“Woman I know you understand
The little child inside of the man
Please remember my life is in your hands”
~ John Lennon, Apology
I’m sorry for each moment that spilled over into oblivion when I feigned presence but I wasn’t fully present with you.
I was fantasizing about an ideal future or past, a project, a distant landscape. I slipped away off on an adventure I’d only seen in dreams. That was innocent enough. The travesty is that I thought you wouldn’t notice. I underestimated your keen powers of perception.
It wouldn’t have been the first time.
I apologize for those times when I felt the word “love” rise up in my throat and I swallowed it, enduring the ache, masking it with an odd gesture or an awkward grin. I broke our contract of vulnerability wherein I promised to accept you in the depth of each moment.
I didn’t make this promise lightly, and yet I lightly let it go in deep moments. We go deeper, you and I, than most. Deeper than the wine-soaked mystics; deeper than the ax penetrating the heartwood.
There were contracts that scared me away. I’m sorry for those. Vows and resolutions mowed over the warrior in me.
I could kill a hundred men on a battlefield but I couldn’t sit next to you and vow not to wander in body, spirit, heart.
I wanted to be entwined with you on one level and not another. I was still a child. I’m sorry.
When the ocean of life was pounding me with fierce beauty, I fearfully escaped into you. I didn’t realize that it was you who had been pounding me with fierce beauty, and the escape was going deeper, into a sacred space at the center of the pain. The liminal spaces that link moment to moment.
The fallacy was that I thought that each moment that I lived in love I was delivered from life. Instead of realizing that each moment outside of love, I was skirting the edge of life, as a silent witness to the affair.
There is no running from what we are, who we are, where we are.
I apologize for the moments that I loosed my grip on that reality.
Sometimes I allowed culture’s commercial sermons to keep me at the surface of you, instead of plunging into the depths, where your real beauty, your raw beauty is unleashed. The sermon advised me that aging was not natural, lines should be obliterated, hair peeled away, body flushed and bleached, bronzed with electric sun. We keep you around until you age and then usher you aside to lurk in the shadows, gazing longingly into a hand mirror and lamenting lost youth. A part of a woman only grows more beautiful with age. A part that is more than the whole.
I apologize for how blind we were.
There were times when I praised the spirit of the goddess and shirked away from the flesh. This was a convoluted paradigm. I hadn’t yet learned that our beautiful bodies are the expression of spirit.
For those times, I apologize.
When I held you, shuddering, in your courage or in your shame, I put balm on your wounds. My mind scoured the depths of healing traditions for remedies. I thought of how the warrior in me might avenge you; the tailor in me might repair your tattered hem; the mechanic in me might repair your vehicle.
I might have simply held you, cherished you, understood you, loved you.
There were moments when the gap between our gender seemed like a vast canyon—a veritable abyss. I didn’t realize that those were the moments when our essences were flowing together. Instead I got the urge to run, or to seek out another who’s eyes danced in moonlight in a slightly different way. Perhaps another where the canyon was slightly less wide, or not quite as deep.
For the moments when I tried to flee from your emotional deluge, or tried to hide from your maternal graces; for the moments when I loved you and I could have loved you more, I wrote this.
I learned about sex very young, and not from reliable sources. The idea of sacred sex was mystical and foreign. For my awkwardness during the learning curve, the endless arc of my evolution from flesh into spirit and back again, I wrote this.
I love you more than you know. I am not afraid to admit that I need you.
Once I cried and I dried the tear before you saw. This was before I realized that tears are sacred spiritual healing. I’m sorry I didn’t share that healing moment with you. I didn’t even share it with myself. I merely stomped the life out of it before it could grow fruit.
I’m forever speechless, forever in your debt, forever in awe of you; of the mystical thing you are, the way you create and nurture your beauty and mine; the way you see through the veil to what is; the way you, oh so tenderly, revel in the soft crushing pain.
I’ll not let go lightly. Not this time. This time I stand in my power, and allow you to stand in yours, a perfectly imperfect mirror of one another.
Thank you Jeff Brown for inspiration in Apologies to the Divine Feminine.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Author: Steven Budden
Apprentice Editor: Kim Haas, Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Stephen Brace via Flickr.