Poetry of Stephanie Bennett Henry

I Miss Me

I really miss you, in case you didn’t know. I miss the way you used to smile, like nothing bad could ever touch you, the way I could see the passion reach out from your heart, through your eyes and just take hold of the world like every day had a new sky you were seeing for the first time. I miss the way you were the life of the party, always making everyone laugh, and how your spirit was a magnet for every color I’ve ever seen. Even the ocean wanted to be the one to get close enough to touch you, hoping maybe it could hold you long enough to carry you and just maybe… some of your magic would spill out and let the sea drink in every scar that made you so strong, let the wind carry the softness that put music in your song. You used to say, everything that ever made you fall or cry or break were the things that had to happen so that you could become unbreakable, unshaken, and unapologetic for the strength you carried like a medal no one could dare pry out of your hands. You said you used to be ashamed of all the times you had to rip out your own spine, plunge hard into rock bottom and crack wide open across every sharp edge of your own heart just to learn how to crawl out, grab every piece that ever made you bleed, and use the pieces to build a whole new universe that cannot crumble. I miss you. As fierce as you always were, you did crumble… and I’ve never seen you stay down this long. I am watching the ocean, checking the horizon, looking for flames or any signal at all that you are crawling out soon. That you are just resting a little longer before you reach up to grab every piece you can use to stand on until it becomes unbreakable, unshaken, and so unapologetic for the medal you carry, the universe you build, and every flag you fly that was once a scar. I’m waiting. I miss you. I’m watching the sun every time it rises, every time it sets… I’m watching the sky to see you again… where you used to say, face forward, eyes toward the sky, whole heart opened so much, every beat plays a song that you were saving for a rainy day. I am waiting for your storm, any flash that looks like your lightning, counting every second to hear your thunder. I’m waiting for you to come back and say, you can stay down as long as you want, hurt as much as you need to, cry as hard as you want, because the sky always could use another lesson on falling to teach everything how to grow from breaking open, spilling every single thing you ever knew, and losing it, so you can get it back again and appreciate it more.

I know what it’s like to lose it all… I am waiting for you to come back, unshaken, unharmed… anything at all.. so I can help you build another universe… where the lights are on, the music never stopped playing, and the sky is waiting to tell the ocean how it learned to shine from your smile…. I miss you. How you taught me to love every version of myself and let go when it was time… the way you showed me how to wear my whole heart in my eyes and the way a smile can change everything… the way you taught me how to land inside the breaking, touch every edge until I learned the lesson in every wound enough to survive any fall. I’m still here…. waiting for me to come back. I’m still here, watching for you… to get up, bring me my own spine, and every piece I lost on the way down… so we can crack wide open, stand on every edge that ever made us bleed.. I miss me. Never thought I’d miss any part of myself I lost, but I do. I miss you. I’m waiting here, holding my softness like a song without music, checking the sky for my name, listening for my thunder… waiting for the sky to break open and teach me how to grow by losing everything I’ve ever known… including myself. I miss me. I’ll wait under the storm, cry it out as long as I need to, until I’m ready to stand up, shake my spirit back to life, pry the medal back from the hands of the flames, and burn without being sorry for the way I shine. Even when I’m broken, I’m unbreakable. Even when we’re broken, we’re unbreakable. Let’s go. The spirit never cracks. Bring your pieces home; we have universes to build, where the lights stay on, even in the dark, so we never lose ourselves again. I’m holding a new sky for you and it never has to break again to show us how to grow; we know, and every flag we fly that was once a scar just became a shooting star. Make a wish on me. I’ll make a wish on you. We always do come true.

-Stephanie Bennett-Henry


2 thoughts on “I Miss Me”

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