Poem: After Diligently Searching for Good, Sad Songs

I am so sick of songs about love,
Treating it like a puppy that doesn’t make messes
Or a gemstone no soot-coughing miner 
Had to pry from the guts of the earth.
Love is a roiling thunderhead
With flashing power and shadowy edges.

Love can go so easily wrong—
Demanding perfection,
Masking manipulation,
Destroying its object 
(That no one might have it)
Or casing it in amber 
(That nothing might change it.)

Even when it is true,
Love binds and breaks,
Wearies and demands,
Casts our failures in harsh relief
And breaks the dam on a river of tears.

“God is love”—
With all the transcendent mystery,
The holy terror,
The fiery judgment, and
The bleeding incarnation that requires. 

Let us revel in the rain,
Life-giving nourishment and delight,
But never treat it like some insubstantial mist.
We must open our arms to the deluge
Though it batters us and carries us away.