We are so cautious around one another,
socialized to pretend politeness when all it really is — is distance.
We are unprepared for rejection,
for the raw experience of intensity,
not knowing what to do with interest,
inexperienced in receiving,
we attach stories to human connection,
to the natural wanting and needing to be seen and reflected by someone.
We avoid touch and gaze to avoid the stories,
the awkwardness of not knowing,
or the fear of expectation.
We suspect we are not deserving,
that we are not enough of a person to give ourselves.
We hide our gifts, our presence, our true essence for fear,
or out of habit,
“When someone special comes along, then I’ll show myself to them, then I’ll give them me. For, who else will really see me without running away in fear? Who else will see my demons and not punish me for them?”
We save ourselves, our richness, our honey,
for ghosts that never come.
And we miss each other.
Again, and again.
We miss the spark,
the soul food,
Instead of landing in soft, uncovered hearts,
we bump into each other’s hard edges.
Because all we do is we protect ourselves.
And all we see is each other’s shields.