The Angel on my Shoulder

by - June 13, 2011

Her ghost is the angel on my shoulder, a sweet shadow that slips around my consciousness and begs me to forever hold her memory against the beating of my heart.  She hangs, suspended there on the edge of my peripheral, and I remember her in uncharted moments of weary almost-sleep or unguarded contemplations on the moon.  "I would be seven now..." her whisper carries along the yellow-dash highway as we weave home through midnight darkness and I try to catch her and hold her like I never could but she is always and forever beyond my finger tips - a breath away.

I can feel her - this angel of mine - in rhythms of wind or in patterns of clouds, her breath on my cheek as she showers me in oceans of forgiveness and I wish for nothing but a chance to smell her hair - to catch it's gold in my fingers - to weave it with my love.

I am left with nothing but my fervent faith in a heaven.

She knows how I tried to hold her.  How, when the moment came, I curled myself around her, swaddled her in prayers and tears, tightened against the pain that captured what makes me a woman - and still she was stolen from me, exiled from this safety meant to be her home, there beneath the heart that had for her all the love in the world.

I search for her in sudden moments of panic, leaving the store and I can't find the fourth, head counts in the park...One...Two...Three...Have you seen my daughter?  There will always be a hole where she would stand.  Every pair of shoes the little one wears should first have saved her feet from rocks and thistles.  Hand-me-downs should be stained because she spilled her ice cream there.

And she comes upon me in warm breezes and washes blame from me in wind-whispers and though I miss her with the power of a freight train I am eternally thankful for this vision of her in perfect love suspension, knowing nothing but a smile so saturated in sweetness and grace.

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