Hi there! Welcome back to the pink room. Grab a seat, get comfortable… we might be here for a little while.
I have been doing a lot of writing lately. And the other day while I was sitting in a coffee shop, I had been trying to write. At some point early in my attempts, I got distracted by a conversation happening a few feet across from me. I won’t revisit the details of this coffee-shop conversation I overheard from the mouths of two middle-aged white men in the middle of liberal suburbia USA. But I will tell you how it felt. How my body tightened as if desperate to hold on to itself. As if she knew, those words, on a Tuesday morning, in the mouths of men I did not know, desired nothing more than to deconstruct me. To pull me into so many pieces that I would soon forget what it felt like to be whole.
I don’t move. Like I lose the ability of mobility. My tongue loses its elasticity and sits there silently. Head down. Trying my best to only mind business that’s mine. But isn’t my casual destruction by men I do not know my own business? No matter. I refuse to look up, to scream, to stare down the men who make my existence a game of whack-a-mole. No. Instead, I try. I try once again. To still a heart that started sprinting in a world championship race. To force lungs, afraid, to empty at a reasonable pace. To ignore a stomach so hollow it started eating itself. I wonder if this is what it must feel like to turn into stone.
Even so, I have learned to grow compassionate to this tightening. Knowing even my organs need a hug sometimes and my muscles can be desperate. I had only come to do a little work. Maybe journal a bit on love. I remember even now the exact grip I demanded of my fingers so as not to let go of that pen. To write what I came to write. To forget that words could be as deadly as life-giving. But my words, which started in my bones and then buried themselves in the heaviness of my chest, well, my words began to rebel against my pen. And soon they were writing a story of their own. This is the story they wrote…
How do we live together well? I mean when there are lovers. And jealousy. and envy. and hate. Violent self-delusion. Power-hungry and sadistic addiction. To play God. To be divine. All of me wishes I could snap a finger and return to the garden. That all this violence… all this vitriol and oppressive systems were just part of one long and desperate nightmare. But when we finally open our eyes, we are lying in a garden. God walks by and she smiles tenderly.
“What child did you dream of”, she whispers.
Oh, nothing really. It was terrifying though. Our bodies enslaved and our very existence regulated, my brothers, using pleasure instead as forms of violent power and domination, family de-creating itself in ships and coffee shops. Oh, nothing. I whisper. A world where they chained you against a tree and rejoiced as you swallowed your last breath. I was scared, no, terrified that they were right. That you died. That all we had left were pictures. Pictures of a divine that looked nothing like my face.
God. God. Are you okay? Creator, are those tears? God, don’t worry it was only a dream, I say.
And there, right in the middle of that Garden, God grieved. Divine wept. and wept. washing all of the pain and blood like ocean waves. The God of the universe wept for a nightmare. And next thing I know I am weeping too. My body seemed to have been waiting centuries for this moment. And together, God and I wept. God and I wept for the world of my nightmares. We wept and wept and soon everyone who lie in that garden was weeping too. And so I decided to tell God at that moment when the whole garden smelled like salt water. I told him that they used to talk about a place like this. They used to describe it with all that beauty and pain could muster. But you know they had been convinced that there would be no more tears.
And as the last word fell down and off my tongue, suddenly and without warning divine laughed. He laughed. and laughed. All three persons laughed so loudly, the clouds and trees began to laugh along too. And so we spent the rest of eternity, laughing. Until suddenly God’s mouth closed and their eyes began to flutter. And we all fell into a deep and profound slumber. Naked and eyes closed in a garden that held a multitude. We slept. and slept. And even now, you can still find God sleeping peacefully alongside all those image-bearers in a garden meant for eternity.
Okay, that’s all from me folks. See you here again real soon!