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For my Beloved: I am Water

By Brook Bhagat

'Water Lilies' by Claude Monet

I am woman. I am as soft as spring rain, coming in the evening on your aching fields like the answer to the prayer you need so bad you are afraid to whisper it. I can love you like a child, nourishing you to your roots; I settle silently, deeper and deeper as I fall. I am as thunderless as an open hand, seeping down to the cold, dry depths that have been hurting so long you got used to it, the earth so tight and hard it has forgotten that it is not a stone, has forgotten that it holds the tender roots of life in its grasp. My touch awakens you, softens you, reminds you that winter was only a season, not who you are. Your nature is to grow, and I was yours even before I left the clouds.

I am a winding brook, babbling with joy through ordinary days, alive with meaningless divine delight. You are my riverbed, holding me and letting me run free at the same time, listening to the jokes I can’t laugh at alone. We are a home, tickling tadpoles safe in shallow eddies cupped lazily by grassy banks, welcoming the bare feet of children on sunny days. I tumble gently over your stones, smooth after years of my caress, soft with moss of the deepest green; I know your colors, your feel better than I know myself, yet at your core you hold the untouchable mystery of your existence, elements born in the bellies of stars and carried by billions of light-years to this moment.

I don’t know who you are and I don’t know who I am—I am formless, eternal, running blind to oceans I can’t fathom. I am afraid to know what I love to forget—that I am not, that I am just a process, a happening like lightning or evaporation, like the sea mist that rises fearlessly in the morning light, not pretending, not clinging to what it thought it used to be. All I know is that alone we are silence and together we are music; all I know is that you are my path, and all I can do is trust that when we reach the ocean, we will burn and rise together, realizing as we surrender and become the sky that we have been one all along.

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