Hurt is like the turning of a loose screw
into a board left in a damp driveway.
The fish in a flat that faces the sea
and the single mother on the long road,
holding spilled milk to a car seat that bleeds.
Hurt is the worm half-stamped by a heel
worn out and worn in by the late-night shift.
The notification left on just ‘read’.
and the breaking of one’s emoji heart.
It’s the sole tossed over the smallest stain
and the vicious cycle that knocks on bones.
Where boots keep rising to blot out ant hills,
hurt festers like the caked-in clods that cry.
Hope is like the rising of the sun
after the sound of Shiloh’s bell.
The joy at discovering a mislabeled hole
and the rush of resurrected memory.
The voice that fills the most hollow heart
and touch that grasps the most sinking soul.
Hope is the message of more
at a table of less.
And the belief not every day is night,
but can be mended in the ashes.