you don’t

You don’t feel close here
in this empty room,
bare walls, bare space.
I look around, feel
the weight of absence
—where are you?
And the friends who loved
me, fought beside me?
Victory we knew was ours?
Someday, someday my
hands reach to grasp yours
and I am surely hold-
ing only air. Yet
I’m learning to trust
this heart, its opinions,
the weight of its beauty—
strength, glory with you.
For surely, you clear
the room—we two side
by side, your presence
filling all emptiness
‘til it is crammed,
crammed with love even
though there is no one,
no one but you and
me here.

—jennifer j. camp

i will not despise her

I will not despise her no matter what you say. She is lovely, her heart what he holds in his hands, Her voice a song he created, every word a note he loves to hear. She is a masterpiece– exquisite, incomparable, indestructible fragile-strong. He calls her Pure, his True One, and she cannot be replaced

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how she finds him

It is when she thinks she is alone that she finds him. A flutter of wings outside the window, a caress of wind on her cheek, a warm hello from the wheelchaired man in his garage. I am not complicated; my love for you is not complicated, he says. And the untangling begins —a whisper,

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hold this hand

Hold this hand calloused, tired and grasping, grasping at this hard air slipping through fingers that want to hold on onto anything anything that feels real. They catch nothing, hold nothing, hold nothing I want to keep. So catch me catch me, as I drift without tether. Turn my face so my eyes meet yours.

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i never thought

I never thought it would look like this, where time with you was just pretend, a waiting, a pacing, an ache of busy. There is something I’m missing and I’m afraid I won’t find it. So I stopped looking before I started. And that is when pretending is painful. —jennifer j. camp

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the messy beautiful

Father, my mind cannot grasp your greatness. I read your Word, your many feats–how you advocate for us, and my mind, my self-absorption, my pride, makes me focus on myself–my small problems, my small worries and cares. Your ways are good. You see beyond what I can see. You pursue justice. You ask us what

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lying is no way to impress anyone

I dreamt last night. And in the dreaming I was lying, manipulating. It was a group setting–people I know from different parts of my life–and we were each asked to share what it means to us to be vulnerable. People shared. And they were honest, authentic. Their very act of sharing was a beautiful example of vulnerability. Not hiding. Not pretending. Not faking. Peeling back layers of the heart to reveal the naked beautiful truth underneath.

Yes, it was beautiful.

Specifically, we were asked to share times in high school and in college when we demonstrated vulnerability. And in the dream, I am panicking. I not only want to be vulnerable; I want to do a rock-star job of being vulnerable. And what is so weird is that, in the dream–rather than confessing truth (and actually being vulnerable); I share lies.

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