Listen. There are stories that glisten. Stories like the ones stinging my eyelids – you would never see them until I pull them off with my fingers, until I grip my pen. Stories stitched to my tongue, stories you would never hear of if I do not break the walls of my mouth.
Like I do now.
I break the walls for the sake of your stories. There are stories in you too. Stories in your breath, in your arms, in your lungs, tales waiting to be told. Beneath your feet, there are stories of mud and thorns threatening you – stories you would never overcome if you don’t know what you own.
What do you own? You own the power in your palm – a power that weaves galaxies with just the tongue. A power that pacifies storms and makes parallel lines meet.
In God’s storylines, parallel lines meet. Unclench your fists and let them unfold. God’s storylines are perfect, regardless of the circumstances- parallel lines stretching themselves out to mock your faith. God’s storylines are perfect, regardless of mockery, sneering and pressures from people who see parallel lines alone.
The power I speak of is not the power of your bare fingers; it is a power from above deeply engraved into your palm. Your fingers alone cannot craft good stories. People who do not understand God’s storylines will pressure you to create yours with your fingers or tamper with God’s storylines using human wisdom. These stories usually seem smooth, logical and unparallel but then no matter how hard our fingers try crafting stories of broader horizons and smooth paths, they end up half-honey, half-ash.
Half-honey, half-ash. This is why you should never feel your neighbour’s story is better than your own: most times, when you compare storylines, you only notice half: the honey not the ash. Relax. You do not run the same race. You do not wear the same shoes. Different shoe sizes do not make you lame or inferior.
This is where we miss it in our stories: we think the storylines God etches onto our palms are not good enough. And so instead of spreading our palms out for these lines, we toss them aside and begin to scratch the earth with our nails like ordinary people, eventually behaving like earthworms, dragging our bellies against the mud, twisting and turning, waiting for a filling, searching for meaning, longing for healing, waling and banging doors we have the key to. We dig the mud for answers that lie within us. And when the mud corrupts our skins and spreads to our palms, browning the storyline of God, we raise our palms to heaven, pleading for solutions already engraved onto our palm.
Unclench your fists so you can weave galaxies with your tongue. Stretch your palms out and let the thorns fall, do not conceal them or hide wounds behind fake flashy smiles. Do not stitch rags to your body, trying to cover the mud from your mistakes.
God’s storyline is still in your palm, waiting to be traced again.
Somebody once called me the prince of metaphors and imagery. Another person asked me why my poems do not rhyme. I think of it now and smile. One of my favourite poets once wrote, “If the streets of heaven are golden, then God’s feet should glitter.”
The question is, if God’s feet glitter, do our feet glitter too, since we are in his image? Who benefits from the golden feet? Is it the angels- beings full of light already? Is it the clouds full of sunlight? Or the earth, his footstool?
It is the earth. But the gold doesn’t just fall. We have the power to choose. We can choose to see mud beneath our feet. We can choose to see gold instead. We can choose to accept the storylines engraved into our palms or craft woeful ones with our fingers. Your feet are golden. They should be the kind that outsiders admire – they should notice a difference and ask for your source. Your feet should then lead them to your fountain, your source – God! God is not a tap, he is an everlasting fountain that wipes off mud from our skins when we draw close, a fountain that quenches our thirst when we break the walls of our mouth.
However, it’s our choice to break the walls.
There are stories stinging my eyelids –tales you would never see until I pull them off with my fingers. Stories stitched to my tongue, begging that I break the walls of my mouth.
Like I did now.