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For Orlando, my heart

For Orlando, my heart

I got up this morning to make bread and water the plants. I retrieved the dough from the refrigerator, shaping it onto a peel with flour and salt, numbly. I filled the watering can six or seven times, watching the water swirl and puddle around the planter boxes. Then I sat on the couch with my dog, waiting for the oven to preheat, slowly starting to read the news again, on this third painful day.

Everything is gray right now. Everything is bitter and hard to swallow. I miss my friends. I wish I could run to New York and California, where many of the people I love and care about are living. I wish I could attend a Pride event, and hug each of them, and each of you, and get lost in the moment of escape that hug would provide.

I feel sick this morning, for the third day in a row. Sick at the loss of life. Sick at the fear. Sick at the hate language I hear at work while people throw around terms like “Islamic radicals,” claiming all muslims are terrorists. As I argue with the senselessness, I think of my friends and professors from college, from grad school – Muslims and Christians and Jews and atheists – people I care about dearly, people I would so much rather be around than the bigot I sit across from, pleading with.

But this morning, I hold my dog and eat my bread and water my plants. I yearn, from the South. And I think of every single one of you.

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