Jaz Persing is a writer, singer, and human living in Los Angeles. She works in television when she can. The rest of the time she’s just looking for a dare-to-be-great situation, hoping she can put a good dent in the world with the mess of broken love, vulnerability, and words she has. In the meantime, she’s immensely grateful for God and the many good people around her that make it all seem feasible.

To My Love, On the Eve of the Solar Eclipse

Tonight, before the sun and moon collide, be advised
I wholly love you
To the clattering edges of my psyche
 
Spinning revolutions without end, back to you
And your arms that encircle too briefly
But too briefly
Paralyzes, consumes, even while I dwell in their nest
Catastrophizing
Forgetting to ask you
Forgetting to know you
Sitting two miles away painting
Your archetype into tragedy instead
How neatly dramatic
 
Forgive me. 
 
I didn’t know then
That good love never makes good narrative
I painted you broad-stroked mean and magic
Missing the profundity
Of your unfinished second glass
The specific symphony of your spic and span
The plants you kept alive until they comprised a garden
You can care for living things
And I have been one of them
 
Forgive me.
 
I’m just now waking up out of the fog
That kept me from regarding my palette plainly
I didn’t see how few colors dot the wood
And how narrowly I worship some lines
When I claim to have washed all division away
Fear has me painting with eclipse glasses on
So that only in the space you gave us
Could I see a glimpse of your rainbow
Blinding in brilliant broken glory
Breaking through
 
Forgive me.
 
Now I know I must earn my way back
How much time spent unburdening
My chaos to your warm acceptance?
 
And there you were
Always unraveling me into new joys
 
But I was bound down deep
Deeper than you could reach
Knots in my tongue stomach soul
 
They bind me deeper in darkness
Into volumes
Stories I never told you
Reasons echoing back through ages in chains
 
I thought the strong nimble fingers I love
That hold my face to guide us into shared breath
That brushed a thumb along our entwined hands
Under the overpass
Wind rushing
Like it did in the underground tunnel
Where all this began
 
I didn’t see how
You walked near the road
So I wouldn’t
And unspooled your life before me
All I could hear was you going to my head
As I swallowed my words
Words I was sure would break everything
 
I thought your hand in mine would liberate us all.
 
But this chain around my neck
—And maybe yours, though I’m trying not to guess you anymore—
Only releases when I stop pulling
Stop hurrying
Remembering my breath
 
Yes, my chest shakes when I exhale
Yes, a breath becomes a wail
Especially these days
On the eve before the sun goes dark
And the world’s gone mad in record time
 
Still I have to breathe to feel it all
And wait for peace to come
From a well deeper
Than every chasm of my ache that
Sees
Knows
Loves
And I am more than untied
I am free
 
Until I rebind myself
In the spiraling cycles
In the unknown battles ahead
 
I wish I could walk entwined through the fight with you
But I know
There is still much to heal and free ourselves from
 
Each day I untie
Each day I see my darkness still loved
And release, unburden
I see the tapestry of the world open before me
People as I’ve never seen them
Enthralling me
The aged recounting trepidation and memory in shaken tones of glory
The strangers on train cars, strangers no more
The new friends stowed in shops in seaside towns
The overheard overtures
Alive again tenfold
 
And I’m struck by the gift it is
That with each knot untied
Humanity clearer
Stories held dearer
 
And I don’t know how to sing their symphony
To do it any kind of justice
But all I can do is breathe and love
And spill blood and tears on the page
 
I love you right here
In my limited human place
Heart fractured, doubt resurfacing
Hate everywhere
The sun about to darken
But I believe light’s making a comeback
 
My broken love will grow
Inflating my palette until paint’s not enough
And I have to dance, stretching and whirling to giddy delirium
And I have to sing, to the bottom of my lungs gasping
The end of my voice
But not quite
 
Hoping I leave just enough air
To ask you how you are
And who you are
And what are you thinking?
And begin a time
Of loving you freer

Tonic of Melting

Horizon Promise