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Hinge of the Year


The hinge of the year hangs huge, over my head

It is discolored from age

it skims my hair, expelling rusty flakes 

that float down, coat my face.

The hinge of the year is here.

I dangle from its  edge–

what has come before

what will happen next. 

The hinge of the year is here

wide open, gaping,

inconceivably huge, immeasurable.

I am small underneath it.


So much wears down.

So much breaks. 

My bedroom door frame is fissured with cracks

the soles of my shoes have grown so smooth 

that I slide on the wet

land on my face on the sidewalk.

The good news–

I chipped 2 teeth but did not break my nose–

so much breaks.


So much wears down.

The hinge of the year is rusty with age

and I worry it will crumble as it closes.

So much wears down, so much breaks.

I am broken this year,  

I am broken right now as I watch the hinge swing open.

I am lost.

This year I am shocked and surprised

when the hinge appears, swings open.

I forgot it.

I forgot it would come

or I smudged its existence from my mind.

I gaze up, unnerved. Disturbed. Uneasy.


We must forgive ourselves.

I must forgive myself for not noticing the hinge, not caring

not preparing or reflecting

not praying

not calling, not cooking.

My brain is stuffed with dates and results and and meetings

I wish it was empty. 

I wish I could open a plug hole and drain my brain

I wish I could cast it all away.


The hinge of the year hangs huge, over my head.

I forgive it for showing up, 

aggravating me, prodding me

year after year after year.

I forgive it for taking up space.

I forgive it for rusting, for aging.


I do not like the open-hinged season

it has always made me uncomfortable.

This year it is more than just a prodding annoyance.

I try to repair, to do my job

as it pokes and needles us to reflect

to do as we are bidden, to do the deep work

to reflect on what has come before, what will come after.

The hinge prods us to set our intentions–

only 10 days till it swings shut, groaning all the way.


The hinge of the year hangs huge, over my head

ancient, weary, stunning, strange, spectacular.


I forgive the hinge for appearing and disappearing every year

I forgive it for taking up space, 

for opening wide, for swinging shut.

I forgive it for aging, for rusting.

I forgive its fragility, 

I forgive the hinge for being so close to crumbling

like I am.

I forgive it for being

I forgive it

I forgive.

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