T R A I L S

She carried the vestiges of a smile
It seemed she’d missed a spot
Forgotten as she stopped to read
The adhesive verse on the wall

“That’s beautiful, I’m Catholic,”

She said as she turned to me
Not a question but a moment
That would qualify me as more
Alike than I initially appeared

She paused revealing curiosity
Seconds passed as I stared
Into her eyes, determining the
Response that would encourage
Her to feel most at home

“Me too,” I replied with a smile.

A perceptible sigh escaped
She returned the smile and
Continued looking around at
The words on the walls

It wasn’t technically a lie
Nor was it technically true
It was the squeezing place
The space we sometimes
Move in

So that others might feel they
Have a safe place to visit

Though it is the only religion
To honor me by water
It is not the water I bathe in

We are best honored by a thirst
That has no boundaries
Quenched by a faith that
Has no words that walls
Can hold

So “Me too” is not a movement
Of survival, so much as it is
A statement of surrender
To the idea of exclusion


A palm that quickly wipes away a trail of tears will on occasion leave residue behind. When we look upon the face of another to find those spots accompanying their smile, it is our cue to take whatever moment is gifted, to follow the trail and hold them in our presence, as if they had wiped nothing away at all.