1.

Dolphins.

Grey broad backs rising clean and wet out of the water. Gentle. At home. Just themselves. Graceful.

Seeing them makes me want to cry. I almost do.

Verdict: Beautiful.

2.

The mangled thing inside my chest, like crooked pieces of machinery, the gears and rods that make my heart beat.

Crushed and left to hang, barely together, by a giant’s apathetic fist.

The hollow is silent, empty.

I don’t work anymore.

Verdict: Broken.

3.

The soft way the brisk seawater foams and fizzles around my legs.

Delicate white infrastructure, poofy, like sponge cake or dandelion thistles blown in the wind.

I love the sound it makes, evaporating. I love the friendly hissing of a wave’s end, contentedly resigned to having reached its limit and crashed into little things, small ripples where children’s feet play, pretending to be horses.

I remember.

The ocean doesn’t feel sad, or angry. It doesn’t know. It just is.

Verdict: Beautiful.

4.

Looking back at my footsteps in the sand, seeing them alone, just imprints, fast disappearing.

I remember a time when I could look back and see two sets of toe prints, wet on slate, one bigger, the other smaller, the one following the other, sometimes first, sometimes second. Or dirty footprints, coal black on quiet, echoing tile halls. Always together.

Lonely feet. It didn’t use to be this way.

I like to close my eyes and pretend it isn’t. But sometimes the comfort hurts too much.

Verdict: Broken.

5.

And lastly (and yet), the sunrise–magenta, whole, clear and glowing, round.

Rising as if steadily pulled by a transparent string on a strong arm from beneath the ocean and into the pale purple morning sky.

The ocean is calm in breathing, respectful greeting. All is right.

The clouds mirror the rising glory’s brilliance, like small, happy cotton balls pulled out, stretched, misted glass to grace the exchanging of the moon.

Verdict: Beautiful.

I watch, and I (Verdict:) am Broken. Somehow together, the sunrise and I, are broken and beautiful. The tired, hopeful, bleeding thing inside determinedly beats its wee, shattered wings in miniature flurries, trying to break free and reach the home, the countersoul it has lost, although its cage is itself, an impossible prison.

Yet that small hollow shines, with good and beautiful gone-by’s, preserved in full as long as the little bird’s wings keep beating, no matter how crushed. No matter how alone.

I have found that all beautiful things now make me want to cry. Sometimes I do.

I guess, can this mean, maybe I am beautiful, and broken, too.