She has a //choice// to make
[[guard|guard her heart with her life]]
[[be brave|offer it]]I am a fortress—strong and impenetrable. I am steadfast and built to last, thick thighs like red oak tree trunks, meant to //keep me standing tall.//
You-— read: //I//— do not know what to do with a heart as delicate as this except keep it safe from cracks and fissures because it is too perfect to be broken. Not when the rest of me weathers all manner of storms, all manner of fire, all manner of disruption but this part can
[[break]]Now let’s imagine for a second that she decides to take a leap of faith, praying to Oya, Oshun and Yemaya that she does not fall.
Let’s imagine that she bundles her heart in a handmade quilt and places it in a woven basket, ready to gently set it in the river, with the hope that the water carries it to safety.
And let’s forget for a moment that she believes the only safe place to guard it is within her.
Let’s imagine that somewhere, someone or something is able and willing to protect this heart with their dying breath.
Someone finds her heart, bundled in a handmade quilt and placed in a woven basket, trapped in the reeds at the edge of the river.
And they recognize it for what it is.
They have two choices: [[break]] ''OR'' [[cherish]]The heart slips from between their fingers and shatters into a million ruby pieces, some burrowing into the ground, others slinking away into the river to be carried away and never found again.
And her heart will never be whole again.They leave the heart in its protective capsule, carry it home and place it on the bed while they fashion a leather pouch that will go around their neck, and that can hold the heart next to their own, and perhaps they will beat in unison.
And some time later, when she finds the two hearts, nestled together and beating as one, [[she could never take it back]].
//this// is what it is to be