Release

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The sky was cloudless that September morning
when my father found me,
hands behind his back,
twinkle in his eye
I looked up from my pile of dirt and weeds and held out my hands
“What is it?”
I demanded with a pout.
He only smiled before pulling out the exquisite kite,
placing it in my grubby fingers
shades of deep purple streaked with lavender and gold
and a tail crafted from yards of ribbon and lace
a breathtaking piece of beauty amidst my grime
I jumped and laughed
grabbed hold of my kite and began to run
I ran as fast and as hard as I could
threading inches of twine through my fingers
Release the purple kite higher and higher toward that cloudless sky
And daddy’s eyes twinkled
Why did he love to give me such extravagant presents?

A few months later he stopped in to check on my magnificent flying contraption
My results were something les than spectacular
ribbons trailing the ground
A beautiful invention meant to soar
lay crumpled at my feet
Oh father . . .
And he walked over and placed his hands on mine
I looked up, questions in my eyes
How had I managed to ruin this gift so quickly?
Patiently he let out the twine,
“You’ve got to release.”
he whispered
“You’ve got to let go,
you’re choking the life out of it—
holding onto it so tightly
as if it were me.
I gave you gifts to soar through sun-breathed skies
but they’ll never fly if
you’re holding on so tightly.
You’ve got to release.”

I try it—
reach out my hand,
link my fingers through his
while the kite strings brush the fingers of my other hand
and suddenly the kite takes off.

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