I’m between dreams, mind processing in bits and pieces my recent experiences. It is the liminal space. I hear him, sandal scraping lightly on stone that isn’t there.
“Is it ok to be here?”
I turn from the dough I’m suddenly kneading.
“You’ve never asked, before.”
“I’ve never been so uncertain of being welcome”
“Dear boy, I will always keep a place for you, here.”
I open my arms and he walks into the embrace like coming home. We’re like that. The love I have for this benighted man is deep and abiding. I may not worship him, but I weep for him all the same.
“I was worried. You’re angry, and hurt…”
“Dearheart, I don’t blame you for what those fools do in your name. I know you too well. Come and have a cup of tea and some toast with honey.”
“I can’t stay long - there’s so much to do, so much to make right, so much wrong done in my name…”
He falters, distressed.
“Joshua, there’s no time, here. There’s only now.”
“Is that Irish butter?”
“Of course. And honey from a friend’s hives.”
He sits next to me on the padded window seat that just became, and I pour him tea and give him toast with butter and honey. He leans on me with a sigh.
“Why won’t my people listen to me? How did they stray so far from my message?“
“Oh, honey…” I wrap an arm around him - it never hurts or is frozen when he’s near - and give a squeeze “I don’t think they ever heard you in the first place.”
“Look at how they behave and tell me I’m wrong.”
He can’t meet my eyes. He knows. They’ve taken the beautiful gifts he’s given them and twisted everything around until it is thorny and slicing, and they’re trying to wrap the world in this perversion of his grace and call it love.
“I think maybe it’s going to get ugly out there in the world, Joshua. You come here whenever you want. Never fear - this Witch will always welcome you.”
Eventually we stand up. One more hug, and I kiss his brow just like a mama kisses her child, offering comfort and benediction. He gives me that sweet smile and fades away with a sigh. I notice he took the rest of the toast with honey and grin as I slip into my next dream.