She is young
and crying with despair.
I want to give her a hug,
to share a mutual hug,
opposite of a hostile shrug
instead of caring with each other,
To cooperatively embrace
recommitted to responsible compassionate health care
I need to ask her permission first
to cross this physical and spiritual boundary
between older and younger,
male and female,
employer and employee,
To ask her if she would feel obligated
to take care of my need to reach out
and reassure her we are in this life together,
Or could she freely say,
Not right now?
Without guilt or concern that taking care of me
could or should be more important
than taking care of herself,
her wounded past,
her coping skills protecting self-esteem
against sometimes smothering needs of others
wanting to be fed,
especially authority figures
too often invested in Win/Lose games
rather than Win/Win compassionate therapies.
now is not a proper time to ask,
When she is in emotional distress.
Could she freely receive or deny an invitation
to mutual embrace?
For reassurance we will not be broken by this,
and perhaps this is an opportunity to grow together,
mutually healed by solidarity,
mutual access, physical and spiritual,
with cooperative boundaries yet to be responsibly explored
through more robust compassion.
I wish I could be free to ask her
if we might share a co-redemptive hug
rather than lurking in the wings of this chronic crisis stage
with only her tears
and my box of tissues
to speak how much we care
for a better tomorrow
rather than continuing too defensively apart.