Clay Vessel

The clay I blended wasn't good quality. Quickly grabbed, easily on hand, I made what I intended to be a beautiful, enduring, sturdy vessel for my love. Perhaps, because the materials were slapped together, or because the creation wasn't fired in any kiln of time and trial, my clay vessel couldn't withstand lack of maintenance.


At first, it held and distributed, collected and protected the fluid of love. Slowly, the collecting ceased as a love drought crept in. The liquid dwindled, yet still I poured it out thinking (hoping really) that it would soon be replenished. When the drought persisted and famine set in, I did not recognize the shift. I’d already grown accustomed to the arid conditions, accepting clouds as hope of rain in love’s stead.
While cracks began quietly dividing the solid sides of love, the base remained firmly fastened so the container stayed connected. Outwardly, my vessel looked lovely, like the shattered glass beneath plexiglass protectants. But dainty hairlines spread and became ragged, jagged drifts between pieces of clay not kept seasoned and properly moisturized.


In attempt –  one desperate last attempt for a refilling, filling in the cracks and dipping into the pool of love – I handed you my frail, poorly fashioned, loosely-connected vessel of love.
I placed my heart and body in your hands, hoping to extract affection to glaze my splintered parts over, offering outer support. Instead of balm, I received a careless drop. You held me long enough to eek out the last of my love, then dropped me. My body flailed and the grip on my love vessel failed, and it fell, splintering into an infinity of irreparable shards.


Even if you had the years of Methuselah and the patience of Job to reunify the once pretty vessel, it wouldn’t be useable. Nor would it be attractive. It would be garish. It would be full of leaks. Best to sweep it all away. Just walk away without keeping even the smallest sliver as a reminder of what was…and is no longer.


Clay grabbed and slabbed

Quickly dried and died.

No water to keep it supple.

No kiln to bind or couple.

Days, months, years lacked maintenance.

Love lost its continuance.

Vessel sides cracked where

Whacked, yet held to the base.

Now, religion has lost face.

You left me displaced.

Love withheld, pushed away

Dropping the ill-formed vessel – nay

Throwing her down to shard

Hopeless on ground so hard.


-Rebekah Layne

In