Once I was promised the world. I was a child, and I believed it. But time and money, abuse and a parent’s weakness, took the world. Taught me how to play hide and seek in my mind, made me forget how to exist inside of my body. As and adult, I have become a magnet for the unreliable and capricious. Can you keep no promises, my friends? Promise me everything or promise me the smallest of things. The pattern is clear, and prior grief has taught me nothing, for I cannot escape my own ill-considered faith every time. My walls are so high but I consistently fail to lock the gate. And, my, my given word is without reproach, promises made are not to be taken lightly, all of them, large or small. I have given my word and may be taken at it death and circumstances beyond human control alone can take me from it. Don’t you know? Our word is all we have, our loyalty is what defines us. Promises, promises. A child whose trust was broken and rebroken it is a miracle or an overcompensation that I want so badly to trust that I want with such desperation to believe. Stop. Hand me no lightly given promises, tell me no lies. If you cannot do it, say so. If you would not do it, speak true. If you never intend to come through or even try, say nothing. Make no promises, so we don’t both have to live with your lies.