Plantings

Image courtesy of https://www.mutualart.com/Artwork/Green-grapes-on-the-vine-with-morning-gl/0F474D245DD85FB8
I tire of seeing memes about having a positive attitude and choosing one’s feelings plastered
social media. It is no surprise our young people are in the midst of a mental health crisis when constantly bombarded with messages telling them, in essence, “The only reason you are sad is because you are making the choice to be sad,” or, (one of my favorites for sabotaging anyone’s self esteem) “You have a choice to make your day wonderful or not.” While such simplistic messages are well meaning, I believe they are sometimes extremely toxic. After all, what if your parent died on that day? Did you make the choice to have a horrible day? What if you go home to a toxic abusive environment? How can you choose to make your day wonderful? So before reposting those wonderful positive messages on social media, let’s all take a step back and think about what we are really saying to someone who may be going through something or in an environment where there is no choice in the matter but to feel what he or she feels. Let’s send messages that say it’s okay to feel what you feel and acknowledge it and to take time to feel it all,so something can be gained from it—a lesson, a positive action taken, whatever it may be, so we know our suffering was not for naught. Hence, this piece.

I gathered my despair,

my tears, my losses, all my grief.

Sat with each,

held them close,

let them dry,

waiting for spring.

 

When the ground warms,

softening, ready for tilling,

I will plant my despair,

sow my tears,

plough rows for my losses,

dig a hole deep enough to hold all my grief.

 

In the turning of time,

from the shrubs of my despair,

I will snip flowers and herbs

for healing others.

From the vines of my tears,

I will pluck the fruits and vegetables

to pile upon the table for all who need.

From the fields of my losses,

I will reap the harvest grain

to store for when a time of need arrives.

Finally, from the tree of all I grieve.

I will pick the sweetest fruit

of memory.

 

 

Crumbs

Inspired by this line from Mary Oliver

Feast not too often on meager crumbs of joy,

fallen haphazardly from someone else’s table.
Thinking yourself filled, sated,
you will find yourself crouching, smiling,
lowering your head to be patted by the hand
that cares nothing for you.

Then, when beaten back from the table,
you will scuttle away crouching low,
spirit yielding to fear.
But rise, rise then, standing—
staring eye to eye.
Lift your head and turn,
walk to new horizons.

There, build a table all your own
where you feast wholeheartedly
upon the delightful dishes of joy
you create,
inviting others to share.
Each one partaking in as much joy
as can be held
at your table
where no one
need feast on crumbs.

Endlessness

Image courtesy of Pexels.com

https://godoggocafe.com/2022/06/21/tuesday-writing-prompt-challenge-june-21-2022/

Todays prompt: Begin a poem with “endless”

Endless winds rustling

Through leaves baked a thin crisp green
By summer’s noon sun.

Endless wilting flowers
Reaping words of empty dust
Sands away meaning.

Endless hope sprouts blooms
In the dry cracked refuge of earth
A survival scented thing.

Next time– Get a Dog

pexels-photo dog
You should have gotten yourself a dog.
              No, really.  I mean it.  Instead of chasing me
              Until you caught me.
What you thought you’d found,
When you found me—
And that’s what you wanted me to be—
              A rescued dog—
                             Full of gratitude and loyalty for the perceived rescue.
                             With no record or memory of previous owners,
                                           Ah, an extremely important part.
                             A wagging tail at every word or look from you.
                             Sitting at attention, waiting patiently for you.
                             Desperate for any command you should happen to give.
                             Dutifully complying with each command, each wish
                                           You should ever express.
                             No friends, no family, no loves.  No needs
                                           Other than you and to serve you.
 
That is what you wanted
That is what you needed—
              In your own words—
                             To be my number one at all times.
                             After all, no one would love me better.
                             No one would give me a better home,
                             As you so lovingly liked to remind me.
                            
 
Next time get a dog.
She’ll feed your ego better.

Dreaming of You

Medusa

Image from lostgirlmyths.wikia.com

I dreamed of you the other night.
A dream in color and complete.
We both know I rarely remember dreams.
But this one I awoke from—fresh
With that it felt so real feeling.
Imagine my surprise
when I realized
this dream hadn’t dripped from reality.

We sat, it seemed, at some café
In Dallas or Houston,
Or perhaps, we were strolling
The streets of Provincetown,
Walking across the Golden Gate,
Hiking some trail up a Colorado mountain,
Riding the subway of Manhattan,
Driving the traffic jams of Baltimore or
Los Angeles. Perhaps, we watched the whales
Out on the Pacific or maybe it was the Atlantic.
For in the dream, the background shifted like
A chalk drawing on the pavement in a rainstorm,
The colors bleeding, fading, sliding into one another
The way we used to do.

The place doesn’t matter, in the grand scheme
And all, of any such dream.
You talked away as you always did,
Leaving me no room to breathe
Or even catch enough air to say a word,
Squeezing the freedom from my soul.
Your eyes glowed, shining sapphires with no rain.
Your golden bleached hair blowing wild in dream wind.
Your words twisted, tangled in on themselves,
Doing a contortionist’s dance,
Snaking their way into my ears and on toward
The inner working of my heart and brain,
Slithering under the door to my soul.

Once there, your words tried to bite away,
Injecting some poison into my heart, my brain, my soul
To twist me into saying all the things
You wanted me to say–
All the things your ego needed—

Like that oppressive August afternoon
When you argued nonsense to get me to say
I was to blame and beg to stay.
I never knew a slither of words
Could slide and twirl so many ways
like those ribbons of a gymnast, circling this way and that.
As you saw a snaking pattern wasn’t working so well,
I watched your frustration rise.
Your back straightened even more so.
Your eyes narrow almost microscopically,
Your thin lips disappear completely.

I woke then, laughing.
I think I startled my dog.
I laughed again—
To think the last few days I had been missing you—
To think I had once thought you beautiful as a goddess–
Even wrote Botticelli and Byron got it wrong.
Now I see Medusa
When I think of you.
It’s a bloody wonder I, myself, am not stone,
But the well of my hope is another matter.

Lies We Tell Ourselves

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image from Pinterest

The lies we tell ourselves
Such sparkling things.

Belief needed in the moment–
See diamonds, rubies, sapphires,
Gold, treasures to cherish.
Let the mirror reflect
The lies to eyes
And souls
In needing desire.
Do not hold them in harsh sun.
Too thin,
Too frail,
Too fragile
To withstand such blazing light.

Gently bury them deep
Beneath the soil
Of a needing heart
And the damp decay
Of foolish wants.
Let the lies take root
Growing into the very soul.

Believing
The lies
We tell ourselves,
We smile
To keep
The truth at bay,
As the lies grow
The rot of hopelessness
Into our very souls.

Air

Never could breathe
When in your air.

You, your perfume,
Or something in the scent of you
Clogged my nose,
My sinuses,
My bronchial tubes
With fluid like cement,
Leaving me no air
To live on.

Really, suffocation
Never felt so sweet.

You were warmth personified
Like fire you fed on the oxygen
Whenever you wanted,
Wherever you were.
But God, it felt like heaven
To warm myself near your flames.
Until it felt like hell
And I burned in the flames,
Sucking in nothing but smoke.

Now, from the ashes,
I rise and breathe.


Once again,
I know the air.