What Scars Remain?

Should I escape these shackles,
manage to re-surface, swim
despite this weakened condition
against the currents of disability,
find myself once again on the
solid grounds of civilization;
will I be embraced with cheers
of victory, or slotted into some
backroom, reserved for the fallen,
spoken to in hushed tones,
forever handled at arms length,
an object to be feared?

And if I manage to fight these
bonds that for so long have
threatened to annihilate,
will I have the bravery to face
the calling that once defined me,
shake off the cobwebs of
disorientation, defy the
certainty of unpreparedness,
draw from the well of past
experiences and rise to
a new battle, proving the
validity of my return?

Or, with freedom, do I look
to opportunity, clear the slate
of former ambitions, rewrite
the pages of my destiny,
embrace an attitude of
rebirth, decide to relinquish
the sword, cut my losses
and redefine a new, gentler
way of being in the world,
less dependent on a system
which undoubtedly propelled
this descent in the first place?

(For Reena’s Exploration Challenge.  Reena gives us a choice of prompts.  I have chosen  ‘disorientation’.  What Scars Remain was first written in August 2016.


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Permission to write, paint, and imagine are the gifts I gave myself when chronic illness hit - a fair exchange: being for doing. Relevance is an attitude. Humour essential.

13 thoughts on “What Scars Remain?”

  1. You are now rising above the queries you penned a few years ago. I agree with LuAnn, you certainly belong in the second group. Today you are re-recreating you life.

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  2. I absolutely love this poem, V.J. Your efforts to “rewrite / the pages of my destiny” are inspirational to me. I go with a friend to art therapy at a cancer clinic and there seem to be two kinds of patients. One group may be joyous from time to time but mostly bemoan their ‘scars’ as they have a right. It’s a scary disease. Others though, seem to take the suffering and mold it into a deep gratitude for life, even if they complain from time to time, as they have a right. I would put you into the second category and I am so grateful to have your poetry in my life.

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    1. Your words mean so much LuAnne. No matter what life brings us, the only thing we have control over is our attitude. I try to keep the faith. Your support and encouragement lift me up.

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  3. Rewriting one’s path in life is sometimes necessary. And, we only need to prove validity to ourselves, no one else. Love this!

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