adversity · life · poetry · writing

Loss and Light

Absence fills the silence
with shadowy wings
becomes a raven
sharp-taloned,
razor-beaked
I cower

loss too
immense
for comprehension
would lay my body down
be consumed, but for
the children’e eyes pinning me
their woeful gazes,
begging to be uplifted
I am abandoned
and not
a flicker
called to be
beacon.

(Art from personal collection)

adversity · disability · life · ME/ CFS · poetry

Spirit Stands Strong

Progress – seldom linear –
tosses me into unexpected decline –
stranded and incapacitated.

My son – with labour-hardened strength
leaps to my side, steadying me
and I feel the fear in his caring grip.

My daughter, ever compassionate,
reaches out for me with horror-filled eyes
as my body crumples onto the bed.

My husband, my oak, seeks to comfort
his voice betraying the helplessness
this futile predicament imposes.

Beloveds, I know that you see me
this dis-abled, non-functioning shell
weakened and sickly, lying on this bed.

Do not be deceived – that is not me –
it is only an illusion –
a vessel – temporarily fettered.

I am, in essence, beside you –
ambitions and desires intact.
Feel me there, tall and proud.

Sense the wholeness of my being
remember me for the woman I am yet to be –
My spirit stands strong.

(I first wrote this poem in August of 2015, when efforts to sit up and visit with friends caused a collapse.  I wrote it as reassurance for my family that the woman they knew was still strong.  I post here now as a reminder to myself – of how far I have come, and how strong my spirit remains.)

adversity · art · life · nature · poetry · writing

Mountain

I navigate sharp twists,
confront rough trails,
steep slopes, swoon
at dizzying heights,
frailty felt.

This path is for rugged,
mountain-born,
those accustomed
to the sheer immutable
force of rock –

and yet, my lens
tells a different tale –
speaks of shadows
shifting witnesses
mutations of colour

describes a giant
whose facade reflects
the day’s passing light,
demonstrates compassion
in earth’s stillness.

(Mountain first appeared in February of 2018, inspired by the Apache Trail, Arizona.  Watercolour image by yours truly.)

adversity · aging · change · health · ME/ CFS · poetry · writing

Even Trees Fall

Majesty is a tree
quiet strength
and vulnerability

no more sheltered
from acts of nature
than I – none

impenetrable,
although youth
believes it –

days when strength
equates with rigidity,
resistant arrogance

A right fighter, was I,
iron will, in control –
never measuring up

such foolish nonsense –
destructive, no doubt,
took illness to educate

recognize courage in
withdrawal, merits
of inviting understanding

physical limitations
birth potential –
gracious acceptance

surrender of struggle
open, vulnerable,
rooted, like a tree.