Ghosts and Shadows

Ghosts have no shadows
they are unsubstantiated
rumours of a life…

I exist, not because
of my shadows, and despite
the times I’ve been ghosted

Ghosts and shadows –
without them I am two-dimensional
with them, I am poetry.

(Tuesdays, I borrow from Twitter @Vjknutson. Image my own)

Marriage Potential

What if loyalty purchased this house
and commitment co-signed?
We’d take out a mortgage
based on love – interest only

What if our foundation was spiritual
and our walls cornerstones of faith?
We’d furnish our home with joy
and leave room for wonder.

Can you imagine the possibilities
if we dedicated this life to service,
if we made our marriage the hub,
found a reason for being?

The ingredients are all here –
so where’s the hesitation?
Let’s turn off the screens
and tune into what can be.

(Image my own)

The Last Train (Sonnet)

We wait at the station, Mother and I,
one final stop for her – painless she prays;
I busied at bedside – prolonged goodbye –
memories and regrets filling our days.

“We live too long,” she wearily proclaims
“Why must suffering linger till the end?”
I plea and bargain, call angelic names,
yet the will to survive refuses to bend.

The urgency builds as my time dwindles;
must I leave her in this compromised state?
She rallies and stands on wobbly spindles
dismisses fears – has accepted her fate.

Some destinations are clearly defined –
Death is a train whose schedule’s unkind.

(The Last Train first appeared January 2019. Image my own)

Mouse Massacre

There are mouse bits
splayed across the sunroom
stuck to my favourite throw rug
and great globs of glue

The trap my husband set
to catch the recent invasion
apparently lured the hunter
for she, stiff legged and
face matted, is skulking
elsewhere

I stepped on a gluey bit
eyes not yet open
before noting
the disarray

Hard to concentrate
when a tail detached
from a thigh (foot intact)
lie stuck to one’s rug
and entrails drip down
the freshly painted
off-white wall.

Sustenance Rekindled

It wasn’t the knowledge of stability –
chaos had the upper hand back then.
It wasn’t even that love was expressed –
unconditional an unheard of concept

It was an unspoken presence
the reassurance of rocks
the irrepressible allure
of a freshwater stream

How a child’s heart
found encouragement
in the whispering wind
solace in the arbored shelter

Naturally the din of home life
overpowered this self-assured
passage, disrupted kinship
and shattered childish faith

But all that is behind now
and when I clear cluttering
thoughts, disperse static
emotions, quiet the heart

The rhythms are still there –
presence offering sustenance…

(Poem first appeared here, January, 2021. Image my own)

What Dreams Reveal

Two decades before the fall
I dreamt of that white house
with black shutters,
entered the dimness
and saw myself –
withered, a straw body

Could I have altered the course
gathered that mummified self
in my arms, breathed new passion
into old bones, stopped
the onslaught of night
of cells freezing
passionless

No.
I walked in oblivion
seduced by false trickery
dim-witted in the fading light
cold, aloof, unresponsive
warnings be damned

Two decades later,
body inert, mind bereft
of hope – I dreamt
of a younger self
so intent on life
that she passed me by.

Fallen From Grace

The proverbial can has exploded –
transparency of our deceit now lies
like swarms of glass snakes writhing
at our feet – litany of hissing truths

Bent on keeping innocence alive,
I strategically attempt avoidance,
point to wealth, abundance, nurture
focus … the onslaught continues.

Slivers of slime, maggot-like hoards
mobilize – a sea of protestation,
I, overwhelmed by filth and disgust
encroaching on my sanity, helpless.

Familiarity colours the devastation –
have witnessed it before, watched
as my mother bit into the same
serpent-defiled apple…turned away.

There are no barriers to block out
the vile beasts, no refuge for broken
souls, whose lives, twisted in denial,
have mercilessly fallen to betrayal.

(Fallen From Grace was written in January, 2016. Image my own)

(This is an edited version of an earlier poem from 2016. Image my own)