Young Woman, I See

Young woman, I see your pain
remember a time when I too
struggled for autonomy, purpose

Wish I could reach across
the span of generations, mirror
the beauty that I see, release

the tangle of deception that binds,
facilitate your potential, help
advance your journey, lift you

beyond the clutter and noise
and deliver you to freedom, but
your book has not been written

and the chapters need to unfold
as they will, and I am no deity
who sees with clarity the path

you must choose, the destiny
that calls you – trust that life
is educational, and you bear

the resources to see your way
through; celebrate your hunger
and rejoice in your triumphs

I will watch with nostalgia
and the pride of recognition,
for your giftedness is real

your optimism a worthy tool,
and I know you will succeed –
have faith in your tomorrows

for you were born to shine
and the pages of your memoir
await experience’s depths.

(Young Woman, I See first appeared here in September, 2017. Image my own)

Why Poetry?

Sentences refuse to form –
Words, though, bear pairing
punch-packed phrases
delicate unnervings

Fear grasps the wrist
stunts sentences –
thoughts staccato
emotions gagging

Poetry loosens the grip
bundles the mayhem
spits it out – births
breakthrough

(Image my own)

Why do you write poetry?



Living with the Unwritten

Impossible to ignore –
even though I’ve tucked it away
there, between the chair
and credenza –
a life-sized story,
waiting to be told.

As much as it compels me
to pay attention,
I am repulsed –
this is my life
we’re talking about

And not just mine –
the tale weaves itself
with tragic threads of others
and what right do I have
to expose that?

And yet, I don’t know
that I have the strength
to squash it – this living
breathing thing…
wandering aimlessly
about this house.

(Image my own)

Moon Message

Here on the threshold of change,
anxiety and despair howling,
shadows of uncertainty lengthen
beneath the fullness of the moon.

She is no guide, this orb-faced
deity, whose countenance
fails to reveal a directive –
and yet, at some intrinsic level

I feel that we are aligned;
know that her pull is primal,
her presence a reminder
that life is cyclical, and

just as the emotional waters
rise, so too will they ease,
and her voiceless essence
calls me to still the madness

close my eyes to fear’s distortion
and attune to an inner calm,
to trust the light within, and
surrender to the unknowable.

(Moon Message first appeared here April, 2018. This is an edited version. Image my own.)

The Minimalist Eye Project

Coordinated by the curator of our local art gallery, the poetry circle partnered with a photographer to create The Minimalist Eye. Yours truly has two poems featured in the project: Slanted Orange and Big Red.

To see the full exhibition, visit the virtual tour:

So fortunate to be part of a such a vibrant community. As a bonus, the collection has been published.

(Self) Portrait of a Waitress

Jumbo Jet
they called her –
fast on her feet,
zooming in,
swooping up trays,
delivering with flight-
attendant flair.

When did she turn
to autopilot,
stop paying attention
to her destination?

Didn’t she know
she was set
on a crash course,
headed for disaster?

Tried to warn her,
wake her from stupor;
told me she’d reset
but danger remains.

She’s cruising now –
over-sized
turbo-lacking
under-fuelled,
no longer able
to soar – trapped
in a treacherous game.

Waits tables,
tries to keep
a clean house,
caters to others,
lends an ear,
has squeezed
every drop of self
into a low flying life

needs to land
a space of her own,
with room to breathe;
take life in shorter
intervals, refill
her jets.

(Portrait of a Waitress was originally written in 2016. Image a self portrait. Note: once upon a time, I was a waitress, whom the cooks referred to as “Jumbo Jet”. I waitressed my way through university, and a few rough spots in life. While I gave up the job, the metaphor of ‘waiting’ continued to be a theme in my dreams for many years after.)

Next Door

Next door cultivates perfection –
gardens pert with flowery blooms
like vibrant little soldiers heeding
the command of love’s labour,
shimmering with prideful confidence

My garden is overgrown vines,
chaos’ shameful exhibition,
bemoans the futility of planting,
knows there will be no follow through,
betrays the absence of love’s toil.

Life has schooled detachment
lessons in loss counsel defensiveness –
better to guard hope than plant it…

How can next door be so reckless;
do they not know this all for naught?

(This a rewrite of former poem also titled Next Door. Image my own.)