On Growing Old

Comfort is where we’ve settled,
a well-appointed existence
with commodities on the side.

I dawdle with grandchildren
casting pink thread for slugs
ignoring the sludge in my veins

while he wrestles with fallen
leaves and closing the pool
and readying for the cold ahead.

Even now, there is no security
no locks to protect against invasion;
we live a permanent transience.

When complacency is threatened
we steel ourselves, steadying
against the pull of anxiousness

telling ourselves it’s all expected
we’ve known all along that life
is tenuous, control a fallacy.

Current upsets prove hollow
and we, precariously plodding,
hover once again at the edges.


Come Back, Mr. Sandman

He’s comes each day at seven,
wearing the cloak of night
humming a lulling lullaby
hypnotically taunting me
with the dance of fatigue.

I resist, of course,
too early for sleep,
brush off his advances
busy myself, pretending
he doesn’t matter to me.

He pulls me onto the bed
lures me with shady promises
Just close your eyes, Love,
rest your weary head awhile;
I won’t keep you long.

I push away, incensed
by the indecency of it –
no one goes to bed so early!
What does he think I am?
Who does he think I am?

He shrugs and tips his hat
letting himself out as
quietly as he came.
See you tomorrow Babe;
you know I’ll be back.

I shake off his residue
slap myself out of his reverie,
ready myself for another night –
of what – monotonous routine?
Did I really have a better plan?

By ten I’ve caught up on the pvr
and restlessness sets in –
should I start a new book,
sketch a thing or two,
or eat to ease the blahs?

I choose, instead, to write
this silly poem, hoping to
soothe this aching regret
for chasing away the Sandman
I’ve bought myself a guarantee
that slumber will not be mine.


Disability’s Dilemnas

Clutter defines my surroundings:
accumulation intended to simplify
only complicates, suffocates.

I am roommate, burden, dependent
confined to a singular existence
no longer lover, wife, companion.

While I lament the past –
ghosts of horrors and indecencies –
he drinks to forget lost dreams.

We have vowed to mend the cracks
carefully secured our footing
and yet our foundations rots.

Is it our over-active need to please
or the cold civility of our interactions
that causes us to withdraw?

My mind drowns me with shoulds
that my body can’t possibly fulfill,
guilt flooding my conscience.

How do we reconcile this distance
imposed by so much tragedy,
right the impotency of loss?

Life rolls on and I with it
humour and meditated calm
wrangling doubt and criticism.

He wears the projections
of my dissatisfaction: unresolved
remnants of old wounds resurfaced.

I can no longer ignore my needs
and reel at the mounting imbalance
grasping for sustenance and equilibrium.

Pulling away, I stubbornly proclaim
self-reliance, hindering progress
endangering self for dubious promises.

These life-altered eyes perceiving
only disappointing, unpalatable options
grasp for an end to this perpetual ache.

I am lost, disoriented, tired
communication clouded by fear
I hardly understand myself.

There is no solid footing on
a voyage as rocky as ours,
no answers to allay uncertainty.

Now is not a time for walls,
tenderness alone will guard our hearts
and patience lighten the way.

Morning Fog

sludge is my body
sludge is my mind
in the early hours

consciousness fights
for breath

is swallowed up

messages chime
phones ring
worlds away

the altered reality
of disability
has claimed me.


A Sorry State

Stubbornly, I follow
my desires and motivations
over the edge,  humbly
my sorry limitations.

Calling home, hoping
for a sensible response –
reliable, clear-headed –
(I should know better –
no one like that exists
where I come from).

Miss Vanity and Ms. Martyr
come to the rescue, with
Perfect baby, Spirited baby
and the Despondent One
in tow, along with
adolescent Asperger,
awkwardly incapable
of social intercourse.

Doubtful of their intentions,
certain of their impracticability
and suspicious of neglect
I pull back, angered,
threatening to exert independence;
I don’t need anybody
least of all, you people.

Miss Selfless smiles reassuringly
gesturing for my compliance –
she has everything under control
there is room for everybody –
I climb on board –
surprisingly comforted,
conceding assumptions.

I am embarrassed by my situation,
in need of repair…
Approach cautiously, I warn
it’s a steep state of decline.
My stories, exposed, overlap,
piles of debris cluttering
where hope should dwell.
This is not a place for children,
or the pure of heart.

I feel trapped, but don’t express it.
Ms Forever Up and Miss I’ll Pray For You
smile as if to say:
Don’t worry, Silly,
we’ll clean this up in no time.
And look after the babies?
And look after the babies.

Weariness begs me to surrender,
trust these dubious cons –
too overwhelmed and overcome
to care, resigned to repeat
the drama of the past –
fearing this is my lot.

Dissatisfaction niggles
Don’t give up –
there is more to aspire to
a greater dream to dream
give it time, give it time
and quit driving yourself
beyond the confines
of this current state
of dis-able-ment.

Fleeting Libido

Crazy catches me –
semi-conscious/ zoned out –
body slams me,
hot mouth pressed on mine
suppressing objection
(as if I’d object)
working my juices
my mind overboard
passion flaming

I forget
who I am
where I am

Modesty intervenes
compelling flight –
flesh torn from flesh
prematurely –
this seduction,
taunting me in youth,
surprisingly vital still

I forget
who I am
where I am

heart palpitating
loins throbbing…
abandoned again.
It was only a ghost
a spectre from the past
mocking me –
false ecstasy.

(Linked to dVerse pub where desire and sexuality are on the board tonight.)

A Falling Out

I would entertain confidence,
but here, on the edge of emotion
(others before self )
I am ungrounded.

I gesture kindness
(a shady, alluring reconciliation)
your heart unavailable
distracted and driven.

Pushed aside, I am
still raw.

I ponder relationships
(incensed and violated)
worthy of investigation –
these many sides of self.

Sidestepping social niceties
(I am righteously enraged)
personal indignation
makes for interesting dynamics.

Exile is hurtful,
unacceptable – I look
for a voice – pause –
your expectations a brick wall.

Obligations temporarily overloading,
executive functioning down,
my exterior collapses –
we fall out.


Remember when we were lovers,
and would stay all out night –
me full of bravado,
you coaxing one more drink?

I’d awaken the next morning
head thick and fogged
and you’d reassure me
that the car was in the driveway
safe and sound
and want to do it all over again
but I’d have to work,
so you would sulk all day
until you could sweep me up once more.

“You’re going to burn out before you’re 25”
a co-worker told me
and you just laughed and said:
“Not me, I’m invincible!”
and we’d dance the night away
never knowing where we’d end up
or how we got there.

When did it change for us?
When did you abandon me?

Was it the day we lost four friends-
all dead in a fiery crash –
a tragic combination of speed and alcohol
that fateful long weekend?

Or was it that time
you let me get into that car
told me I’d be okay
flattered me that a man so handsome
would want my company
then left me alone
to be raped?

Maybe it was me that
just couldn’t look you in the face anymore
deceived by your recklessness,
seized by the recognition
of your self-serving ways.

Time and obligations
have made me forget you,
yet every once in awhile,
I dream of those days
when we watched the sun come up
then sleepless and still buzzed
faced the world – our oyster –
as if nothing could tear us down.


Emotional Pain Dance

A singular activity
suffices not to distract
from underlying pain –

Robotic attentiveness
fails to allay
constant buzzing –

Sidestepping issues
elicits no solace,
unravelling inevitable –

I am trapped
in solitary confinement,
sensory deprivation –

momentous force
raging within
boring outwards –

silently, alone,
unheard, unseen,
unburdening –

Self-pity dead ends,
breathe in life,
suppress negativity –

ignites purpose,
smacks of productivity –