Category Archives: loss

Nobody warned me

The weather is turning here in Indiana. Not quite as icy as the picture above – at least not yet… but the delicious chill in the air has seeped into my brain.  I’ve been thinking a lot about ice, and icebergs, and depths in relationships, and hidden things.  What amazingly fascinating creatures we all are, worthy of respect and always a second look.  I haven’t always been the best at seeing what is in front of my face.  Here’s a rondeau about love and ice and loss – not about any one person in particular, but maybe about us all.

 

Nobody warned me

Nobody warned me when the front door shut
a piece of me would leave as well. The rut
worn deep into my heart from long routine,
our blunted expectations, set the scene
for this unraveling. Perhaps what cut

me most was knowing I had missed a glut
of signs, had let the feeling in my gut
diminish to a whisper. What did it mean
nobody warned me?

If I had known I might have altered what
I said. Instead those icy caps that jut
above the surface chilled us with the sheen
of easy waters over pain unseen.
I could not reach you then – I would have, but
nobody warned me.

 

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No turning back

 

It can be a wonderful thing to belong in a group.  I know people who find great fulfilment in knowing every move to make, every word to say or avoid, every rhythm of “how we do things.”   The comfort of knowing there will be people there for you, come what may; and the knowledge that you will do the same for others – whether they ask for it or not.  The can be a comfort in conformity.

But then there are the others, the ones who struggle continually within the constraints of belonging.  The ones who live like icebergs, unwilling or unable to reveal their depths.  Or who give up and melt away.  I’ve seen it so often.  The longer I live, I find I am wistful for the belonging, for its goodness; but at the same time find I am increasingly drawn to the fringes, the rebels, the bright orange in a sea of black and blue.

 

No turning back

Someone in this sea of black and blue,
of downturned eyes, has a tattoo
on her shoulder blade – a butterfly
perhaps; better yet, a devil’s eye
that no one but her lover knows,
a secret that she never shows.

Someone in this modest fashion show
is wearing orange, brazen just below
her neckline, bursting with desire
not so much to shock as just to let the fire
within her have its head at last – finally
to be the blazing torch that she was born to be.

Someone in this close and holy space
is terrified, yet ready to depart this place
once and for all. Tonight,
after the benediction, no fight
no grand pronouncements, no bitter end.
Just a kiss, a plain embrace for every friend
and then no turning back – her fierce reward for
loosening the tight-tied strings her mother wore.

 

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