Tag Archives: Journeys

Thin Traces

thintraces

Thin traces
of tracks
not yet laid
like invisible lines
or a long thread,
golden and white
running through,
held at either
end, at once taut
and loose,
swayed and buoyed
by forces
of love and
time, like a guide
that beckons
from a past
into a future,
mouthing your name
in sand
or rocks
or steel,
a formless form
that winds its way
to make a track
or make a life,
both,
yet to be
laid
down.

Lies and tricks

Lies and tricks
take me on detours
from my chosen path
Lured by promises 
of a future
with no guarantees
I now realize
it wasn’t 
the one I ordered
Seduced by false idols,
it takes all my strength
to see beyond
their luminosity 
and give up
and give in
and give myself back
to the place I started from
where hopes and dreams
stir and grow
where trust and love
become 
the only guiding beacons
of light
I see.

Connective Tissue

This in-between has got under her skin,
it is the dermis, the layer beneath –

made of connective tissue and sensory nerves.
It has become like a light

and she is the moth, who cannot 
help but fly into it.

She knows too, she dwells in that space
with the writing of this, as the words 

fall like a sun shower, only to dry up
as quickly as they once poured.

Are there moments of being
there, or here? Of starting, or arriving

of beginning, or ending? Or is there only
birth and death, and everything

in between?  It has caught her, this space
like a fish in a net, struggling to move. 

A place of transition, this not-here
nor there, a borderland between yesterday 

and tomorrow, vast and open
for as far as the eye can see.

She thinks of transition, and recalls
that worst part of labour before birthing

her children, and recalls 
the rattly sound of his breath

the agitated flailing of his body
before death mistakenly took him.

And she wonders, is it important, does it matter,
so what? To be left in a lurch, or

sat in a slump, to be forever left 
in the waiting room (of Dr Suess).

Does it matter what’s there? Does anyone 
care to know the pain of a labour, or

the agony of those sounds and sights 
that pre-empt death? Or the stories 

of traversing the vast sandy desert, or 
climbing the steep mountain track?

And I think, these are the  processes 
that take us, shape us and make us,

the in-between of this way and that,
of this self and the other.

Does it matter where I am? In between
the old and the new, reaching for one

while holding the other, moving between,
unsure, not knowing, reaching backwards

and forwards, outwards and inwards,
sinking and rising.  

So I embark on this journey 
of migration, navigating through

the borderlands, working the hyphen
between this self and an other. 

I have one hand on before, 
one hand in the after,

as I move into 
the multiplicity of possibility,

my heart in my mouth
my feet on the ground

no flying above
no shortcuts below,

with only the breath of wondering 
to guide my way.

The gap

She felt like she was living somebody else’s life. Or maybe somebody else was living hers.  Or maybe her life was still caught between the two worlds, presuming there were only two.  

Was it everyone’s story at some time, or all times, in their lives? Or was it simply some diagnosable condition, treatable with a little white pill, that every second person seemed to be taking these days? 

Was it the story of her time, the ‘having it all but really having none of it’?  It sounded more likely to be the story of an earlier time when women could only dream of a different life.  

So where did she fit, in this forever dreaming, straining, for some kind of life that didn’t seem to exist, anywhere in her vicinity?  Even as she thought it, dreamt of it, imagined it, even only just a shade of it, she asked herself, instead of reaching for it, toward it, into it, shouldn’t she just be happy with what she had? Because she had a lot.  A lot.  And it wasn’t that she wasn’t grateful for that, she was. And sometimes she felt it, how truly blessed she was, and for a moment, even moments, that was enough.  

And then it would come again, creep in, sneak up, like wind blowing through a tunnel, invisible, until all of a sudden it would chill her to the bone, and she couldn’t remember what it was like to have been warm, or how she ever would be again.

She knew what she wanted, one minute, but the wanting it, and the picture of it, of this longed for life was too much for her, too much to truly contemplate the possibility becoming a reality.  That life, that creation, was for clever people, people who had worked at it their whole lives, had a gift, could remember, and recite even, their first poem or story written at age 6.

It was too late, even though it wasn’t at all. 

Sometimes it hurt, physically, in her chest, the ache for it, the ache of not having it, the gap, like being on one side of the ocean, and her lover, her love, was on the other. But in this case she’d never had the love, only longed for it. She felt like a piece of her was missing, like a puzzle half completed, yet the pieces are lost and she’s looking in all the wrong places. 

So, she leaves it, well she thinks she does, to do what she knows, what she’s good at, so she’s told, what she thinks she enjoys, likes, can call a worthwhile life.  But secretly she worries, all the while, maybe its sucking the life out of her. 

And then she wonders if maybe there’s still time, and a way, to find her life, to push through this world, into the gap, where it’s waiting, this other life, sitting, waiting, for her. Or maybe she’ll spend this life pushing, only to realize, it was here all along.

Journeys home – small stone Jan 28

The car snakes round bend after bend
to travel the long journey home.

Grief sidles up to me, like a thief in the night
to steal my breath, and the present moment.

Through the rear-view mirror, time is displaced
as brother and sister become my brother and I.

Like Russian dolls, each generation
a reflection of the last.

I wonder, when is it written 
upon our hearts, or our souls
the time we will depart this world?