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Wind

I was walking late night, the breeze lifting my hair, lifting

my hair from my forehead. I was walking late night, the breeze lifting

a weight from my shoulders. A weight was carried for me.

I was cared about by the wind, talking to me in the trees,

the trees, tall black silhouettes, held air and shook it into words,

a word sailed across currents – hedonia, hedonia – pleasure.

The pleasure of hair swirling around my head, hair lifting off my back.

My hair—I couldn’t control it—the wind lifting it from my back.

 

Post PTS Me

Will the real me please stand up!

No, not that hypervigilant rabbit.

The real Wendy

Not that self-effacing nobody.

The real Wendy

Not the one who reaches out to others

in learned helplessness.

The Wendy free of trauma.

Is there such a one?

Can I ever truly know me, sans PTSD?

Who is she?  I have not yet met her

but I am searching.

The People of No

I was attracting broken

people torn off at the root.

Aimless we wandered

or just keeled over, our

branches dead on the earth.

 

We found others with holes,

sisters, brothers floundering;

we dragged heavy nets of shards

 

until there were too many. Sharp-

edged or dry and brittle, we

were empty, pretending to be full,

stirring up a ruckus. Wastelanders

picking up broken cups to drink from,

 

in our way, trying to find home.

No one told us to stand still, sink roots.

The word “broken” had hypnotized

us. It was a matter though of

 

waking up. A snowflake landed

on my third eye—it couldn’t have been

random. The seed of me in there

 

somewhere, yes

yearning to take hold.

 

no tear

i am easily bruised today

lying here thinking only

of what I am not, what i could’ve been,

who i could be like, where else i could be

. . .

i want to rewake, remake this day

wake early, morning tea

a poem, inner blossoming

and no tear, no tears

 

My Body Speaks a Poem

Do not be afraid of me.

I am your body, your smell.

I soothe you. Come close,

inhale, comfort yourself.

 

Do not be afraid. Not like

your mother who would not

bury her face in your baby belly,

afraid you’d pop and go dead.

 

Let love press its face

into your middle, your soft underside.

 

Don’t you love how you feel?

Those mushy mounds.

 

Don’t be afraid to love yourself.

 

Go where you love to go. Do

what you love to do. Now

is the best time. Take yourself

to coral reefs, tidepools, the creatures

of the sand.

 

Take yourself to the lands

of your ancestors. Leap into turquoise

water. Rejoice in life’s bounty—

that richness waiting for you to

Trust. Take. Be Free.

 

Let Love

Let an open heart

drench us in love.

When critique flies in

fill your well with kindness–

a hand offered, a drink, a cup.

Let us understand,

step back from analysis,

bow to forgiveness. Let us

put our hands together

in a prayer of thanks for mistakes;

they teach us to laugh at ourselves,

connect to all human hearts.

Forgiveness feels so good.

Let’s hug it to ourselves like a pillow.

Let’s lie on it like a feather bed.

 

Eye of PTSD

O that heating lamp,

that orange unblinking eye

of Hades! My fired-up

amygdala clanged and bonged

like fire engines rushing

to a house in flames.

 

Frozen, I stood stuck, staring

at the Cyclops eye—

giant, throbbing pulsar—

wondering what memory

its Big Bang:

a lamp in the operating room glares

at me, a baby strapped to a gurney,

the surgical field of my belly

aflare. Flesh.

 

What will put out the fire?

 

Expansion

I thought I was my fear

I thought I was my fear

I thought I was my fear

 

She is not me.

 

I thought I was my tears

I thought I was my tears

I thought I was my tears

 

She is not me.

 

My startle response, ever present—

No, not me.

 

My years of disconnection, hooking up

with harmful people, causing harm

myself, dropping those who do no harm.

 

No, she is not me.

 

Self-doubt, self-abnegation, self-less, help-less.

These words are not me.

 

I am new in the burning universe.

 

At the Center of Being

A scar at the center of being

sent me running from self

hiding under big shirts,

cinching belts tight.

Flight ruled

though return beckoned–

a reunion of body and spirit.

Age 50 the party began.

Clothes fit now, belts loose.

My center is a sun

and the stitch-scar

rays of light.

In my middle, a button

activates power.

Press and current flows—

turned on to life!

 

Gemstages

Cracked ruby
baby
operated on
sliced
no anesthesia
perhaps I swallowed
the ruby
my stomach
swelled red
with rage

Aquamarine
teen
blue ice
cool hard
I’d slice
the razor along my skin
for wasn’t my arm
made of stone?

Emerald
twenties
opening
growing
grass
the tender
blade
rose
somehow
I was able
to love
at least
to try

Obsidian
thirties
black, firm
tumbled
smooth and edgeless
comforting to hold
in one’s palm

Amber
now
catching ancient light
a mosquito¬–
that blood-hungry one–
suspended in sweetness
the juicy fire
flame
of love

If anyone has a star

If anyone has a star

come place it here on my forehead

If anyone has silent dark branches

come lay them over my chest

If anyone has golden pine needles

spread them under my body

If anyone has fragrant balsa wood

let me use it to float

It’s not that I can’t on my own.

It’s not like I always haven’t.

But once, just once

let me fall into arms

that catch me in any direction.

If anyone has some moss

lay it here against my cheeks

If anyone has warm, wet sand

press it firmly to my chest

If anyone has the quiet of forests

come cup it to my ears

If anyone has a waterfall

fill me with its cool, fresh mist

It’s not that I can’t on my own

It’s not like I always haven’t

But once, just once

let me fall into arms

that catch me without my asking

 

What Calls

Castle Fear is folding,

turrets crumbling, crenellated

walls falling. The moat drained, Trust

gallops over and climbs the bank.

At the tower window, a damsel. Horse’s

hooves have called her to the opening.

Come, the empty saddle beckons. Ride

into the green expanse

of everywhere—the places you’ve

never allowed yourself.

Can she leave this fortress, its embattled rooms?

The castle floor gives way as her hands

let go of the sill, reach for reins.

 

How Beautiful You Are

Do you love your soul?

Have you talked to it lately?

What does it say?

Do you love your inner voice?

How does it sound, and what feeling

does it convey?

Have you felt joy in re-union?

Are you walking as one now?

Are you an undivided self?

Are you a tree of many branches and roots

receiving from the world of light and air

and the world of dark and damp?

Did you finally turn on your lamp

to see how beautiful you are?