Thursday, June 30, 2011

Silence is near

Leonardo da Vinci's
Head of a Woman
I don't know if every writer is also a poet, or if every poet is a writer.  I know that I consider myself to be both, as my Muse visits and sometimes decides to manifest in a manuscript, and sometimes the words come out in poetic format.

I rarely publish my poetry, as the majority of it is very personal.  A dear friend recently posted some of her own poetry on her blog after a long spell of being wordless.  Some of the comments that ensued about her poetry struck me as very profound, in that she mentioned poetry, for her, is usually grounded in difficult emotional moments.  In the last couple of months, I've shared some of my own poetry with a small number of writing friends which has resulted in every single one of them urging me to begin publishing my poetry here on Healing Morning.  I was hesitant, because as with Jane Prater Haislip whom I mentioned above, some of my poetry was written in very trying emotional moments.  My hesitance was that if I shared my poetry, people would automatically read some of the darker content and misinterpret where I am emotionally today.  Where I am today, by the way, is a very happy emotional place.  That being said, I've noticed repetition kicking in about poetry all around me.  When repetition strikes often about the same subject, that's a Divine nudge, in my opinion.  So, I have decided to take a leap of faith and share some of my poetry here.  

The poem below was written several years ago during one of the most painful emotional moments of my life.  I won't go into details; I will just say that this poem flowed from an inestimable place that at the time seemed to be an endless well of sadness and grief.  Because those emotions do seem to prompt the poetry Muse, I gave the emotions voice and identified the pain in the figure of Silence.  I've written in the past about grief, and I continue to find it a very important topic that is sometimes....often...swept under the proverbial rug. Grief in its raw form is primal, and that makes many uncomfortable.  I believe it is important and healthy to process these emotions.  In sharing this poem with friends recently, many said that they felt this one would be of help to others in their own grieving process.  This is why I chose it as my first poetry post.

Silence is near

I can hear the beating of my heart

the quiet closing in on me
pressing near with palpable force

Silence waits patiently

in the darkness, anticipating
my utter desolation

the incredible feeling of absence
it lingers with a bitter taste

jeering cruelly

ripping the breath from me
a heart punch

dancing gleefully in my agony
leaving me…


my mouth open in a soundless scream
stripped bare
robbed of who I am

stark in the violence of loss

Silence smugly waits

the empty shell of me

no comforting touch of strong arms

no earthy smell of skin
no taste on my tongue to soothe

depths of despair

scraping nerves already shredded and raw
digging without remorse

to reveal abandonment

Silence waits patiently
to enfold my shattered remains

wrapping me up

Turn your face away from the light

Dance with me here

I am so close to your love…am I not?
Mocking you with a shadow of sweetness

the shell of memories…a pitiful thing

the soft icy sound of her mad laughter echoes
in the chasm of my broken soul

the one sad note detected
is that of the two of us weeping

Silence waits patiently
hovering in the fractures of me

her touch a magnificent isolation

In your moment of blank emptiness

Only I remain to greet you
Despite the very sad tone of this poem, I feel it is one of the best pieces I have ever written. I remember writing it in one sitting, perhaps it took ten minutes, total, to write it. The sharp pain of grief poured out of my hands into the words, and I remember that for a short while, that night, I finally slept for the first time in days. It wasn't the beginning of healing, that moment, but it was a brief respite from the crushing pain I was experiencing. As I mentioned above, I am now recovered from that sad time in my past, and very happy. If, however, my writing in any form - be it blogging, poetry, a manuscript or a magazine article - can help someone who is in that first razor sharp stage of grief to feel not so alone, then it will be worth the uncertainty of baring my own grief to the eyes of the blogging world.

I am hopeful that people will read this and find something worthwhile to take from it. I believe that Silence has visited us all, numerous times, in her sad, slightly crazed form. Grief does throw us into a maelstrom of what I call "spiritual insanity" for a time. Eventually, that eases and we begin to heal. In my mind's eye, Silence absorbs those terrible emotions, the ones simply too horrific for us to bear, and she becomes our solace. In my own soft, sensitive heart, as fanciful as it may sound, I hope there is a place for her to turn to as well, after she absorbs those emotions.

Grief is necessary. We all know this. Without going through all the stages of grief, often multiple times, we cannot come back to a whole person, capable of moving forward. Silence was a part of my grieving and this poem was the result of her visit to me.