Tuesday, June 24, 2014

What shatters...

For dversepoets.com  Marina Sofia asks us to write about despair, which often leads us to poetry, trying to express the unsayable, trying to make sense of the random and painful, and then how one can rebuild or rise up again.  It's a gorgeous day and I'm sitting on my porch, the sun spilling through the trees..

                                                                 by klr

Shards of my heart,
strewn upon life's path-
accidents happened,
battles occurred-
Flesh wounds many;
ruddy-blue scars
reveal the deepest wounds
Like splinters of wood in a finger,
some had to be coaxed out;
damaged ventricles required
necessary surgery

It's easy to replace
a smashed window pane
hit by a fly ball;
but it takes years
to mend a human heart,
not made of steel after all
Even invisible shavings of glass
can penetrate, inflame,
causing insurmountable
suffering and pain-
why this now, again?

Oh for the balm of youth,
to play in the moment-
balloon in hand;
to skate on solid ice
bundled up to our red noses
Before we knew reality
Oh, for the salve
of a circle of friends and family,
for laughing,
and other carrying on

To those innocent days
when we played all day
with turtles, trucks and dolls
looked to the moon and stars
each night-
tales of whiffletrees
and  enchanting wizards;
Riding bikes with arms free,
being in love,
looking forward to wed

Loan me strength of giants,
whatever it takes,
in spite of it all -
to wipe the slate clean,
undaunted by negatives
No wonder aging cannot
be arrested for more than
a little while -
consider the heavy artillery
that comes our way

Let us lift the shells,
load our cannons with confetti,
adorn them with streamers
and fire them back
with surety
Each time we turn a sharp corner,
when we feel fear
or vulnerability,
when we are broken,
we nevertheless
gain sagacity

There will be smiles
for the progress made;
a new level
of understanding
We can be glad we are not
in some others' shoes,
that we are not deadwood,
without any use
We will live, love and flourish,
do our best
keep going -  test after test.


  1. ha. i like the returning fire with confetti...instead of shells of our own...and getting back up and dusting ourselves off...not giving up...that is huge...because we will find life again...even when it feels like we will not....

  2. yeah...let's load our cannons with confetti... hope against life's difficult moments....that is a good weapon...the best of all me thinks

  3. The splinters is a good image of how that pain of life feels.. And how difficult it can be to heal again - love the way you fight on.. And cheerfulness could be one to face it.

  4. Even invisible shavings of glass
    can penetrate, inflame...
    Sometimes those are more damaging than the major and very visible weapons!
    A lovely idea, the confetti-filled cannon, adorned with streamers - I'll carry that image with me now.

  5. That is always right......... Without the test we cant excel and get a gold medal............... For life success is that............

  6. To mend a broken heart takes a long time ~ I love this part best:

    Loan me strength of giants,
    whatever it takes,
    in spite of it all -
    to wipe the slate clean,

  7. This is incredible Kathy. I really love this. An amazing piece of writing. Healing sometimes take a while, but we are really resilient brings :)

  8. Your piece is wise...and for the most part, we wouldn't trade the hurts of our lives for those of others, but sometimes it is the 'worst,' and then we must pick up our own pieces, sort through the rubble, and hope we meet someone we like on the other side. (My son's doctor, told me, 'yes, we must go through grief, to get through it, but no matter....., the one who begins, will not be the one we meet on the other side. We will be changed.) No one gets through life, without loss and change.

    I have had a similar idea. Inside I see tiny bits of paper littering the innerscape, each one has something scribbled on it. And each must be picked up, read, considered, and sorted...tied with a blue ribbon. I think I am seeking order, some would call it peace.

  9. So very true, deep and telling how hardship and pain and our reaction to it changes us.

  10. Test after test is the absolute truth. Always another lesson to learn, another refinement to make.

  11. "but it takes years
    to mend a human heart,
    not made of steel after all"...how true..only consolation is that time is a great healer....

  12. Mixing the joy of surprise images with sorrow at just how damaged we become when innocence is gone--the effect, of course, is a resilience that requires neither a return to innocence nor a transformation into giants. By the time I've traveled the amazing journey of this poem, I've got confetti and other means of transforming violence to peace. Thank you.

  13. I love the end of this--the confetti. I'm in that age group where you do look back on the joys of childhood, where you read obits to see who you know and if you managed to escape--and yet the wonder of each day, the beauty of nature and friends and loved ones are still available. Live fully a day at a time--that's where it's at.

  14. "Oh for the balm of youth"... many times I've felt this... just to be a child again with no adult hurts and worries. But, that isn't real and I guess I'm glad for the growth that has come through the hard times.
    So many wonderful lines in this... very nice.

  15. Excellent Kathy I so connect with the image of repairing the human heart and it taking years. Our youth is now past and we travel forwards on experience some good a lot of pain that holds us in good stead as more aware and more discerning. Have a good day.

  16. Thank the universe that with aging we have picked up the ersatz trappings of wisdom. Like Grace, I love the line /loan me the strength of giants/ Your poem touches many aging hearts, restless seeking souls it certainly did mine; nice job.

  17. this poem was a glass of refreshing iced tea on a hot depressing day. Thanks.


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