In November Lori invited me to go to a writers’ open mike at a bookstore in town. Not certain as to whether I would just watch and take things in or maybe even read something, I went back and read some of my poems and practiced reciting a few. Up until then, it was not something that I even did and I still don’t easily do and something that I probably need to do more of because I found a much more compassionate and encouraging voice than the one that I had been used to hearing in my head. So that sealed it. I had to put my name in the hat to read that night. The poems were delivered once I got the past a few tears and although I had to stop for Kleenex and blow my nose I finished strong. Someone commented that one of the poems, New Voices, that I read was in fact an apt depiction of my reading that night.
I started writing poems because I had a dream about a year ago that I was writing poems and I went with it. A lot of them were of the note to self variety and surprisingly to me, they did resonate with a few people as well. I discovered that I have a very encouraging side of myself . At times I wonder where did that come from and who wrote that? I need to get used to taking a new more compassionate view of myself because it hasn’t been the automatic voice inside my head. I look at where I’ve been and where I’ve come and sometimes falling back into old patterns as I learn a new way of relating to myself. Not always smooth, but moving, not always forward, but moving, and then there are those time that feel a little stuck and I think a bit more aware. Sounds like part of regroovenating to me.
These days, Trust is a word really resonates with me. To continue on the path that I am on, to complete some projects ( decluttering, quilt, writing projects ) that I have started and start a few new ones, to keep going and putting in the work. Keep regroovenating.
Five favourite poems that I wrote in 2015.
- Sweet Potato Love was the first poem I wrote last year. (January)
To my teacher-friendthough not a friend,connected,though not connected,loved and supported.In a dream baking imaginary confectionsmaybe one day to enjoy a slice of sweet potato pieof our own hands and hearts coming together.Time to let go and release the hold on apron strings.One day, in our dreams, in our every day, in our every way alive and flying solo, but not alone.With a heart broken open to discoverfierce courage to be vulnerable and face joys and sorrows both,a fertile field of possibilities and dreams yet unknown,and faith to leave the refuge of a clear calm reflecting pool,owning the map to find the way back and the steadiness to return daily.The map can now be recycled, or better yet, passed on to another.Could it be as simple as pie,when taken one step, one full breath, one luscious slice at a time?Pie isn’t all that easy, but plenty worth the effort.
- New Voices. I think I wrote this while volunteering at a gymnastics meet. It came out of letter#1 of Letters 1 through eleventy-three. (March)
A gentle reminder from another critic, not my own worst
Looking back, an imperfectly beautiful debut performance
She sang a song with such resonance that it seemed like one you’ve always known
The shock of the momentary screech of feedback
almost overshadowed the beauty of the chorus sung in unison by the band and the audience alike,
It was evident that the young singer was at times rough around the edges and clearly put off balance but continued to the end
Not outstanding in all areas, but outstandingly daring
So many beginnings including a harmonious new partnership that shows such promise to be long lived and full of adventure.
May you celebrate these beginnings in their wholeness, screeches and all.
Those are just small blips to be expected when singing a new song.
My love, please keep going.
- Flying (September)
Flying forward into fall, falling forward flying
seen from above away afar
the fears the doubts scurry busily like ants.
Ants have belonging
that we all long for and share if
only in the sad notion that we do not belong.
End this longing and fall into this fear and see it is shared.
It is sometimes the source of a new found belonging.
You too? I’m not alone?
I can be broken, imperfect, unfinished and you’ll have me just so?
No other way. Let’s go together.
We are never alone, although at times we do believe it.
Fly forward fall in
Fall in fly forward.
I am no expert of walking labyrinths in the grass.
Having walked just two that leaves me looking forward to a walk number three.
A labyrinth walk is simple.
A winding path in towards centre and then back out into the wider world
One way in and one one back out.
No tricks, no dead ends no obstacles for the feet
Yet doubt did arise, will it really work? Am I doing this right?
Surrender and release let go to go in.
Am I there yet? Can’t I hurry this up?
A few quicker steps and then surrender again.
Another breath, another step, slowly again.
Almost there, keep going.
And a pause at the centre, open, receptive, attentive
“Let go of the labyrinth, the sure path, the one way”, was the message I heard this second day.
Taking this out with me, how do I walk with this what do the first steps look like?
Isn’t it curious this simple journey into centre and the one that comes out again into the wider world.
- Gift (an acrostic poem as well as a haiku) I keep coming back to this one. I had planned to read it last at the writers open mike night, but I had to read it first to get to the rest. (October)
What choice do you have?
How long will you hold your breath?
You have this moment.
Happy New Year!