Then


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Then

It’s about time, for her.
She has worked unselfishly,
and has more than paid her dues.
Time, then, to remember herself.
The longer that she forgets,
then the more she has to lose.

A ten-hour day,
then kids, then dinner, 
and then it’s a half past six.

The others clean up,
then they head for their screens.
Then another hour ticks.

Then TV, for another two or three.
Then she is lost in her thoughts.
Her self, getting lost in the mix.

She gives, and she gives.
She gives some more,
and then, she gives.
Seldom, does she complain.
Never, does she consider
how she barely lives.

She stares, alone then,
vaguely through the mirror,
and then she washes her face.

She remembers morning practice.
Then sets her alarm ahead,
so they won’t have to race.

She turns back the covers.
T
hen reaches for her book.
And then she takes her place.

She gives, and she gives.
She gets very little,
and then, she gives.
Seldom, does he notice.
Never, does he appreciate
how the other half lives.

Then, in the silence, he fades.
There’s a mumbled ‘good night’,
and then it’s lights out.

Then she lies there awake.
Then along comes the pain.
And then, the self-doubt.

Then, the frustration builds.
Then the inevitable tears.
And then the urge to shout.

It’s then that she realizes
that this can no longer be 
what her life is about.

She gives, and she gives.
Then she wants more.
And then she knows.
Eventually, she recognizes.
Finally, she decides.
And it’s then that she goes.

It was time then, for her.
She knew she deserved better,
and she had every right to choose.
Time then, to rediscover herself.
The longer that she waited,
then the more she had to lose.

She is taking time, now, for her self.
Leaving her longing behind,
and making a solemn, personal vow.
She will take, as much as she gives,
because this is her time to live.
That was her then, and this is her now.

 

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Address

Address

It feels sudden, suddenly, and overwhelming,

when I hear the brakes of the truck
as it backs in, to load up my past,
to transport my life until now.
I feel both jolts of clarity, and of reality, 
going straight to my heart,
having been consumed, for so long,
by the why, as much as the how.

Two decades of possessions, one of mixed emotions,

accumulation, and memories,
sometimes, that seemed so right,
that somehow, slowly, seemed wrong.
Strangers, gathering up all that I have,
packing up all of the years,
carrying them out the door,
and then moving them along.


I think, eventually, or soon, I will find out

that this was a momentous day.
When I finally get to breathe, 
and to slow things down, and to have a look.
I will see a vital and necessary step
on the way back to me.
I will recognize another pivotal and decisive stride
that I bravely undertook.

Soon enough, I will remember all that is so very good.
I will be sitting, and settled, in my new home.
Unconstrained. With the rest of my life before me.
 And those I love will be knocking at my door.
As always, I will graciously welcome them in.
To them, only my address will have changed.
They’ve all been here with me, my entire way.
Each arrives, carrying the same love as before.

Past

“So give me hope in the darkness that I will see the light…
Just promise me we’ll be alright
But the ghosts that we knew made us black and all blue
But we’ll live a long life
And the ghosts that we knew will flicker from view
And we’ll live a long life”
‘Ghosts That We Knew’
– Mumford & Sons


Past

I took a chance
and let you into my heart.
I let all of my feelings show.
Uprooted my life,
for me and you,
but little did I know.


I discovered your wounds,

written in your own words,
there, for anyone to see.
Cuts and bruises,
vital accumulation,
scars, that you never showed me.

The breadth of your struggles,
so much I didn’t know,
spread across my screen.
Instead of in my mind.
Instead of in my heart,
where they should have been.

I took your determination,
for never again,
as a personal affront.
Your learned defensive posture
as harsh belligerence,
 you just being you, being blunt.

Your fierce independence
was stubborn vulnerability.
Your frustration, was our fate.
The voice of your experience,
sad and specific,
finally heard, but far too late.

I would have tried harder
to let you speak to me,
to let your words get through.
I could have helped you 
confront your demons,
instead of confronting you.

 It became impossible
to live with you
when you wouldn’t let me in.
Hard for us
to start over,
with nowhere to begin.

Had I only known
 the slippery slope
  of dealing with your past.
Known that I would struggle
to wade through
the depths
and dangers of your doubt.

I still would have wanted you.
I still could have loved you.
I would have understood.
I could have pulled you out.


I chose the challenge,

and gave you my heart.
Let all of my feelings show.
Uprooted my life,
to be with you,
but little did I know.


If only I had known,
I could have earned your trust.
I would have opened up my mind.
Instead, I read of our demise,

   determined before we met,
 by those you left behind.

Takers, martyrs, bullies,
sad and hurtful people,
there on my screen.
Instead of in our talks.
Instead of in my thoughts,
where they should have been.

 Until I read it,
I never once heard you 

refer to your mother as
Mom.
In fact, I barely knew
where all of the hurt
and resentment
were from.

Never could I picture, you,
together with your ex.

Made no sense to me at all.
And, until I read the name,
  typed in bold hostility,
I had never heard of Paul.

Bitterness and bravado.
 Broken pieces of the past,
clenched inside your fist.
   Our time, our spirit,
spent fighting with your ghosts.
One more added to the list.

It’s tough to share
with someone
who barely gives.
Hard to live
with someone
who reluctantly lives.

Had I only known
the bleak history
of your emotional pain.
The depths to which
those before me
had sunk inside your mind.
I still would have wanted you.
I still could have loved you.
I would have understood.
I could have been more kind.

I gave you my heart.
Had I only known…

 

 

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