Three Poems

 

Three Poems

Amy De Ann Curtin

ENG/340

September 28th, 2015

 
I would define, in brief, the poetry of words as the rhythmical creation of Beauty. ~Poe

 

Poetry is a literary form that gives special intensity to the expression of feelings and ideas. The aesthetic and rhythmic qualities of language are used with particular care given to vivid imagery, strong metaphors, rhyme, and structure. By analyzing these elements, a deeper comprehending the authors’ message can be discovered. Understanding the components of Lewis Carroll’s “Jabberwocky”, Craig Raine’s “A Martian Sends a Postcard Home” and William Butler Yeats’ “The Stolen Child” all cover varying subjects but still, at their very foundation have similarities.

 

Lewis Carroll’s poem “Jabberwocky” is the tale of a young boy that goes out into the woods to hunt the Jabberwock as told by the narrator, most likely his father. This is a poem that is constructed of primarily nonsensical, made up words. The nonsensical words add to the fantasy and whimsy of the story. By examining the grammar, morphemes and syntax in the piece you can derive the meaning of much of the nonsense words with relative ease. The word Jabberwocky can actually be found in the dictionary and the definition is a noun that means meaningless speech or writing. Its origin is credited to Lewis Carroll’s poem. Several of the words are in fact portmanteau words such as slithy, galumphing and chortle. These are blended words are combined into a new word. Chortle and galumph are both also now found in the dictionary and owe their existence to this work. There are several onomatopoeia words that add a high level of vividness to the similes created. Onomatopoeia words emulate the sound that the item it describes makes. In Jabberwocky even though he words are nonsense they manage to give the reader a clear picture of what they refer to. When he tells of the “Jubjub bird” you can imagine a bird that makes a jub jub sound as it perches in a tree.  “The frumious Bandersnatch!” conjures up a beast with a fierce demeanor that should be avoided. The major metaphor that is used in this work is in line “The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame.” (p. 294). Carrol, L., (2005). This is not intended to make the reader think that the Jabberwocky actually had flames for eyes but that his eyes seemed to glow red as if they were made of fire. Although others can be found in the descriptions of other elements in the poem. Although containing mostly senseless words, the structure is consistent with classic English poetry. It can even be regarded as a ballad with its lyrical sentence structure and rhyme scheme. The construction is a quatrain, a series of four lined stanzas. Jabberwocky is constructed of seven stanzas with the final one being a repeat of the first. The rhymes follow an A.B.A.B scheme.

 

“A Martian Sends a Postcard Home” is a poem written by Craig Raine that is exactly what the title states. It describes the way an extra-terrestrial may interpret what they observe while visiting Earth. This is a type of Martian poetry that was popular for short time in the late 1970’s and into the early 1980’s. This became known as Martianism, a minor movement in British literary history that demonstrated the anxieties and qualms of an alienated nation. The Images may be difficult to recognize upon first reading the poem. Raine’s otherworldly witness attempts to explain simple functions and items found on Earth, they are a book, the fog, the rain, a car, a clock and a watch, a telephone, the use of a restroom, and the act of going to sleep and dreaming in terms that the Martian’s back home will understand. There is no attention paid to rhyme in this work. Metaphorically this poem is very rich. Being that the Martian is lacking the understanding of the different things they are all detailed with metaphors. The first description is of a book, “mechanical birds with many wings, and some are treasured for the markings-“(p.308), Raine, C., (2005) Using a birds wings to describe the pages. However, in many of the descriptions there is a definite amalgamation of the natural and the technological. This piece is constructed of seventeen stanzas each of two lines. The poem if very enigma -like. The first riddle consists of three of the stanzas and describes a book. The second riddle is made up of two stanzas to describe fog, followed by riddle three that is only one stanza to describe the rain as a television with a snowy screen. The fourth riddle is two stanzas to describe a car as a way to “free the world” by turning a key. The next stanza is the fifth riddle it is “tied to a wrist or kept in a box” and describes a watch and a clock. The three following stanzas work to describe a phone. The next three describe the function of going to the restroom, something no one is “exempt” from. In the final two stanzas our Martian narrator describes humans going to sleep and dreaming.

 

In “The Stolen Child” written by William Butler Yeats, an Irish writer was charmed by the folk-lore, ballads and superstitions of the Irish people. His poetry has Celtic spirit mingled with a sense of mysticism and even some measure of sadness and grief. “The Stolen Child” tells of a young boy that is lured away by a host of Fairies. The imagery that is created is of a fertile place with a rocky cliff and. Here the child is tempted by the fae to leave the world he knows as it is full of weeping and join them in their woodland paradise. This piece is in itself somewhat of a metaphor about returning to the innocence of youth.  It uses a varied pattern of rhyming words and reads highly lyrical. The poem is composed of four stanzas of varying length. The first stanza is twelve lines and describes where the fairies reside. It tells of the rocky land and how where it slopes there can be found a thick mysterious forest and a lake. “Where dips the rocky highland; Of Sleuth Wood in the lake; There lies a leafy island” (p.320), Yeats, W.B., (2005). This island is the home of the fairies and it is where they tempt the child to go with them with promises of the stolen berries and red cherries in their hidden containers. The child is enticed to come to the waters of the lake and wild world of nature because the world in which the child lives is bursting with grief and sorrow. The second stanza is fifteen lines and tells more of the wonders of the fairy’s home, a place far away from the “distant Rosses” and where the grey sands are illuminated by the moonlight. This is where they spend the evening engaged in the dances of old. They describe this as chasing bubbles under the light of the moon. Again they voice to the boy the troubles in the world and implore him to come away with them. The third stanza is fourteen lines and tells of how the fairies look for sleepy trout in the waters by starlight and by whispering in their ears cause them to have disturbed dreams. Showing their power over the living things of the world and yet again ends in the plea to come away with them to a happy and natural world of the fairies. In the fourth and final stanza is twelve lines and tells how the child is going away with the fairies to the island. The fairies take the solemn eyed boy and tell him of the things in the human world that he will no longer experience. No longer will he hear the sound of the calves lowing as they graze or the sound of the kettle on the hearth. No longer will he witness the mice as they scurry around the chest of oatmeal. He is now going to the leafy island to live amongst the fairies and escape a world full of weeping and torment.

Dissecting poems and identifying the elements helps the reader understand the message that was intended. Poetry is personal and somewhat subjective but a clearer understanding can help the reader better discover what the work can mean to them. “Jabberwocky”, “A Martian Sends a Postcard Home” “The Stolen Child” all speak from an innocent vision of things in the world trying to understand things that are not evident and simply defined.

 

 

 

 

 

Reference

Carroll, Lewis (1998) Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass pp 198–199 Wordsworth Editions

Carrol, L., (2005) Crossroads, (p.294), Pearson Education Inc.

Hayes, Max Hunter, “At a slight angle to the universe: Martianism and cultural deracination in the works of Martin Amis, Craig Raine and Christopher Reid, 1977–1984” (2003). Dissertation Archive. Paper 2093. Retrieved from http://aquila.usm.edu/theses_dissertations/2093

Merriam-Webster Dictionary. (2015). Jabberwocky. Retrieved from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jabberwocky

Raine, C., (2005) Crossroads, (p.308), Pearson Education Inc.

Yeats, W.B., (2005) Crossroads, (p.320), Pearson Education Inc.

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The Hope Chest

 

As far back as I could remember it had been there. For years it occupied the area at the foot of momma and poppa’s bed, before the remodel banished it up to sit in the attic with all the creepy crawlies and dust that drove my allergies into a frenzy. Momma always called it her “Hope Chest” although I wasn’t sure what that meant. It was a beautiful thing, dark wood with brass fittings, a giant trunk that had played quite a few roles in the imagination of my childhood. A pirate’s treasure chest filled with booty, as I fought of the swashbucklers with my little wooden school ruler that had magically become a mighty cutlass. After a night spent with my dearest friend from school, watching scary movies, it became the sleeping place of some horrid vampire looking to feed in the darkness of the night or the mummy’s resting place, come back to life to seek out his revenge. In reality I knew it was momma’s own chest of treasures, and she kept it locked up tight. So I knew there had to be something truly dazzling hidden inside. I remember when I finally got access to the contents of that mysterious trunk. I was six, it was a rainy day, and I had come home from school with a cold so wasn’t allowed to play. Growing restless trapped inside, Momma found me as I lay face down on the sofa close to death from boredom.

“Adelaide, sweetie, being stuck inside isn’t so terrible is it?” momma cooed like she was trying to draw out a frightened animal hiding in a burrow.

“Oh, momma, there is nothing to do. Nothing at all.” Arose my muffled protest through the floral pattern of the couch.

“Come with me silly girl” taking me by the hand she led me into her room and that is when she pulled, out of its hiding place in her pocket a tiny brass key. I recognized it as the key to the trunk. As we knelt down in front of Momma’s Hope Chest she explained to me what a Hope Chest was.

“See, Adelaide sweetie, when a girl reaches a certain age she is given a special chest like this one to store away things in the hopes of one day becoming a wife.” Momma explained.

“You mean get married?! To a BOY?! That is so gross!” I bawled in protest.

“One day, all too soon, you won’t think boys are gross honey.” Momma laughed as she slid the key into the lock.

“You will eventually find a boy that isn’t gross and you will want to start a life with him.” She explained. “When you get older we will start saving important things for that time.”

Opening the lid with a screech and let me see the “treasures” inside. As I peered over the edge excited to finally get to see the doubloons and jewels I was deflated to see it was full of nothing shiny and fabulous. Some rotten scallywag had gotten to the treasure and spirited it away leaving the chest filled with a bunch of old blankets and linens. There was however in the bottom, a pretty quilt that I had never seen before. Hand sewn pieces of yellow fabric with delicate little flowers. This was all the treasure the chest held. This is when I lost my interest in that massive wood chest.

I hardly noticed when the trunk was banished to the attic. The time of playing at being the mightily monster hunter fighting off all manner of chilling creature or a pirate princess guarding my treasure had long gone. My attention had turned to the silly things that occupy the mind of the teenage girl. I once overheard momma on the phone tell Aunt Nadine that I was Boy Crazy. Life was about what girl had a crush on which boy and who had been kissed by who behind the gymnasium.

Life moved on and I was busy with growing up. Anxiously awaiting my Sweet Sixteen I imagined of the incredible things to come in my life. It was just a week before my birthday when momma called me up to the attic to help her with something. I hated the attic, it was dark, dirty and creepy, but I had to do what momma asked.  So I reluctantly trudged up the stairs wound my way through boxes of Christmas bobbles and crates of Halloween decor to find her standing over the trunk that I had long forgot. It looked the same as I remembered just coated with years’ worth of dust and cobwebs.

“Remember this old thing?” she asked as she ran her hand over the top of the chest, sweeping away some of the grime.

“When you were little you were fascinated with it. Now it is time that it is yours.”

I was astonished. I knew that it had been in the family for a long time, it had been my Grandmothers and her mother’s before that but I really never thought about it one day being mine.

“Really? Do you mean I get to have one of those Hope Chest thingies like you and Aunt Nadine and Aunt Kathleen all had growing up?”

“Yes, this very chest was actually used by all of us and now it will be yours.”

She again produced the delicate little brass key from her pocket and opened the chest. In the dim light of the attic I could see the chest held only one thing inside its depths. A beautiful hand sewn quilt of yellow florals.

“Oh, I remember seeing this quilt before, it is so pretty, why have you always kept it in here momma?” I prodded.

Momma ran her hands over the fabric and I could see some sadness in her eyes. As she lifted it up out of the chest. My curiosity grew, there had to be a reason this blanket had been buried away like this.

“You are old enough to know the reason why we don’t visit your Aunt Kathleen often, I suppose.” She almost whispered, “Having sisters can be a difficult thing, especially when one is selfish and rotten.”

We sat together on the closed lid of the trunk with the lovely quilt across our laps as momma told me the story of why she didn’t get along with her oldest sister with tears in her eyes.

“Grandma Aileen’s first baby was your aunt Kathleen. From the time she was a born she was a needy little thing, always demanding all of the attention. When she was three aunt Nadine was born, Kathleen began throwing temper tantrums every time Nadine was given any attention. In another three years down the road I was born. My mother named me after her childhood best friend Isabelle. Kathleen continued acting out and even hurt Nadine on several occasions. There were even several trips to the doctor for various injuries over the years.” She absentmindedly rubbed her left wrist as she said this.

“So anyhow, growing up Nadine and I kept to ourselves as much as possible. I think that knowing how devious Kathleen was capable of being made Nadine want to protect me and made us so close.”

I sat there shocked, I knew mom didn’t get along with her oldest sister but I didn’t realize that Aunt Kathleen had been so mean.

Mom continued “When Kathleen turned sixteen she was given the wooden trunk from our parent’s room to start her own hope chest, and our grandmother gave her a hand sewn quilt in light greens and oranges that were Kathleen’s favorite colors at the time.”

I wrinkled my nose up at the thought of a green and orange bedroom.  Mom saw this out of the corner of her eye and giggled a little. “I know, I know, the great popular colors of the Sixties.”

“Kathleen was so proud of her quilt, she was always taking it out of the trunk to look at it. I think she was almost showing off, rubbing it in our faces. She would lay it across her bed and tell us how it was made special just for her by Grandma Gallagher. When one of us tried to touch it she would slap us. She was always finding reasons to pinch or slap us. Nadine and I both hoped that she would marry and move away soon. Luckily, she did, at nineteen. She had gotten herself in “trouble” according to my parents. I really had no idea what that could possibly mean. I just knew she was out of the house.” Mom sighed and I got an idea of the relief she felt when her mean sister moved out.

“Just as Nadine was about to turn sixteen the contents of the chest went to Kathleen’s new home and the chest was handed down to her to use as her own hope chest. Nadine knew that Grandma Gallagher had been busy sewing her a beautiful quilt of her own to place inside the chest and she couldn’t wait to see it. Grandma’s quilts were always so lovely. Then the week before her birthday mom took Kathleen with her to visit Grandma who lived down south from us, and promised to bring back Nadine’s quilt with them. Of course we were not pleased that mom was taking just Kathleen on the trip. I remember how I felt extremely left out yet again. It had always been that way though, Kathleen was always running us off so she could have mom to herself. Now I know that Kathleen wanted to go alone to tell our Grandmother about the baby she was expecting. It was years before I understood that was the “trouble” she had gotten into.”

Mom and I both giggled a little about that, I knew what that kind of being in “trouble” meant.

“The day they returned from the trip Nadine was so excited. Even I was a bit excited. Nadine couldn’t wait to see it, the quilt she had been anxiously waiting for was finally within her grasp. It was all she had talked about for a week. Mom dropped Kathleen off at her own house and arrived with a large bundle in her arms. Nadine was tremendously joyful as she tore open the brown paper, but once she saw the contents she broke down into tears and locked herself away in her room.” Mom shook her head gently. I could see how this upset her.

“I didn’t understand, what would have caused my sister to be so sad so I pulled open the package, inside was a tattered and torn quilt of yellow floral fabric. It was once beautiful but it had been worn and used, with many stains and rips. I knew instantly, without having to ask, that Kathleen had taken the quilt that was meant for Nadine and replaced it with another. I was only twelve at the time but I knew how awful and conniving my oldest sister was. I gathered up the tattered blanket and went to mom’s room. Laying it on her bed I boldly asked her where Nadine’s quilt was. At first she said she didn’t know what I meant but I would not be dissuaded. She finally told me that Kathleen had just loved the new quilt so much she had to have it. So she had replaced Nadine’s with an old quilt that grandma had given her that needed some repairs. She actually told me that Nadine should just be happy she got a quilt at all.”

“I just couldn’t believe it, my own mother, treating her daughter that way.” The sadness in her voice was crushing.

“Oh Momma, I am so sorry. What happened then? Is that why the quilt has always been here?” I questioned

“Yea Adelaide, I took the torn one and fixed it myself, cleaned up all the stains and stitched up all the rips and tears.” Running her hands over the fabric I could see the pain she still felt over this.

“When I turned sixteen and got my own quilt from Grandma I snuck it into Nadine’s hope chest and never told her what I had done. She thought mom had gotten her a new one from Grandma.”

I sat there, still as I could be and thought about my mom’s story of the quilt. I finally understood why Aunt Kathleen was never invited over for holiday’s or family dinners. I had never really felt like I knew her, but all of a sudden I felt a deep level of hate for her. I knew this was not a good thing to feel, I just couldn’t help it. She was just so awful. My eyes filled with tears thinking about what my aunt and mom had been through. Then momma stood up, wiped a tear from her eye and with a big smile handed me the quilt.

“Well now this quilt is yours, along with the hope chest.”

Grandma Gallagher had been gone for years now and there were no more beautiful handmade quilts specially made for the girls of the family to put into their hope chests so I was pleasantly surprised to know that I was actually going to have one of my own. I held it up to my chest and thought about how much my mom loved her older sister to have done what she had. To hide away the quilt that brought so much heartache and repair it in secret, returning it to its original condition, keeping it tucked away, safe for all these years. Then to give up her own quilt to help repair the broken heart of a much loved sister. My preconceived ideas of my mother had really gone through a serious change in the span of an afternoon in the attic. My appreciation and love for her was overpowering in that moment.

We moved the trunk down to my own room, spent the rest of the day cleaning it and polishing the wood and brass until it was shiny again. I was handed the tiny brass key that unlocked it. Momma had strung it onto a delicate gold chain along with a tiny gold heart with a diamond, so that I could wear it around my neck. The beauty of this was dazzling to me. This was my first piece of real jewelry. I used the key to open the trunk and the spicy deep aroma of the cedar enveloped me. I placed the beautiful and meaningful quilt back into the chest where it had been kept for countless years. Over the course of the next few years I added to the contents of the trunk. Several hand embroidered items, a delicate china set that I found in a thrift shop. An antique set of crystal goblets that my mother brought back from my parents second honeymoon in Europe. Many assorted kitchen wares, including an exquisite full set of real silver cutlery in a velvet lined case. Each time I found a new treasure to add to my hope chest I would open it to see the beauty of the yellow floral patchwork, and I would think about how meaningful this particular quilt was.

Since I was an only child when I finally found that boy that wasn’t gross and married him momma let me take the chest with me. To this day it sits at the foot of my bed and my own children have no doubt had their own pirate adventures or maybe even monster slaying expeditions with the chest playing its role. I had two rebellious boys and had given up on the idea of a daughter to hand down the hope chest and quilt to then we were blessed with a tiny little princess. She has brought so much love and joy to my life and now as she approaches her sweet sixteen I am preparing to pass on a family tradition along with a lesson disguised as a quilt. The very quilt that kept its place across the foot of my bed for years. Finally after being hidden away in the trunk for so long it deserved to be used and loved. The quilt that has comforted each of my children when they fell ill. The quilt I still use to curl up in on the couch on rainy days. See the lesson I learned that day up in the dusty attic with my momma was that sometimes bad things happen and bad people do terrible things and get away with them but it is how you deal with it that really matters and shows your own strength of personality. Even a tattered and torn quilt can be meaningful. That quilt was a symbol of the love of a little sister and how she made sacrifices to help mend a broken heart and kept the disappointments that family and life sometimes deal out from spreading and poisoning entire lives.

Starry Night

Jolted out of a deep sleep I find that a tender ice-cold breeze has reached its spidery coils through the open window, ruffling the gossamer thin curtains. The violent bang of the window frame upon the bare wall of the room must have been what woke me. I cannot recall leaving the window open to the late autumn night. It is something I do from time to time but I felt the cold coming, I recall leaving it latched. Yet it here stands wide open and the room has grown so profoundly cold the I can see my very breath, it is a glaring reminder that winter is not far away.
The window hangings flap in the opening conjuring up the image of the tattered shreds of a phantom shroud, beckoning me into their icy embrace. Pushing off the heavy comfort of the old quilt on the bed I slide out of the only warmth in the room. Slowly, I cross the uneven surface of the old wood floor, the frosty cold steals deep into the soles of my bare feet.
“Where are you going?” the sleepy voice of my husband questions from the bed. I can see his form shifting under the quilt as he rolls over.
“It is so cold in here” I can see my breath as I reply. “Just need to close the window.”
“Come back to bed, you need your rest”
That is the whole reason why we are here in this place. The doctor says I am exhausted and I need some rest. I think they don’t understand. I think they don’t really know what is wrong.
“Be right there” I mumble, by the sound of his ragged breath I know he has fallen back asleep and isn’t listening.
Reaching the open window I pause for an instant to gaze out, mesmerized by the full moon floating in the air. The glimmering reflective sphere, so abundant and heavy, casts an eerie light that fills the night.
I take a deep breath of the night air smelling the wetness of the earth and the robust aroma of the eucalyptus trees standing guard at the edge of the expansive lawn below. A fresh clean minty smell that evokes childhood memories of the salves momma used when as a little one and had come down with a cold or some type of congestion. That was before, when I wasn’t “unwell” like I am now. Then my illness was easy to understand and cure and treat. I am no longer the little baby in swaddling clothes with the loving mother to care for it. I am the lonely sad creature that is here in this freezing room on the edge of nowhere with only the moon to comprehend.
The Moon, such a misunderstood object. Talk of moonlight is common, in poem and in song, yet the moon does not create any light at all. A cold, dry ball with a surface peppered with craters and frosted with rocks and dust and darkness, it simply reflects the light of the sun. There is a darkness inside of me. Suffocating, taking away all of the color in the world, food has no taste, life has no joy. It is what they all say has made me unwell. The Doctor’s, Nurse’s, my loving husband, all of them. They don’t understand that it is a living breathing entity just as much as they are. It isn’t something I can just snap out of. There is just so much pain and anguish that tumbles around inside my head and in my heart. It has developed and transformed, swelling to become something undefinable. I no longer reflect any light.
Through the streaked glass of the window the deep azure sky churns like a sea of lapping waves threaded with liquid silver and sprinkled with golden shimmering stars as wispy clouds race across the surface. The moon is all alone in the darkness, much like I feel myself. Even surrounded by the stars it stands alone. The illumination it provides is distant and cold yet so brilliant that it shines down upon the sleepy little country village below like daylight. A sprinkling of tidy white houses with red clay roofs line the brick-paved streets. They seem so far away that they appear to be children’s playthings. All the windows stand black, devoid of any sign of life. Just like a window into my soul. It as though every other living being has been swept away, leaving me here alone in this icy world. Between me and the miniature toy village stands a majestic church with a tall white steeple. The spire reaching up to the moon as it is also begging, praying for understanding, compassion, or love.
Securing the window latch I ensure the breeze will not push it back open to fill the room with more of the night’s icy cold breath. I gently pull the delicate gauzy curtains open to allow the night sky to be seen from any place in the room. Turning towards the bed I cross the room to return to the downy warmth of the antique quilt that holds the loving arms of my husband and a promise of warmth.
I cannot help but glance over my shoulder to look out again at the moon. I feel reassured to know it is still there, watching me. The coldness lingers in the room, creeping under the bedframe, crawling across the floor, snaking along the floorboards wrapping its coils around the space, holding on, not wanting to let go of the hold it has upon the room.
Step by step I make my way across the frozen floor on feet that have grown numb from the cold. The distance between the window and the bed seems to have grown. What was only a few paces now seems to be leagues. My mind drifts off to the dark things crouched inside me. Such a pretty, little monsters, full of ugliness and beauty at the same time. They are all mine, and I keep them to myself, holding onto them with the desperation of a mother clutching onto the shell of her child that has long since passed. Refusing to let go, because release means that all that is left is facing reality and being left with only the overwhelming grief of a loss so profound that is holds the power to transform who you are at your very core.
At long last I arrive at the foot of the bed. I run my hand along the fancy scroll work of the white wrought iron frame. The twirls and dips of the metal mirror the swirls of the night sky. I find my attention drawn back to the view beyond the window. Knowing that I can easily slip back into the blissful depths of slumber and let the troubles of the world and in my mind disappear I stop for half a second to wonder why I chose to turn away and return my study of the moon and the stars. The moment passes quickly and I let my mind wander back to the things eating me up and making me ill while I gaze at the world beyond.
Every hurtful word and experience of my life up till now has created a vicious little creature that now resides inside. A great number of these are contributions from others, bloody offerings, gifts that haunt my mind, torture my soul. Some I have created for myself. These are the most treacherous of my sinister little demons. Existence based on some deep subconscious longing to cause myself harm. Feeding them with my own disturbed thoughts I watch them grow strong. I bury them all down deep within, were it is shadowy and dark, a damp cold dungeon, a black pit of misery, the perfect place to sit and rot. Deep where no light can ever penetrate. In the inky blackness, eyes glowing bright, as bright as the golden twinkling stars. Watching, waiting for the moment to reveal themselves. When all is quiet in the night and I am alone with only my thoughts, my wall of defense becomes weak. They creep up, sneaking into my mind in the dead of night, like this night. The fiend under the bed that has been patiently lying in wait for me to shift position and carelessly pull the covers off my feet, revealing my defenseless flesh. Giving the perfect opportunity to sluggishly slither cold, clammy hands up the side of the bed and wrap around an exposed ankle.
The tiniest fissure is all that is needed for them to wriggle through. As a spring flower opens its delicate petals to the sun, my dark, putrid bloom emerges in the darkness and stretches forth, a rotten decaying deep scarlet rose adorned with razor sharp thorns that prick the flesh and draw fresh blood. Tendrils snaking around my form wrapping around me like a cloud of black wispy smoke, enveloping my form entirely until I am no longer visible, I am disappearing I have ceased to exist outside of this darkness, it has finally consumed me.
“Honey, are you out of bed again?” the concern in his voice is unmistakable.
Suddenly I snap back to the moment, the here and now. How long have I been standing here?
“I’m coming back now” I whisper gently, “don’t worry my love.”
Legs so cold I find it difficult to move. Stumbling slightly, I take the last few steps and pull back the quilt. Sliding in I pull the thick, soft blanket up to my chin as the warmth of my husband’s arms envelope me. Seeking some comfort, hoping to find it here. Closing my eyes I realize for the first time that I do need help, I am unwell. I want to move into the light and let go of these dark thoughts. Softly I voice a goodbye to the darkness of the night. For the first time in longer than I can remember I feel that I can let in the light and love.

Amy De Ann Copley-Curtin's photo.

Some people

Some people are just born to do it….  when a child is born sometimes it is just detiny that determines that eventually, come what may, they will have to commit this act. I think I may be one.  It has lingered in the back of my mind for as
long as I can recall, sneaking up on me from time to time, to remind me it is there, hiding in the shadows,waiting patiently. Things will be fine in my life. I am happy and content. Things are going well, and out of the blue it comes. Hands wrapped around the steering wheel, music playing on the radio, something catchy that begs you to hum along. The sun is shining still, know you got a couple good hours of sunlight left before it dips down turning pink and purple, lighting the clouds on fire, as it sinks down to the west. Diving into the ocean. Letting my thoughts drift off, wander as they may when that little voice pops up. I eas nust thinking about what to make for dinner tonight, particulars from a job at work or what we havet planned for next weekend when it comes. It is a familiar voice. One I know very well so it doesn’t scream of stranger danger. It is like hearing the voice of a dear old friend. It really sounds like the strong version of me that i wish i could harness. It just feels right and true. The statement never changes. It is uttered as though it is fact. There is no lack of credibility. It is an outside, strong, commanding voice that is not me, but it is me! This voice may be more me than I am myself! Only four words does it ever say, only the four, and they, until now are only
heard deep within the recesses of my mind. It is a firm, strong voice that does not invite debate. It is stating this as a matter of fact. There will be no dispute, no argument.

Trepidation

So I finally decided that i had better go to the doctor about this strange BB sized lump that seems to have suddenly appeared in the joint of my right thumb. It is actually causing me some pain and discomfort and I figured better safe than sorry. Well, it turns out it is a ganglion cyst in the tendon of my thumb and I am to wear a brace for 6 weeks to immobilize it to see if it will heal. If not they will have to send me to another doctor so they can go in with a needle and inject it with steroids. Learning to cope without the use of my thumb has been challenging the last couple days.

Since i was a new patient the doctor sent me out for a full panel. I absolutely hate giving blood, hey, at least I don ‘t faint every time now. They told me that if there was anything that was wrong they would call me and have me come back. Well, I got that call yesterday. I am set to return today to find out what is wrong. I have been eerily calm on the outside, but I am screaming on the inside. a million things are running through my head. Diabetes, bad cholesterol, anemia, cancer, liver problems……  I have the distinct feeling that my life is about to change.

Music calms even the most savage beast

Quiet Inside~The Jane Does

This Woman’s Work~Kate Bush

Young and Beautiful~Lana Del Rey

Wish you were here~Pink Floyd

Mad World~ Michael Andres and Gary

Who wants to live forever~Queen

Straight Jacket Feeling~The All American Rejects

You were meant for me~Jewel

The World I know~Collective Soul

Hurt~Nine Inch Nails

Better Than Me~ Hinder

Asleep~Emily Browning