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Archives for aftermath

before and after

it seems that we keep time
in before and after.
not so much in days or years,
but in moments that stop everything.
some moments create deep fissures
in the skin of our souls,
as though splintering the heart,
penetrating even our deepest being.
each soul is marked by scars
by tears not shed
by pain too great
by fires gone out
by before,
and after.

sparkle

This is my walk
Nearly every day
I say hello to flowers and trees and tall grass
as they sparkle in the late afternoon sun
My heart records their incredible beauty and sad decay.
I focus on the shapes and colors of the leaves,
the twisted limbs of ancient trees.
every flower is delicate, unique.
some are faded, some vibrant
some reaching around others [...]

begin again

it doesn’t matter how many times I start over,
only that I do.
hypnosis is my love,
my power.
I can do this.
I am good at this.
life interfered
but the time is now
to return to what I love and what I can do well.
I will begin again.

exposure

tonight, i feel like a bird’s nest covered with skin.
broken, twisted little branches
held together with bits of string and sticks and stems
wound up tighter than necessary
 to protect the pieces of me
that have yet to shatter

if only

Today I attended a holiday boutique with my lovely, talented, oldest daughter, who was showing her hand-made aprons. The show was in a a hair salon. It is more modern I suppose, than when my mother had been their client many years ago, but essentially the same. I recognized it right away.
My mother had thick, [...]

storm

suddenly the storm is me
my emotions rage and tear the air 
like debris tossed about in a wild wind
i will not be peaceful if it means dying with the words suffocated behind my lips
i will not be a shadow any longer
i must stand in the light
even if it is a storm

destiny

I was not his victim. I realize that now. I could have walked away a thousand times before I became so stuck in my own mind that escape seemed impossible. In the end, I became my own victim. I decided to believe that the things he said about me were true, his estimation of my worth as a human being, and my abilities as a parent.

He said that I would never leave him because I could never make it on my own, that I would never be able to support our children. And I decided to believe that I needed him. I decided to believe that I was helpless without him. I decided that it was my destiny to have that life, and that I deserved my fate.

stalemate

I had a dear friend once. She was originally from England. She had a uniquely marvelous perspective on the American world. She was one of the few truly honest persons I had ever known. I loved her within minutes of meeting her.
I came to learn that her husband was terribly critical [...]

i saw the play

It’s been thirty plus years since I left my abuser. Thirty years, and still, the reminder of one moment, all that time ago, can steal my breath.
Not any particular moment. There were a lot of bad moments back then. It can be just a random memory, even a sound, or a smell, but most [...]

bullet

I parked at a cheap lot several blocks from my office. I would get out of my car and start the walk. Each step was a victory. I figured that if the bullet got me, I would probably never know it, but I was saddened at the thought of my two young daughters having to go on without me.