Rivers

In her life, she has crossed many rivers
Some she swam with sure, steady strokes
Some she walked over on burning bridges
Some were so shallow, she easily waded
But fording the last one, she almost drowned
Failed to reach the other side

The swift, black waters dragged her down
Filled her lungs with life’s heartaches
Then cast her battered body back to shore
Left her choking, gasping, gagging,
Down but not defeated
Never defeated

Older and wiser, she bided her time
Waited at the river for the dire wolves to come drink
And built a raft from their strong bones
Made a cape from their warm, gray fur
Then floated across upon the cold choppy surface
And stepped off safe and warm on the other side

She fashioned a home from the raft bones
Made a bed from the sleek fur cape
And she abided there in the high desert
Content and happy as she grew old
Until the time came for her to leave
For there was one more river yet to cross

Home

Down a distant country road
Lined with hickory and oak
Sits an old weathered house
Its roof wreathed in gauzy smoke

Wash flaps on the line
Hound dogs rest in the shade
Kids shimmy up a walnut tree
Wearing clothes handmade

Mama stands on the porch
Daddy towers at her side
Unconditional love in their eyes
Welcoming arms open wide

Here’s my baby,
Daddy says with a grin
We’ve been waiting for you, Mama adds
Supper’s ready, come on in

I close my eyes, take a final breath
My heart no more shall roam
I leave the road, pass through the gate
At last…at last…I’m home

Photo from Pixabay

 

Wings

The wings are still there
Propped in a dark corner
Of a forgotten room
Since childhood

Shaggy and moth eaten
Dull gray with dust
Feathers drooping
Beneath Time’s weight

They whisper of a dream
Where anything is possible
Where I can fly
If only I believe

And possess a child’s courage
To strap on gossamer wings
Constructed of innocence and faith
And leap blindly into space

Photo from Pixabay

Mistress Youth

Youth is a fickle mistress
Batting her clear green eyes
Whispering in your ear…
I will stay with you forever

Naively, you believe her
Slug through the weeks
And months and years
Thinking she will always be there

You live your days for others
Instead of yourself and her, while
Work and family obligations
Mindlessly gorge on time perennial

Time you should have spent loving
Time you should have spent living
Time you should have spent just being
Time you should have spent with her

Until one morning you wake up alone
She has left you for someone younger
Leaving you old and worn out and used up
No good to yourself or anyone else

You see her out with her new love
And grow angry and resentful and hard
Hating her for abandoning you
Hating her for being happy without you

Then slowly you come to realize
That she did not leave you
You left her, long ago, standing alone
Beneath the glow of an eighties moon

Photo from Pixabay 

Silly Girl

once upon a time…

there was a silly girl
who didn’t see
the mistake she made
by trusting he

she gave her heart
she gave her all
and he tripped her up
just to watch her fall

he felt big by
making her small
used sarcasm and anger
kept her back to the wall

he didn’t listen
he didn’t see
that she stopped loving him
wanted only to be free

now he’s sorry
but it came too late
for too long he sowed meanness
and now he reaps her hate

Wednesday’s Child

I was not born to be happy…

No bright star shown down on me
When I was dropped headfirst into the world
Red-faced, kicking, screaming
And placed in my mother’s arms—
The only true home I’ve ever known

Instead, a dark star witnessed my birth
Stepped out of hell’s black hole
Took me in its cold bony hands
And christened me “Wednesday’s Child”
Damning me to a life full of woe

Not for me fair of face or full of grace
A clumsy witch with frizzy red hair
Who mounts her broom
And beneath an alabaster moon
Runs wild with the night

Night understands, night knows
What beats inside my heart
What tangles and twists my soul
It doesn’t question, doesn’t judge
Night is my beloved familiar

There’s a certain comfort in failure
A happiness inside misery
A pleasure in absent feelings
For a Wednesday’s Child
Who has serenely accepted her fate

For…
I was not born to be happy

Photo from Pixabay

Better

mistrust
distrust
no trust

been blue
been bruised
been used

cracked love
crushed love
no love

feelings gone
all alone
have no home

better this way
no piper to pay
with myself I lay

won’t be shamed
nor called names
play no games

just want peace
pain to cease
dark oblivion’s release

Photo from Pixabay

I Wait

sprawl in a wrinkled, uneasy bed
old demons and new share the covers
they jabber and snicker, toss and turn
chase away forgetful sleep
eyes on the shadowed ceiling
I wait for sunrise…

pour a cup of bitter, black coffee
greet the ghosts of past friends and lovers
resentful and accusing in their stony silence
tears slide down unforgiving cheeks
eyes on the cold floor
I wait for sunset…

pace dingy, dark, shuttered rooms
regrets, fuck-ups, and what-ifs hover
lamplight glints on gunmetal gray
what you sow, you shall reap
eyes on the bore of eternity
I wait for death’s release

Photo from iStock

Wolf

the wolf is at the door
he growls … I moan
he knows I am in here
afraid and all alone

the wolf is at the door
he claws the ancient wood
he knows I am behind it
he knows I will taste good

the wolf is at the door
his nose draws in my smell
he tastes the sapidity of my fear
his appetite I will quell

the wolf is at the door
I rise to let him in
this night will be an atonement
a night to pay for sins

the wolf is at the door
I gather my courage close
my fingers curl round the icy knob
I let in the lupine ghost

the wolf is in the door
he snarls … I scream
thrust my dagger into his heart
and carve out his bloody wet dream

the wolf is on the floor
I smile in satisfaction
he thought I would be an easy meal
too weak to take bold action

the wolf dies on the floor
no longer a threat to me
I write my name with his cooling blood
for other wolves to see

Photos from iStock and Pinterest

Old Crayons

white faith
purple hope
flesh yearning
can’t cope

green eyes
blue tears
pink lips
silent fears

brown thoughts
yellow emotions
orange screams
unending commotion

gray days
black nights
red dreams
nothing right

FYI–Crayola changed “flesh” to “peach” (for obvious reasons) in 1962. 

Photo from Morguefile