Tag Archives: love

For Better or Worse

His memory lingers
long after the last door slam,
to unsettle emotions
and distort newly held beliefs
His legacy bequeathed
in the divorce settlement
are ripples on a mirror surface. . .
the crinkles of eyes laughing
arms meant for holding,
thoughtful insight of a kind
rarely seen in the eyes of men.
And yet,
the papers speak
of a different reality,
of dreams gone awry,
and a world spinning of balance.
No regrets –
but sometimes, in quiet moments,
when I forget to raise my shields,
the memory of his eyes
as he made love to me
tears at my heart,
that I remember
there won’t be another
such as he . . .
for better or worse.

In times of greatest anger
I find myself wondering
where did that great love go?
It is here, pocketed within secret places,
to emerge in the peace of the night
and remind me
how great the loss was
to walk away in anger
and carry the love.

Palm Sunday

Are my whispering doubts
just the after words,
diluted by time,
of the rabid crowds in
Jerusalem, spurred on by
wrinkled, threatened old priests
perhaps lessened or camouflaged
in time’s passing?

I waved my palm today,
trying to weave a cross
from the dried out grass,
singing of love and adoration
and pain . . .
his, not mine.

Had spouted statistics
of 31 deaths in Egyptian
Coptic Christian Churches,
with many more injured
and felt sadness, mourning,
but not depth of feeling
for the atrocity and its effects

I’m outraged and worn down
simultaneously, by all the
madness and cruelty in our world.
Nightly I pray that the evil ones
doing ordering or following
be so filled with loving kindness
that never again can they do harm
nor for those underneath
to respond back in rage.

What is enough?
Enough for me to do,
enough for the world to bear,
enough for the Trinity to react
as was promised?
Where and when will it end?
Or is it still in it’s infancy?

Thanksgiving and Gratitude

My Grinch is coming out.  Thanksgiving was when my Mother was alive and put out a huge spread which she would always take a picture of.  Thanksgiving is now the time everyone seems to gear up for Black Friday – except for us poor folk.  I’m lucky if I can do a little Cyber Monday but not much.  These times they have been changing.  I feel like Albert in Miracle on 42nd Street – “Who put the commercialism into Christmas?” Although now it starts before Halloween. How can you be thankful when you can’t keep the Holidays in linear alignment?

My family always treats the Holidays with great stress.  Who should go where – what to bring – Should we try to force ourselves into uncomfortable gatherings?  There is so much stress, you can’t find it in you to give from your heart.  You stand, feet moving back and forth, shuffling to find an easier position.  Your Holiday contribution to the meal lies untouched, except by you, the only one to eat it.  And worse, it was a staple on Mom’s Thanksgiving table – Heresy!!

Gratitude?  To either be with persons you don’t really want to be with or be sequestered within the walls of your empty home.  Honestly, the fact that we have a home is an amazing thing to be grateful for.  And if not your own home, than a shelter or another person who offers you a bed in which to sleep.

Disgruntled by what you have to bring or that no one appreciates it, or that you have to go to a Community Meal?  Let us get down on our knees and be grateful we have access to nourishing food.  Think of the refugees, those in Aleppo or other sites across the world that have no food, water, shelter.  And those within our own community, particularly the elderly and children.

So many of us struggle with the holidays, particularly so because of our disease.  Most of our friends and relatives simply don’t understand why we are so uncomfortable, withdrawn or manic.  Why can’t we be better?  We can’t, that’s why.  We are doing the best we can.  Just realize they struggle with our illness too.  They might really want to relate better with us but don’t know how.  If we need to, we can gently explain it to them.

But there are real and valid reasons for gratitude and thankfulness.  We do get help.  We can get services to assist us even if persistence is necessary to obtain them.  Our support groups can help.  Even if we are hanging in by the skin of our teeth, there are crisis centers to call, ministers to talk to, friends or neighbors to talk to.  We can keep to our traditions.  Watch all those sappy movies that have little to do with real life. Do things for others.  Pray for guidance and understanding. Smile as much as we can because the act itself, even if forced, realigns your face and emotions. Finally,  realize that it is only a month and a week before it is over.

 

 

Scorching the Innocent

The aching which ripples through me
in ever widening waves,
permeates each pore,
suffusing it in the lament
for one to encircle me,
wrap me up, penetrate
to fill all those empty holes.
And yet I fear
for touch may burn skin,
sear the soul, the rage within me
seeking appeasement
still seeks the source
and not having divested itself
upon its owner –
knows only to burn all
who have come close and seek
to infiltrate hallowed halls
and so I, feeling the flames
flickering so close to the surface,
turn away from gentle touches
that I not be the bearer
of a scorching that maims.

Caregiving challenges

His face a maze of rivulets and ravines, crutches help bear the weight he carries,
his feet heavy, movements ponderous. Yes, age has wormed its way into his bones
but more, he carries the years upon years of caring for a willful, capricious wife –
most times removed, caught up in her own world, with people and presences
no one else can share or know, leaving him alone with the battle of care.

Caregivers have a heavy burden even with the easiest people those with minds still clear, bodies more or less functional. Whose age or disease make the need for care, daily or occasionally, a burden, willing or not.

But for others, caregiving  carries a much different burden. When they must manage a violent or mentally challenged person, a person with bipolar or schizophrenic
episodes, one whose body has worn out, needing total care, it can make the caregiver
sicker than the person cared for.

That old man has cared for his wife since she had nervous breakdowns forty years prior, sitting by her bed every minute, ignoring all else, including his only son, alone, left to fend for himself, do the shopping, laundry, cleaning.

He has abided her demands, given into whims, defended her right to choose not to medicate. In so doing, she has chosen a tangled trail leaving her family to carry a hard burden of care allowing the right of self-choice to medicate and feel largely better or be “in control” of herself as she berates, hits, babbles, ignores him or
or talks gibberish. BUT always remains the center of attention.

The burden of caregivers is their lives aren’t their own, at the least for sizable chunks of time.  From bill paying and shopping, to bathing, feeding and all facets of self care,
they spend from Sunday visits to constant care for family or hired professionals.

When it comes to Alzheimer’s, all bets are off. You are not often recognized for yourself. Hitting, endless paranoid pacing, constant distraction, inability to  voice thoughts coherently . . .it is exhausting. But it is also a means to give back, to make amends, to relish the moments you have because they may not be long.

That old man now must also contend with a son who believes his mother has every right to choose not to medicate, even though all who are part of her life are negatively affected by that choice. The son refuses to listen to his own children who have enough detachment to see the situation more clearly.

When the Father is overwhelmed, the son brings her, 600 miles away, to his home
where she sits alone, hour after hour, or wanders off with the dog, lost, unaware of where she is or why others are yelling at her to get off the street. It’s not care, not a solution, it’s an ill-chosen stop-gap measure that could hurt or kill her.

We need to be aware of the long-term effects of the decisions we make for our loved ones or those under our care. Sometimes the right solution is personal care by the family, sometimes it’s professional care within the home, but assisted living or skilled nursing homes may be the best options too.  Money is, of course, a vital component in decision-making, as is insurance coverage, and what the impact will mentally have for the person being cared for.

The Question

So love is where its at Baby,
and my, my how we all run
from body to body
in desperate yearning
for that one person
beyond all others
that can reach deeply
into the soul’s dark corners
and pull forth
that gift carefully hidden.

Frantically we search
for the special someone
to fill our empty places,
making a shell become whole
because so little belief
is set in our own capacity
to make ourselves complete.

Love, baby, love –
the solitary key
passed from one hand to another’s
thoughtlessly dropped
by hungry feet
that in riotous panic
throng toward gathering places –

To get lost in the crowd
but fearfully hoping
for one night of love
before the illusion is shattered
and we stand naked
before empty souls
who had too little to give
and no time to give it –
desperate and despairing –
because love wasn’t the answer anymore
but just another question.

 

Pretender

For just one night hold me –
you can pretend someone else
is cuddled within your arms
soothed by your touch
but don’t tell me
these bittersweet moments
are an illusion.

For a brief few moments
wrap your arms about me closely,
let my head nestle
into your shoulder,
soft and warm . . .
and let me imagine
for just a little while
someone loves me,
and let vague illusions
I could love too
pass through my mind.

 

Coming Together

You run – I run –
coming together to spread
tiny slivers of bitter icicles
into raw nerve endings
to numb feelings and still
the tremulous beating of hearts
far too vulnerable.

Then quickly, lest either one
see a glimmer of emotion
lurking beneath eyes cover . . .
we vanish with the coming
of dawn to pursue our separate
destinies as far removed from
tender touching as possible  –

Yet again and again
our souls touch though words
are not understood,
stabbing so lightly these shaky egos.
inner depths of bonds exist –
our faces staring so wariy remain
strangers to the game.

The souls speak
of a companionship beyond words
or feelings.  So run we may
with the first light of dawn
but night is the time
for souls to reach beyond boundaries. . .

Bringing deep, still waters
close to the surface
in the miniscule moments,
voicing such feelings
neither you or I can ignore.
Rising than submerging
then running agaiin.

 

Chaos of Feeling

Don’t woo me so gently
take me hard and fast
scorching the skin
in the intensity, the
blaze of your fiery passion
Please forget the tender touching,
the quiet communion of souls,
the silent reaching out
for understanding and warmth.
Wrap me in a spinning inferno
of feelings, rock the ground
upon which my  feet tread.
Let me feel those butterflies
of infatuation, too soon gone.

Don’t go so slowly
that I come to know
the secret person behind
the mask of illusion,
one you want me to see –
I don’t want to know your soul –
for if I do –
I may never wish to let it go.

Don’t court me with flatteries –
flowers, endearments –
for coming to love you
would hurt far more
than burned fingers ever could.

(No, please, take me slowly, gently –
cover me with kisses sweet with desire,
warm me in your quiet glow –
let me know that the love
I so dread feeling –
so achingly seek but mask in fear,
is possible in your arms.
Don’t leave before I can feel
the pain of your embrace
one more time – and time again – and…)