Tag Archives: nightmares

When do you say Goodbye?

She was by turns feckless or feral.
ferocious, fickle, self-centered.
Twelve years spent in her company,
unable to respond or defend.
captive, as she came to visit
several weeks at a time,
several times a year.

Schizophrenic, Bipolar –
voices keeping her company
more than her devoted husband.
Her only caregiver –
he wore himself down
to bare nubbins.
And I worry now he will soon
follow the same path.

She appropriated my life
told me there was a cancer in me
she had to cut out.
Humiliated me in front of family
relatives, her friends – while they lasted.
Spoke in a foreign language
my husband wouldn’t teach me,
about me, in front of me,
my knowing the words were directed ,
about me, in front of me.
Told my children she
was their real mother.

She died last night,
first came mourning,
now rage . . .
It’s been 20 years since I have been
her daughter-in-law,
since I have seen her except
when my children married,
or graduated from schools.
And even in these years I treated her
with a consideration and kindness
rarely shown to me.

This woman who made my life
miserable, terrifying, unstable –
who did so much to ruin my marriage –
twisting, turning truth,
confusing my children,
angering my husband so he wouldn’t
speak meaningfully to me for months.

Who twisted my children’s
understanding of Mental Illness,
refused medication or therapy,
made her husband of 60 years’
life one of horror and despair,
beating and berating him,
listening to those damn voices . . .

After all this time, and I mourn
for her, for my children,
for her husband and my ex-one.
Mourning the woman she was
and could have been
if she had accepted her diagnosis.

Listening to her voices . . . .
Still feeling a relative,
Mourning the loss,
even as the rage pours in.
Some nightmares you never forget.

Shadow of Death

As I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death
what evil is there to fear?
‘Tis but colored air
to be changed with the sun’s rising.
Or . . . .

Creatures beneath the bed,
come to snatch the hands,
of little girls who carelessly
abandon them to the bed’s side
under cover of night.

The horrific rapist
who takes our precious trust
as he spills his seminal fluids
into his chosen receptacle.Or those
who repeat the acts over and over
to their children or others
.

The inquisitionist sharpening
his emotional knives to extract just
that bit of information more
to make his twisted imaginings
a reality even though drawn from one
who would do anything, say anything,
to make the pain stop.

For few horrors  are more potent,
then those stored in genetic memory,
merged with the weighting our days,
that enable a mind to envision
a nuclear bomb as an answer.
A politician who’s popularity is
dented by the evil coming from his lips.

Virus codes which can infect pain and death
on select populations while avoiding others,
leaving them intact, fostering legacies of discontent,
of narrow-minded bigotry and racism.

Of an exhausted, drained mother
who looks with love at her young children,
giving them everything she possesses within
for the nourishment of their souls,
while shattering her mirror
so she won’t be forced
to see her own reflection –
who has never been able to grasp
how to love herself, forgive herself,
nurture herself . . .
for doing nothing more than breathing.

How else could she walk
through the valley of the shadow of death
unless those shadows
were the echoes of her soul,
the holes in her true being,
the gaps between reason and understanding.

Down to the very acceptance of fear’s worth,
the acknowledgement of fear
as a long-time companion, and as such,
a dear friend.

As she rocks her children to sleep,
praying for their safe passage.
through their valley of shadow
to the coming of the light.

The Lord’s Guidance

Lord, I ask you to guide me.
I am lost . . .
I have squandered the life you gave me
by being afraid to live.
Fear has dogged my every step.

Dreams I’ve turned to nightmares.
People see me as fragile,
how self-created is that?

Lord, help me out of the quicksand
I am sinking in before it goes
above my nose.

Help me have the strength
to free myself
from my self-created prison.

Inside is a published author of books,
a healthy person –
someone to give to those in need.

A woman who has the right
to find love and a lover.
Someone who wants me.

There are many facets of my being
and I only show the worst
the helplessness, the sorrow . . .

Release me from the burden of myself.
Show me what it is like to be free,
confident, inspired –

for I can not find my way out alone –
not without you.

 

 

 

 

 

Only in Nightmares

They came
insinuating themselves
into my life,
shooting words of venom
into my mind . . .
raked my soul,
over flames of hot coals,
tortured my flesh,
with ill founded barbs,
stripped me of known attachments
to live in a world alien
to my understanding,
putting shackles on my spirit,
and now . . .
only now . . .
they are the nightmares
I dream but from which
I awaken.