Tag Archives: Pain

Love is . . .

Love isn’t the brassy blare of a band, marching down the avenue on July 4th’s celebration. Oh, to be sure – that is part of it – loud jangles, crash of cymbals, heartbeat of drums. But love has many faces, some apparent, some quite deceptive.

Love is the gentle stirrings evoked by a walk after a thunderstorm’s power, smelling the earth, watching lightening flitter over the New York skyline, curled up on a rock, and telling each other of your pasts, and peoples – speaking in reverence and caring tones.

Love is the sharp pain of betrayal and the shooting stabs of hurt inflicted upon sensitive, fragile egos that make one near in anger and rage – defending yourself at risk of rejection – yet believing, nonetheless, first in your own sense of worth.  Being able to say “fuck you” to the one you love.

Love is the despair and confusion and insecurity brought forth in opening yourself up to another person.  Of being aware of his frailties and still wanting him more than ever – because of those faults not in spite of them. Of seeing the flaws yet not running away.  Of opening yourself , baring your soul when trust is just a mirage, still to become real from knowing your love, facing it and not walking away, and of having to tell that other person that love is there – whether or not he chooses to respond in kind.  Of wanting so much to hear the words “I Love You”, yet not pressing but allowing them to come of their on accord at a time of his choosing – if at all.

Love is passion and the exploration of a body found wildly exciting – seeking those hidden sources of pleasure, being sexually vulnerable.  And love is those quiet ripples that float through your body as you see the one you love or think of him during the course of your day.  Love is giving and taking- together or apart – the stillness of soul touching – the fire of lust, the knowledge that this is something different than any before or any after, but that a part of you, larger than ever before, rests in the hands of another, and you are content, or largely so, to have it that way.  Love is a gift from God to be savored, enjoyed revered, for each moment it is a part of you.

Love is encouraging the strengths in the other, urging him to grow and explore facets of himself.  Being a source of strength rather than drowning him in your need.  Love is knowing the relationship may end yet moving forward in self-determination, with trust and belief gathering your courage about you, a mantle of strength in the storm of emotion.  Love is knowing that love may change in form and substance, devolving into a well of despair, fragmenting, feathering away into a manifestation of a different making – yet Love still.  Love is holding still the trembling of the soul.

Love is the bringing into the world two children to bless this union. Children precious, deserving of all that is good.  Physical manifestations of love and passion.  Children who bear witness of good and ill. Who bear the scars of devastation.

Love is the torture of knowing your love was always far greater than his. Of sustaining emotional scars, physical bondage, inquisitions, blasphemies, of running and hiding to escape his wrath. Of finally, running away, knowing not to do so would mean your death, be it emotional or physical.

Love is the PTSD moments after the Fall. Twenty years later.  The choosing aloneness rather than taking the risk of opening yourself up again.  Of the nightmares that continue, again and again, of what it turned out to be.  Of the ending, cruel, painful, devastating in consequences not just for the two of you, but for the children brought forth from the union of those souls.  Of the never ending trauma that follows in your wake, curling in sadness and despair deep within.

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?

The world is crying

There is so much pain in this world.  It seems to be screeching out at us.  Not sorrow, although that is there, but abject misery.  We may think our little lives are painful but when I think of the refugees, the millions of people in refugee (internment) camps, those who have nothing to eat, no shelter, lacking clean water, caught in the crossfire of crazed beings fighting over bombed out towns which lack every necessity now, children raped, stolen, trained into soldiers, deliberating drugged to make them more obedient, who are we to say our pain is great?

It is real, and exceedingly hard to climb out of, but my pain is increased by the pain of this world.  It’s crying out, in the air we breathe, in each time I put food in my mouth or walk into my comfortable, safe apartment.  I may be disabled, living on Social Security, and facing real challenges, but can you imagine being disabled – mentally, emotionally, physically, And being a refugee?  Can you imagine being on a boat with so many people it is impossible to move, not knowing when, or even if, a country will take us or if we will capsize the boat and drown?  That is fear.  That is feeling voiceless, unwanted, without shelter or food, not knowing how to care for your children in a situation like this, totally alone in the midst of many.

I hear and feel the ground beneath me aching in sorrow.  I feel the air I breathe trembling in agony.  There is only so much pain this Earth can withstand and in these times, it feels like it can’t possibly take anymore.  For we can’t forget, this world is an organism in its own right.  Can you imagine how It feels being bombed, desecrated, stripped of its beauty, groaning under the strain of having to hold the burdens of the multitudes? Sometimes I feel I should sit down on the ground and stroke it, soothe It’s burden even a little.

And mostly, I don’t know what to do.  Where I can place my small sums of money that will make a meaningful difference and not swallowed in “administrative fees”. Can I make a difference and where? If I could jump on a plane and fly to those crying in the wilderness, what could I bring but a hug, an ear to listen (if I understand the language).  But even that is not a reality. I need to look for people and places nearby. Stretch out a hand where it can actually be grabbed.  Help. And I need direction about where to do the most good, any good, rather than retreat into my tiny world of cat, books and home.  How is an activist born?

Lesson in Humility

The day is blustery, warm for Autumn, and the winds are kicking it.  I head out with my trusty broom and start sweeping the leaves on the deck and driveway of a client’s home. And I’m thinking, “Look at me. I’m raking leaves.  This is going to look so good.  I’m 60 and sweeping leaves!  (I’m an apartment dweller, I don’t do leaves) I might also add I’m in a lot of pain so the bluster is on both ends.  I’m getting close to finishing and a huge wind comes along and swooshes the leaves right back where they were to begin with.  I stop, look into the sky and say, “Really?  Just had to knock me down a few pegs.” So I took that trusty broom, went inside, and put it away.”

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.

Holding the Pain

HOLDING THE PAIN

Golden tresses softly caressing
a face filled with naivete’
yet her eyes are what draws for
they hold within their luminous depths
all the sorrows of the world.
This is her legacy . . .
to walk down paths
where burrs tear her skirts
and thorns scratch
sensitive, vulnerable skin.
So impressionable yet wise,
carrying the pain
of each crying soul she meets
in the private reaches
of her being.
Ever growing, ever changing,
but one fact remains constant . . .
a child she stays
in the deepest sense
and each tear she sees
becomes a bath for her soul,
a continual renewal of the pain
of her birth, a reaffirmation
of her most primitive essence.

Image courtesy of Danielle Niculescu

Disabilities and Health

MOVEMENT

Tick, tick one finger straining upwards
teaching as it goes – how to do what it does
to the other nine who have forgotten.

Teaching me how to raise my arms
by trying to flip ice chips in my mouth
and laughing myself silly
at the picture I must make.

Rehabilitation home number one –
glaring light room – another joins me
Left alone, scared, confused, hours by myself
Moved to another room, roommate a schizophrenic
demensia ridden person screaming all night
for three nights – I can’t get away, don’t know what to do
feel like I’m loosing my mind.

Until she gets really sick and, right next to me, dies.

Rehab dept. – Bars – stand up and walk
are they crazy? Can’t even stand, can’t move legs
on my own or not, whichever.

Okay – lay here and raise five pound weights
Are they really that nuts?  Have they read my file?
I can’t even lift my arms.
Exit Rehab One

Carried like a lump of coal
entering rehab center two
living in bed, succession of roommates,
put in the frequent fallers club
just could not stay put
put an orange bracelet to
signify my disgrace?

Month after month
an eternity of exercises, the Sopranos
(Roommate number 2, or 3?)
finally took a shower
MY GOD! THE HAIR ON MY LEGS IS 6″ long!)

My own walker. deluxe RED with basket, seat.
Walking. Feels so good to move on my own.
Proud.

Home again. Visiting nurse says
I’m depressed. Is he kidding?
Look at me! Where do I go from here?
Of course I’m depressed.
Medications, Inertia, Agony,
Continuing Pain,
Endless thoughts.

All in all, a grand time.
Something to tell the grandchildren.