Sparked by Words

Archive for the ‘Just a Thought’ Category

Moth

Captivated by moths. The beat of their wings so soft that the breath of elves do not approach their whispered thrum. I’m alive, I’m alive here.

Bodies thick with fur weighing less than a thimble of honey. The flash of exquisite wing art to terrify predators and frighten humans who approach at night. Leave me, leave me be.

Diurnal creatures attracted to light, intuitively brave explorers. They flit toward all the light in the world, basking in its artificial or natural beams, yet steal none of it, leaving plenty of glow for everyone else. We share, we share always.

To lose myself in your shadow and you in mine, yet each remain whole. More ourselves when paired, more complete than if we flew alone. How can I not be enchanted by greed that is not selfish? Love you, love you too.

Strangers may witness but my heartbeat is yours to claim. Do you see me drawn to your candlelight, my wings beating in the dark? Captivated by you, I’ve claimed all but taken nothing. I am, I am yours.

 

Just a thought 59

 

Painting Emperor Moth, Vincent Van Gogh, courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

Spilled Water

 

A few ounces of water barely fill a glass

Transparent, silent, static at the bottom

Topple the cup, and water flows everywhere

The surge of ounces conveyed quick as a tide

Saturating the books on the shelf, soaking their pages

A clumsy accident we say, and maybe that’s true

 

Grab the nearest cloth and press dry each book

Yet the pages between covers remain damp

They’ll dry in an hour or three, curling like waves

Each sheet bearing a permanent water stain

Dusk gray or dove wing brown as pages shrivel

The rippled intaglio of having been doused

 

We harbor truth within our heart’s deepest coves

It slumbers quiet as a secret tucked in a locket

While hate flows from our tongue, lashing blindly

A snake hissing danger at the edge of reeds

Sorry is a sibilant word, sliding soft from our mouths

Like fire, water burns and leaves a riven scar

 

Just a thought 58

 

 

Image of glass of spilled water courtesy Max Pixel,  CCO Public Domain

 

 

Praying Thankful

 

As we approach the holiday season, please remember the thousands who have lost members of their families, their homes and possessions, their entire communities, to fires still raging in California.

Say a prayer in the language of your heart, write a check to assist the many who have lost everything, and express gratitude to the exhausted first responders still on the frontlines trying to quell the flames and assist those who have been stricken.

To be truly thankful is not only to account for your own blessings but to realize that so many are injured, harrowed, and grieving, and then to share your bounty.

If your celebration this year finds you dining at a table of cinders, sobbing at an open gravesite, bereft of all but the charity of strangers, please know I wish you a future.

 

 

Just a thought 57

 

Sorrow by Vincent Van Gogh, courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

Kind of Like Stars

Kind of like stars – only the ancient light of them remains

Not yesterday’s anger either, just the sticky path of our tears

What was it we argued about that now I can’t recall

Less the chores of our lives than slights that pierce our flesh

And make me bend as if holding my ribs will heal the pain

 

Kind of like rainbows – name their colors but never catch them

Not the wind either, just the toppled twigs, the skittering leaves

How did I not see you shiver, the confusion in your eyes

Why did you fail to ease the ache of my heart, my soul

Though one part of me is as tender as all parts of you

 

Kind of like water – without shape of its own, only a wild surge

Not the thirst for assent either, just the hungry plea that you see me

Will you call my name, touch my hand? I cannot swallow

Still we yearn to press beyond what we can’t hold in our palms

Love and acceptance, memory and future, all of all between

 

Kind of like fragrance – bereft of corpus, only a scent we inhale

Not the spices we measure either, just the smell of you against me

Even if you leave, I will still feel your breath on my cheek

Yet I run to gather flowers and seeds, as if they will thrive

You will always be a living presence in my life, today, tomorrow

 

 

Just a thought 56

 

Painting, Lovers, 1928, by Felix Nussbaum, courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Most of All

Most of all, I

quiet to hear my sons’ laughter but snub the marching band

tongue spicy sweet cinnamon though disdain rare truffles

climb to sight the far sunset  and turn away from the road

yearn to listen to the poet but don’t hear any king

lean to smell the hyacinth though not costly perfume

reach to kiss my lover’s hand but ignore the silken gown

chant the trope of psalms but refute the tyrant’s rant

kneel to drink clear water but am not sated with Champagne

stretch to grasp my toes far longer than to hold a torch

pray for my grandchildren’s health rather than myself a longer life

seek my worth as a seashell more than all the gold in the world

 

Just a thought 55

 

Photo of seashell courtesy Pixabay

 

 

 

 

Sailor

A story isn’t a steel railroad track transporting the reader from Chapter One to The End, but an ocean with currents in constant movement below the surface. Readers sail on words that drift according to the force of the currents, not the lapping surface tension.

So do we writers adjust the sails of our ships to write the story of the essential journey lodged in the bowels of our hearts, the one hidden below the waves. The rudder thrusts through the sea of scenes, the keel maintains an upright status of the plot, the sun glints off the crests of conflicts, the words flow over and under the characters. Sometimes the boats capsize and sometimes they save us from the storm.

I am not a sailor but I’ve learned to command the ocean.

Still I know metaphors can only take you so far. There must be a story to the story or you drown in a sea of words.

 

 

Just a thought 54

 

Painting: Through Sea and Air, 1910, by Charles Napier Henry courtesy Wikimedia Commons

 

The Minefield of Alzheimer’s

No one steps into the world of Alzheimer’s with aplomb and grace, knowing just what to do. We lurch into the minefield of a war without possibility of victory or truce, pleading for an advocate to help us avoid stepping on bombs. Then we find that only surrender is possible, only blood on the sleeve. Yet on the battlefield of this disease there is a way to dismantle the bombs.

 

We who are the family of those who suffer try to placate and offer solace, but we are also victims. There is no manual with step by step procedures. Yes, there is information, and you should avail yourself of all you can find. But it is likely to show a huge blank in just the area where you need advice, because the person we love is not a perfectly fitting cube in a bin.

 

If we are very, very lucky, one person steps up and says, “Let me help you find a safe way forward.” I had the comfort of that person’s presence, someone who showed me strategies for dealing with behaviors I didn’t understand and a parent I didn’t recognize, one who didn’t recognize me. Now I strive to be that person for others. I am no expert, not a professional in the field, but am good at directing. If you have questions, ask, please. I can show you the way.

 

You will still sob and raise your fists, you still won’t sleep at night. But you will bring joy to the person you love and sometimes you will both laugh. It will be those moments you live for.

The end is tragically assured but the journey is everything.

 

 

Just a thought 53

 

 

Image of aged woman courtesy Max Pixel

Image of aged man courtesy of Pixabay

 

A Few Words More or Less

First word a child learns:

 

Mama.

Then dada.

Then no. Why. So big.

How come. Go now.

Pick me up. You do it.

I do it.

Play with me.

I love you.

 

Not a bad vocabulary for learning how to get along in the world.

Maybe the grownups should speak less.

Listen more. Share the cookies.

Love better.

Too many words, too much taking.

What have we got to lose?

 

Everything.

We’ve got everything to lose.

Especially our children,

And their future.

 

 

Just a thought 52.

 

Painting Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose, 1885, by John Singer Sargent, courtesy Wikipedia

 

 

 

Buttercup

I work hard to corral the horses before they stampede.

Still, someone asks, “How did the buttercup escape?”

I turn to see a hoof crush a flower.

Yellow stains on my hands, I crumple and weep.

 

Just a thought 51

 

Photograph of buttercups courtesy Pixabay

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stones

 

Pausing in the garden I search for two perfect stones.

It’s not truly a garden but the space around our house.

I’m not seeking perfect stones so much as the right ones.

 

They’re scattered over the yard, assorted stones and rocks.

Few flowers as they refuse to grow – not the snapdragons

With fragrant cheeks or lantana with miniature bouquets.

 

The flowers boast perfume, organdy petals, ballet stems.

The stones repose modestly, too plain to pirouette.

Withered bouquets will be tossed but stones remain.

 

Others will bring flowers but it’s stones I require, hard and strong.

Which of them will speak of endurance, of devotion? Aha!

The sharp edged one of umber strata, a smooth one with quartz veins.

 

The grass crushes as I kneel and lift my hands to place them,

One on my father’s grave, the other on my mother’s.

I won’t reveal on whose marker I set the sharp one or the smooth.

 

Pausing in the garden I search for quiet sanctuary.

It’s not truly a garden but the space around the graves.

I’m not seeking perfect solace so much as refuge.

 

Just a thought 50

 

 

Image of stones courtesy Pixabay.com