Listening to Waves
Listening to waves, the moon calls me
and the blood of my womb answers,
Although I no longer bleed.
Emotions surge, drift, toss.
Lifting small creatures from the sea floor,
Snails, sea urchins, seaweed, sea slugs.
No choice, taken, seized, only to surrender or fight
I am animal too, subject to the whims of the moon.
Listening to waves,
Grief rolls over me endlessly.
The triggers are myriad,
peculiar and unpredictable,
A song, the sky, carrots, roses,
Like being pulled into the Bermuda Triangle.
Will it be a day, two weeks, three years, forever?
Grief light to despair, no choice
Drowning with random sips of air
from time to time
Face life without him every single morning
to the end of my days
Pain almost beyond bearing
Listening to waves, the sound
soothes and stirs me.
Lifting seaweed on the beach,
the sand fleas jump manically.
Exploring the tide pools,
I watch a hermit crab navigate its way,
sideways from rock to rock.
Driftwood my father picked up
and carved into a gull,
with a green, seagrass eye.
A message in a bottle my Grandma and me
found from the Canadian Tide Commission.
Halcyon days when I was young.
And all there was was now.
First Birthday Without Him
Wrung out like an old mop,
used to swab the factory floor,
so many miles done.
Abandoned like a too-small shell,
after its hermit crab
Shattered like a porcelain vase,
thrown in a rage
at the wall.
Immolated like coal in a mine,
compressed and compacted
Tossed on 27-foot waves,
her ship almost founders,
Wracked with grief, anger, fear,
tears flood her face,
Another first without him,
her birthday, loved and alone,
over, and the world goes on.
She lives on with her whole heart,
both broken and healing,
There Is a Crack in Everything
“There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in,” from “Anthem.”
Cracked open, broken up, shattered into pieces
Almost unrecognizable even to myself
Priorities shift and right themselves
Busyness recedes in favor of connection
Passionate engagement supersedes obligation
Choosing me, choosing him, choosing us
Over all others
Reframed, remade, raring to be whole
Taking back lost fragments of myself
Given up willingly for my intimate love
Light shines through my cracks of loss
Reminding me of infinite possibilities
Opening me to embrace new opportunities
From my expanded self
Stretched, held, healing with time’s passing
Loved then and now and, eventually, again
Simply because I say so
Radio silence with not much and too much to say,
worrying about money, home, love, business, art,
moving in fast spurts, slow spurts, no spurts of energy,
a million ideas and, sometimes, only grief in my head and heart.
Here in the south of France, sitting next to a Buddha and wooden shoes,
life is good, life is tough, life goes on.
Tears crawling salty down my face when I wake up, alive,
ready to create my path again, I fall, I soar in the same day.
And maybe you do too.
Passion Eludes Me
Passion, simple passion eludes me.
Grief and rage are easy, roar through my body like a cyclone.
Even their pale cousins, sorrow and anger show up.
Longing to breathe in his breath, impossible,
missing the smell of him and touching his textures with fingertips.
Wanting lusty connection and afraid to reconnect,
perhaps I no longer know how.
Still daring, still wanting more.
One day, she’ll take it with both hands and all of her.
Then to Now
In the endless landscape of grief light to despair,
I commit to thrive or survive.
I expand or contract,
no matter what my circumstances.
Life has its own current,
even in the midst of grief.
Seasons pass and I go on,
Experiencing, feeling, even loving sometimes.
Staying miserable means
digging in my heels against joy,
closing my eyes to delight,
trying to escape the flow.
When the past is gone,
except for the memories,
and the future seems precarious.
The present is all I can count on.
Forgive without reservations.
Love with my own heart.
Be all of me again.