Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘healing’

Scavengers


 
 
A wake of vultures circled above us
as we sat on the porch, conversing,
their dark wings unflapping as they spiraled.
How did they know there would be carrion to devour
when my friends and I did not yet know?
 
The conversation began, perhaps, like most others.
Weather. Politics. Health. But as it deepened,
we spoke naked. We spoke wound. We bled fear.
We cast off ideas that no longer served us
and left them for dead.
 
God, they were beautiful,
the vultures as they circled,
their black wings backlit by the light.
They feasted on the scraps we left on the ground.
We emerged so light, so wildly alive.

Read Full Post »

What I Can Offer


for S & J

I want to give you something
necessary as rain and lasting as honey,
something useful as a spoon,
something helpful as wheels.

Sometimes it feels so inadequate
to offer you a poem, a prayer,
the small light of a candle,
a hammock woven only of blessings.

Still, as you meet these difficult hours
I wish you the peace of the amber field,
wish you the rose quartz of dawn.

Because it’s what I can do, I offer you poems,
prayers, the small flame of a candle, and
a hammock of blessings woven with dark, with light.

Read Full Post »




Though she has been shaped
by pain, she thrives.
She is like a tree, now,
that remembers its wounds
and grows differently
because of its injuries,
some of them deep,
yet is no less vigorous
as it grows new healthy wood,
as it reaches for sun,
as it grounds into the soil,
as it offers its fruit
to the world.

Read Full Post »

Oh, the Tenderness




To be touched.
That skin language
of hand and cheek,
arm and shoulder,
that is what
I need. Words,
yes, I love them,
but what has healed me
and held me
and kept me from drought
is a palm on my arm,
a chest where my head
can rest, an embrace
that lasts until my breath
becomes slow tide
and my whole body
leans into the trunk
of the one who is holding me.
I have been held
by near strangers,
held by beloveds,
held by invisible hands.
We are, of course, spirit,
but it is the body
that makes us human,
the body that bears
the grief. To be touched.
It saves me. Each caress,
a ray of light. Each embrace,
a soft rain that seeps
into the soil of the day
and says nothing at all,
but encourages what is still here
to grow, to believe
in green, in spring.

Read Full Post »

How the Healing Happens




Again today
I dig with my teaspoon
into the soil
of sorrow.
It is said
there is healing water
somewhere below.

Perhaps I wished
for a shovel.
Perhaps there was
no shovel to be found.
Perhaps I did find a shovel,
but the work was
too heavy, too hard.

It is not hard
to dig one teaspoon
at a time.
Anyone can do it.
The hole gets wider,
deeper. Soon
it feels like a well.
It is easy work.
It’s the hardest work
I’ve ever done.

I thirst.
Yet what heals us
is not only
the promised water.
What heals is
the work itself,
dry and slow,
one spoonful,
and another spoonful,
and another parched spoonful,
and another.

Read Full Post »

How the Healing Comes




Healing comes less like a falcon
with mighty wings,
and more like an earthworm
that slowly, slowly moves
beneath it all, tightening up,
then stretching out, tightening up
and stretching out, a simple
two-part rhythm. Some days,
that is all the body can do.
Contract. Expand. Contract. Expand.
In the meantime, through this
artless act, what is dense
becomes porous.
In the meantime, what is stuck
and clotted gets moved around.
What is dead passes through,
is processed by the grit inside.
There are tunnels now in the soil of me,
thin channels of recovery—
a blessed loosening,
a gradual renewal. It’s unhurried, but
I feel the air, the rain,
the life coming in.

Read Full Post »

for Paul Fericano and so many others


I turn first to the chapter
on techniques for broken wings.
I learn of contour splints and anchor tape
and reasons why most broken wings
should not be completely immobilized.

I am not so unlike an injured bird.
Struck down by grief, I too, am unable to fly.
Even walking, I find I’m off balance.
I’m best treated without an audience.
I heal best with absolute calm.

I was unsure at first why my friend
would have sent me—along with tea,
chocolate, crackers and sweet biscuits—
a book on “kitchen healing:”
how to treat injured wildlife at home.

But there beneath the image
of a simple wing break, I read,
a sentence like a prophecy:
“Nature starts the healing process
almost as soon as the injury occurs.”

And I feel, to my surprise,
the tender places where the bones
of my wings no longer protrude.
And though my joints are rigid,
with supports, I’m recovering.

And I am thankful for all the hands of friends—
unskilled, untrained, yet willing to try.
Hands that send letters and blankets
and feathers and books. Calm hands
that help heal these fractures until I can fly.


*Quote from Care of the Wild Feathered & Furred: A Guide to Wildlife Handling & Care by Mae Hickman and Maxine Guy (Unity Press, 1973)

Read Full Post »

Stubborn

When the brain is separated from the heart, it is capable of doing terrible things to each other and the planet.

—Jane Goodall

And so I try to tend the path each day

between brain and heart.

Whatever smallnesses I trip on,

I try to remember to bow as I remove them.

Whatever weeds try to overrun it—

weeds of should and shame—

I try to yank them out, knowing full well

I never get the whole root.

The more I travel the path,

the easier it is—

though steep sometimes,

and the effort to go on

makes me weep.

And sometimes, it feels unfamiliar,

though I’m sure I’ve travelled this way before.

Frightened, lost, tired, exposed—

yet I try to find and preserve the path.

Because the stakes are too high

when the path is gone.

Because the healing is so great

when I honor the path

step by stubborn step.

Read Full Post »

The Burn

I keep a bag of frozen peas

for nights like tonight when

I am clumsy and burn my skin.

I press the cold bag against

the angry red welt and always

I marvel how quickly it helps—

until the bag is taken away.

I would like to be your frozen peas,

want to be what you reach for

when the world burns.

When you wince with hurt,

I would make it feel better,

if only you hold me,

if only you don’t let go.

Read Full Post »

 

 

 

Because I cannot be there to hold my father’s hand, 

I walk into my children’s room and hold my daughter and son 

as if love in one room emits a wave strong enough  

to be felt many states away. Because I am afraid, 

I don’t try to pretend I am not. Tears run hot 

down my face and I don’t dam them.   

When they dry, I let them dry. 

Because I am helpless to fix my father’s kidneys, 

I tell him I love him, as if words could help 

filter his blood before returning it to his heart, 

his tender heart.  

Because the helicopter is flying him to Miami, 

the blades of my worry begin to spin. 

Because I can’t stop them, I turn them 

into a giant wing that carries prayers 

into the rooms where I’m not allowed to go. 

And though I’m not there, I hold his hand, 

imagine it heavy in my own. Because maybe 

he can feel it. Because I don’t want him to be alone.  

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: