ToadSoda's blog

Weightless

I've forgotten my own poetry
locked it away,
my pen stuttering to a halt
the standstill, so real
mired in a pit of dark criticism.
I don't know know how to trace the path
when the pens are all gone, relics
from a time when we pressed our thoughts on paper
like fresh flowers
the color weeping, a permanent echo.
The rasp of pages turning felt like something
permanent and worthwhile
But now words are weightless, floating
like debris orbiting the Earth
always raining down,
always unnoticed

January

I glimpsed winter through my window,
saw the evergreens turn white
and the clouds crumble
Their pale bodies falling in sticky sheets
of icing, frozen and thick
And the solid sky rained down
Transforming the grey January earth
With its cracked and salted pavement
Into an Ansel Adams dreamscape
If I were a season, right now,
If I were an element,
I'd be snow in winter.

A Mother's Plea

The cure shouldn't take so long;
shouldn't be so painful;
shouldn't rip them from pinwheels
on the front lawn
and whisk them away
to buildings of glass and concrete.

Battleships,
adrift in cities and towns,
house the small ones
we hold onto so tightly
until we're forced to let go
and let the doctors
cut the cancer out.
Burn it!
Poison it!
While we pray the same prayer
over and over.

Save my baby, please...
Save my baby.
I'll do anything to have her back again
Can you work that miracle?

Moon Series with Emily - Day 19

I can see my breath
more clearly than the moon
and feel the icy ache
of winter

The cold stone castle floor
doesn't hold warmth
the way I'm used to
in my world
of oil burners and electric heaters

Only these days
I feel a deeper cold
and I shake from forehead to toes
fearing a cold so old and deep
that warmth might never touch me
Certainly not the warmth of the moon
absent tonight
from its bed of dark clouds

Moon Series with Emily - Day 2

10/8/13 - 8:00 p.m. Waxing Crescent

Hiding behind finger-printed glass
that reflects the night back at me,
obscuring the sky,
I can feel the bite of the cooling Earth
The heat lifting from its skin
as if from a lifeless body
and the cold threat of winter
peering over me
from behind the moon's cheshire grin

I saw it earlier
smiling with some dark promise

Moon Series with Emily - Day 1

Waxing Crescent - 10/7/13 - 6:40 p.m.

Maybe we are too eager to see the moon
outside with the dusk pressing up against the clouds,
making them glow far brighter, I think,
than any moon ever could.

But it is a new moon, or so I thought,
So even if the sky were dark
and sharp as it is in mid winter
there would be no moon
just the bright pin pricks of razor stars,
their lethal points of light
cutting through blackness to dazzle
at least until the moon begins to wax.

Showing us her sickle grin

Mute

Maybe the words, buried,
in this raging froth of emotion
locked tightly, under my cracked surface,
will come.

I can barely keep them down
they make no sense
poisoned with cliche
they feel desperately inadequate
like me
pretending to be strong
inspired,
inspiring.

When really, I'm lost
heart pounding,
eyes darting wildly around
searching for something familiar
in this wilderness
I am a child again
tearfully searching for my mother
her sure, familiar face
will rescue me
from a sea of strangers,
strangeness
where I float,
untethered and drowning.

I've always been afraid of this
paddling wildly
while the sea drags me away
that Long Island undertow
finally too strong
The roar of the waves
stifling my cries
my voice, too soft,
has never been strong enough
Now it's carried away
and me with it.

Hospital Shadows

The long shadows cover everything
not just at dusk or dawn
they are here always
even when noon comes
with its plastic trays
plastic foods
dimming the long hallways
full of closed doors
darkening the corners
of sterile shelves
making the edges seem sharper
more lethal
like the slow drip of poison
into sick bodies.
They linger
in the hollow places
under the nurses' eyes
Those eyes,
always hopeful
mostly kind
never too optimistic
because they've seen so much more
than we have
during our forced stay in purgatory
a purgatory for the living,
for the dying.

Post Partum

I'm floating through these days
upside down
as drops of time come and go
casting ripples
in my awareness.
But there is no linear logic
to the newly born.
She exists in a spiral
waking
eating
sleeping
without self-consciousness
or hesitation
she takes what she needs.
I can almost feel the pure air
of the before place
on her breath.
That place where souls await birth.
I can smell it on her skin
The newness
still lingering six weeks later
the meaning of life
lies in the palm
of her tiny hand.

Visualizing Wholeness 2 - Poem Before Surgery

This worry is alive
devouring me
driving every action, every word
until my free will is gone
and you are all that remains
my beacon.

We're looking down a road
far too steep, far too long,
far too difficult for you.

Follow my draft, stay close.

We'll ride the fragile pauses
between deep breaths
into that place
where worry fails
allowing impossible glimpses
which stretch high above
your heavy reality.

On this magic-carpet ride
we'll see your body, whole
as it was in my first dream of you

The whisper of this vision
must carry us through
until suddenly, you are strong.

Even after the surgeon works his magic
Even after you wake
in astonished pain
until you sing again,
a new song
and we ride towards wholeness
together.

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