Love after Love and a Pregnancy Haiku

So, I’m not really sure when i started loving poetry but i think it was around the time I was at a loss for complete sentences to describe what was happening – so…. pregnancy perhaps?  I wonder what my pregnancy Haiku would have sounded like:

Plump and round…
Square circle
Weighing FAT 183 pounds

or

Cookie Cookie
Carbs and Baloney
Love you so… never lonely

I digress.

I’ve loved poetry since the moment i discovered what a beautiful way it describes the “in betweens” of life.  The intangibles of our emotional world.  It can weave words into beautiful life pictures.  It’s the artists pallet of the written word.

Take this image for example… in a sentence it would sound like this:

“yeah, this sunset over the water painting was so spectacular, and the colors were amazing”

or

“Sunset sweeps across the sky,

radiating color

warmth will spread from the hue of tomorrow”

Ok- who know’s if i am making any sense at all but the point of this post was to share the following with you:

I  love this poem a friend introduced me to about two weeks ago and wanted to share it with you and dedicate it to The Revelation Project and all the women who have come to the banquet of their own lives.  Also to those who dare to really discover who they are.  What inspiration-  wow.

Love After Love

The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving

at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.

You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.”

― Derek Walcott

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Not Your Children

I’ve been thinking this morning about that poem by Kahlil Gibran because sometimes I need to remind myself what my role is as a parent and I particularly love the part in the poem – “you may house their bodies but not their souls” –  how very true.  My children are free beings…not my possessions.  They have come here to find and follow their own path- how lucky we are to tend to them in in the meantime, as we strengthen our bow to eventually send them off into the world.

Lets not bend them to our will.

Break their spirit.

Control their thoughts.

Censor their speech.

It would be a grave and terrible mistake to make them like us.  Lets each teach them instead how to find their freedom of expression, their voice, and ability to listen to their own heart…and if we listen, closely and openly- they have so very much to teach us.

Kahlil Gibran

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

My Brother: The Poet

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He tells me it just “comes out” and it’s true- I’ve seen it happen.  I wonder though how his mind can work this way.  Five minutes ago I sent him an email letting him know that my house is officially on the market.  Five mintes later he sent me this… a poem- for us, me. him. you. those & they.  It’s a poem for me, yet I think so many can relate.  Can they?

He’s written like this for as long as I’ve been his sister. Forty years. Sometimes I am just in awe because he can capture what I can’t say…no matter how many words I write.

First Seeing
When we first saw the place
We knew
We were so certain
All our dreams would be fulfilled
We would all be there
For generations to come
Especially the new one
We had brought along that was tugging on our sleeves
Wanting to climb up into the branches of our arms.
We knew ahead of time
All the laughter that would float in the air
Like bubbles from those silly toys that every child gets sooner or later
Spinning, spinning as they made them
Their eyes focused on every one
Distracted
While you and eye failed to see
Eye to eye
As conversations descended into
Eye for an eye.
Soon enough
All we could see was a future
Far away from the big elm tree
In the center of our little circular drive
You drove away first, or I made you
I would follow later
Going the other direction
Leaving only
The dreams and the big elm tree
For the Realtor to show
The next generation of couples.

-Jim Grady