2.17.19 At the Edge

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Hello dear ones. I hope that you will join me in reading my newest poem, “At the Edge,” on Grace Notes, Bella Grace Magazine’s blog. This poem means a great deal to me, as it represents a place that I think we all find ourselves from time to time. We try so hard to make sense of the things that try us, not always realizing that the trial itself promises beauty on the other side of enduring it. Nothing lasts forever precious hearts. Stay strong, and please share this piece with those who might most need to hear it.

All my love,

Elle

 

 

2.12.19 His

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They say all men are created equal

and I believe it

But in my experience, they don’t remain so

because some

(one)

has found a way to elevate my perspective on the possibility of everything

His is the memory I run to when I need to hear just one more story

the promise that nothing lasts forever, and tomorrow will be better than today

His is the patient voice on the other side of my endless why’s

answering when he can

and holding me when he can’t

There are few people who are able to possess the freedom of imagination

and the anchoring roots of integrity

but he does

His is the mind that recognizes my Neverland dreams

and the plank-walk inducing push to jump into the unknown

and keep swimming though I can’t see land

“Landing isn’t what you’re looking to do,” he will remind me

and I will carry on

I share his eyes, but not always his sight

and yet his is the calm to my tempest-beset heart

when the world overwhelms my “Why does it have to be that way,” view

“So then make it better,” he will challenge

Equal to none,

this is the man

I have made a lifetime of admiring

It is his hands that have held me

helped me

pushed me

and fiercely protected me

always

and today

it is his life

I am grateful for

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.25.19 Peace Will Arrive on the Climb

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The path of my mind runs in circles

around and anon

my thoughts drift as shadows

chasing priorities that cut each other off

in their attempt to steal forward in my thinking

sifting and shifting 

too quickly for anything to gain much more attention 

than an increased heartbeat

as I try

and fail

to make yet another decision

that may not be mine to make

inside

and out of reach

over arching

and undercutting

the calm repose

I am only allowed to seek

not find

Patience is the prescription 

but knowing a cure

and procuring one

are sadly not of equal merit

to a fragile heart

or a too-full mind

And so it comes down to the truth

that though I may wish it – 

the path is not mine to forage,

but to follow

One tentative,

night-light-lit step at a time

Perhaps in the dance of a spiral staircase 

I cannot see the end of … 

peace will arrive on the climb

For now,

I’ll tell my weary mind, 

“Fret not dear burdened friend … 

for maybe sleep –

will come tomorrow” 

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1.14.19 Not Now

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Today I lost my grandmother. And while I know each person’s pain is their own, this feels quite acute … as if a particular piece of my childhood-self, somehow, can’t fathom her world without her. Yesterday was a long goodbye, and today I missed her final breath by two minutes. Just two. I wouldn’t have wanted her to stay, but it was my turn to be the brave one. In leaving, it’s almost as if she was saying, “No, no little girl. This moment isn’t yours to bear.” And yet facing a host of tomorrows without her seems somewhat indomitable if I’m being honest.

After leaving, I wasn’t ready. So I stayed. I went to the lake and closed my eyes against the rare, January sunshine. I went to the park and swung in the swing she always sat in … second from the right. I bought sweets at the candy store. I ran all the way up the church steps … just to run right back down. Then I got my nails painted red – her favorite, flashy color.

I tried grandma, to have a day “bumming” around … just the way you’d like it. I smiled. I remembered. I played. And I know where you are. And I’m happy for you … but here’s what I’m feeling just the same.

 

There is an art to saying goodbye

to orchestrating a memory that you know will be your last

only nothing seems good enough

or long enough

because although you may have shared a million laughs

it seems a million and one …

would have been the perfect number

Maybe I could have been satisfied with just one more

if one more had been allowed

but then again

maybe not

In coming my memory flickered like moving pictures

each and every one starring that jubilant face,

but in going, I fear might fade

like the sound of a voice in the echo

like the shade of the eye I can’t catch

like the difference between holding a hand

and having yours held in return 

the coming

of going

hurts strong

There is an art to saying goodbye

and it would seem, I am no master

There are too many colors and

untidy emotions that don’t quite match

In a medium of tears and memories

of the words I’d planned to say

of the prayers I meant to pray

and moments I may have missed 

without knowing

I tried so hard

to paint pictures that would last

but now there is only beauty 

in retrospect

You’d think I’d have seen it coming –

but who looks for what they don’t want to see? 

Who studies what they never wish to know?

Who accepts what they’ve practiced to deny? 

There is an art to saying goodbye

and I’m sure 

somewhere

it is done prettily 

with noble tears

and released fears

and flower-petal softness

But art is only a representation of the parts we 

want

to remember

and today

I want then

not now

I’ll love you forever. Thank you for being you, so I could enjoy this life in a way I couldn’t ever pursue without the gift of eternal optimism, and relentless joy you showed me how to own.

I pray this poem helps you too, my readers, however you are hurting from whomever you’ve lost. There is an art to saying goodbye … and maybe the key to being the best artist … is to never say it at all.

Elle

11.11.18 I Go

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Sometimes it is hard to take myself seriously and I don’t know why

or I do

It’s because of the honesty I can’t hide from myself

though at times I wish I could

because it would be easier

It would be easier not to have to face the insecurities

the what ifs

the let downs

It would be easier to hide the past and present failures

attempts to be what I want to be

but haven’t found my way into 

yet

I look back on my life and I’m happy

but I wonder 

if my path wasn’t riddled with quite so many hesitancies … 

… would I be farther down it?

Would I be on the same route at all?

And one question leads to another

another maybe

another might

another should I have tried

before?

But wishes are wasted on the past

forward is the only direction for dreamers 

and so I venture on

though often I can hardly say even where I’ve been

I am going somewhere

of this I am sure

because I am not where I was

and neither am I in a place I to stop

or stay

ever on –

with a pocket of words for company

I go

10.28.18 All That’s Left Unsaid

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I dream in ochre gold and brilliant red

enchanting leaf-lined swirls that round my head

and in-between the passing wind through trees

there breathes a hint of magic on the breeze

This time when nights grow long and skies grow dark

when flicker-flames dance boldly from a spark 

silent stars look on a little brighter 

spirits rest – our souls somehow feel lighter

I walk into imagination free

my conscious open to all I might see

the bed of dew and leaves become my trail

I lose myself as space and time prevail 

As beasts of nature and of mind lie still

I find my strength beside my own free will

and in the tempest storms where none could save

in near defeat I finally find my brave

The glisten and the glitter of what may

remind my wandering feet at once to stay 

to feel and deal with feelings as they come

experiencing everything but numb

I dream in vibrant orange and deepest green 

a wonder-waking clarity foreseen

delicious stories waiting to be read

in all that is and all that’s left unsaid 

10.9.18 Picturesque Song

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Every once in awhile, when I quiet my busy long enough to feel – life finds another way to bring me back. Sometimes it’s in the unexpected shift in the clouds that reveals an iridescent promise. Sometimes it’s the smile you didn’t see coming from the person who never does. And sometimes, it’s the words you didn’t know you needed to hear until you heard them.  Lately there’s a song that I’ve been loving called “Testify” by the band Needtobreathe. Although all of the lyrics speak to me, there is one line … isn’t there always … that draws me in and holds me.

“Mist on the mountain, rising from the ground – there’s no denying beauty makes a sound.” 

Doesn’t it just make you breathe slower? Close your eyes? And hear it?

What does beauty sound like to you?

I’m not sure I ever thought about it before, but now that I have, I often find myself wondering at what beauty sounds like, and little by little, my list grows.

Beauty sounds like the recession of a wave, pulling back the might of a swell.

Beauty sounds like the contented breathing of love sleeping evenly beside you.

Beauty sounds like the rustle of leaves … the hint of change swirling underfoot.

Beauty sounds like the quiet voice urging you one more time, to carry on.

Beauty sounds like a chance.

Beauty sounds like a choice.

Beauty sounds like a prayer, offered up without anything but remaining hope.

 

What do you hear? I’d love to know what beauty sounds like to you dear ones. Let’s make our own picturesque song.

Elle

9.24.18 Knit Me Back Together

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Nature has a way with restoration

with piecing together the pieces of me

that have begun to pull apart

Stepping into a world of green

the interconnectedness of bough and root

remind me that no part of ourselves 

can be lost from the whole completely 

Silent steps on fallen pine needles

usher me into a place of contemplative quiet

where no burden of daily routines can find me

Why is it that the sound of rushing water 

doesn’t make me hurry?

Why does the blast of racing wind 

set my heart to still?

I think we have become so talented at crowding our senses

senselessly

Filling our minds and our hands with various forms of distraction 

from the beauty that most deserves our attention

Anxious thoughts can’t keep company 

with the tranquil breaths I breathe

My worried mind is finally clarified

when focus is paid to sure feet and steady hands

There is healing in the body seeking higher ground

as if heaven is somehow a tangible opportunity

rather than a far off, distant dream

And what enlightenment there is in realizing this side

can sometimes see holy too

In the promising curl of an infant vine

In the assurance of a rock that still stands so still

In the sacrifice of a fallen, sheltering limb

In the delicate bending of light between darks

Nature has a way with restoration

with piecing together the pieces of me

that had begun to pull apart …

but somehow knit me back together

 

Be well friends,

Elle

8.17.18 I Can’t Believe She’s Mine

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“You wanted everything for everyone, and you wanted to know it all and learn it all …”  – Julia Quinn, To Sir Philip With Love

This one’s for my baby … my even-as-I-write-this little lady who captures every heart she meets. I have never met the likes of her, nor could I have dreamed her into being. My thoughts are simply not capable of the wonder that she is. She is a singular treasure. A divine gift. A paragon of what kindness truly is. Happy birthday to my little dolly. Knowing her is the privilege of a lifetime, but being her mommy is nothing short of a miracle.

 

Brighter than starlight

and made of the same radiance

she emanates compassion

she breathes empathy

and she feels – everything

Wonderstruck eyes at the world she yearns to know more of

yet enchanted with the reality of pretend

she travels her deepest thoughts

curiosity her constant companion

only outshone by her desire to be:

what everyone needs –

never realizing that she already is

There is not a day where charm doesn’t chase her

smiles and compliments are ever in her wake,

still she tries, failing to realize her effortless magnetism –

obliviousness to practical perfection allowing her to remain blameless

She is art personified

a walking masterpiece

the crescendo of emotion

the chorus of a beautiful song …

With effervescent giggles, she twirls with me

and doesn’t walk but cartwheels place to place

She creates

She delights

She seeks

She finds

And every day I can’t believe she’s mine

 

 

8.2.18 Crave

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I crave that creative place

where my mind 

is free to wander 

just a bit

to dabble and dance

in and out 

of a memory or two

lingering in places particularly sweet

and allowing my heartbeat to quicken with reinvented remembering

I love to fall into a good conversation

where the words tumble over themselves 

in an effort to explore the emotions born with them

pushing past inherited perspectives and perceptions 

searching for what is true in your shared or borrowed states of mind

and heart

I wish time was a little less relative 

to everything

and everyone

that there would be more of it in the space of a day

or a moment that doesn’t necessarily need, but wants more attention

so that a detail

a look

or a longing wouldn’t have to go without

I crave that creative place

I love

to wish