cancer, hope, letting go, living

11.20.14

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by Carmen H Gray 

the waves lapped at the shore

industrial waste in a place

where freshwater meets saltwater

the bright sky viewing a town that feels like a story I’ve written

like time stopped here, somewhere in the 1970’s of my childhood

and it may as well be a repeat of those chaotic times these days

except here I am, a woman now

with a daughter who can celebrate

a date that has past

and here we are

souls brined

hearts preserved

bodies intact

and this is better than any man made holy day to me

 

 

 

 

 

hope, letting go, nature

Flow

Flow

by Carmen H Gray

 

i sometimes feel I drift between two worlds

one is

where time is not a binding entity

where cataclysmic waves are waiting to be traveled fearlessly

and the sky is fully present

broadened chances that aren’t hampered by clouds

heavy with water molecules

the other is some projected world

stifled by the densely packed

minute hands and man made dimensions of too much talking

but i choose the former

with streams and rocks and ants

who know better

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

hope, letting go, living

Parallel Lines

parallel lines

by Carmen H Gray

 

I saw those lines

running across your

soft arms

arms that had formed inside my womb

arms I bathed

arms that glistened in the summer sun

arms that were cut and poked and prodded, too

I gently placed aloe on those lines

and whispered prayers to each of them

”let the pain leave” I said

and only beauty reside here

Hope paralleled

within a tiny freckle found

Between those lines

 

 

 

 

hope, letting go, living

Rose Colored Glasses

Rose Colored Glasses

By Carmen H Gray

 

The truck with the tools

And the hole in the eaves

My view of the sunrise obscured by the trees

The cigarette butts

The plants dying of thirst

A Wold War II veteran nursed

In this unassuming place

And no, I never saw the ugliness

In you or you or you

I only saw what light you brought

Even in an afterthought

Even after the storms have passed

And sunlight shines its golden cast

I still see possibility in my line of sight

Sometimes I slip and take them off

Those rose-colored glasses you tossed

But if life is the way you think it is

It’s all for nought

We are absurd

Are we succored, our thoughts?

By the gentle palette?

For we can paint our world

Anyway we want

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

hope, letting go, living, nature

August 2014

August 2014

by Carmen H Gray

 

When, then, did I begin?

Was it in the darkest peak of that death?

Or was it when I found that opening?

A deep and hollow gash

The natural result of an unforeseeable crash?

I do not come with a timeline

Or a rolodex of recipes

Neatly filed and perfectly spaced

No, that is not how I was placed

I saw myself at the start of that curve

And then again at the baker’s dozen glance

Turning once more at thirty four, a dance

Of four gilded edges forging

Like what we see in the night skies

The spiral galaxies that radiate

The cells within us that communicate

I am you and you are me

We relive each moment’s mystery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

hope, letting go, living, nature

Sunlight Beams

55A648C2-1B6C-4748-BE5E-DF6A9E929292 Sunlight Beams

by Carmen H Gray 

“Capture Me” I told him

I want to halt that moment

Of gravitional bliss

The freeness from the pull

The airborne leap in the heat

Before my warm feet kiss

The frigid turquoise water

And in those milliseconds

I feel the deliciously sweet

Water colors reflecting onto me

The sunlight beams shushing

The gentle azure wave, beckons

As it anticipates our embrace

hope, letting go, living, nature

Leaving

c.j.jpg

Leaving

by Carmen H Gray

My eyes hurt from all of the tears

Like sandpaper when they shut out the world

And in my mind’s eye I see

Pretty poppies along those paths I roamed

Eternal sleep in bright colors

That belie their playful congenialness

Like the blue and sunshine day

And lush berries hidden within the forest

Everything looks pretty in pictures

But like those death flowers everywhere

There is a heaviness

The echoes of a frailty

The crimson words of anger

I want to go home, but where is my home?

While “Leaving On A Jet Plane” plays

After, “Here Comes The Sun”

And our broken parts are just instances

Not the whole of something

Meet me in the back of the plane

Where I get the seats to myself

In a lucky secluded moment

And I can look at Mount Rainier

Recalling that such a place

Once held summers of happiness

But now it’s raw and cold

Each version of our personal hells

Remembered and recounted

As they needed to be

Death flowers and swollen eyes

Forests and mushrooms

Life and death and everything in between

Leaving all those years and fears

On the porch with tears

Only captured in my heart

And my words as they are

Leaving

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

letting go, nature

Quilaztli

in tonān in cihuācōātl in quilāztli  (our mother, Cihuacoatl, Quilaztli)

You promise us emerald and jade, but do those precious stones
truly endure? Only the divine song, drifting down from Omeyocan,
outlasts human life and earthly age. All else is but a dream, dear brother.”-Malinalxochitl to Huitziltzin in Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky: Myths of Mexico, by David Bowles

 

Quilaztli

by Carmen H Gray

Eagle Woman

Beckoned me in the desert

She called, “walk with me”

In day and night

We traveled

Beneath the sun and the moon

I heard the songs of people

Illuminated in the caverns

Of an earthen womb

I am Solar Strength,

Woman Spirit

Curandera of Great Magic

Snake Woman

The Left Behind Tragic

She whispered to me

As she opened her Great Wings

And took to the sky

Leaving me brighter

My hands feeling lighter

Upon waking from that dream

 

 

hope, letting go, living

Little

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“I wish I had never got manic depression. When I was in junior high, I didn’t know what was the matter with me. It was as if I’d died or something.”-Daniel Johnston

Little

by Carmen H Gray

Do you know how much I love you so?

Your sweet black curls and those dimpled cheeks

Thank you for letting me dress you up like the little sister I never had

When you were toddling around me in our innocent years

Thank you for shooting that hurt little dying bird

In our backyard and we both wanted to put it out of its misery

I knew it was hard for you and I saw that tear

And later still, in that 14th year

I’m sorry I couldn’t save you from your mind

Do you know how much I cried?

Do you know how hard I tried?

Do you know how much laughter you gave me, too?

All of the ways you saw the world were new

Thank you for breaking open that elevator door when my baby girl was stuck inside 

You didn’t stop to think about the rules of property damage

All you knew was that my little girl was crying and stuck

And you knew how that felt and didn’t give a fuck

About the consumeristic things in this world

You wanted her to be free

Just like I want you to be

 

 

hope, letting go, living

Today

Today

by Carmen H Gray

 

It’s Easter Sunday and April Fool’s

I came across an old birthday card

A token of a time when I was the perfect mother

In my daughter’s eyes

Before the cancer and the heavy stuff

Before the hormones and the teen angst

Now it’s all eye rolling and pfftsss

You Fool

And families are a funny thing

All those egos parading with divided perspectives

We thought we had already traded them in for prizes

From the fortune cookie wisdom

“You will make great advances in life”

But time is a funny thing, too

One shift in our clutched-tightly-guarding-it-nightly story

And suddenly we are that little child again

From 40 years ago

Finding our footing

Can I just say even if it’s all a joke

I’m so glad to have laughed and cried

And lived and sighed

With you today