The prompt and the week that it is attached to sometimes are not in sync. This is the situation reflected in this entry to the poetry battle. The prompt was : Bliss.
The word repels me. Turned its back on me. So I turn away in turn. Sore. Ignored And bruised. It denies me its presence So I deny its existence. I will be Barren stone To being a fool Waiting Longer Longing For rain To bloom.
My voices Speak to me Inside my head. They travel in a troop Like a cloud Of babble. One is shame, mud soaked, discarded, and yet loudest of them all, One cries ‘look at me’, she wears a red dress and high, high heels. One slips by invisible, almost. Transparent, made of cellophane. One clings. Wanting to be held. One rages. My angry girl, so brave, so vibrant. Behind them Walks a silent old woman Dressed in dark oil skin. Always prepared for disaster She follows them in silent solitude. Slung across her back In a rucksack twice her size The colossal collection of My lost memories.
I have been participating in the Poetry Battle Friday over on Twitter sponsored by JD Greyson (@JDGreysonwrites). I’ll admit, I always say I’m not a poet at heart, but I’m really enjoying this weekly exercise. So – I’m going to pass along some of the results. I hope you enjoy.
I love the poem The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost which contains the line used for the title. The simple idea that we all face choices that define our lives. Those choices can be momentous or tiny. They can be so small that at the time we didn’t notice that we had made a choice.
I suspect we have all stood at a decision point in the path and tried to discern which one would be ‘better’. For me, the reality is that often I made the choice based on what I knew others expected. I did this no only because it was the expectation, but equally because I had no idea what I wanted. I spent the bulk of my life constrained by fear of the unknown, fear of punishment, fear of speaking up, fear of speaking or doing, at all.
I am learning, rather late in life, that these choices were mine or at least they were meant to be mine. I still wonder, were the choices taken from me or did I abdicate them in the hope of buying safety?
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair, And having perhaps the better claim, Because it was grassy and wanted wear; Though as for that the passing there Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay In leaves no step had trodden black. Oh, I kept the first for another day! Yet knowing how way leads on to way, I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.
I stood upon a road facing a divide, I trembled knowing that on one path Without premonition, sign or guide Both branches were equally eyed. Filled with doubt I must choose to pass.
On both roads stood dread unknown Faceless fears and boogie men Childhood monsters though I’m grown Follow me far from home And try to draw me back again.
I was caged safe and sound My hands could span from wall to wall In silence I sat making myself small Blinded to the bars that did surround For if I did not rise then I could not fall.
When I saw the cage I had designed Silver bars and barbed wire fence About myself for fear I did wind I was prisoner in my own mind And that has made all the difference.
As the author of the poem stated, “And that has made all the difference”.
There is a monster in the mirror. I stand shaking, clutching at the cold porcelain of the sink to support myself on withering knees. My body is numb, but the tears that wash over my cheeks are hot. There is a monster in the mirror.