P is for poem

life is what she writes about,
liaisons and love affairs,
rife of erotic passages,
relations…some, short-lived,
brief encounters lost too fast,
she’s wept so many salty tears
grief stricken beyond her years
yet, memories of lovers lost
beget in her sweet moments
where pain and suffering will exhaust
and only images
that burn her cheeks
and warm her heart
shall trickle into heated
words in love poems.

(troiku)
first kiss – after,
a decade of solitude
stuff to write poems

first kiss – after,
too many years
like riding a bike

a decade if solitude
spiritual cleansing
looking within

stuff to write poems
always a good tragedy
love, lust and heartbreak

© Tournesol’16/04/19

Haiku Horizons “Poem”

Blogging from A to Z Challenge

merci pour votre appui

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Merci pour ces jolies fleurs
pleines de vie et de couleurs
chantonnaient votre appui
illustrant votre amitié
merci pour votre soutien
votre support m’allège si bien
éblouit mon quotidien
Merci pour votre appui.

© Cheryl-Lynn ’14/12/13

Ramblings on life (haiga)

(haiku)

hot muggy day
spider finds a cool safe place
took a bubble bath

August sailing
gusty winds tense the jib
crow kissed a windshield

fly fidgets
buzzes around his arm.
SWAT!

spider spins
all night long diligently
Eureka!

children’s park
swings, teeter totters, slides
barbarian invasion

children giggling
bright coloured kites catch the sun
string floats silently

© Tournesol ’14
© Tournesol ’14
© Tournesol ’14
© Tournesol ’14
 

(free verse)

If I were an insect,
who knows how my life would end?
If I were a bird,
who knows how the wind would blow?
If I were a child living in the wrong part of the world,
who knows when my life would end?
Life is a gift for some,
a puzzle for so many,
an affliction for too many…

What life lends
may be a mystery
black and white blends
interesting and dreary
I can always count
on rivers to flow
on the sun to glow
sunsets sublime
and the moon to shine

originally published @ Tournesol dans un Jardin

© Tournesol 2014/08/12

Lise Lafrance

https://pookypoetry.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/write-a-poem-in-which-the-first-letter-of-every-line-spells-out-the-name-of-somebody-you-admire-and-the-poem-explains-why-you-admire-them.jpg

 

Let me introduce you to a special friend
incredibly compassionate and extremely
selfless, she cares for youths, friends and family
extraordinary benevolence for felines as well.
Lise would drive to a city park for many years
at the same time every night to feed feral cats,
furry felines fed in a park,  from food kept in her car,
ready to go, she had kibbles and moist food
available for the fussier kind…just in case…
no person, social worker, counsellor or friend
could be as generous, going beyond her call of duty
even digging in her own modest pockets to help clients in need.

 

A small tribute to Lise Lafrance, friend, former colleague, brilliant and compassionate person.

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/05/18

Submitted for Prompt 18, PookyPoetry on Admiration Acrostic

 

Hopscotch terror

CLR 2014
CLR 2014

 

Skip, skip, hop, hop,
she turned around on one foot
threw her pebble on six
the hop, hop, hopping followed;
heard a whisper, stopped transfixed,
then a long deep moan
she stood on both feet…forlorn
little child frozen on square five
not budging, terror took over her
dared not move her head,
just her eyes from side to side,
the moan grew louder, longer
her eyes just gawked…
she turned her head swiftly
to the right and THERE she saw it
from the dark basement window
it looked like a man…an old man
with long shoulder length white hair
he looked exactly like Ebenezer!
MOAN
GROAN
BEUHHHHHHHH!
She turned her four yr old body
and stode frozen, staring, tears streaming
down her chubby cheeks….
MOAN
GROAN
BEUHHHHHHHH!
And then she hurled t
he loudest piercing yowl!
the engineer on the oncoming train
must have heard the howl.
Grandmother came running down the stairs,
grabbed her by the shoulders
to shake her back to reality
shouting at the THING at the basement window
“Stop scaring the child like that, GrandPa!!”
then hugged the child close to her bosom,
whispering, Shshshshshshshshsh.

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/05/13
Submitted for: Mindlovemiserysmenagerie Prompt 55, Slowly dawning horror

Don’t you feel sad?

Since last December I have had many class interviews on the phone students about the work I do, working on a youth help line. One question that came out often, just warmed my heart. The fact that these youths were concerned about me!  So when I saw this prompt to write a poem and start it with a question, this came to mind.

 https://pookypoetry.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/write-a-poem-that-opens-with-a-question.jpg

 

Don’t you feel sad when you go home at night
listening to unhappy stories about this or that?

Why I guess sometimes I do feel sad alright!
That is really sweet of you to ask me that.

Do you cry sometimes?

Why yes, I may feel a tear
run down my cheek
from time to time.

So how do you feel better?

I think you are wondering
how I practice self-care.
I am very much aware
I need to be mindful
of my feelings as well
or else I would not be capable
working here as long as I’ve been able.
I talk to my supervisor
some of the time
or a counsellor friend,
they always will lend
a good listening ear
so I can continue working
day after day right here.
I walk a lot, write a lot too
I read for distraction
and love comedy shows
like The Big Bank Theory
gets me laughing quite loudly.
There is always a counsellor
or manager available
to allow me to debrief
which is a great relief!
Thank you so very much
for asking and caring such!

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/05/10

Submittted for: PookyDailyPoetryPrompt # 9 Open with a Question

Death of a loving man

Seberg / Belmondo. À Bout de Souffle. ‘60.

Photo credits:  Seberg / Belmondo. À Bout de Souffle. ‘60.

I chose the death of Fred, my step-father to share my first experience with the darkness of grief, feeling a huge loss that left me empty for almost 8 years.  There were 2 deaths that marked my life the most…as a child my grandfather and as an adult at 31 when my step-father died.

We live in a culture that is uncomfortable with death. We don’t even say the D word, now do we…much?  In the 70’s we heard of Dr. Elizabeth Kübler-Ross talk about the stages of grief and initially at that time, she was observing people who were diagnosed with a terminal illness.  The stages at that time were in relation to a process when faced with dying and death as in her book On Death and Dying: the Five Stages of Grief, first published in 1969: The Shock, denial, anger,  bargaining, depression…then acceptance; but negotiating/bargaining,   for example  would make more sense when we put in perspective someone who is negotiating with their creator, “Oh, G-d, are you sure it’s really my time? Maybe there is one more procedure…one last try…test…”  Kubler-Ross theory  was followed by so many people including professionals, throughout time up to about the mid or late nineties.   

I remember when this book came out.  It was  like THE gospel, the apostles’ creed of sorts; and although helpful the order of stages, at that time, confined many to feel they were not grieving “adequately” if they skipped a stage or if it lasted too long.  How can one measure one’s grief compared to another? 

Thank goodness in 2002 I joined a bereavement support agency (Bereaved Families of Toronto)  as a professional advisor helping youths grieve the loss of a sibling or parent. In my training, I felt so relieved when the grief counselor and professor at York University said, “Remember all those stages you learned in the 70’s and 80’s?”  We all bobbed our heads like good students. “Well, you can throw that out the window now.”  And a sense of relief came over me. What he meant was I was not tied to a set order of stages…the burden was finally removed.  No ONE was set to fit into a see through jar so everyone could evaluate if they were grieving right.

I remember when my step-father died in the summer of 1982.    My mother had not really accepted her loss until about a year or so later.

It was quite simple. Mom always said she felt his presence even when she went to bed at night. “He is right next to me each night. I am not lonely because he has never left me in spirit.”

I believe this is, on some level to be true. A year later, it was as if she suddenly woke up…her grief turned into a violent rage.  She had a difficult time dealing with this time…angry that he left her, angry that she was really alone. It was difficult on so many levels. Being a woman of that generation, born in 1926, strict Catholic upbringing…good girls do not get angry…must comply…accept.  Good thing they added “guilt” as another stage or emotion one feels with grieving. A good Catholic female knows how to feel guilt real well!

In a way, this stage of her grief was unleashing a very angry lioness.  Before it became liberating, it was quite frightening for her.  Many professionals and family to her she was experiencing a delay or complicated grief.   It was not delayed …she was simply grieving in her own unique way and in her own time. 

Thereafter, she felt much sadness, guilt and fell into depression. It was in spurts…not all in one shot since my children were young and she was often with us. I think the children eased the pain…made it more palpable. I hope so.

I had been exposed to death as a young child but children under 7 do have the same concept on death, developmentally they just cannot understand abstract thinking, only concrete. (Children and Grief by C.L. Roberts)

My step father was my first loss that I truly grieved a long long time…many years thereafter.  Perhaps the process was longer as I could not grieve all at once…I mean, I did not have the freedom to feel my sadness and emotions when I was with the children…they were so young both one and 4.  So it was only when I would go for a bike ride, a drive somewhere or long walk that I could be alone with my grief.

I loved him as my father…more than my father…he was good to me and loved my mother with so much affection and admiration that I loved him more for that.  His love took Mom out of her depression, I think for the 13 years they were together.  She made him fill with wonder, his eyes smiled at her always.  They both came from dark places, having suffered broken hearts, undeserving anguish.

You  know that GaGa look you get when you first fall in love?  My mother had that look for him …always!  Of course when I was 17, it made me sick…thought she was so silly and making a fool of herself sashaying around, flirting and all.  But as a teen we knew very little about love, sexuality and sensuality.  We think it is reserved for the young and firm bodies only.  Well, of course I learned differently as I matured but back then, my mother and my step-father were such an enigma.   I still was in awe at their love…that current of love waves…I say this because it was not electric…they did not have a hot, sizzling love affair but a warm, loving relationship…like warm, soft mellow waves wrapping them together, soothing, nice, sweet, calm and safe. 

She always loved him even into her dark illness of dementia…she would often still call out to her third husband, Fred.  Perhaps in her dementia, she is comforted with spiritual visits from her love, Fred.

Death of a loving man

(Tanka)

A true Love Story.

Two anguished souls mend their hearts.

Affectionate love.

One day his body failed him.

A part of her died with him.

 

**************

 

I asked a favour of the Lord

to have his life extend

until my daughter walked.

She still was only 8 months old.

 

****************

 

He was given three

months to live

when he left the hospital

so he could die at home

but, he stopped at the court house

to marry my mother officially

and ensure she would be secure

with his military pension as his widow.

What an act of love!

He sent her off to a ten week course

Assertiveness and building self-confidence.

He wanted her to be strong,

be able to stand on her own

and stand up for her rights

when he no longer would be here

to stand up for her.

What an act of love!

My daughter and I were visiting one day

Fred was lying in a hospital bed in the living room

resting and admiring my youngest child.

She crawled on her knees joyfully,

then up she stood so suddenly

and walked towards her grandfather.

Eleven months she was, and walking now.

my feelings were so bittersweet

I shed my tears of fear,

because her walking meant

his death would soon be near.

 

One night I felt I had to see

him one more time

And on my drive a bird hit…smack

the windshield of my car

I knew then, his time was near.

 

I told him for the very first time

I whispered softly in his ear,

“Don’t worry, Fred, I’ll be hear

and watch for Mom. I love you.”

He died that night in mother’s arms

I’m sad I did not tell him more

how much he meant to me.

 

© Cheryl-Lynn, 2014/02/21

Dungeon Prompts – Season 2, Week 8: When did Death Become Real for You
 
 
Related article:  Youth and Grief (Ntouch-Alecoute)

Teachers’ Appreciation Day

me sidewaysI am a bit late in submitting this and I have only listlessness to blame. First day of my long awaited vacation I am spending NOT on balconville but pretty much close to le balcon. 

This is humbly written (because I don’t write as many real poets I know) but it is from the heart.  If it were not for some amazing teachers I had growing up, I may have slipped between the cracks. I do appreciate this difficult vocation because I do believe that it is a vocation for good teachers who go beyond their mandate. And yes, many do. I only worked 5 years teaching a very easy course and could not believe the work involved to keep courses alive and students engaged but that is what you need to do…keep them engaged.

I am sure you all can remember a teacher or two (I’ve had more) that inspired you and mostly that believed in you. So here are my thoughts…

Dear Teacher,
without your guidance I’d not be
here writing any form of poetry.
You taught me my ABC`s
and how to write with ease
entrenched a love of word
my nose so often in a book
I did not know I could afford
to have become so hooked.
Arithmetic, geography,
literature and history
opened my mind to the world
except for algebra and geometry
I did not seem to catch on fast
until university
where a humble math professor
with immense serenity
unassuming and patient…
a quality math teachers
could benefit in the future…(hint)
I breezed through with an A minus!
I learned much more from you, Teacher
but it was still sown in academia
whether you were French or Latin teacher,
Physical Education or Drama..
you inspired and moved me to awe
encouragement and self-worth
filled me with determination
stirred such an inspiration
and allowed me to believe
in me… and not give up
you sealed my fate
a long time ago
today …I can`t seem to satiate
my thirst and hunger for truth…
knowledge and understanding
of life by examining, exploring,
investigating, discovering
realities about humanity
probing with curiosity.
Dear Teacher,
many years ago
you lit a flame
that`s still aglow .
So on this Teacher`s appreciation Day
I thank you all for filling minds
and mostly rousing souls…
stirring them to reach their goals.
Thank you evermore.
© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/02/14
 
PostScript: I just noticed a prompt at The Seeker’s Dungeon and I think this would qualify as a good contribution as well to who has inspired me to be the person I am today.

Tired surrender

Photo credits: Self-Care

Tired surrender

Times you may feel
you care a great deal
wish you could help more
suffering, pain and sore
spirits and hearts
make you sometimes
want to fall apart.
Days, turn into weeks,
time just seems to drag
on and on and on.
You start to get edgy
can’t seem to sleep every night
you have nightmares that might
keep you up, they’re too scary;
You start to forget, become wary
it’s harder and harder to focus
impatience starts to follow suit
and soon you realize it’s that time…
You need to take some time for you,
you need to surrender yourself,
to self-care, wellness to restore
your mental well-being.
Surrender your mind and soul,
pamper yourself, your body whole,
massages, bubble baths,
allow friends to treat you
refrain from resisting support
take back your “self”
regain your mental
and physical whole SELF
Surrender…now…
you’re tired now…
Surrender…tired surrender…
Open yourself to soothing,
restoring, healing your SELF!

© Cheryl-Lynn, 2014/02/12

Prompt #42 Tired Surrender

Ms Calm and Ms Anxiety

the-surreal-arts.deviantart.com

Penny Calm came in the diner
one cold snowy Friday
ordered a cuppa camomile
and the soup of the day;
sipping her herbal tea
lost in thought totally
she waited patiently
for Ms. Sue Anxiety.

Sue arrived in such a state
trembling and rambling
about why she was so late
“A loser on the interstate
slowed me up a long time
twenty cars were tailing in line!”
she ranted and she raved,
an order of soup she then gave
with a double Cappuccino.

“No wonder she’s so nervous”
thought her friend, Penny Calm,
“drinking cappuccino all day long.
If only she changed her diet,
her nerves might soon be quiet
and not be so distressed.”

“Now, now, Sue, calm down a bit,
let’s just enjoy our visit.
We have so much to share
Now tell me, how you are?”
Sue Anxiety , no time to spare
she complained all afternoon
’bout this and that and not aware
the impact of  her attitude
had managed to stir Penny
no longer was she calm, rather
started to panic, hyperventilate.
she had to use her inhaler
to calm her breathing rate.

By the end of the day, Sue Anxiety seemed much calmer
“This was such a great idea, to meet and spend the day
Talking and getting things off my chest I feel so much better.”
Penny Calm just stared at Sue, not sure what she should say
and left the diner, saying, “Don’t call me, I’ll call you.”

And so the story goes that Penny Calm never
did call Sue Anxiety, and calmly lived forever.

© Cheryl-Lynn, 2014/02/06