Somewhere Along the Way

I suppose somewhere
along the way, 
this became 
about me, 
this once person
conditioned
to inwardly
mistreat,
neglect, 
bury
prematurely
at sea,

too busy
keeping them
afloat
in puddles,
sacrificing my soul
for others, 

in the lows 
between lowers
in that life
unstable,
vows before God
to remain 
(abusive) spouse faithful,

the escape-clause
contingencies blurred,
repercussions lingering 
in the years after,

children ten years apart,
and always children,
I keep on 
giving,
Silverstein tree 
down to the trunk,
instead of remaining
to be sat upon,
I leave my roots
to carry on,

re-sprouting from
acorns and seeds
to reach the end
of land
as a sunflower, 
brazen yet desperate,
in the sand
to be plucked
by a youthful hand

and sprinkled
into the surf
for the mermaids 
to collect 
and bring to the site
of where I left
myself
and resurrect 

from Davy Jones’ Locker
the Heart of the Sea
still alive
in its keeper:
me. 

The ducks and swans
gather to greet
at the pond
where I used to
weep. 

Donned now
in floral dresses
and locks
long enough 
to dance freely 
with the breeze, 
(he always said
neither looked good
on me…)
the reflection I see
is another plot twist
in my ongoing story

with an ending
yet to be written 
but full of God’s 
golden glory,
His daughter’s strength 
ever-growing. 

Somewhere along the way, 
somehow this did become
about me. 
Another struggle lifted,
another soulful healing. 

In the setting sun,
I reflect upon the journey
and look so forward
to the fulfilling
of my legacy.

I will never drown,
for you can only
hold me down
so long, 
years but moments
in the eternity 
of dawn. 

Hope unconditionally
floats
from the buoyancy 
of love. 

This is my story, 
long overdue 
to be 
self-sung.

I actually do like to sing those soulful songs.
(He always changed the station if I even began to hum…)

Dust and Glue

I wish I knew 
true love
of friendship 
early on.
I wish it didn’t exist
as missing
photos in 
the album,
having been
removed
from the glue
after each exposure 
of being 
used,
or that one
that left me
to this day
confused.
My album
became less 
and less
full;
lighter became
the feeling
I knew, 
chambers of the heart
renovated rooms,
but I held fast
to faith,
and God inside
filled each 
vacant space.
I kept 
the others
at arm’s length,
guard up,
bowed face,
casually brushing 
invitations 
away,
though introversion
was also at
play,
having created
my very sacred 
space,
but in these weeks 
when weak
became my shame,
and I had to
search extra hard
to find
the blessing
takeaway,
it was friends
who came to save
the day,
who found
and mended
and returned
my cape,
who lifted me back
with hugs
to strength. 
Okay, Lord. 
In this broken state,
I give you 
thanks. 
Full is the feeling 
when the heart
reaches
dam break,
when love
fills in 
in all of its 
sizes and shapes,
and the dust dances
off those old
blank pages. 

Soft Impressions

Let me walk
with you awhile, 
whether or not you
lend me your shoes
for a mile.

In fact, let’s both
take them off
and leave them here
as we surf the shore,

finding naturally
the treasures
within us each,
bare feet
on common
shifting grounds
equally.

One set of footprints
in the sand
they say is when
we are carried by Him,

but in the interim
let me be the second
impressions alongside yours,
for in this world
we all need sometimes
to see the touch
so longed for. 

We don’t need to hold hands.
We don’t need to even speak.
Let’s just walk together awhile
in the comfort of kindred company.

And should you be here again tomorrow,
maybe we could exchange shoes for a mile. 
And should you come back at our planned time, 
maybe for a bit, we could leave our shells behind.

Poem and image ©LauraDenise

Sending This Ray


Thinking of you, old friend,
and sending this ray
to reach you and remind you
you are valued today.

Thank you for all the ways
you inspired me to take up my pen;
I haven’t let it rest since then
and never will again.

It’s not right for the shadows
to ever find you so I
chase them sometimes
because you forevermore deserve
peace of mind,

and souls connecting
in this life
is what most matters,
so these shadows
I’ll continue to endlessly help
sc a t t e r

because you changed my life
for the better:
because of you,
I am a writer.

Pick up your guitar
and strum away
the shadows encroaching
upon you and others today.

Leaning on You

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deep exhale

let it all go

leaning on you

close enough

to home

 

respite from the world

untouchable on your shoulder

lay all defenses down

in my safe harbor

 

your laughter shakes me

as dreams flood in

through the open doors

I trust you are guarding

 

I permit myself

to float away free

in this utopian moment

so absent of worries

 

just you and me

and surrounding friends

good times, music

carefreeness

immortal again

 

Neither Lost

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Neither of us currently lost

in the deep wood,

 

but alone on your long walk,

let me be reminders to you

 

of the good,

 

let me be that bright twinkling

on the water

when the sun and ripples

seem to come together

to call you,

 

let me be the single blurry bloom

coming into view,

 

a heart-butterfly

to whisper-deliver a message

just for you,

 

let me be that subtle extra beauty

that brightens up your day

and life,

 

as you were for me

when I walked alone

by the sea

and you made me realize

 

that beauty

can be gifted

but can also

be seeded

inside.

 

Poem and images ©LauraDenise

Alongside Me So Faithfully

IMG_9113

Paths cross.

Some, like I,

believe for reasons.

I get disheartened when

the trail diverges

and someone again

leaves me,

 

but even in that,

as I take more steps

into the great unknown,

I know

so many

are not supposed

to walk with us

all the way

home.

 

You came along

and were soon nested

in my mind and heart;

your patience,

your shoulder,

your understanding,

you offered so selflessly

from the very start.

 

My laugh

you seemed to arrive with,

the greatest gift

I continuously unwrap.

So many fears

you convince me

to relinquish,

that together we

can combat,

 

my biggest being

the path diverging

up ahead

again,

 

but you assure me

you’ll keep walking

the way I go,

like our path together

has no end…

IMG_9681

Poem and images ©LauraDenise