Resetting the Sand

With wide-opened arms,
I offer myself
again to the sea,
double-red flag at the
abandoned beach
and in me.

I give it all to God
who takes it up
with the wind,
wild waves
rush up from within.

Benevolent powers
remind me
who I am
and what I’m capable of
in this lifetime chance

when He is inside me
like He’s always been,
and all of nature,
my lifelong friends.

The beach itself
is rippled clean,
new slate
on which to imprint
the path
He leads,

another first step
into the trust
of His plan,
the next leg of a journey
to lead me even closer
to where He is at.

Poem and images ©LauraDenise

Re-Lighting

Rough week. Double red flags waving. The bay wilder than the ocean. It called me home. Here’s to the ones in the throes of it. Let’s relight ourselves. Again.

I give my light freely,
but sometimes it is taken,
emotional perpetrators
breaching my innermost spaces.

They underestimated 
my strength
and did again
today,

for as long as there
is the sea and my God,
I will raise my arms
in faith;
you will never 
keep me down
as long as there 
are waves and rays. 

I will wash 
what you left
away. 

You underestimated 
our strength. 

May I?

May I never lose my way
to getting lost,
may I never resist the urge
to leave it all, 
may I never shelter my face
from the storm, 
may I never let my arms fall
in the downpour,
may I never fully wash off
the grit of the sand, 
and may I never be restrained 
by clock or human hand.

May I never negotiate with my soul: 
may I never let anyone close the window. 

Poem and images ©LauraDenise

Wind and Wings

I will bend to please,
for I put first others’ needs;
overempathy makes me weak.

Forceful winds,
whether intended or not,
push with invisible pressure 
until my insides knot. 

In opposite direction
of secret desires,
the flight I am put on
with unpurchased ticket
takes me higher

but farther
on false wings
to where I wished to be;
nonetheless, I relentlessly
look for the positives 
in my surroundings. 

Rock, boulder, 
my anchor,
my center,
is never stationary.
I move the mountains
with the strength
of your arms 
and my unshakable faith
in the Almighty. 

Bent tree. 
Flight path. 
Criss-crossing trajectories.
I will bend back.
I will disembark. 
And wherever that leaves me, 
I will find where 
the wildflowers are. 
And if you pluck them all, 
I will water the seeds
in my heart. 

I will persevere as me,
no matter how many rounds
I smartly, politely, or wearily
concede. 
Each of those fertilize 
bloom potentiality. 

I will grow my own
wildflower fields
until they rise
out of me. 

Hope Is A Red Balloon (With Audio)

Hope is a red balloon. 
To dream is to release,
To let the heart again believe:
Benediction granted wings.

Hope is a red balloon. 
To fear is to release. 
Self-shackling to the ribbon needed
For freedom to be achieved.

Hope is a red balloon.
But with passenger and knapsack attached,
It becomes the passageway
Between spirit-death and life hatched. 

Hope is a red balloon
That may burst at any moment
Over deep, dark uncharted waters 
With drowning a likely occurrence. 

Hope is a red balloon.
Faith is to ride it into the winds
Knowing the trajectory
Is calculated and adjusted
by Him,

Delivering to safety,
Granting the dream.
Because you held fast
To Hope’s string. 

Poem and image and recitation ©LauraDenise

Resilient Hearts

I am NOT a gardener.
Though a gardener I’ve never tried to be…
Every natural wonder I’ve ever encountered
has been there before me, 
remnants from previous tenants’ tastes
and sculptures wild and free
lovingly planted in my path
by the Creator Almighty
and meant at the time of discovery
to be the personal messages needed. 

And so it is with my hibiscus pinks, 
cut down to the ground by the men
so they could build a fence more easily. 
Flowers dear to me for the way they so faithfully
after such meaningful moments took turns blooming
to mark the milestones in my healing,
to commemorate the special blessings,
to symbolize with such humble beauty
the changing seasons within me. 

In the soft, golden morning rising sun, 
they lift themselves again to greet me. 
Not defiantly. Just filled with inspiration. 
An example. A reunion. A smiling. 
I approach and spend some moments 
I do not have according to clock and duty. 
The buds seem from an extra-long green
hibernation to be defrosting, thawing.  
I know what lies inside. The knowing
denies mystery but does not anticipation-impede.

My heart does indeed too beat again,
my dear friends. 
They can never cut short
our aspiring stories. 

Poem and images ©LauraDenise

Always Surmountable

©LauraDenise

We are never trapped,
just fated to faulty perspective,
succumb to specious perception;
it’s all relevant, related –

one more rock-move away
from the light 
on the other side
of the avalanche,

one more “wrong” turn
lost in the forest
before hearing
the anabranch…

much is necessarily experienced:

near suffocation sometimes the only way
to motivate a life-saving change,

the legs of the journey
in the humanless woods
lead to the reflection
and feeling of wounds,

and all paths probably have purpose
among the universe’s higher powers.

Without the lonely, looping trails,
we could not emerge anew
with our truest selves

and others we met along the way
not-so-coincidentally placed.

We are never trapped. 
We are never lost. 
At least not for very long. 

No change was ever ignited 
without the spark.
So many opportunities
missed, passed up, though
after being gifted matchsticks
but still refusing to start
the fire. 

Sea Dance

Barefoot atop the deep waters,
white dress and wild tresses flowing,
sunken-ship cemetery of the past beneath,
I twirl in this present moment. 

The sea is mine
as my dance floor,
and I skim across 
to my pick of shores;
I explore, I vacation, 
not searching, just jubilation
of losing
worries and fears,
exaltation of the lightness
of the lifting of those stormy years,
each moment an eternity
to get to the next,
each stepping stone
sinking with each vine grasped,
no beanstalk discovered
to bring me to the clouds,
only faith each day
for decades
of a better tomorrow.

That tomorrow is today,

hence the head-raised dance
in the sun and in the rain,
embracing with wide-opened arms
the achievement of having started
upon this horizon
I only viewed from the beach.

The stepping stones still sink.
I just realized the only missing factor
was to fully 

believe.

They were never needed. 
Self-love was the only key.

I was always worth it. 
Eventually, I fought
for me
and this
dream.

Poem and image ©LauraDenise

The Tiller

Trust in the shadows;
they are benevolent too,
dimming the wrong ways
so the beacon may shine through.

Listen for the truth;
it whispers faithfully through the gale.
Turn your back to the blustery lies;
the bitterest of winds best fill the sails.

You don’t need a map
for an evacuation route;
just follow the signs
He’s already laid out.

He knows all,
including what’s up ahead.
Listen for The Light;
drown out the ghost voices
haunting your head.

You took the steps.
You left that land.
These turbulent waters
will lead to the end

of that decades-long storm
that shredded every kite you raised
that lightning struck
on its way down
to reiterate
that you will never
be freed from this fate.

But fate was a falsity
and now you will know
that destiny
is all within
your control,

and He wants you to have
all your heart desires.
He will lead you there
through these uncharted waters,

but He wants your hands
on the tiller
to feel
the power you have
that He instills.

He calls upon the winds
and every fin in the sea
to escort you on your voyage to
your chosen dreams.

Poems and photos ©LauraDenise

One Blank Page

If I had but one blank page to fill,
what would my message be?

What dance would my fingers perform
across the finite-lettered keys?

How could I paint in black-font
a picture of beauty and hope

that would reach and pierce with light
the souls who need it most?

If I were confined to the cage of a page,
how could I choose the right combination of words

that could break free from the paper or screen
and inspirationally rebirth?

How powerful words can be,
how powerful the choices,

how powerful this lesson when applied
to our spoken and inner

voices,

how powerful the silence
when writer’s block takes hold,

and we fail to say what should be said
when it matters most.

Poem and image ©Laura Denise