Once upon a time, a terrible enchantment swept across the land like a howling, raging wind. It forced people into their homes so lives could be spared. It kept children from being with their friends and grandparents so the evil sickness would not spread. Many heroes waged a mighty battle with a tiny germ at great cost to the whole kingdom. Meanwhile, the people waited … and waited … and waited … and longed, with all their hearts, to be together again. They missed each other fiercely but they knew the waiting was an act of true love, and that love, eventually, conquers all …
I would love to hold you close Sometime soon Only when it’s safe again Let this virus go, let it go All will be well in Time It is so long, so hard On the heart, being apart Now
Soon the spell will be Over and we Can be In the same bright kingdom together Again Let this virus go, let it go Don’t come back any more It’s funny how Some distance makes everything seem like Time is frozen Although, little queen of my heart, we are one day Nearer to overthrowing this Corona-nation separation to resume our happily Ever after
Original photo with text: L. Haley. Edited with Cartoona Watercolor.
So far I’ve managed to write a poem a day for National Poetry Month, a feat I’ve never attempted before. All my life I’ve loved rhythm, rhyme, and free verse, but the great fun has been experimenting with form. This is my second completed blitz … how apropos is that name for the times …
Stay at home Stay on track Track the days Track your steps Steps in faith Steps to a better you You should know You aren’t alone Alone in all the world Alone at last Last night Last time Time stands still Time on our hands Hands sanitized Hands not held Held a puppy Held in the heart Heart grows fonder Heart of the matter Matter of fact Matter constitutes the universe Universe pays attention Universe giving gifts Gifts to guide you along the way Gifts of words Words are power Words are magic Magic portals Magic moments Moments too few Moments too short Short on time Short of breath Breath of fresh air Breath on the mirror Mirror image Mirror glass Glass half empty Glass half full Full of sound and fury Full of hope Hope against hope Hope springs eternal Eternal God Eternal love Love like there’s no tomorrow Love your neighbor Neighbor Tomorrow
In case you’re curious: Here’s my first blitz, Signs of Sun.
While we couldn’t attend church yesterday, it doesn’t mean a presence wasn’t there.
A friend went to photograph the dawn and heard a song coming from the steeple.
The building, empty like the tomb, had its own winged messenger at the first light of Easter.
If you do not know: A cardinal bird can be considered a sign of the divine—I’ve written of it before (Divine appointment). The vivid red birds also represent life and blood. In Christianity, specifically, the blood of the living Christ. Thecardinalexperience.com states: “Traditionally, the cardinal is symbolic of life, hope, and restoration. These symbols connect cardinal birds to living faith, and so they come to remind us that though circumstances might look bleak, dark, and despairing, there is always hope.”
Cardinals were named for the red-robed bishops (although this one’s sitting on a Baptist church). Name associations include heart and possibly the Old Norse word for cross.
Which is, of course, atop the steeple where our visitor perched to offer his doxology.
First light of Easter morn Found the church silent, forlorn Empty of its life, its music, its people And a winged messenger on the steeple As if proclaiming the old, old story Singing, full-voiced, Glory, glory, glory.
Waking to grayness rain slapping windows winter wind crying because it does not heed spring and life. Wrapped in my blanket I listen to that unrelenting wind daring not caring moaning mourning around the edges of existence.
Through the gusting gloom wailing doom a faint sound. A solitary little bird singing joy joy joy-joy-joy honoring the light ever how dim.
This is my second attempt at writing a blitz poem. The first didn’t go so well. I think I am getting the hang of it. Will keep practicing to see what comes … of course my thoughts are colored by COVID-19.
Signs of Sun
Read a book Read the signs Signs of spring Signs of the times Times of trouble Times of plenty Plenty to eat Plenty enough Enough to go around Enough for now Now is the best time Now who among you You who are [not] gathered here You are loved Loved best of all Loved more than words can say Say it again Say it like you mean it It matters It is your word Word of the Lord Word of encouragement Encouragement is needed Encouragement makes the world go round Round and round we go Round off Off the wall Off the chain Chain letters Chain unbroken Unbroken horse Unbroken spirit Spirit of the moment Spirit set free Free from all harm Free as a bird Bird of paradise Bird chatter beyond my window Window of time Window closing Closing the day Closing the book Book of Life Book it out of here Here is where we are Here comes the sun Sun directly overhead Sun in my eyes Eyes Overhead
When I was a child, I looked forward to seeing the dentist.
His name was Dr. Job. Like Job in the Bible, long o, not as in “teaching is a hard job.” I could not understand this when I saw his name on the office door: Why do we say ‘Jobe?’ It says Job! J-o-b. That’s not right.It should have an ‘e’ on the end. J-o-b-e …
It irritated my father: That’s how his name is pronounced. He knows how to spell it. Now stop.
Dr. Job had white hair and a white coat and to be honest I wasn’t happy to see him.
I wanted his rings.
After each visit—usually for a filling—Dr. Job reached into some magical cabinet and brought out a box. With a big smile, he opened it before me like a hawker on the city streets selling watches out of a car trunk.
The box was full of rings, set in foam rubber, as if on display at a fine jewelry counter.
“Which one would you like, hmmm? You’ve been a good little patient!”
Of course I was good … there were rings for the taking! How they glittered. All different colors, sizes, shapes. It didn’t matter which one I chose as they were adjustable; their metal bands were split to be widened or narrowed to fit.
One day I looked and looked it—had to be the best ring—until Dr. Job finally cleared his throat: “Ahem. You need to pick one, all right?”
I settled on a ring with a pale purple stone cut in facets like a diamond. I put it on the ring finger of my right hand (not my left, that was for getting married someday). Feeling like a princess, I said: “This is alexandrite, right?” (so … as a child I was fascinated by birthstones and pored over them in mail-order catalogs. My own is emerald. To me, at the time, this pale purple was prettier. June’s birthstone. Point to ponder: How many kids today know about birthstones? ).
Dr. Job looked at me and blinked. He closed the case and returned me to my father.
The main reason I remember that ring is because of a scene in a different office. Plagued by allergies, I had to get weekly injections in both arms. Sometimes I had reactions, rashes or big knots that burned. While I sat waiting, waiting, waiting at the doctor’s office, before and after the shots, I read all the children’s books and magazines—I loved Highlights. Then I read the grown-up stuff, like Reader’s Digest. One afternoon I was too tired to read. I sat sideways in the waiting room chair, leaning against the wall in the late-afternoon shadows. I reached up to rub my sore left arm when waning light from the window caught my “alexandrite” ring. A dozen tiny rainbows appeared on the wall beside me. Mesmerized, I move my hand this way and that, watching the rainbow-spots dance, vanish, and reappear. I forgot the time, forgot my swollen arm; I was too busy scattering the light.
This whole story returned to me as I was continuing my containment cleaning and sunlight caught my ring (diamond, on my married finger) just right.
Scattered light. Tiny rainbows. On a day, incidentally, when Highlights became a destiny…
Ethereal moments call for an etheree, don’t you think.