Published! I was so pleased to receive the email yesterday from Burgundy Balloon to say that they had published their first anthology because my poem is in it!
On 22nd May, I sent a submission to them in hopes of publication. They chose one of my poems and it can now be read here: https://burgundyballoon.files.wordpress.com/2020/06/burgundy-balloon-issue-no.1-2.pdf
I’d written this poem as a tribute to my mother who died of Alzheimer’s Disease last year. Over the years, I watched her lose her brain power and also her self! I worried as her body grew emaciated and the organs within fought with each other for supremacy – for survival. I groaned within as her bright intellect grew dim and ebbed – perhaps like the private tears I never saw – into nothingness.
But, Mother was strong. She had great faith in God, the helper and friend who had saved her from a watery grave when she’d almost drowned. That was when she called out to her Him and promised to serve him the rest of her life if only He would save her. She told me this story some number of times, and I know her faith did not fail her. Every night, I witnessed her reading her Bible through the half-open door of her bedroom, prayerfully and with great concentration. She would remain there with bowed head for at least an hour.
I do not know whether she repeated herself constantly just like anyone who might be asking a boon of his or her heavenly Father would probably do. Alternatively, she might have become repetitive due to her illness. I know that I for one kept asking and praying for her healing. Mother was nothing if not tenacious. She was also very brave.
Mother was often to be found propped up in her rocking chair at home. It was just the correct size for her, because she was very small-built, short and slight at 4’11”. In order to keep her comfortable and from falling off the rocker, a couple of pillows and cushions were packed around her body. There, she held court from morning to night . . . the central figure in the household. I had this vision in my head when I was writing the poem. And it has never left me.
The poem I wrote and which was published is presented below, if you prefer to read it here instead. I hope that the sentiment in it will resonate with you. For Mother, soaring home was her return to the Lord. She was, I think, looking forward to that newly bright momentous day after SOARING HOME!
She sits in her rocker,
face turned toward the light –
lids closed upon eyes
once sparking orbs brilliant bright.
Years in the passing,
decay in the waiting –
waiting, waiting, waiting . . .
a Monument to Decay.
Storm clouds pass – cruel in unending play
interwoven with lightning strikes;
her brain wracked by missed connections,
mind and body in thrall . . .
Where do these tempests go?
Misty tangents that weave intricate steps to the yawning beyond?
Waiting, waiting, waiting . . . years in the waiting . . .
for . . .
Oblivion’s gentle embrace . . . in whose eternal caress dances a soul now set free –
Blenheim Lodge . . . panoramic Lake views, peace and tranquillity, nestled against acres of beautiful fields and woodlands, in the heart of the English Lake District National Park.’