I can see the bright-white hair
Of the child, bending, fingers reaching,
Trembling down into grass blades
To touch the little bug crawling along.
Mesmerized by moving life, slowly
Touching the tops of its shinny fly-like
Wings. Then, stand to running
across dark verdant grass yard,
Freshly mowed, to chase the butterflies
Across bush-tops around the corner.
I can hear the Appalachian accent laden
Voice of the young woman, screaming
The argument to higher intensity
As if loud will win it. The twirling turn
Of angry body, movement in flash-quick
Motion toward an open door. Then,
Footfall to running across the red dust dirt
And down through the wood path
To cry in solitude, quietly.
I can feel the angry quick vehemence
That becomes a cause becomes a mission
Becomes what will change her into wholeness
While she struggles to leave the dark rooms
of hard memories and tries to help others
never visit those places. The drive to live
after making such an effort to die, rather
than stay in the pain that was nothing
but is becoming, becoming a voice with
purpose. The first letters forming
words forming a poem, forming tomorrow.
I can remember time before it became
Abyss of career and responsibility, before
Manager became a carried title implying
In charge, a time before being diligently dutiful
in taking care of the things Others left
un-taken-care-of. The twirling turn From art
to actuality, from theory to responsibility.
That has come to feel like a very long version of
A four-letter word said under-breath in madness.
I can still see
The bright-white hair of the child, bending,
Fingers reaching, trembling to grasp life.
~South Carolina, 2009