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Stories From the Edge of Blindness

In 2002, Retinitis Pigmentosa changed my life. This is my story of a slow approach to darkness.

My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, Ali Jones and myself. April 3rd

Please take a minute to look at the lovely painting and read the poems for day three of Paul’s Ekphrastic challenge. And if you feel inspired, write something!!!! Happy Poetry Month!!!

The Wombwell Rainbow

19Inhale

Can you remember when you held god,
close to your chest, and inhaled?
the animal warmth, butterfly heart,
the quiet still body, faking death,
fluttering a gentle warning in the chalice
of your palm.

Bring the bread up to your lips – here is the
body here is the blood.
We all do the same if we are left alone when
we can’t survive without another.
Sound alarm, if nobody comes, assume
a predator prowls – so mimic our end.

We knew we should never have touched the
hare, leveret beached in a quiet field,
mother flown far into the long grass, where
she waited with eyes like flaming torches,
helpless to intervene, as we passed the small
body, breathing in the enchantment.

When the church clock rang, the spell was
broken, wonderland now the back field again.
You placed the leveret back to earth, to root
into dash…

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My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, Ali Jones and myself. April 2nd

The painting and poems for day 2 are up. This painting really resonates with my particular artistic sensibilities, and elicited some beautiful and inspiring responses.

The Wombwell Rainbow

20Adolescence

One day, Jack and Jill walked out,
footsteps leading them, way from the town.
They trod through the mist beneath glimmering trees –
quiet watchers wreathed in verdant lichen gowns.

They walked velvet path, past beckoning swamps,
and warnings ignored, as tracks twist far away.
They wandered far into fairy tale lands,
where a spell kept them moving and they could never stay.

And all the while, the trees were listening –
to new beings travelling, the girl and the boy,
to the not quite grown ups, the people in between-
not old enough for choices, but just too old for toys.

The wise trees watched and the trees leaned in
wth their pooling woodland eyes and secret woodland ears,
and whispered sweet nothings, and sang spell melodies,
through dancing new spring leaves, and in rolling sap tears.

So little Jack and little Jill walked along the tracks,
Feet…

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My annual National Poetry Month ekphrastic challenge has become a collaboration between Jane Cornwell (artist), and poets Susan Richardson, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, Ali Jones and myself. April 1st.

I am thrilled to be part of Paul Brookes’ Annual Poetry Month Ekphrastic Challenge. It is exciting and humbling to be inspired by and in the company of the exceptional writing of Paul Brookes, Samantha, Jay Gandhi, and Ali Jones, and the beautiful art of Jane Cornwell, every day this month. I hope you will join me for this wonderful ride!

The Wombwell Rainbow

1Treasure Hunters

“Arise, cry out in the night…Lift your hands toward Him for the life of your young children, who faint from hunger at the head of every street.” – Lamentations 2:19

Oppressor and oppressed,
Hunter and hunted,
May appear unalike. Indeed, they are.
But surface appearances
Are harder to distinguish
In dark of night,
When vibrant colors of
Royalty and wealth
Fade into commoners’ blues and greys,
Leveling the rich and poor, adult and child,
The sick and the well.
And all are finally forced to admit
The only treasure worth seeking
Is the future.

-st

Dreamscape.

After dark, your real self rises,
slips on midnight’s cloak.
This self can do everything
the daytime you is afraid of.

One night, full moon
riding a galleon sky,
maps a star path,
to show another you.

You mount a milk white charger,
gallop out across galaxies,
plunge and land, hoof-sure

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Shard

A beautiful and terrifying poem that takes the breath away.

anotetohuguette

A piece of the world fell today

in the form of an ink-black crow,

falling swiftly upon a city grate

its voice silenced forever.

Other pieces fall in the form of fire

supplanting summer’s eternal beauty,

fall in the form of cyclone bombs

unleashing ceaseless rain,

and then there are the countless lives lost

to war, famine and disease.

I walk in what’s left of this world

noting every spring flower and blossom

hoping they can stem the tide and heal

what might be forever lost.

A piece of the world fell today…

The Shard building never failed to shine, its beauty coloured our days in London, England no matter the weather!

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Pendemic

Through a brilliant poem by my friend Steve Denehan, I discovered this beautiful project out of Ireland called Pendemic. You can read Steve’s poem here. Then I discovered that another writer I know from Twitter, Will Schmit, also had a poem up at Pendemic, which you can read here. I told my friend Rudy about it, as I had read a recent and beautiful poem by him about the pandemic. You can read Rudy’s poem here. Then I decided to write something as well. You can read my poem here.

Pendemic is an inspiring project which is promoting art and expression and the bonds of shared experience, whether separated by a hallway (Rudy is just across the hall from me) or an ocean, which both feel the same now. I hope that many of you will write about your experiences during this time and share them.

The Condition of My Heart

This is the second poem of 6 originally published in Chantarells’s Notebook, and recorded for my YouTube series. I am going to try and put out 2 of these a week. I am super excited about this one because Joe did the visuals. I really should have asked him to do it from the beginning. And, on a side note, if you are interested in a Gorgeous website, please consider Joe. Here are the links to his website, where you can get more information, and to mine, so you can check out his beautiful work. Joe Richardson Web Design and Susan Richardson.


Take a Listen

It is such a strange time, such a painful and difficult time, and in beautiful form, so many of the writers and artists I know have risen to the occasion and begun to share so much of their art with the world. This prompted me to be courageous and start up my Recorded Poetry Series again. Yesterday, I posted a sort of second introduction and the first poem for this second incarnation of the series.

If you have the time, I hope you will take a listen.


Time Spent in Doorways

I bite back images

of staggering into midnight,

intoxicated and burned by rage,

a gift from my abusers.

Eyeless, it flies like a blade

through my memory.

My hands are fierce and stained

with the stigmata of bitterness and indignation.

I remember your fingers firm against my throat,

forcing me backwards into the crowd.

Spurned by the flicker of violence,

I strike your cruel lips, 

coil back with shame and run.

Drunk and stumbling, the icy pavement

tears holes into my fishnets and the

twisting street leads me to collapse in

the doorway of an abandoned coffee shop.

I lay sprawled at the feet 

of an unforgiving night,

drenched in the smell of fury and 

covered with city soot.

*originally published in Chanterelle’s Notebook

Untethered

I was in the car with my husband yesterday, Thomson Twins jangling in the background, when I started to think of what it means to be untethered.  I am parentless, floating without the anchors that rooted my bones to the earth, my blood to the sky. My identity was already fractured, unstable at best, but now I become the definition of loss each time I open my eyes to inhale the sun, each time I close them again to swallow the moon.  I have been emptied out so many times, turning to the memory of voices that fade with the passing of years.  I became old when I should have been steeped in youth, threw my eyes into the grave, forgot how to look to the sky for solace, for discovery.  I am recognized by the shape of my diseases, ailments that strangle my determination, but I don’t recognize my own face. I am the word on the page that erases itself but never stops searching for sound. I am a war, a need to be invisible and seen, to be silence and noise. Is this what it means to be untethered?

A Dream Come True

As a writer, my ultimate dream is to one day have a book published, and this year, that dream is coming true. In July, my first full collection of poetry will be released! What makes it even more special is that it has ties to the incredible community that has embraced me and my work, here on Word Press. I am honored that my book will be part of the gorgeous catalog of work being published by River Dixon of Potter’s Grove Press and The Stories In Between. He has been an inspiration to me since I first read his work, and he is a dream publisher and editor as well. I feel incredibly lucky, and am thrilled to be able to return to WP with such amazing news.

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