Between Seasons – Poetry and/is Therapy

tree for blog

Written October 10, 2013 –  In therapy today, I was asked to list out ways that I “cope.” The therapist encouraged me to try to write something today because I’ve been having some difficult moments lately with the bully situation involving my oldest daughter and words do comfort me. I worry for the emotional health and physical safety of my children, and yet I don’t want them to feel afraid or that I didn’t do enough to protect them from the meanies of the world…and I’ve had to face my own painful past experiences because of the surging emotions lately. These memories are poisonous, yet dealing with them is necessary if I want to be an emotionally healthy and positive role model for Sasha and Bella.  On my walk home through Millennium Park, I stopped at seeing this beautiful tree. It’s really one tree, yet only half of the leaves have turned this glorious red, causing my mind to slip sideways, inspiring me to pull out my notebook and write this little something to try to get my muse cooperating with me again and jot down my feelings.

Inexplicably, this is my souls way of beginning to stir, all because of a tree:

This drowsy-tepid life,
rooted to her spot,
Unmovable and yet alive –
One stump-foot moving into the next season and
the other holding on to the finery of her springtime green gifts
fed by roots that run deep,
absorbing the hush
in the fibers branching downward.

And I wonder if,
in despite of the soiled nourishment,
her green embellishments scream at the world to
hold on!
Hold on while the crown of her head bleeds into the sky blueblewleafblue.
I wonder if,
at night,
when darkness is her pillow and cool autumn fog
blankets her from the passing dreams of her painful seasons,
if her red crown is worn with wonderment or terror.

I wonder if I paused,
closed my eyes,
breathed in her miraculous strength as her branches thin out
and bare their bark to the bittering wane of the sun,
if I can taste the blood of yesterday,
when she was almost wholly greened.
And I wonder,
I lament,
that if into the grass I go,
climb up the bank to touch her bark,
if I close my eyes
close close them
and curl-hide down deep into her shade,
if I shut out the teeming world and break from my own static – I,
I wonder if I would hear those screams.
I wonder if those screams
would really be coming from me.

As if.
I’m Fucked – emotionally seeping into the ground beneath me.
Feeding into the soil of memory and drawing from it the totality of all my IFs.
So I suck it up, suck it and IF and everything else in,
and I walk up the grass to touch her trunk.
And I thank her for her camaraderie,
for her bright display of rebelliousness,
rocking her fierce red mohawk while
the sheepish-conformists around her have already
paled yellowy-drabbed ecru and given up their
fierceness to other boring shades of the Fall.
The Fall. Emotionally, I have, and soon she too will be bared, naked.
Yet perspective is a parachute.

I think we are alike.
Between seasons, holding on and yet having to let go.
Red crown, red lipstick.
Black soil, black combat boots.
Bark-hard and Trauma-harder.
I. F. abounds.
Yes, I think I am a sister,
a kindred spirit of this calamity of shedding leaves.
Body Weight.
Chilling denial.
Worries for my nymph-bound Persephone’s, Sasha-fire and Bella-Ice.
Autumn-tasting heaviness.
Fear of the coldness ascending by creeping days,
like the worm-trails digging deeper to arrest warmth.
Our ground root-tunneled hallow and yet left waiting for the frost.

My eyelashes blink back tears,
hers hold the heavy weight of dew and rain.
It’s all H2O.
Harassing Hydrogen.
Two of us in the green, grass-grown gait of season-stalling,
harnessed between the first and the last breath.
Overbearing yet necessary Oxygen.
that wedded formula is tried and true,
hesitations commonplace for
anything trying to go through seasonal THE.RAP.Y…
rapataptap of prickly inquisition and all attempts at holding on to our beloved color – our vibrant stance in this drifting world.
Holding on tight, yes,
Of what we believe.
Of what we think we are
and our ideas of what we could be.
Strength in colored defiance, in claiming what part of the seasons
left for us.

And because I find solace not in Eulogies,
but prefer the happy sighs of eye-wide preludes to usher in new-storied hope
(and because the might deem it necessary to healing and maintaining a healthy root system),
I must concede that in her final days, before this tree sheds
her half-blushing eyelashes and closes her eyes to rest still and barren,
stretching her branches wide to embrace what’s left of warmth,
She is,
in fact,
being graceful in her season-dictated distress,
Passing through time-Fall to the beat of her own drum in her tied dyed song.
Red with passion.
Green with soothing hues of her summertime.
Sprinkling of age and turning.
Altering, yet beautiful.

I wonder.
No, no longer to wonder,
but to know this stronghold of roots deep down –
I KNOW her roots are resilient.
I know she’s lived many decades, and is still inching upward.
Onward, year-creeping through time, through her nourished domain and
into the challenge-tango of miraculous balance…
A mystery of Earths-song and strains
of DNA swirling into dispositions.
A matrix intertwined with past, present and
future seasons dancing along the
mystery of what grows from what was (no matter how painful).

I’ll own this truth, until my last season, my last breath:
This beauty of a tree is really only going to sleep for a time.
And I am really only growing awake.

GothicTemptress – 10/10/2013

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