Today, we farewelled a very dear friend of mine, David, this poem is in his honour and with my love.
Treasures of Gold
Man of dapper ware and lyrical tongue.
Which pinpoint insight into me will you launch in my direction today?
Sword drawn, your open challenge to engage.
Now with slightly mellowed whit, with age.
Front and centre focus
I’m the fish on your hook
Wriggling in the stirred water of our conversation
Dancing on my toes
Trying to bring your probe to a close.
But you never let me loose so lightly
As you care, with depth and love.
Your dare, to go where many others don’t.
You fish, you drill down, you pan for gold
Presenting your nuggets with a grin, as they unfold.
In turn, you ask for my counsel
So I unfurl my map, offered to smooth your ruffled mind.
With diplomacy shut out of the room
We trade honesty back and forth,
Sharing our truths
Our eyes, attention and words becoming balm to soothe.
My dear treasured friend
Man of mind, fragility and strength.
I’m gasping for air at the sudden swift loss of our known regular constant.
The door is shut firm, it is gone.
For decade upon decade with an open ear.
I will keep you near, my David-dear.
And in my mind
You will find
Our treasures of gold.
These I shall closely hold
For you and me to keep
And to share with you when you visit me in my sleep.
Come soon. Please.
Rest, dear friend, it’s good you’re now at ease.
And if you’re looking down from above
Know that, by many, you were deeply loved.
Let the breeze wash over you
Let the sun do its work
Let your eyes feast on the beauty
Let the pain subside
Let your friends envelop you
Let your laughter out
Let your lightness come and shine
Let your beauty show
Let yourself be content
Let this time heal your wounds
Let it happen
Let it go.
Are you up?
Are you down?
Are you mobile?
Are you around?
Do I have space to be?
Or do I need to see
What needs to done
In this moment I'm free.
But I keep looking to find
To be, to see, to plan...
To simply, breathe.
Oh you wicked life
You've dealt your card
You've cut right through
Our burgeoning hearts.
You're cruel, you're mean
We didn't see
The space we had,
When we could just be.
I'm screaming for space
A slower pace
I'm struggling with
Conflict in needs
Of hope, instead of fear.
I want to be here
My love for you
Will keep me always here and near.
So. Today. Our lives are different.
I need to find the good.
I've now understood
That life is precious
It's beauty is flawed
But it has a new law.
Live. Love. Today.
We may not get more.
I love you with every claw
Of my fingers
Trying to close the door
Against the tide and the roar
Of my pain.
I love you
I want the best for you.
My heart bleeds
With seeds of desperation
To find reason
In this season of confusion
That has become
So precious. So precious.
Today. We have today.
Live that way.
In the moment.
It's my only way
To make sense of
Each precious, precious Day.
I hope I can do this.
I'm trying to do this.
Please be patient while I try.
I can't lie.
This is hard.
I'm relaxing my guard
To be human.
We're both human
I have no more delusion.
In this new life
Full of strife
We have today.
I'm trying to live that way.
I love you.
Rustle through my hair, o wind
Flitter across my face
Like ripples on a sea.
I feel your cool breeze
Chirp away to your friends, o little bird
Sing your melody
With full orchestra.
I hear your morning song
Melt the morning drew, o sun
Waken the day
With your radiant light.
I bask in your rays and let them
Stand tall, o tree
Strong and proud
Home to thousands of insects unseen.
I note your resilience;
Form and unform, o cloud
Change before my eyes
Flowing, adapting, accepting.
I remember your ability to
Thank you, nature
For your varied contribution
To waken me
To quieten me,
To warm me,
To strengthen me,
To still me,
To welcoming, accepting and replenishing me.
I was raw, right through
To the bones; Frozen jaw
Couldn’t thaw, no-one saw
The trauma carved, scratched and clawed
In to my mind, my soul, my body
Couldn’t see, couldn’t be, wasn’t free
To live, to feel, to think
So close to the brink, could only shrink
And shake, couldn’t escape
The prison of shock, ricocheting again and again
That was me.
The pain, again, again, and again; the same, again
Never predicted, shooting
Like a shooting star
Searing, soaring, roaring, flooring me once more
That bloody frozen jaw, back; no slack, another attack
Body ridged with fear, mind searing, screaming, reeling
Who today has come in, visiting the haunted house
Of my soul, through those Jigsaw doors.
Attacked! Through their very presence
Attacked! In just the essence
Of breath escaping from their body,
Words relayed, in casual disregard; once more
Scared, jarred, alarm bells ringing, singing, shrieking
In every inch of me.
A year, of living through fog, only visible when looking back
A year, of surviving just through being, needing to get up to get to work.
A year, of walking mile upon mile in the shop, movement cathartic
Action. Camera. Engage. Move. React. Connect.
Nine hours every day, 365 days
My daily treadmill of life; my saviour from shocked static inaction.
My rope, through which to climb up. Knot by sticky knot.
And through this all
They have been. Seeing. Being. Feeling,
With sensitive eyes, not understanding but truly accepting
Where I am. Letting me be. Hugs, support, words of peace.
Encouragement, acceptance. Friendship, Laughter, Safety.
My friends at Jigsaw.
Never will they understand the part they have played
In my recovery back in to life.
Not there yet, but on my way.
Never should they ever ever understand where I’ve been
What I’ve seen. Please never visit it upon them in their lives.
My friends at Jigsaw.
They have found me, deep within and gently pulled me out
Like cotton fraying from a thread.
Pulling gently at first, but the more you pull, the more there is
Unravelling, unveiling, pulling me through trauma
By simply finding: Me.
I have found a safety, through my friends at Jigsaw.
I have had a safe haven; through the tiny four walls of the staff room
Through my friends at Jigsaw.
I have been validated, again and again
Through my friends at Jigsaw.
They have listened to my virginal questions of life, of being
And taught me lessons, of being
My friends at Jigsaw.
So young, but so wise. So sound. Parent, friend, colleague, teacher
My friends at Jigsaw.
They have made no demands on me, other than to be me.
So rare in my life. My friends in Jigsaw.
They have allowed me to put space in to my life, for me. For once. For me.
They have found me; hidden, deep, deep, shrinking inside
And allowed me to grow
My friends at Jigsaw
Trauma? What trauma. Slowly, very slowly, becoming a dream, to be replaced by life.
A thousand million thank yous. To my friends at Jigsaw.
My heart sings with the possibility of opening fully
Drawing in nature’s rapture through the smiles, sounds, touch and breath that surround me - like a newborn skin.
Beauty envelopes my soul with vibrance
Warm, enriching, fulfilled
Flowing as a trickling brook over smoothed worn boulders and pebbles of past pain.
My body is the reciprocal and filter to receive
Soaking in the nourishment in which each breath sits.
Entwining and gently pulsing through my veins.
I am the river of the ingenious machine of life.
Gratitude rises through the pores of my skin
Resting and evaporating, to mix with the air of all living things.
All that I am bounces back through the mirror of my eyes
Pollinating each landing place of my gaze.
To be repeated in the chain reaction of all that is natural.
I am whole. I am everything. I am nothing. I am here.
Hey dude, you construed
To take me back to my pain
You hit me where it hurt.
Your act of violence
Won't stay silent
No violence will.
I still feel your punch
In my back. You're attack.
It brought it all back.
F*** it's not right
To be attacked
For any reason:
Whether quietly hidden or seen.
F*** I won't take it from anyone
It's a trigger that flips me
Like a mouse trap
It so takes me back.
How does a person stop the damage
There's a huge difference between being a victim, passive
And recognising the signs, active.
I feel no sympathy for you. None.
I exist and stand equal with others.
You will not take away my power
To stand tall, to be visible.
I will not tolerate violence.
Of any kind.
Parents, who have tried their best, and given you the structure to launch
A brother, who is there, and caring, when the chips are down
A partner, who listens, who you can share and build with, and express who you are
Friends, who you don't need to explain yourself to
Love, expressed - to those close and strangers
Forget money, job, status. Strip back the glitter. Gaze at your neighbour and connect.
I seem to have a talent for doing silly things; please feel free to add any for which you've shaken your head in disbelief (like I have) or had a laugh at my expense! Here are 20 that I can think of. Thank you for your patience with me dear family and friends.
Today my world changed
A shackle came off my heart.
Despite not being directly affected
My being opened up …
To liberty. To hope. To humanity.
Today is momentous.
Today my heart is warm
Bubbling with excitement
Brimming with friendship
To all people, who should all be equal.
Today surely, the world will grow.
Edgily, imperfectly sometimes; but forward.
We breath a sigh of relief
We smile with twinkling eyes
We hug and see within people
Today. People gay, straight, whatever, whoever
In a public and legal recognition
Of human rights. Of liberty.
Of recognition of human connection.
Today will never be like yesterday
People of the same gender can EXPECT
To be treated as equal, instead of hope
You are equal. We are equal.
Today, I’m proud of the world I live in.
What a strong, positive statement when so much in our world is wrong.
Today, a wrong was put right.
What can be achieved tomorrow?
Like paintings, words have the power to connect. I share my poems here with you in the hope that they benefit others.