I slipped my harbored feet from shoes contained
for sixty years. Rough earth is ruthless where
calloused barrier was never ordained.
I walked on soles that burned and bled, a dare
to turn retreat. Instead, I asked for help
to bandage cuts. I praised a course fresh of
deliverance. Sores closed. Skin grew. A whelp
now strong and fast. I met cool shade, green grove.
But there I didn’t rest. More called to me,
unfurled a passage to my Beginning.
In confidence I accorded the plea,
Within myself I captured my bidding.
Not one holy man’s word over another
will heal our wounds, the pain we embrace.
Here in Creation we’re bound to each other
as we dance through the veil in grace.
I truly believe it is the journey that is vital, not necessarily the end product. I like to share how I arrive. For those of you who are interested, below is the path of the end sonnet, Hierophant.
On August 13, I participated in the 2016 Poetry Marathon. I signed up for the 24-hour contest knowing that this was the end of the first week of school and I would probably not make it. I didn’t. But I did complete the half-marathon.
Each hour, on the hour for 12 hours straight, we received a new prompt. We had an hour to write to that prompt and post it before the next one showed up in our in-box. It is a wonderful challenge. Learning to let go of that inner editor, that ego who wants everything perfect. It’s a wonderful thing. That is what I also love about my writing group. We write knowing we are not going to be perfect, the importance of letting go, and the ability to chuckle at oneself.
To the prompt from the Poetry Marathon, I added one more piece. I keep a lovely tarot deck on my desk next to my computer. It is the Pentimento Tarot by Joanna Powell Colbert. She is an artist, Celtic spiritualist, and goddess who created this deck using the medium of beeswax encaustic – a layering of wax – a pentimento:
“An underlying image in a a painting, especially one that has become visible when the top layer of paint has turned transparent with age, providing evidence of revision of the artist. (American Heritage Dictionary via http://www.gaiansoul.com/.)
She only created the Major Arcana for this deck but it is stunning. It is of our ancestors looking back on us, giving us hope and support and wisdom. Take a look:http://www.gaiansoul.com/shop/pentimento-tarot/
Also, this month I wanted to do a study of sonnets. I did. I completed two. I shared the early one after my visit to Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter and the sea.
Here is the process of Hierophant:
The prompt from the Poetry Marathon in Hour 11:
Write a persona poem from the point of view of a person without a home. You can have a specific person in mind, or they can be entirely imagined. This person can be a homeless beggar, or someone who drifts from town to town, or someone who just can’t imagine settling in one place, so they don’t.
The Pentimento Hierophant card:
Of this archetype, Joanna asks questions such as “What do you have to teach?” “What do you have to learn.” “What is the place of religious tradition or lineage in your life? “Who do you trust as a spiritual teacher?”
Below is the poem as it appeared as I wrote it for the marathon. Above is the transformation of it into a somewhat sonnet form.
I took off my shoes.
The ground was rough and poked.
I wore those shoes for almost sixty years.
I walked on feet that burned and bled.
I asked for help to bandage raw cuts,
was offered new ways of treatment.
Sores closed, thick skin grew and
my feet held me strong and steady.
I walked on legs that swelled and
I asked for help to ease the pain.
Good remedies followed and I
I took off my shoes to feel the earth
I knew the ground was rough
they burned and bled but I walked
to find soft grass and cool of shade
No roof above, I left it behind
No friends to share my sorrows
I looked for answers from voices
just shadows merging in darkness
But when I sat down, stopped
searching for the right way,
I stilled myself and found
your voice inside.
We come to this place, a stop over
to ponder, to rejoice in each other,
and dance with abandon.
Not one holy man’s words over
another can heal the wounds
we bear, the pain we embrace.
We’ll move on, through the veil,
but for now we must play in
Creation and unmask one another.