Compassion (a poem about depression)

Depression is not very pretty. Nor is it very kind. It has many faces, and it comes and goes as it pleases. It can affect almost anyone. If you are someone who has struggled with depression, you know it never goes away completely but hides, waiting for the right moment to reappear. It isn’t something to be lightly dismissed in yourself or in others who suffer from it. Who hasn’t seen the devastating effect it can have on a vulnerable person? I’ve struggled with it, and I’ve certainly known many others who were also affected by it.

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Watching someone you love battle depression is never easy. It isn’t easily “fixed,” even in this age of modern medicine. Therapy and medicines are there, and for some people they help so much, but for others, less so. Compassion, patience, unconditional love and presence are the lifelines we can offer…to someone else and to ourselves.

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To listen to me read this poem, please click on the link below. It will take a minute to begin.

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Compassion

 

Taking on your pain was something
I tried to do, like slipping on your
jacket, pushing an arm in and then
another, pulling it tight around myself,
hoping that by feeling what you do,
it would diminish your pain.

 

No matter how hard I tried, it wasn’t a fit.
Your depression fell around me in loose
folds, the sadness sagging around my heart.
Besides, it would leave you cold, open
to the fickle winds that blew your way.

 

 

Compassion was first published in Erasing the Doubt by Mary Kendall
(Finishing Line Press © 2015)

 

 

 

Is Mythology More to Your Liking?

Now that it is early autumn, we tend to stay inside more and even read more (at least that’s my experience). Someone recently asked me if I would do the audio recording for some of my mythology poems on this blog. I had done one already, so it does seem natural to now do the others. I hope you like them. My style of reading isn’t dramatic, and I do try hard to avoid “poet voice,” something I dislike very much. Hopefully my readings are pretty natural, maybe too natural for those who do like more drama. I guess it’s all a matter of taste.

By clicking on each link, you will be directed to the original posting for the poem but with the audio now included. I hope you like them.

Grief

                     Grief

The First Lamentation of Demeter:

https://apoetintime.com/2014/11/01/the-first-lamentation-of-demeter-poetry-and-myth/

The-Abduction-Of-Persephone-By-Hades

The-Abduction-Of-Persephone-By-Hades

Second Lamentation of Demeter:

https://apoetintime.com/2014/11/04/the-second-lamentation-of-demeter-poetry-and-myth/

feather-lake-russia_71645_990x742

Icarus I

https://apoetintime.com/2014/10/10/icarus-i-poem-by-mary-kendall-mythic-poetry-series/

dark-lake

Icarus II

https://apoetintime.com/2014/10/12/icarus-ii/

And, while we are at it, here is one other poem on this blog linked with mythology:

Orpheus and Eurydice by Rodin, Metropolitan Museum of Art

Orpheus and Eurydice by Rodin, Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Broken Promise: Orpheus and Eurydice

https://apoetintime.com/2014/11/26/the-broken-promise-orpheus-and-eurydice-poem-by-mary-kendall-mythic-poetry-series/

On Growing Older…

On my pillow haiga 2015

The Starry Night

The Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh, 1889, Museum of Modern Art, NYC

                       The Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh, 1889, Museum of Modern Art, NYC

The Starry Night

It is silent tonight.

In the ever flowing
river of the night,
a boat of darkness

sails by
as wave upon wave
of stars flow,

then crest,
then
fall,

and silently subside,
consumed by another wave
until nothing is left,

just flickering light
of celestial glowworms
that hang

in the cave of night—
languid star strands
from the heavens.

The moon
could tell stories
if it chose.

It is silent tonight.

Van Gogh Moon

Frozen Moments

Frozen Moments (c) 2015 Harald Illsinger

                                             Frozen Moments (c) 2015 Harald Illsinger

FROZEN MOMENTS

It doesn’t matter that your words were shouted
In a peal of sparking anger, anger spewed
In moon-white flames tinged with flicks—
Sapphire blue and poppy red and yellow.

Burning so hot and fast, those thoughts
Consumed themselves and all
Nearby, including what remained
Of hope
For change…
Your change,
Your transformation.

And when the fire burned down,
All that was left were the ashes of your anger.

Small chars of memories…
Frozen moments of who you were…
Once—
Long Ago.

Unable to forgive—even yourself,
You are locked in the ice of stagnation,
The ice of inner struggle.

Frozen fire—
No thaw,
No shift,
No change.
No redemption.

Frozen
Moments
Forever.

old_pocket_watch_buried_1774093

Note: Many thanks as always to Harald Illsinger for the use of his exquisite photograph, Frozen Moments (c) 2015. His work always serves as such wonderful and unexpected inspiration.

Water Song

water_texture2379

Water Song

Water, the color of night,
so very still
not even a wave
breaks the glass surface.

Fear is sometimes
like this, submerged
so far it is hidden
from the conscious self,
safely buried
and unable to rise
to the top again.

Dark thoughts swim
against the current
of common sense, but
they meet no resistance
that far down.

Icarus II (Poetry and Myth)

feather-lake-russia_71645_990x742

Swan Feather, Moscow by Veronika K. Ko (c) 2013

If you care to listen to me read the poem, just click on the link below and wait a few seconds for it to begin:

 

 

Icarus II

The hardest part was letting you go,
knowing  that once you sailed so high
it would be impossible not to try again.

With each pass you made, you soared
higher, more effortlessly; sweet-scented
beeswax noticeable as the air grew warmer.

Arms outstretched as if embracing the sun,
you changed course and flew even closer
before you shifted abruptly, a quick turning

of wings, now fighting the unexpected wind
with young muscles tensed and determined
to hold the course.

The descent was swift.
A feather fell
and then another.