the leaving times

the leaving times

I’m old
not elderly, not yet
though it’s
over the horizon
now visible
marching toward me
precious friends
in trouble—falls
Parkinson’s, frail
bones, cancers
threats of leaving—
embodiment’s way
of clearing space
some days, acceptance
other days, resistance
as though I could
ward off death
this I must
remember—
love is love
inhale a breath
and feel it
everywhere

repeat

bless the angry one

bless the angry one
note from self

bless the angry one
that rises inside—she’s
your very own self
defiant and scared
let your tenderness
land like a gift—
she requires ferocity
to stand up for herself
yet if she remains
outraged for too long
the fangs of her fury will
turn inward and harm
so wrap your heart
snugly around her

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

vow to herself

vow to herself
note from self

pick a petal
drop a petal
pick a petal
drop a petal
a clearer mantra
than he loves me
he loves me not
see-two not-two
see-two not-two
all around the blossom

love one another
see the other as you
for there is no other
only a rainbow mirage of
ten trillion things
it’s an enigma of course
the one and the many
see-two not-two
see-two not-two
a refreshed daisy game

she has always
stayed true
kept her eye
on the star
anxious or not
frightened or not
heartbroken or not
this matters more
this matters most
this is what matters

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

wild grace

wild grace
note to self

it calls her out of bed—
the wild grace of
flooding words akin to
mockingbirds—occasional
mimic, a borrowed phrase
often her own plaintive song

she looks to morning mist
or coming light, the pad of
fox in the next-door field
soft rustle of finch in firethorn
awaiting a place at the feeder

this wild grace foretells
heart and magic, a frolic
in the field of surprise—
reflecting pond, scrying bowl
inviting herself home

your heart can bloom

your heart can bloom
note to self

the most important lesson
you’ve learned—your
heart can bloom wide
a dinnerplate dahlia
oh, dear one
tend it with care

cuddle the broken thing
by the side of the road
be present as breath leaves
protect the fledgling that
fumbles first flight
watch it catch the
next eddy and soar

that range—
racking grief that rends
you apart, warm gratitude
spilling to overflow
rage that skins you raw
the backbone to forgive—
all held in a heart that blooms

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

belonging

belonging
note to self

you do not recognize
how you belong—
you feel inelegant
awkward and other

until one day
it becomes clear
your belonging
lives in kinship
with what is—

each time you
remember this
the mind, for
an enticing flash
goes still

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

tear off the cloak

tear off the cloak
note to self

you put it there yourself
to percolate blunt truth
into acceptable story
it seems rash to live
without it—until you do
and you look back
wondering—why?

it’s leans to bittersweet
turn toward your lot
whether a cascade of
griefs, ailing child, or
lost possibility
we’re given a fistful
for our very own—
we all have something

tear off the cloak that
served as your shield
it didn’t hide much
you only thought it did
live raw—turn your face
to the pinging rain
feel the chill roll
down your cheeks
let grief break you wide
love all of it because
this, this is what you have

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—please understand that many will be rewritten.

my father’s closet

(this was my father’s birthday—he would be 108 today)

my father’s closet

I don’t know how
to write about my father
forty-four years gone
he’s still a puzzle
a large, lonely man
who drank too much
and hid it well

but I recall the bouquet
of his walk-in closet
musky and male
suits and sport coats
tidy, shoes polished
till they reflected light
and ties—so many ties
myriad colors, wool and silk
I liked to sit in there
under the jackets and
drink in his spice
it all seemed so foreign

I wanted to know him but
that was not possible
his signature—arctic
wiry hair, his pride
amidst balding friends—
he carried a briefcase
bought plush cars with
skin-soft seats
but what were his thoughts?
his cares?
his dreams?

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.

stardust

stardust

note to self

pour in
pure consciousness
veil with stardust
and pond muck

we are part cosmos
part earth slop
undoing ourselves
with rapacious speed
why would we
want to save us?

a splash of ingenuity, yes
but floods of ferocity
fires of venom
maybe worse
disregard toward our
dear earth and its beings

yet I pray for
the hope that waits
at the tar black
bottom of Pandora’s box

may stardust
enlighten pond muck
may that box
slam shut returning
our human family to
civility and kindness

may we cherish one another
because of our differences
add back the dove
the olive branch
and most of all
love

2022 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—they may never turn into anything more or they might flower.