the warehouse

the warehouse

like boxes of faded
photos or piles
of old newspapers
our bodies
are storehouses—
they hold on to fears
hurts and rejections
layer upon layer
and hide them
in recesses

residues separate
we’ve lost the links
and can no longer
parse them
but the slumbering
mass snares us
the stories have fled
but they still grip hard
a saw-toothed trap

until we invite them
are willing to greet
these old hurts
feel them down
to the bone—then
watch them dissolve
into simple sensation
and they’re gone

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

snag

snag

the lightning-struck oak
stood broken and brown
yet new sprouts grew
from the snag—
woodpeckers
squirrels, a raccoon
all found nests inside—
mushrooms and fungus
grew—zillions of bugs
burrowed and fed
this lively home

when life squeezes you
into a pinched path
or misshapen form
when ideas are blocked
or heart-dreams broken

walk out into the dawn
let the snarl of your mind
breathe moist air
go to the root of yourself—
the oak
brought down and reborn

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

lifted

lifted

each morning
I am lifted
by kindness
first light’s glimmer
welcomes my
old body back
still alive

then lifted
by hearing aids
and trifocals
what magic!
what blessing!
I try to imagine
life without—
a blurred muffle

running water
another godsend
not taken for granted
but my life
in this time was
given these tools
so I gratefully
use them

most of all
lifted and buoyed
by love
I throw open the door
the breeze’s caress
steady rain falls

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

dying away

dying away

every moment
I am perishing
one breath
closer to death
the sun, the moon
even our very own
earth, sources
of sustenance
wither, fade
and ebb away

it’s the way of things

and yet
it’s hard to hold
this—the universe
itself grows, ages
and dies—
my mind, a denier,
even with evidence
doesn’t want to accept

this source of suffering
starts with belief
in past and future
instead of resting
in the cradle of now
it holds us, this now
let the puzzles go
let tension go

now breathe

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

friendliness

friendliness

care for
and befriend yourself
that way
you are never alone
life is hard enough

it took me most
of a lifetime
to learn this
and I relearn it
every day
listen to your
inner yammering
a frenzied parade
of thoughts
we’re so used to
that voice rattling on
an endless commentary
fine tune your ear—
is it a kind friend
or harsh judge?

if you find the judge
smile and just say

no.
no more

only goodwill here

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

iceberg

iceberg

what’s frozen
in us, an echo
of human cruelty
or inattention—
as children, we
can’t process
don’t have the skill
innocent
we stuff it away

that jagged lump
we cannot see
shades everything
blinded, we stumble
react and don’t
know why

shine light
on that bulk
oh, it has stories!
unwind and love them
give them leeway
to thaw—when
welcomed and seen
they no longer alarm
the warmth we offer
melts and releases
they re-meld with
the ocean as one

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

tender mercies

tender mercies

a prayer

being alive brings
bruising
breaks me open
a woman’s hard face—
she’s just lost her job
a child’s rage—
his mom’s run off

oh, please!
allow me to be tender
even those who
seem not deserving
who knows what
ravaging blow
they’ve suffered

allow me
to be merciful
it costs nothing
is free to share
watch it catch
one tender mercy
ignites another
a string of pearls
lighting our world

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

beacon

beacon

all my life
driven toward
an unknown
unseen goal—
refined, but
I was still seeking
so destined
for suffering

I called it
True North
knew its
inexorable pull
it framed my days
offered dimension
and shading

until
I noticed
stillness within
unchanging
reliable
no shape
no color

the silence
bright and alive
waving hello
nothing to find
nowhere to go
closer than close
already here

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.

upheld

upheld

while it’s hard
to bear losses
be upheld by love
notice small details
frost on the roof
a prediction of rain
the blessing of
friendship
breathe it in
breathe it out
feel the support
of love’s ground

2023 ©Amrita Skye Blaine
I’m writing a poem a day. These are drafts—not final versions.