not once

not once
note from self

not once
has she deserted
the nave within
that sacred space
where quiet rules—
oh yes, misled
got lost in the dark
took an odd path
stumbled and fell
dusted herself off
refound her lodestar
set out again—but she
never abandoned the nave

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

the warm pool

the warm pool
note to self

awareness allows and
welcomes, supports
and underpins—we
birth right out of it
and float in the
warmth of its pool

this that isn’t an it
that can’t be seen
or heard or tasted
or touched or
even spoken about
midwifes us—
we can deny or resist
defy or dispute
no matter—bucking
what’s true will only
prompt anguish
is that what you want?

sit by the pond
feel the breeze
dust your arms
admire the swans
how they guzzle
the water of life—
hear the crack
and the thwack as
beavers raise homes
watch otters cavort
and play on their backs
they do not bemoan
or complain

unclench your mind

unclench your mind
note to self

anxiety and daymares
of what might be
oh, the tangle of mind!
it took years to see
through it—and still
it sets snares
leaps from the corner
clamps on your throat
makes up stories
and takes you down

unclench your mind
you’re scaring yourself
and there’s no need
feel the confusion
your misunderstanding
draw it close
breathe it in, soften your
heart-thrumming body
consider this—
a new thought
maybe all is well

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

name the shadow

name the shadow
note to self

what is the shadow’s shape?
its intention?
is there a gift?
can you befriend it?

in order to name it
you must see it clearly
greet and metabolize
the knowing—
avoidance invites suffering

once seen through
it will open as insight—
shadow and name
dissolve, and it’s done

thank you to Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer for the title phrase

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

it matters

it matters
note to self

it matters how you
move in the world, if
you are impelled by
friendliness and
kinship with all things—
do you corral the spider
and carry it outside?
or are you closed up
defended, and afraid

you are not a lonely dot
threatened by the wider
ocean—more like pools
that lap each other’s
edges with gentleness
and care
you will be someone’s
ancestor—act accordingly

—Thank you to Amir Sulaiman for the last two lines of the poem.

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

accept the weave

accept the weave
note to self

you’re assigned parents
and a body—no choice there
you show up on the planet—
where am I? now what?
who are these people?

accept the weave—
that doesn’t mean you
can’t snitch when your
cousin spits, reach
for college, a compelling job

or a thoughtful relationship
but resisting what’s given
will only yield anguish—
life is aching enough
without piling on more

it’s a fine demarcation
between acceptance
and submission
what you’re given is
simply a starting place

what lies before you is a
puzzle to parse—only you can
solve it—where are the corners?
are these the boundaries?
what am I?

with thanks to Susan Adelle for the title phrase

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.

fault lines

fault lines
note to self

brush by delicate brush
a painstaking excavator
I uncover the skeleton
of what he did—I was
only four years old
that’s faraway past
yet it carved fault lines
in who I might become
cautious instead of creative

every touch leaves signs—
elephants snap limbs
monks arouse hearts
with their clarity
soldiers blast cities to rubble
ants stumble while hefting
a giant crumb—each
singular action shifts
the bones of our world

pick petals from the daisy
it matters, it doesn’t matter
it matters, it doesn’t
both are holy true—
meet the long ago
metabolize and mend
admire fault lines everywhere
trace with care and gold

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.

leaving it all

leaving it all

note to self

Here is a villanelle, a French form established in the sixteenth century
that uses meter, rhyme, and a specific pattern of repeated lines.
This, my first attempt ever, is written in pentameter.

sometimes I long to simply take high flight
to leave this crooked world behind, alone
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

it’s madness here—the mean and righteous fight
they grab and push and nab the richest bone
sometimes I long to simply take high flight

and flee this place at dawn or plushest night
seek peace elsewhere, a place that is unknown
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

to watch all suffering souls, their dreadful plight
it hurts my heart and makes me feel like stone
sometimes I long to simply take high flight

to soar, and bank, to find the broadest sight
and then unearth the place that’s my true home
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

how will I find the strength for loft and height
so courage, love, and beauty may atone?
sometimes I long to simply take high flight
and reach in deep for purest, clearest light

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.