ON A SPACE CALLED LAND

woman-walking-awayK. Barratt

 

And so it happens that we are all walkers:

Runners, joggers, skippers;

Trail blazers, some of us.

Path finders.

And that is the answer of the ages.

Of the “who am I” and “what am I doing here.”

We are machete wielders, creating

The path unique to ourselves,

To our laughter and our tears.

We are charterers of the unknown

Jungles that our lives are, similar

To many, yet different in every sense.

We do not travel the road less travelled:

We create the way.

We build the bridge, draw the maps,

Write the memoirs that the

Next generation will forget or

Misunderstand, because I am not

You, nor you I, and my yellow

Brick road is  blondish, buttery white,

Whilst yours is coppery gold.

And so, like the Spanish poet

Said, dear walker, there is no road.

The road is rendered by your feet when

You start your walk.

And that is life. And who you are.

A walker of dreams on a space called land.

 

 

 

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Amelia

woman-writing

 

My grandfather used to smoke cigars and

Drink dark rum at twilight, seated on the

Cool veranda, his eyes lost on the slithering

Hips of the dancing waves before him.

Sometimes he would play the guitar,

Without singing, his fingers, slender

And long, plucking the strings with unexpected

Tenderness, specially coming from him,

A silent man of granite and steel.

He would not share memories nor

Colourful anecdotes escaped his lips.

He just sat, quietly,

He, the night, the wind and the sea.

And we knew better than to

Break his peace with our games or screams.

It was years later that the unsent letters

Came out, hidden in a forgotten chest.

He had been long gone by then.

We were selling the old house, emptying

Its century of family memorabilia,

When we learned about the forbidden girl called Amelia.

Amelia of the oceanic eyes. Amelia

Of the crystal voice. Amelia, the fiancée

Of the once best friend,  who came

One summer and left, taking

Grandfather’s heart away with her.

After that everything had her mark.

He drank chocolate because she disliked tea;

The front door was green because

It would bring luck, or so she believed.

And my mother shared her name.

And for all the years to come he

Would sit in front of the sea,

To bring back to mind her memory:

Amelia.

Amelia of the oceanic eyes,

The forbidden girl who came one summer and left,

Taking away forever his heart.

 

Life and I

woman walking_away_by_alongwayfromhome

 

I’m going to walk it out,

The hurt, the ache,

The burdensome pain,

Eroding my bones away,

My soul, cracked into

A wasteland, parched,

Longing for a little rain,

A little hope, a little faith.

But right now there isn’t any.

On my hands and knees

I tremble, wondering if

I have it in me: another

Stand, another

Fight, another

Rise from the dark to

Confront the rage.

As I crawl on the floor

The answer is: I don’t know.

I hurt, hurt so much,

I want to roll into a ball

And just forget. I am not that strong.

But life doesn’t care.

It kicks and bites

And I feel as if I am about to die

And the last thing I will see

Will be the hate in its eyes,

And part of me refuses to accept this.

Life screams. It throws another blow.

And I realize I had enough.

That I will rise up,

Again and again,

I will do it until the end,

Whatever the end may be.

Life steps back as my knees straighten.

Its hand slaps, but I hold on.

It punches and I bend, but do not fall.

I rise up.

I walk the fear away.

Life smashes, breaks. I get up again.

It shakes, my heart’s thumping deafens

Me to its cries. It pushes. Up once

More I go. I rise up,

Rise up and up,

Repeatedly, once more, until my fear

Jumps to life’s eyes and it stops.

Stops.

The world stops. The pain, the gore,

The terrified beating of my heart.

The horror, the terror.

Life staring, silent and cold.

And I rise up,

One last time.

My demons shattered and caged.

Life steps back and I

Walk it out,

The pain, the hurt, the chains

Now broken, coiling at my feet.

And I go, free at last.

Free at last to live.

 

 

The Woman with the Straight Back

woman standing tall

 

I am the woman with the straight back,

Straighten after years of bending, yielding,

Fragmenting my spirit, folding myself

As I carried the burdens,

The baggage, the rubbish that comes

From begging love to others,

From being unaware that I am my sole source,

For I am the wine and I am the cup, and when

It over flows, I tender love all around, enough

For me and the universe, so immense is the

Fountain within. So, I have learned to feed myself

The love I never received, and in so doing

I have created a new path for my feet to walk in,

A different song for my voice to sing,

And tall and limbered I stand,

Ready to fully be who I truly I am:

The woman with the straight back.

A bit cracked, somewhat smashed,

Weathered, bruised, but unbroken.

 

 

Thursday Afternoon

mujeres-esperando-el-cafe-coffee-waiting-for

 

And she was gone.

A good-bye kiss, a last hold

Of hands, eyes veiled by a

Dewy mantle of old tears,

Ready to fall as rain.

Forgiveness.

Ungiven. The hurt too much,

Too deep, too like a knife

Ripping her heart,

Shards falling with the promises

Once offered, the second chances

Bestowed, the betrayal, once more.

And love shrank back to a seed

And then to dust and the day came

When she refused to listen anymore.

No more lies, no explanations, no

Siren songs. Gone is the

Wide-eye girl who trusted,

Who believed, who breathed in

Love every morning, as she woke

By his side, when he was hers,

When he was tender and true,

As when they first met,

When their eyes reflected each

Other at the small art’s café,

Where she entered to escape the rain

On a Thursday afternoon.

 

UBUNTU

 

diversity

 

Ubuntu means humanity;

I am because we are.

This African philosophy says

That to be human is to be part:

Of something bigger, something better,

Something that gives meaning to how we

We walk and live together,

Come together, to grow and heal,

And be the zeal which begets

Community, fellowship and camaraderie;

An embrace of different ideals,

And views and beliefs, interwoven

Like braided ribbons, creating rainbows

For you and me, for my song needs

Your ear, your print asks for my eyes,

My mind wants to tango with

The dancer of your mind.

And bridges are there to be crossed.

And fingers are there to intertwine.

And by myself I’m only part human,

For to fully be, flourish and expand,

I need the challenge, inspiration and warmth

Of my fellow human kind.

So Ubuntu means humanity.

I am because we are.

And in community we hold

Each other, in the sanctuaries

Of our hearts.

 

Sometimes I Dream

woman in bed crying

 

Sometimes I dream of your hands,

Climbing the peaks of my arms, gliding,

Softly, a subtle caress

Awakening every inch of my skin,

With its promise of love -of

Bodies interlocking, souls

Merging in a melting pot

Of kisses, sweat and hugs,

You and I, one. You and I

Branding each other with

The heat of our touch, our desperate,

Hungry touch, wanting so much more.

And then the chill of the night

Awakens me, my hand empty,

My lips dried, the void of your

Body holding your shape

At the back of my mind. And I wipe

Away the tear and close my eyes,

To dream you back, back to me, next to me,

Like we were before the fights.

You, by my side. At last.

 

Holding On

moon_peeking_behind_clouds_by_shells-d9nb74l

 

I ache for your words, you touch,

A sign that says I’m your love,

Your dream, the reason why you get up,

Take a stand and face the world.

If things are supposed to be such,

They are not.

And I should go, I know.

But I am not that strong.

I’m just a whisper

In your storm, a drop

In your sea, and I wish

I could walk away

From the coldness of your being.

And then on those days

You become the sun,

Bathing me in your warmth

And all the pain melts away

By a single act of love.

And then you are gone.

Here, yet so far, that

You would be closer were you a star.

But you are my moon peeking through the night,

Barely visible, completely unreachable, but there,

Almost there, for this heart, surviving

Out of the dew of love left from the

Last time you acknowledge me as

Part of your life.

And I wish I could go.

But what’s a drop without the ocean?

A whisper without the storm?

Your pale face shines in your night of cold.

And against all odds, my crazy, weak heart, holds on.

 

Fossil at the Museum

human fossil

 

You know the party has gone too far

When you make a tiger cry.

When the monster eating the world

Looks so much like you, that

You doubt, for a minute or two,

Wondering if you have turned into

A sort of Dr. Jacky and Mr. Hyde.

And you have.

Your foot print has transformed into that

Of the giant running after Jack. Squishing it all.

In your sleep-walk you have become

The black swan of death, and in the spices

And oils by your hob, is the orangutan’s howl,

The shattering, woeful moan for its lost home.

You have been dancing far too hard and your

Feet have started the fire that’s burning the world,

That will make the rhino and the elephant

Legends like the phoenix and the unicorn.

You are the bogey man to baby seals and bees.

Mother whales scare their young by imitating your face,

And in the future to come, evolved alligators will

Visit your bones at their swampy museums, and wonder

How you did it: how you ended it all?

How you ate the beauty and spat out desolation,

The wasteland that would be your ultimate end?

And they will laugh. Some of them.

And when their alligator kids misbehave,

Acting truly stupidly, no Dodo will be mentioned.

They will call out your name instead:

Oh you, destroyer of worlds,

Oh you, slayer of your own race,

Oh you, Master of creation,

Ending as a polished fossil

At the end of the corridor B, in exhibit eight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the Labyrinth

laberynth

People will cross your path,

Some will come close,

Some will stay far,

Some will stop and interact.

Some will bow, some will ignore you,

Some will simply let you pass,

And some will walk with you,

For a short or a long time.

It’s alright.

Each encounter is a gift,

Each meeting a magical chat

Between former stars,

Wandering, curiously, in this adventure

Called Life.