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Poetry by Shigé Clark

"Let the battered heart rejoice"

Tag

growing up

Experience

I used to believe in immortality.
Oh, I’ve always known
that we all die, but never really ,
truly came to own
that concept as reality.
Though, of course, I thought I did,
wise, immortal child that I was.
I know now that I hid
behind the nescience of a guarded life.
So blessed, so loved and whole.
Whatever tiny trials that
perturbed my sheltered soul,
were small or distant enough
that my tender, reaching hands
barely brushed over agony.
And so now I stand
in fresh faith of two things to be true:
First, that I am still blessed.
All my current pains must surely be
not quite so heavy and distressed
as they appear, despite my inner certainty
that nothing could hurt quite so much.
And second, and more deeply, that
nothing is preserved from sorrow’s touch.
Reality has come to call for me.
And so I live in newfound fear
of the inevitable loss
of all those whom I hold dear.
Which can no more be prevented now
than in my blissful disregard
of the harsh truth of life’s transience.
So what I hope to guard
with this discovery is simply this:
Earth does not last, and no one here can stay,
so for my brief time in the sun, I’ll dance,
and cherish those I love here while I may.

– s. Clark

Theme Week: Loving Yourself – 1

Stranger in the Mirror

Who is this woman, this stranger I see?
She stands in the place where I’d usually be.
This glass must be broken, this image is strange
It almost looks like me, but subtly changed.
It’s not quite the face, or the hair, or the style;
A bitter-sweet tilt has crept into her smile.
She has all my features, my lighthearted air,
But something is missing, and something is there.
I once knew a woman who shared the same face,
And she used to stand in that very same space.
But, back then she was still a child, and now
Her soul, though its salted, is better somehow.
With a gleam in her eye, and strength in her stand
A powerful will, and a dream in her hand.
She no longer looks to be scared, or unsure,
Expressions I had often seen there before.
Maybe she’s missing the twinkle that came
With an untroubled heart she can no longer claim.
But though I may miss her, it doesn’t appear
That this one is lacking what made her so dear.
She still has my eyes, which shine hopeful and true,
And she still seems to have some more growing to do.
But now, she seems like she could conquer the world,
This woman who no longer looks like a girl.

– s. Clark

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