The Lack Of Sense Memory

Today I cleaned out a drawer
His drawer in the basement bathroom
Unused for two years and one month
Blew out and brushed out the dust
Threw away dental floss, toothpaste samples, expired medications
Pushed aside a hairbrush
And found
A bottle of his cologne.
Almost empty
Quite forgotten
Never his favorite,
He wore it to please me
Then left it behind.
Slowly, I lifted out the bottle
Wiped off the dust
And lifted the lid.
Sniffed
Waited

Nothing.
No flashbacks
Just nothing.
A smile spread across my face at the realization
And I resolved to buy a candle with the scent
So I can enjoy it again,
Free of associations.

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Throwback

It’s interesting
Not having seen myself through the eyes of dismissal in a while
Rediscovering the faux-concerned face
The wince of denial
The condescending voice and syrupy tone that assured me:
“No, you can’t. You couldn’t possibly. You’re just
Not
Capable.”
Recently, I watched that happen
Recognized it for what it was – a smackdown –
Laughed inside
And denied *them* that power
By saying softly,
“Well.
Watch me.”

Copyright ©2015 C. Mitchell

Here in the place of my youth (1)

Here in the place of my youth
My roots draw deep
And the earth is dark, and moist, and nourishing
Here I am most myself
Most connected with a lost past
Here I feel my strength
Rising in me like courage
Like joy
Here the wind brings a secret knowledge
And sunlight, instead of burning
Is brilliant hot wine
Warming as wassail
Bracing like brandy
Here, time is an unfinished story
Slowly unfolding its measured loops
Revealing only parts of the whole

Copyright ©2015 C. Mitchell

Not A Tributary

There are times in life
Doorways
Or portals
When life changes
When the unthinkable
Becomes thinkable
Then understandable
And even palatable
When we discover grace
In the face of change
As I linger in bed this morning
I am considering the many portals
That I strode through
Or tripped through
Or was pushed through
Unknowing and alone
And I hope that now, in this phase of my journey
I can see the signposts when I pass them
And can align myself to travel through them
Squarely
Eyes ahead
Arms and legs tucked in
To avoid bumping the doorjamb
Fluid
Streamlined
Jettisoning baggage as I go
Once again, I am not aligned with others on the path
Once again, I am not feeling the same emotions they are
Once again, I feel that I am at a different event, hearing different music
And I have a new thought: that I am my own fish
Swimming in my own stream.
Perhaps it’s ok that my stream doesn’t join the ocean.

Copyright ©2015 C. Mitchell

Poetry Month, Day 25: Joy

Joy

There is joy
in the smell of warm earth
and the feel of it underfoot

There is comfort
in the press of hot sun
on my downturned head and working shoulders

There is redemption
in turning the soil
in pots that held only death

There is benediction
in the caress of cool breeze
lifting my hair from my neck

There is victory
in reclaiming a garden
neglected and forgotten during the death of my marriage

Now there will be life
Now there will be beauty
Now there will be joy

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Poetry Month, Day 12: Soft

Soft

Small limbs
Soft ears
Silky fur
Heart beating rapidly beneath my hand
Large, sweet eyes
Sometimes wary but often warm
A reach that implores
Grasps
Pounces
Expressing through action
Your restless soul
Tender nose,
Cuddling into the curve of my foot
Snuffling against the arch
Whiskers brushing
Rough, businesslike tongue licking
Ticklishly
First your feet, then mine
I struggle not to twitch away
Finally, you are satisfied
All is as it should be.
You sigh, settle
And fall asleep.

Copyright ©2015 C. Mitchell

My boy

My boy