I Miss You

Here, as promised, are the two pieces I have written since I lost my baby. I imagine there will be more. This is the hardest thing I have gone through, and I have found poetry and blogging to be a great outlet. In fact, my other blog contains my thoughts as I have been working through the grief process. If you think that would be helpful to you, if you have gone through the same, the link is here.

…I Miss You

Life rolls steadily onward
For the world outside
While I am pinned beneath the waves
Of sorrow and grief
Emptiness and despair.
They roll over me in a repeat of the same moment–
Mocking me as my body mocks me with the pangs of a labor that did not bring you to me.
They roll over me in a repeat of the same moment–
Sorrow and grief
Emptiness and despair
Bearing down on me in wave after wave
Suffocating and mocking.
For the world outside
Life rolls steadily onward
While I do not.

Not Well Yet

Will time perhaps begin to dull the edge
Of sharpened pain, bled long into the night?
The clock has stronger powers, some allege
Than any form of salve or balm despite
The tempting call of sleep or drink or ought
Which promises to soothe the deepest pain.
The arms of God are stronger still, we’re taught
And truth of this I’ve found before. In vain
Does all else promise healing. I will run
Into the Father’s arms, I know, and yet
My grief has not waned since it had begun
And God knows, sweetly waiting. I’m beset
Unready to be healed or soon consoled.
God knows it is not well yet with my soul.

 

 

Sparks of Hope

The following are poems I wrote when I was pregnant. I lost the baby at 11 weeks, which I also wrote about and will post in a later update. But in the meantime, here’s what I wrote when I still had my little spark of life and hope.

Blind Trust

The cold of winter holds my heart
Though spring is close at hand,
In fear that rips my world apart
Though hope is in command.

A tiny seed of hope has come
And I have no control
To make it grow or come undone
But let it feed my soul

Whatever happens next I know
The tiny hope is mine
To hold when winter comes and goes
And thus I trust you, blind.

Life Tanka

Life explodes in green
From buds and blossoms growing
Out of tiny seeds
Taking over where death was
And shaming barren gardens.

My Furious Spark

It’s out of you whence flows my joy and fear
In equal measure. Life is made of this.
I’m seized with fear and gripped with joy in turn
To know that you are mine and very near.
Your heartbeat next to mine is like a kiss;
Your stirring sets my soul to steady burn.
I feel the weight of days ahead with you–
They’re filled with sunlight, midnights, cold and dark
Where sorrow, yes, and grace will both abound.
But wonder is prevailing, worlds made new
In light of fear and joy. You are my spark
Within and all around.

Winter Poetry

Sorry for the hiatus. First my laptop died, then I lost a baby. But you’ll hear about the latter in later poetry.

Thank you for reading.

Why the Hell

2.10.16

And why the hell unleashed through tiny gates
When heaven is the destined end of us?
Come, answer this: what justice comes too late
To rescue sufferers? Why treat me thus?
Alas, for though you doled out life from trees,
We took bad fruit and unlocked doors to hell
and death and barren wombs and lost the keys.
I am no less than all the rest who fell.
Perhaps I suffer more for all the joy
I’ve glimpsed through tiny gates whence heaven bleeds.
For all the thief comes nigh yet to destroy
I know the restoration yet precedes.
The door yawns wide beyond the narrow paths,
But why this hell that cuts me off in wrath?

Dip the Pen

The fact is, this is not the same
As once it was; the magic ink
Stirs less of me as time leaves lines
So deeply carved in me. I think
The beauty may be lost for now
The muse steps forward, takes her bow;
But here I write
Despite, despite
The fire’s fading, dying glow.

At midnight someone speaks the name:
My well-loved muse stands on the brink.
She doesn’t know I’ll need her soon.
She doesn’t quite come in the room
As I with gusto dip my pen
And light the dying fire within
Come shed some light;
I write, I write!
And pour out promise ere you go.

Still There, I guess.

Breaking my hiatus with some cathartic sonnetry.

“A Warm Sea”

“Just let me drown,” he said without a wince.
A warm sea, a warm tea, they are the same.
You left me then, I have not seen you since.
The coffee cup steam seems to spell your name
Curling, dark, and warm–I am embraced
But drowning nonetheless. Come back, I wept.
Perhaps, in retrospect, ’twas my disgrace
To leave you. Just perhaps ’twas I who left.
I don’t know. I don’t know. All time stands still
Around the teacups, emptied, drained to leaves
Which tell me nothing comforting. Refilled
Again and yet again, at least it breathes
In bracing warm reminders that I sink.
With every sip, “just let me drown,” I think.

Philosophia

Hello dear friends and followers.

Probably you follow Down from Parnassus because you enjoy poetry. For which I am very grateful–it’s fun posting and knowing you enjoy it.

But if you’re interested in philosophy, logic, apologetics, and theology, hop over to my new project, Philosophia Women.

Follow me there and give me feedback as I get started.

Much love,

Heather G. R.

Indelible

With the end of summer comes the good news that I may be done with my coursework for my master’s degree. And as much as I’d like to go for a PhD, there are a few reasons why now is not the time. First, I’m burnt out. Second, financially it is not wise. Third, I’d like to consider starting a family and making that my primary focus. Fourth, it seems best to focus my energies toward creative passions and also toward volunteer and ministry opportunities. Those are the things which make a full life, not extra letters after my name.

Therefore, I hope to focus my energies on DFP, on poetry in general, and perhaps on a secondary blog project. Once that gets off the ground I’ll invite you all to follow me there too.

In the meantime, I’ve written only one poem this summer. I wrote it in June, the night I found out my grandmother had passed away at the age of 91. She was so dear to me, but her body had failed her and I don’t grudge her her current freedom and peace.

Nevertheless, here is my tribute:

Indelible

Among the women who have left a mark
Indelible and striking as the stars
There shall remain the ones who stirred my heart
To fierce ambitions, waging well their wars
Both global and, yes, personal. But some
Remain a summer breeze; a gentle brook
And stir but softly, low and sweet their hum
On time and place where I stood. And now look:
I am a windswept meadow, carved by you
Until I’m marked by leaves and quilts and smiles
Now etched on me to my surprise. It’s true–
I may not always see the length in miles.
But here the stream ends in a waterfall,
And you have left its echo in us all.

NaPoWriMo Days 27-30….finished!

And with this post the month-long poetry challenge is finished. Finals are still not over, but after Tuesday they will be. What a month.

For Day 27:

Poor, Marvelous Words

The bards of English verse have taught my pen
Much more of life and love than I’d admit.
They reach from centuries to speak again

And I admire wordsmiths I’ve not met.
They speak plain truth and life in simple words
And touch on human nature that rings true

In every age. How marvelous the chords

They strike beyond the old age into new.

Indriso, inspired by: “Yes, I read. I have that absurd habit. I like beautiful poems, moving poetry, and all the beyond of that poetry. I am extraordinarily sensitive to these poor, marvelous words left in our dark night by a few men I never knew.”–Louis Aragon

For Day 28:

My Way is Not Hidden

Though I’m growing weary
And roads grow longer still
And time, it mars my body
And sorrow wounds my will

I stand on solid mountains
Though winds howl against their faces
And bitterness becomes the sun
In light of ancient graces.

Why do I lament bitterly
As though I’m hid away
From eyes of God, or chastened?
I fade not into gray

For God grows neither weary
Nor can he be outdone.
I’m strengthened kindly, wholly
When I belong to such a one.

Inspired by Isaiah 40:27-29:

Why do you say, O Jacob,
and speak, O Israel,
“My way is hidden from the Lord,
and my right is disregarded by my God”?
Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might he increases strength.

For Day 29:

Invincible Summer

Always full of love
Never without hope
this is the very knot
at the end of my rope.

Never too far gone,
Never in the grip
of winter for too long.
See how summer rips

The soul clean out of fear
and into scattered beams
of sunlight dancing brightly
across our very dreams.

For in the midst of winter
with its darkened chill
there remains triumphant
a summer in me still.

Inspired by: “In the midst of winter, I found there was within me an invincible summer.”–Albert Camus

For Day 30:

Every Common Bush

And here I stand on cliff’s edge one last time.
Perhaps I leap; and yet perhaps I climb.

There’s no more to be said for where I stand,
In solitude and guarded all around.
The very cosmos may well fill my hands
As I, the two-fold creature on the ground
Look up and see my choices through the storm
Not unaware that nature thrills my soul
As soul and matter touch, lovely and warm
Like trees aflame with God, remaining whole.
You cannot say the soul is all alone
And matter nothing; nor the other way.
For we with both must see and love the known,
Until in light of glory, we decay.

Reverse sonnet, inspired by: “Earth’s crammed with heaven,/And every common bush afire with God;/ But only he who sees, takes off his shoes.” –From “Aurora Leigh” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning. Actually, inspired by the whole 86th part of “Aurora Leigh.

    Thanks for following along as I completed the NaPoWriMo challenge! I appreciate your reading and supporting. If you participated, tell me in the comments below!

NaPoWriMo Days 23-26

For Day 23:

Pilgrim

Despite my lying prone beneath the weight
Of haste-invented reasons not to try
Still, the burning lights will not abate.

No fear within or out assails my eye
To cripple what is left of my ascent
Or stand between the voids, the goal, and I.

The waves may batter shores without relent
Just as the pilgrim’s progress is detained
By all-encroaching darkness’ descent.

But no– unflinching fires still remain
Emblazoned on the paths beneath my feet.
They light the burning hope which keeps me sane;

These lights I follow till my hope’s complete.

A terza rima, inspired by: “No halfheartedness or worldly fear must turn aside from following the light unflinchingly.” –Tolkien

For Day 24:

She Is

She takes the wind in hand
And scatters rain
Leaving footsteps on mountain faces.
She speaks life and storms
And whispers gently.
Reckon not with her
Nor call her lovely
But see beyond her eyes
Into her mind.

She knows the wildest fury
Of the city
Lit at night with energy and dreams.
She takes in hand the bedtime tale and gavel
Peeling off her shoes
To walk the stone-cold floors of office hallways.
Reckon not with her
Nor call her soft
But see beyond her leadership
To her soul.

For Day 25:

Icarus

Had I wings as he
Perhaps I would have chosen
Rather to die well
Flying, foolish, and sun-warmed
Than die hopeless, in the dark.

For Day 26:

I Once

I once took refuge in the tainted past
Clung to fairy tales and happy ends.
The foolishness of youth to think ‘twould last;
I am–I was–as carefree as the winds.

But taint or not, their power over me
Was no less in their words than in spells cast
And in these days without them I am free.

But free from what? They speak to condescend;
One day I’ll take up fairy tales again.

A rainis sonnet,inspired by Lewis’ dedication in the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Also slightly inspired by Antoine de St. Exupery.

NaPoWriMo Days 20-22

For Day 20:

Brighter Still

The road is paved with light which welcomes dreamers
Out of deserts, into gardens
Only to remember
In the desert
The stars shone brighter still.

For Day 21:

Sight of Stars

he sight of stars in growing dark
Lends the soul a comfort still
Knowing darkness will not fill

The night completely; no, a spark
Is always there, no matter where
Your thoughts may lead you; blank and stark.

The doubt will come again, it will–
But stars will light your dreamer’s heart.

n octain refrain inspired slightly by:
“For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of stars makes me dream.” –Van Gogh

For Day 22:

Cheese

What must the sonnet bend its form around?
What must the ode give tribute to, or laud?
To what belongs the metered verse, or sound
Of rhyming couplets? Let them describe God
And let them speak of love and justice well.
It seems to fit the villanelle to sing
Of mighty works, the rubaiyat to tell
Of noble deeds, of wars, of knights, of kings.
This is the evidence of former times:
That glory was bestowed on gilded ink
And granted to the wittiest of rhymes
Which made us turn to truth–to grow, to think.
Indeed bold topics suit such forms as these–
But which form shall I use to write of cheese?

Inspired by: “Poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese.”–G.K. Chesterton

NaPoWriMo Days 18 & 19

Ouch…term papers and finals have me way behind on NaPo. I did write through the 19th though and forgot to post them! So in the meantime, until some of these papers are done, I’ll need a few more days off and back at it to play catch-up before the 30th. But for now:

Day 18:

Heartsore

I am too far from where the rains descend.
I am divided from the cool of shore
And grey of sea.
And where the river wends is far beyond my grasp.
Oh, go before and reconcile the stars with where they end and I begin;
I am not anymore.
Until the chains release and I am free
Their magic won’t mean anything to me.

An ottava rima, with line breaks at the end of thought rather than the end of the metered line.

Day 19:

So Help Me

I knew you when you cried
And I caught your tears.
We’re the same age,
But you’re my heart’s daughter,
Really.
He’d better deserve you now
And work hard to deserve you forever
because so help me
I’ll punch him if he doesn’t.

Haha. Sorry, this one is bordering on glorified prose and almost doesn’t deserve to be used for NaPo. But give me a break: it’s grad school finals time. 😉 But seriously, do you feel me here?