Poetry by: ArdentTly

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
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I came back this morning,
the house dark and silent,
and called out her name.
It felt good on my tongue,
but the echo hurt my ears.

I went to our bed,
cold and dreary,
and inhaled her scent
deeply into my mind.
My fingers twitched with need,
wishing only to touch the shadow of her smile.

I could hear phantom noises throughout
my house, the tinkering of children
eased aside by thirsty ears.
The memory of my name on her lips
seemed to flutter gently
against me, as wine to my soul.

I climbed between cold linen,
my heart beat my only solace,
its cadence akin to the cruel ticking
of an unseen clock: dis tance, dis tance.
And my hand smoothed over the depression
where she once lay,
the warmth still a part of my life.


(c) ArdentTly

[Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]


The Tracks of My Tears

Looking at the blank slate faces,
their eyes just holes in white ash,
I feel so helpless, caught

in these bouts of intense emotions,
dwarfing the power of mt. st. helens.
I fell out of shock, tumbled into sorrow
and now have crawled out into rage,
all from a vat of molten tears.

They are burnished red, fiery white hot and
indigo blue, these rivers that sizzle down
as they scar the surface of my soul.

And I know it's wrong, can't be right,
this purple rage that consumes me,
shaking me to my very core, but

my heart rages for the innocence lost
when men decided to strap 747's to
their bodies, their eyes closed tight and fists
clenched inexorably around the throat of fate.

And my mind breaks as I contemplate those left
without choices, hand in hand, cartwheeling
dark against the terrible blue sky, leaving

those left behind to wear dusty faces and slack jaws,
a haunted look replacing the carefree one
that used to grace it, and I wonder

will the heavens open up and wash it all away,
the good and the bad, leaving me to wallow
in my anguished state of sorrow?

I want those blessed waters to ease over
my body, cool down the lava dripping from
my pores, and let healing tears fall freely,
without rancour, without prejudice,

and without end. I long for that state
that existed eons ago last tuesday,
when beirut wasn't in our backyard and
freedom wasn't a dirty word used against us,

and I wonder as I look at the tracks of
my tears, do angels cry?

(c) Trish Shields

[dis_tense][fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]


...so I'm driving down the road and
I can feel the steering wheel in my hand
the seat against my back and there's a
thumping I can't quite put my finger on

but my eyes are looking straight ahead
looking through the speckled windshield
encased in my safe little world built with
steel and glass cutting the silence out

and all of a sudden it's clear to me exactly
what that sound is the whooshing I hear
the thumping that sounds so familiar
that now with my hand against my neck

I can put my finger on it's me as I
fight to control the anxiety that builds and
crests and then subsides to manageable levels
as I wonder if a plane will fall out of the sky

contemplating whether every smiling face
aimed my way is friend or foe because
now we know you don't have to be thump
bristling with weapons just willing to die

looking just like anyone else the differences
minute and not easily discernable
how can you spot faulty wiring behind
sound structure or an insidious virus

hiding inside something as innocuous as
a smiling face until it's far too late
and lives hang in the balance
your life reduced to a statistic thump

...and I'm looking out at the blue sky and
seeing twin towers where they never grew
almost feeling the acrid smoke billowing
shrouding covering laying to rest

the very things we hold dear the world
moved on but me unwilling to follow
as the dark waters of denial rise higher
and I grip the wheel tighter thump thump

and thank god it happened over there
never here always somewhere else
because to believe otherwise would mean
that thumping will undoubtedly drown me

thump thump thumping so loud I can't think
those images caught inside my head
like some steven speilberg movie
never fading away just an endless loop

but when I arrive home the keys jangling
in tight fingers the roar of uncertainty alive
thinking about my kids and their future
I jackhammer a smile onto my face thump

and try to remember that life is more than
just a series of events strung together
good and bad because it is all worth it
and I will be safe we will be safe thumpthump

(c) Trish Shields

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [In the Grip] [seize the day] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]

In the Grip

fingers tighten around freedom
leaving us gasping
grasping falling
tumbling down into a well
of unspeakable horror

other fingers search
digging singing with pride
holding on to the most
precious of things
the fundamental beauty of life

fists raised in anger
curling into weapons
rage overcoming thought
minds numbed by shock
left shaking quaking with pain

hands reaching out
faceless extensions
dimensions of hope humility
honour duty and love shoring up
embracing and standing strong

beating together in applause
hands held fast in resolve
in unity in prayer
intensely aware
this will happen again

(c) Trish Shields

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [seize the day] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]


seize the day

I've been working on this, off and on, for a couple of days. 'Daze' being the opperative word. It isn't a pretty poem, such as the ones I like to write, but one filled with frustration, anger and yes, hope. I hesitate to offer it up but since I've seen others posted I feel the need to share my own. -T

Blue blue skies filled with sunshine
voices tinkling like crystal chimes
as children laugh and play
on this normal september day.
It's early morning and people are
yawning the sleep out of their bodies
stretching the energy back into their smiles.
Mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers
parents and their children all going about
the day without a care in the world.
Radios blast with bits of news from around
the world this and that but nothing that really
concerns them being half a world away.
The traffic is snarled as usual with tempers
flaring horns blaring and a constant drumming
of minds multi-tasking not taking in their
surroundings not really enjoying the blueness
before entering stark cubicles becoming drones
in the collective beehive that seems to dominate life.
Some scan the newspaper while they wait for taxis
for buses or mindlessly being herding from street
corner to street corner sighing in frustration as
noisy teenagers go trip tripping along to school
and small gaggles of children push and flit
and buzz little dragonflies with a sense of purpose
only they can know their dance one
we can only remember before life became so mundane.
There is a separateness about that life a singularly
focused purpose that plays from nine to five with little
deviation fun something done on the weekends or
after the rent mortgage tuition toy payments are made.
And on such a crisp clean day who would stop to
notice the roar of a plane the silent cry of a way of life
teetering on the brink of death the earth shuddering
with every apathetic breath we take?
Only when fire erupts and people dangle from windows
plummeting to their deaths as reality crashes into
the twin symbols of world order do we even
pull ourselves from the hive mentality.
Only when something so unbelievable so unwarranted
so carefully and diligently planned comes to fruition do we
stop to notice the sudden quiet as life stands still.
Busy minds are suddenly filled with prayer
the stark truth of what has been done oozing through
the mundane pulling us out of the morass and into
the harsh realization that it isn't half a world away
the sky is no longer blue
and children are no longer pushing and dancing their way
along the road to a planned future.
The streets are now crammed held in gridlock as people flee
the unimaginable events that continue to unfold.
And as firefighters policemen rescue workers
rush to do their jobs running neck and neck
their hearts thumping with pride they are the only ones
within the city that truly feel the pulse of reality
always on the brink never taking life too easy.
The phrase, 'first in and last out' is a truth they live with
a reality many die with and something a country will
have to view endlessly in the days to come.
The truth is heroism like freedom comes at a price.
And as the days grind by and the toll rises
shock is replaced by anger fists raised fingers pointed
the world continues to hold its collective breath
waiting for the truth of who would
strike such a shameful blow?
And as the nation responds another truth is
never more evident: innocence is something
we didn't even see slipping from between our fingers.
With life now changed familiar irritants like
congested traffic boisterous children and busy
airports seem less so their absence like the
nattering noise of an alarm clock
waking us up to life reminding us to reach out
and fill the void left by 5,000 strong.

(c) ArdentTly

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]


I find it hard to concentrate
finding a path worn from
my haven downstairs to the stark
reality of what plays on the little
screen upstairs - terrorism on US soil.
Each image each piece of information
grinds into me like the shards
that must have flown from the debris
like harbingers of death pinning me
where I stand naked and weakened
the truth that this big old world can be filled
with more than just a happy face and the
tired phrase, 'have a nice day.'
Looking out into a sea of faces different colours
different shapes and sizes
it's hard for me to remember that some
are masks held up before faces twisted
by hatred and zealotry
their truth swimming
beneath the waves of humanity.
September came silently peacefully smiling
sunshine waves on an every day day.
As sirens came calling and black replaced blue
those smiling mask faces were ripped away.
I grew up today as the death toll rose.
No more the innocent life I used to live where
life was seen through the eyes of a child.
A cry of terror for terror by terror filled my ears
and through the din was found this truth
we are but one people
with hopes and dreams of freedom.

(c) Trish Shields

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]


when the sands of time
come falling though their passage
be restrained I know my strengths
shall dwindle only ancient
flesh remains

and yet shall
passion bubble colours seen bold
within my eyes as dreams float
clear before me my heart held
between your sighs

these aged hands
held tightly as the dawn turns
into day my heart filled
with the knowledge love's sweet sounds
of disarray

would still be heard
at nightfall could these ancient
bones arise but I am trapped within
the sand and can love but with
my eyes

(c) Trish Shields

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day] [911]
[in san it y] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]

in san it y

the noise you hear when
the man wielding the jackhammer
in my head goes for a break
- deathly, all consuming silence
that destroys any pain threshold
I could ever hope to have
- insanity ensues as I like humpty
try to put the pieces back into
some semblance of order
only to find that several pieces
have always been missing
- when did insanity begin to
take on the rosy hue of
the lesser of two evils

(c) Trish Shields

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day]
[911] [watcher] [Sarabande] [Odyssey]
[top of page]


Sometimes when we're dancing
and our measured step's just right
I wonder how my music played
In a monody of life.
And as I hold you near
And we dance across the floor
Other partners fade from view
As I ponder what's in store.
Will we keep on dancing
With the music changing beat,
Or will there be a sameness
And the tempo just repeats?
And if it never changes
As I hold you in my arms,
Will it lessen our sweet concert
And dampen dancing's charms?
With your hand in my hand
And our bodies swaying so,
It's hard to measure failure
When I'm trapped within your tone.
Because you are my music
And the dance is just a way
To move us in love's rhythm,
Hear the beat and feel the sway.

(c) Trish Shields

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Odyssey]
[top of page]


I've searched for that one moment
when I'd find that special place
where truelove could be found
offered sweetly in her gaze
where desire was an ocean
and passion rode the waves
and every fiery touch was
wrapped tight in love's embrace

I want a love decisive
defined and clear to me
where light shines into darkness
bright against my troubled sea
where we would stand in union
against life's cruel tyranny
and I'd know without a doubt
that truelove would set me free

(c) ArdentTly

[dis_tense] [Tracks of my Tears] [fathom] [In the Grip] [seize the day] [911]
[watcher] [in san it y] [Sarabande] [
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