At times it does seem like sacrifice without success.
At times it does seem like failure without fulfillment.
But more often than not, it is like flowers in the lunch box.
You carry your meal in an old battered tin box,
Then when you finally get to lunchtime,
You open it up to discover that someone has
Tucked flowers in the midst of your food.
The theme for the next few weeks of The Causerie, will simply be "Life". Sometimes difficult, sometimes easy, it is certainly always interesting. Likewise, some of the poetry about life that I will be posting in May will be challenging for readers because of the sadness of the poems and sometimes uplifting because of the happiness of other poems. Such is life.
The posting above is one of my favorites. I firming believe that if we look, we will find the flowers in our lunch box. Metaphorically speaking, that is.
Following is a poem that tells us two women talking about their individual lives. It is not the most happiest of pieces, but it is honest, and acknowledges their strength and that they are taking charge of their own lives.
I was chatting with a long time, but not
Intimate friend. I extended my usual
Asking of the family. This one time she
Spoke, without constraint.
She told of grown children, still not grown, of
Broken marriages, of debt and
Desperation. Illness of mind.
Pain lasting decades.
Pain, not always hers, but that which she
Witnessed to the point to taking on.
And she told of supplying aid, but
To no avail.
So soft and in such short words, she spoke,
There was no need to elaborate.
I knew. I knew in my own world.
I knew and could only utter a low, almost inaudible
Response, ‘Yeh.’ ‘Yeh.’ my mouth hardly moving.
A dialogue in monotone.
There we were two worn women, telling what didn’t need
To be told, but must be shared to be endured. We
Were in voice, barely a whisper, not looking at each other,
But in stares, out into the space of our ever-reaching time.
‘Yeh’, I murmured.
Then she took charge, as each of us must do.
She talked of music recitals, of meal preparations,
Of waiting for the future. And she went on her way.
And I went on mine.
▶ Life is not in the minutes of what happens to us; it is in the seconds of our response. Earlene Grey