This was written in 1988 when I was pregnant with Alex. It is quite long, but someone was wondering what a longer poem would be like, so bear with me.
I am the chronicler of my own soul
The shadow of the past the glimmer of the future.
The creature present at this moment.
I am the laughter of a child surprised by a
New found discovery. The tears of disillusionment
And hurt also describe me.
I am a toy shiny new, picked up and examined with
Amused curiosity. Played with, used until the
Glamour fades and I am tossed aside. A relic
Of happiness and fulfilled longings. Found in
The attic among old photos. I am a half remembered
I know pain for scrapped knees and bloodied lips I have
Had a plenty. Scars I can point to and feel
The moment of their infliction. Mended bones
And old strained muscles sometimes call out with
I know heartbreak for it has sat upon me like a
Thousand pound weight often. I have been
Smashed by it and found it hard to crawl
From under the dark pall.
I know elation for I have loved and been beloved
I have lain with warm arms around me. I
Have frolicked in sunshine under clear skies.
I have coasted in a boat on the Tennessee River
Half giddy with rum and awareness of my bare
Body watched by my love.
I hear the hum of traffic on the highway just
A little way beyond my window and I am
Hard-pressed to ignore the call to travel.
Lured to drive and explore far beyond the places I
Have been as yet.
I hear the washer spurting water and am reminded
Of my duties. To hearth and home I am bound
As well as to my family. This is joy and also
I hear the quiet of the house with me here alone and
Relish the moment. The future will less solitude
Afford for I carry the burden of an unborn child.
Soon bottles will clatter and whines will be common
As Springtime breezes be.
I see the ground reappearing where only days ago
Was a blanket of clean white snow. Beauty only
Lasts a short space in time replaced by different
Scenery or only a change of the same.
I see the swell of my body as it changes with
My baby’s growth. It amazes me and too reminds
Me that time passes always changing. I am
In awe of God’s miracles and His bountifulness.
Each person is a touch from His majesty. How
Varied He must be.
I see a squirrel capering in a tree outside and
Am the wind delighting in stroking through
Soft fur. Teasing the little sport upward and
Then into it’s warm nest.
The brightness of the city lights
People scurrying from building to building
Cars bustling from portal to portal
All these are reflected in my eyes.
Utterings that come from my lips
Are spoken in the tongue of all speech
I have heard in passing. I am a mimic
Of the dialects I have witnessed
A clutter of papers collected in a notebook
Is the essence of my thought
The words pushed from a pen are my labor
These validate my existence.
Without I had written about a thing it would
Not be touched with my vision to your
Experience. Through reading my words you
Learn from my soul. I become a part of
You and likewise you of me.
I rode once upon a yellow canvas floating
Tensely through rock crammed waters
Of the Chattahoochee River. Bathing in
The chilled fast moving currents was
Exhilaration epitomized. The rapids
Swashling song was new music to my
Ears. Ah, grand the drifting.
Sitting in a high place on a wedding day
I was aware of joy intense as the
Wind whipping my skirt. Pleasure was
The touch of my beloved’s hand in mine.
Skiing on the twisting river in April with
Wind plaiting my hair in the sunshine.
Marveling at the mountains shaped like
Breakers rising on the beach as I glide
Past throwing up a shower of sparkling
Spray. Slaloming with no sense of ever
Tiring, only reveling in the work of
Often a visitor to the library, books are my
Friends. When I need excitement it
Is within the covers I find it. Books
Don’t argue or demand so our relationship
Dreamer, observer, examiner, these all are embodied
In me. An adventurer to far worlds or just
Outside exploring the yard, a dancer amid the
Grass. All this and more am I.
Darkness also within recesses deep does lurk. Madness,
Even, for I have been behind locked doors with
The men and women in white coats. The screams
Of the demented are known to me. Did I not
See things that induce madness? However, sanity
Prevailed, although at times craziness seems
Only one shadow foot step away.
© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan
I have been having intermittent computer problems so excuse me for not posting earlier.