Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Poems to weather uncertain times

I am delighted that Sanaa, our newest staff member of Poets United, is guest host today at the Midweek!  Enjoy!  
I will be back in August.  
Much love, Susan

Healing ~ Himanshu Shukla ~ Art Ranked Engine

It's not a terrible thing that we feel fear when faced with the unknown. It is part of being alive, something we all share. ~ Pema Chodron

Faith means living with uncertainty - feeling your way through life, letting your heart guide you like a lantern in the dark. ~ Dan Millman

Midweek Motif

In our lives we encounter uncertainty a number of times. We live through each day with hope either blooming or dissipating in our hearts. When life seems tough and spirit feels low .. remember my words .. you were created to wade in unknown waters .. in you there is power to dispel doubt and uncertainty with a firm voice. Believe me when I say that it matters what energy we decide to put into the world at the end of the day.

Your task today is to write a new poem that will spring forth after reading and going through the following poems that I have lined up for you. Feel free to address uncertainty and how you choose to deal with inner demons in your own unique way:

It Comes In Every Storm

by Olga Orozco

And don’t you feel also, perhaps, a stormy sorrow on the skin of time,
like a scar that opens again
there where the sky was uprooted?
And don’t you feel sometimes how that night gathers its tatters 
into an ominous bird,
that there’s a beating of wings against the roof
like a clash among immense spring leaves struggling
or of hands clapping to summon you to death?
And don’t you feel afterwards someone exiled is crying,
that there’s an ember of a fallen angel on the threshold,
brought suddenly like a beggar by an alien gust of wind?
And don’t you feel, like me, that a house rolling toward the abyss
runs over you with a crash of crockery shattered
       by lightning,
with two empty shells embracing each other for an endless journey,
with a screech of axles suddenly fractured like love’s broken promises?
And don’t you feel then your bed sinking like the nave of a cathedral 
crushed by the fall of heaven,
and that a thick, heavy water runs over your face till the final judgment?

Again it’s the slime.
Again your heart thrown into the depth of the pool,
prisoner once more among the waves closing a dream.
Lie down as I do in this miserable eternity of one day.
It’s useless to howl.
From these waters the beasts of oblivion don’t drink.

Everybody Has A Heartache: A Blues 

by Joy Harjo

In the United terminal in Chicago at five on a Friday afternoon
The sky is breaking with rain and wind and all the flights
Are delayed forever. We will never get to where we are going
And there’s no way back to where we’ve been.
The sun and the moon have disappeared to an island far from anywhere.

Everybody has a heartache — 

The immense gatekeeper of Gate Z–100 keeps his cool.
This guardian of the sky teases me and makes me smile through the mess,
Building up his airline by stacking it against the company I usually travel:
Come on over to our side, we’ll treat you nice.
I laugh as he hands me back my ticket, then he turns to charm
The next customer, his feet tired in his minimum wage shoes.

Everybody has a heartache — 

The man with his head bobbing to music no one else can hear has that satisfied
Feel — a full belly of sweet and a wife who sings heartache to sleep.
In his luggage (that will be lost and never found) is a musty dream of flying
Solo to Africa, with a stop on the return to let go the stories too difficult to
Carry home. He’ll take off his shoes to walk in a warm, tropical sea.
He’ll sing to the ancestors:
Take me home to mama. No one cooks like her.
But all the mamas worked to the bone gone too young.
Broken by The Man.

Everybody has a heartache — 

Everyone’s mouthing fried, sweet, soft and fat,
While we wait for word in the heart of the scrambled beast.
The sparkle of soda wets the dream core.
That woman over there the color of broth did what she was told.
It’s worked out well as can be expected in a world
Where she was no beauty queen and was never seen,
Always in the back of someplace in the back — 
She holds the newest baby. He has croup.
Shush, shush. Go to sleep, my little baby sheepie.
He sits up front of her with his new crop of teeth.

Everybody has a heartache — 

This man speaks to no one, but his body does.
Half his liver is swollen with anger; the other half is trying
To apologize — 
What a mess I’ve made of history, he thinks without thinking.
Mother coming through the screen door, her clothes torn,
Whimpering: It’s okay baby, please don’t cry.
Don’t cry. Baby don’t cry.
And he never cries again.

Everybody has a heartache — 

Baby girl dressed to impress, toddles about with lace on this and ruffle on that — 
Her mother’s relatives are a few hundred miles away poised to welcome.
They might as well live on a planet of ice cream.
She’s a brand new wing, grown up from a family’s broken hope.
Dance girl, you carry our joy.
Just don’t look down.

Everybody has a heartache — 

Good-looking punk girl taps this on her screen
to a stranger she has never seen:
Just before dawn, you’re high again beneath a marbled sky,
I was slick fine leather with a drink in my hand.
Flying with a comet messenger nobody sees.
The quick visitor predicts that the top will be the bottom
And the bottom will flatten and dive into the sea.
I want to tell her:
You will dine with the lobster king, and
You will dance with crabs clicking castanets. You will sleep-
Walk beyond the vestibule of sadness with a stranger
You have loved for years.

Everybody has a heartache — 

This silence in the noise of the terminal is a mountain of bison skulls.
Nobody knows, nobody sees — 
Unless the indigenous are dancing powwow all decked out in flash and beauty
We just don’t exist. We’ve been dispersed to an outlaw cowboy tale.
What were they thinking with all those guns and those handcuffs
In a size for babies?
They just don’t choose to remember.
We’re here.

In the terminal of stopped time I went unsteady to the beat,
Driven by a hungry spirit who is drunk with words and songs.
What can I do?
I have to take care of it.
The famished spirit eats fire, poetry, and rain; it only wants love.

I argue:

You want love?
Do you even know what it looks like, smells like?

But you cannot argue with hungry spirits.

I don’t know exactly where I’m going; I only know where I’ve been,
I want to tell the man who sifted through the wreck to find us here
In the blues shack of disappeared history — 
I feel the weight of his heart against my cheek.
His hand is on my back pulling me to him in the dark, to a place
No soldiers can reach.
I hear the whoop-cries of warriors calling fire for a stand
Against the brutality of forgetfulness — 

Everybody has a heartache — 

We will all find our way, no matter fire leaping through holes in jump time,
No matter earthquake, or the breaking of love spilling over the dreck of matter
In the ether, stacking one burden
Against the other — 

We have a heartache.

Awakening ~ Helena Wierzbicki ~ Pinterest

Please share a new poem using Mr. Linky below and visit others in the spirit of the community
 (next week Sumana's prompt will be ~ Weather)


  1. Hello everyone πŸ’ž I am so happy to be hosting the Midweek Motif this week .. feel free to write and go wherever your muse takes you! See you on the poetry trail 😊

    1. What an inspiring prompt, Sanaa! Thank you for standing in.

    2. Thank you so much, Susan 😘 so glad you liked it!πŸ’ž☕

  2. Congrats prompter Sanaa, will link in with my share later. A very happy Wednesday to all

    much love...

    1. Thank you so much, Gillena 😘😘 looking forward to reading your poem!πŸ’ž Happy Wednesday!☕

  3. A wonderful prompt, Sanaa, and an excellent poem by Joy Harjo. It was timely, as i was in tears watching the news, so it all came out in my poem.

    1. Thank you so much, Sherry!πŸ’ž I knew the moment I read the poem by Joy Harjo that I must share it with everyone 😊

  4. A beautiful prompt Sanaa. A wonderful selection of poems.

    1. Thank you so much, Sumana 😘 so glad you liked it!πŸ’ž☕

  5. Hello Poets, and thank you Sanaa for this challenging prompt. 😊

    1. And thank you for the lovely poem, Khaya!πŸ’ž☕

  6. What a great prompt Sanaa. I love the poems you selected too. You're doing such a good job as hostess.

    1. Thank you so much, Myrna 😊 I am so glad you liked them. Heading over to read you πŸ’ž☕

  7. Thank you for this inspirational prompt, Sanaa. I've managed to write a poem before going back to exam marking. Although I finished my quota, I was asked to continue marking, so I'm back to work tomorrow and probably right through the weekend. Just when I was looking forward to getting back into my writing routine...

    1. Loved the poem! Thank you so much for writing to the prompt, Kim πŸ˜ŠπŸ’ž☕

  8. A bit late, perhaps, in linking - but a great prompt, Sanaa. I had a lot of fun with it.

    1. It's never too late to link up for Midweek Motif😘 thank you so much for writing, Wendy!πŸ’ž☕

  9. Sanaa, thank you for this opportunity and for hosting Poets United!

    1. Thank you so much, Yvonne 😘 heading over to read you!πŸ’ž☕

  10. Apologies for coming so late to the party!

    1. Loved the poem, Rosemary 😘 thank you so much for writing to the prompt πŸ’ž☕

  11. Hello Sanaa- I had to ponder this prompt for awhile. Better late than never,I suppose. Thank you for hosting! For those in the USA, I hope you had a wonderful July 4th!


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