When I Live By the Garden and the Sea

A friend challenged our writing group to write and read poetry this month, and while I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with poetry (how do you write poems?!?!), I decided to jump into the challenge. I’ve written a few things that need some editing, but I also went back and read through some more poetry I wrote in college and in recent years. I’m actually surprised to find I don’t hate my poetry. I’m not claiming to be a genius or anything, but I like some of what I have. So here’s another prose poem I wrote at some point that I like.

Optimism at its finest is what drags me through life by a thick red rope, saving me from destructive ends like Rahab’s scarlet cord. The boiled down blackness that brims on the edge of tears and hopeless thoughts is clouded over with chalky white nebula spread across the bright blue sky that makes me think of foamy waves in the ocean. All I needs is a purple octopus to give me a wave of his tentacle among the waves of ocean’s depths. But I can soar free among those chalk clouds and feel free from the sticky tar pit of inner thoughts. Who said fun and games have to stop when life gets hard? I need—no, I crave—the innocence of a child clutching my finger with all five of his. I need laughter—stupid laughter that can only be described as utterly dumb and breathlessly alive. I need the fantasy, the hope, the things otherworldly to grab on and pull me away from those secret vaults of the twisted labyrinths in my mind. Because without optimism the monsters return and they demand my source of life—the beating my heart.

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