A Faraway Place, By Jennifer Angelina Petro

A Faraway Place

For Shannon

By

Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

She nods politely, smiling dutiful smiles at the nurses

As she walks outside into the yard where patients are permitted

To take in some silent sun;

 

She finds the bench she thinks is her favorite—

The one nearest the gate post; she sits, closes her eyes,

Inhales deeply until she grows still as a summer afternoon;

 

Inside she moves from garden to infinite garden, like

A hummingbird—her wings invisible in the honeysuckle atmosphere,

Her memories lifting, one by one, like so many pink petals

From the weeping cherry.

 

Where does the hummingbird go after it startles from the trumpet flower,

And vanishes, like retreating emerald lightning,

Back into the sky?

 

There are difficult questions and difficult answers, except here—

For when she lifts from her body, she will rise, dancing

In the weeping cherry petals letting go into the sun,

And one by one, her memories will return, like so many lost children,

And she will stand among them, arms open, welcoming them home.

 

 

 


 

 

Donations for this post will go to an Alzheimer’s foundation


It All Starts With a Question

It All Starts With a Question
By
Jennifer Angelina Petro

 

 

 

 

It all starts with a question.

Somehow, someway it gets spoken

Or simply lifts into your life, like

Morning.  Either way

It appears and your life changes.

Perhaps it sings into your life, like

Morning birds that say:

“Flock! Tree!  Let’s Go!

Stay! Sun! Fly! Wings!”

Maybe it gets puzzled up in chatter.

Perhaps it crashes into your life, like

A tree branch through your roof.

Perhaps it stands unspoken for years

In a corner of the room, like

A lamp without a lightbulb.

Perhaps it drifts into your awareness, like

The fragrance of morning coffee,

Old books, or the air just before rain,

No matter how or when it arrives,

The thing to do is to remember:

There is a quest in every question.

And sometimes questions

Need to be followed casually, like

A child on a walk in the woods,

And sometimes questions need to be pursued, like

A lost child in a carnival.

And sometimes questions simply need

To be acknowledged, and the answers

Pale in comparison to the fact

That you were finally able to ask whatever it was

You so desperately needed to ask.

And sometimes the answer is so utterly everyday

You miss it, like a stop sign or a dandelion—

At least I do–

And sometimes the question and the answer

Arise together, like

The butterfly in the cocoon,

Or the bird in the egg,

Or acceptance in the sorrow,

And sometimes…sometimes,

It all ends with a question,

And when it does,

The thing to do is to remember:

There is a quest in every question,

And no quest is ever deemed unworthy

Simply because the end winds up being

Another beginning, or the “X marks the spot”

Ends up being the very place

Where your knees touch the ground

Or your eyes search the sky,

And no quest, no matter what

Any staunch individualist says

Is ever meant to be traveled alone.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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