List (A Poem)


Sometimes I feel a weight in the world: it’s dreary

And I know it’s not just me.

Sometimes I see strain and grief pervading things

The ache and edge that all of this brings.

The effort it takes to wade through the pressure

Of comfort and wanting

Or striving and worrying.

Or the lonely stone that sits in the stomach

When misunderstanding prevails.

All of this weighs heavy.

So I made a list.

List of things that pierce the dreariness:

  1. Autumn leaves: yellow shot with green; red dissolving into amber; the curls and the smoothness; the points and the lines; the flurry in a bluster; the carpet gently kicked.
  2. Tall heron glimpsed in the mist, head darting towards the water.
  3. Birds calling under a blue sky: oystercatchers, gulls, curlews and sandpipers, their whistles and screeches and clicks somehow glorious and free, across the estuary.
  4. Homemade soup: the slow chopping of vegetables on the familiar wooden board; the handful of leaves or herbs thrown in; the fragrance filling the kitchen; the nourishing warmth; its flavour; its goodness; its simplicity.
  5. Geese cutting through the air: their flight wild and familiar, straight and far, a sign of the season, an announcement in the grey sky.
  6. The turning of the face toward the wind, or the rain, or the dark, winter night.
  7. Words on a page: a novel, a memoir, a poem, a song. Truth and spirit, courage and healing unleashed in bold, black curves and lines.
  8. Shells, collected in salty air: their myriad patterns and hues. The wonder of their stories of whirling ocean; calm pools; sunlight; lightning; depth; time and distance.
  9. People around a table: the lilting and jolting of conversation and laughter; plates emptying; time moving imperceptibly – significantly – in a love-filled room.
  10. The heart: its thoughts and memories; its grief and love; its courage and, mostly, its hope.

One Comment Add yours

  1. Olivia says:

    Thank you for sharing!

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