To Glory

Broken brown leaves
litter the path from my door.

As I breathe the air today
I see myself leaving,

taking nothing with me.
I have said goodbye to

the saved greeting cards,
to the treasured lines of poetry

scratched on scraps.
The fragments of lover’s gifts,

shards of childhood memories
I’ve thrust into the hands of others

for them to keep or destroy.
In my house I leave behind memories

of children’s voices, Christmas carols,
parties,  sadness, sickness,

visitors, ghosts of pets who shared
days in the now silent rooms.

What I’ve gathered from moon and sun
I’ll take with me on my journey through

cosmic dust. I face light and darkness
ahead with the self I’ve learned to love.

© Gay Reiser Cannon * Nov.2011 * All Rights Reserved

“The only journey is the journey within.”
Rainer Maria Rilke

“And you? When will you begin your long  journey into yourself?”
Rumi

Posted for OLN @dVersePoets on 11/8/2011

dVersePoets on 11/8/2011

38 thoughts on “To Glory

  1. with the self i have learned to love…that is an awesome thing…because light and darkness will come…and to think otherwise fools no one…but yourself….and some really great textures through out this gay!

    • Thanks Brian. I am working toward simplifying my poetry to elemental basics, shunning devices, moving to minimalism to express depth. It seems to have delivered the message. Hope it’s also poetic.

    • Libby, I had you in mind as I wrote it. I am so pleased you commented. Do you think it fulfills my goals? I was aiming for that cleanliness of line and truthfulness of thought I always find in your work. No artifice, no devices, the work standing for itself and yet somehow poetic. Your voice does this so well and I admire that. It is something I continue to strive to do. Do you think I should compress even more? I wanted something of self left behind.

  2. awesome rilke quote and awesome poem gay..
    What I’ve gathered from moon and sun
    I’ll take with me on my journey through

    cosmic dust. I face light and darkness
    ahead with the self I’ve learned to love…we need to learn to love the self, don’t we…and the journey we do inside is the most important of all..

  3. The slow long goodbye–but some baggage is just too much to carry on that inward, onward hike, sometimes even a line of poetry or old photo. Bittersweet and beautiful, Gay.

  4. Love these lines:

    “What I’ve gathered from moon and sun
    I’ll take with me on my journey through

    cosmic dust. I face light and darkness
    ahead with the self I’ve learned to love.”

    Beautiful poem. Recently I was thinking about life as a series of leavings…but the leaving always makes way for a new beginning…that journey you talk about. love the Rilke and Rumi quotes.

  5. Gay…my heart cries with this write. Not sure if that was its intent, but as one who not that long ago walked away from her dream home…one who is still doing her best to keep her chin up and not dwell on what was…oh dear…might have to take a break from commenting and let my unpoet human self regain composure! And please don’t go too minimal with your work…you have such a gift!

  6. It leaves me wondering about my mother and mother-in-law who are both shedding treasured things. I do hope and pray that the inward journey bears more weight than the “items” of sentimentality. This was tight and delivered well.

  7. RE: Your note to Brian

    I am so glad to see you moving in this direction with your poetry!. The impact of one’s words can often get lost in all the grandiloquence that many poets, for some reason, seem to deem necessary.

  8. I love your poems Gay, they are light and easy to understand for a beginner like me, but as I learn to understand them, they are deeper than I could fathom. I hope you understand what I’m saying :)

  9. A lovely journey, my friend. Through life, and death; it resonates bittersweet right straight to this poet’s heart, though I daresay it should for any human heart. Such a gripper of an ending – those final words pack such a beautiful emotional, and reflective quality.

    Fine quotes to end on as well.

  10. I have walked this road .. it’s a beautiful journey and those scraps and such are interwoven in the new steps..

    truly a wonderful poem..

  11. Thank you guys. I’ll be around tomorrow to read things I’m missing tonight. My internet time is hit and miss these days. Truly inspiring and wonderful comments. Very much appreciated.

  12. Dear Gay

    What a beautiful verse.. and you summed it up so nicely in the end…. Lovely…
    Some of the memories of love, and being loved… do not need to be carried.. but the learning from it all.. as a whole.. as you say…

    “What I’ve gathered from moon and sun
    I’ll take with me on my journey through

    cosmic dust. I face light and darkness
    ahead with the self I’ve learned to love.”

    … in the end, we have love within us that needs to shine through to be the love in our life.. in others… around us.. and that is what we all need to learn… and then carry on the journey forward…

    Thanks for sharing love…

    Shashi
    ॐ नमः शिवाय
    Om Namah Shivaya
    http://shadowdancingwithmind.blogspot.com/2011/11/whispers-tears-in-rain.html

  13. not all can be taken along when one begins a journey, but one’s own self shall walk every mile, an understanding between the two is essential. Good to know no conflict.

  14. This has a great, clean voice. So transparent and personal without excess ornament and sentimentality. Based on what you say you’re working toward in your writing, I’d call this a success. Very fine poem.

  15. Touching poetry, to find the peace within to let go of the things that seem to define the days (past and present). Makes me feel wistful because it takes me through these steps in my own life, many I have yet to reach. Wonderful.

  16. Oh, a beautiful poem, Gay

    Striking in it’s intensity and focus. There is a tauntness that is very fetching here….right and proper.

    You have learned something that many poets don’t so easily: You have demonstrated that we can get across very well, nicely, with fewer words: we don’t dilute the impact of what we are trying to say by trying to cover all bases…we let the words have space to breathe.

    Perhaps this is what Japanese literature, poetry has taught me the most: the beauty in a concept drawn simply.

    Lovely, Gay.

    Lady Nyo

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