Poem · Poetry

Still You

Oh, yes,

The seasons come and go,

bringing new ways

of being.

Sometimes you shine with new growth,

literally bursting at the seams –

brilliant in shiny young green.

And then there are the periods

when what is not needed

must fall away –

the colors indicating

how bold you are

to face the loss

of what is attached.

And yet,

through it all –

despite how the winds have shaken you,

or how crowded your field has become,

you remain.

Your roots run deep,

they grasp, expand,

and strengthen

as your rings widen.

Your center

is deeply connected to the eternal.

So, my friend,

the lesson here

is to understand at your core

that though the changes come –

whether welcomed,

or not,

you are not the changes.

You are

still you.

 

Copyright © Cynthia Cady Stanton, 2017

Image created by my sister, Martha Harris

Autumn Tree by Martha

Poem · Poetry

Interdisciplinary

 

It takes all of us
to bring you home;
to follow your lead
while you demonstrate what you need –
how we can help.
Sometimes you don’t know.
After all,
this is a first for you.
We understand.
So we show you the way.

At first,
it is all about the pain
in all its potential forms
and impact.
Then it is
all about the Love –
given and received
over a lifetime
and in this moment.
We help unwrap
how Love endures
through it all.

We have travelled this road
with so many.
But no one is
exactly like you.

We are here.
Right next to you.
Each of us tasked
with a different
aspect of you –
the whole picture of you
and the life you were given.

As witnesses to your
soul’s journey,
we catch merely a glimpse
of the mystery
ahead
that calls to us all.
Thank you for that.
The comfort flows both ways.

We will never forget you.

Copyright © Cynthia Cady Stanton, 2017

healing hands heart image

Poem · Poetry · Uncategorized

Breathing Rare Air

 

“I don’t think you can see it,”
said my love one day
during one of our connecting moments
when he gently dared
to pull away my self-imposed blinders.
“You are too close to it.”

He may be right.
Maybe I don’t see it,
this reality that few get to be in.

I work in a strange land,
a land of life
and a land of death.
The terrain is sometimes rocky and treacherous,
sometimes peaceful,
always momentous.
Every day I am in the midst
of the end
and the beginning,
all wrapped up in the movement of breath
and the wrenching of hearts.
I get to witness this,
over and over.
And my love does not see
how I can do this.

I breathe rare air.
It is the air of final breaths,
filled with spaces, longing, regrets,
love and letting go.
On a daily basis,
I am next to bodies as they sputter to a stop.
I take in the worn faces and the withered forms
barely taking up space.
I breathe this rare air.
The air of souls bursting to be free.
I hear the sounds
and smell the smells.
I breathe rare air.

You may wonder what this does to me,
this rarified experience.
I wonder, too.
Is this death I witness contagious?
Will my disappearing act be hastened
because I am seemingly comfortable
in this strange land?

I think not.

If anything,
entering this territory on a daily basis
is an invitation.
A chance to truly see.
With eyes wide open to what lies ahead,
there is no pretending.
No glossing over or dodging the truth.
I will end one day,
or, at least my body will.
There is no covering this over
with any effort to avert it,
whether it is in being as healthy as I can be,
or in avoiding what needs attending
before it is too late.

No.

Working with the dying
and breathing this rare air,
has opened me up in ways
beyond my comprehension.
I am being changed.
How could I not be?
All I know now
is that with each inhale of this experience,
my tightly bound heart
unwraps a little more.
I am softening.
And here is the nub of it:
I am getting a head start
on letting go
of all that does not matter.
I am being schooled in death bed academics
and I intend to be a straight A student.
So, maybe working with the dying
and breathing this rare air
IS contagious
because in learning to let go now,
and do the work before me,
my death can be more beautiful
when my time comes,
and my loved ones
more at peace.

breathe

Copyright@2017 Cynthia Cady Stanton

Poem · Poetry

I Am Not My Body

I am not my body.
I am not the wrinkles around my eyes,
nor am I the deep lines forming under my nose.
I am not the softening of my belly that is thickening my waist and
now spilling over my waistbands.
I am not the annoying chin hairs cropping up.
Every time I look in the mirror,
I notice the things I am not.
My eye goes right to anything that screams aging at me,
especially my now droopy neck.
Or the brown spots forming on my face and hands.
“Damn it!” I say to myself.
“I am getting old.”
And I turn away in disgust.

But I am not even the parts of my body that I like.
I am not my pretty blue eyes.
I am not my fit arms or my perky ass.
I am not my feminine hands
nor am I my white teeth
and nice color treated hair.

I am not the bad,
I am not the good.
I am not my body.

I am much more than what I see in a mirror.
I am more than how my clothes feel on me.
I am more than any pain, any tension or ache.
I am more.
I go deeper than all that.
I am larger and more expansive than any image I see as I walk past a mirror,
or window.
I am above and below the skin
I am not the skin.
I am the spirit that gives my body life.
I am the sparkle in my eyes,
the warmth in my voice.
I am the tenderness in my touch.
I am the deep tones of my hearty giggle.
I am the strength behind a sincere embrace.

I am made of stardust.
I am connected deeply to all living beings.
I am energy.
And most of all,
I am divine love expressed.

I am not my body but
I live in my body.
My body may be weathering on the outside
just like any home would.
The paint may be flaking
but a warm light burns within.
A house is not a home
without that inward glow.
Shine on.

Copyright© 2017 Cynthia Cady Stanton

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