When I woke up this morning, the throbbing sensation was unmistakable. The kind of sensation that pulsates in the joints, in the head and in the heart.
The sensation was activated by pain sensory neurons, I am sure. Yet, it felt more than that. It was a sobering reminder of mortality, which led to this, a gut-wrenching poem that needed to be written.
Bear with me. It is not meant to be morose. On the contrary, it is meant to celebrate the past, the present and the reality of all futures. For just minutes taken away from my fingers busy as an aspiring novelist, I bowed to the wishes of my poetry muse.
WHEN I GO
No one needs to leave on my account;
I have been left too many times.
Not abandoned or neglected.
Just left behind,
when the Heavens called the names
of the love that nurtured, sustained
and delivered reality for the sake of my growth.
When I go, let me go.
But do not bury memories, images and
the love I gave; the love
that never suited everyone
it seemed. But it is my love to give,
the only love, the only way I knew.
When I go, do not bury me in the ground.
Let my spirit soar with the breeze
like a bird in the sky which sees the
land from up high.
Let my essence soak the earth
only in small dose just to be embraced
and reminded by the sands
of my childhood, the camino of
adulthood, the imperfections
of motherhood, sisterhood, and life
with my beloved.
When I go, let my ashes feel the warmth
of the Pacific Ocean, and the cold of the
Atlantic. They delighted me as I touched
waters of my past, and my future
at the time of chronic illness that changed
my body never to be the same again.
The throbbing pain wakes up the wrists, knees
and all the joints, small and large I took for granted.
The throbbing pain reminds how I lived,
how much I loved and how much I was loved.
You are free to let me go. I have been preparing
to see the face of the Divine
since the day I was told by an unfeeling
guardian of health that my life
would be shortened by the disease;
that I would be
crippled in no time. I defied the odds
seven years after that fated day.
I may be pained, but crippled?
Hardly. I meet my muse at
odd hours to dance to the beat
of poetry in my soul. I meet my beloved
on the pier at sunset, act of love that softens
any agony and raises the spirits. So, you see,
I lived after the diagnosis. I live
not as a disabled, but differently able.
When it is my time when I am called,
when I go, let me reach for the stars.
Let my fingers touch the words I’ve written
in poems that woke me up in the night, in stories
that nudged at all hours for capture of scenes
eager to be read in the novel that is taking shape.
I aim to give dignity to the dialogue, scenery and
life stirring in the pages of the book in my mind.
When I go, let me go with the song,
rhythms of which consoled the heart,
lit up the pages when my poems were born,
when the protagonists in my novel met, fated to love.
It is not yet time for me, but when I go,
I go with love; I leave you with love.
Poem ©Lu Sobredo::July 1, 2020
My life as an aspiring novelist.
Photo ©James Sobredo, June 28, 2020
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
About the Author
Lu Sobredo is writer/publisher at Lu Travels Abroad, a blog dedicated to folks whose limitations do not hamper them from traveling. A year into early retirement her world collapsed from the diagnosis of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). Her total life changed, but she did not let RA define her. With love from family, friends and an awesome doctor, she regained some functionality--her new normal. She will have RA all her life. And she now writes about life and travel with RA. During the pandemic of 2020, she stays put and writes poetry and a first novel, a travel of sorts but in the heart and mind.