Monday, November 28, 2016

The Ghost Lady & Me



author’s note:

While rewriting this poem, I realized I'd written yet another Sisyphus tale.


THE GHOST LADY & ME

Legend tells us
each night the ghost lady
ascends this hotel stairway

and with every step, she struggles
to understand
the reason for her loss

so when she finally reaches
the top landing
the lady feels such relief--
a moment of peace...

but then she gazes down
and vertigo again overwhelms her--
once again she loses balance
once again she tumbles down--
all the way back down
to the bottom floor

to die, once more.

I mention
the ghost lady's story
because it mirrors my own:

like her, I've worked
to release my pain
and though I've often elevated
my perspective...

I can't maintain--

I've slipped and fallen
again and again and again

however
that moment of vision
before the fall
--that brief reprieve
motivates me
to pick myself back up

and if I need an extra lift
I tell myself:
yes, you continue to trip
but your legs grow stronger
with every step


and if I need
an even bigger lift...
I imagine the day
when I am able
to look down
from the top of the stairway
and remain stable
in my balance--
solid on my feet
because I've finally accepted
all of what I see.

Yes, today
I feel quite weak
yet I still believe--

consider this:
no one at the hotel
has witnessed
the ghost lady lately--

apparently, she's moved on

and if she can, so can I
...so can we.


© 2016, Michael R. Patton
My War for Peace: a book

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