Childhood

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CHILDHOOD

Chair in the corner of the dining room,

and Daddy sitting in it, and only the orange glow from the ashes,

and gray puffs of smoke,

gave any signal of human presence.

Otherwise it was just the darkness and a chair in the corner,

otherwise it was just daddy in the dark and all alone.

I watched the firelight from the cigarette, as a child,

and wondered why the night was so black,

and why Daddy was so alone, and why voices rang out in the night.

I thought of Mama in the next room sleeping,

and I wondered why I was so small, and why Mama and Daddy never laughed.

And I felt like the night, cold,

and like Daddy,

and like Mama.

so all alone.

Copyright 2019, Jenny W. Andrews

 

My poetry book “Life at the End of the Rainbow” is currently available at Amazon/Kindle. I would love to hear any feedback about my poetry. Thanks.

-Jenny

 

Perspective

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This is the first time in about a month that I have sat down and wrote anything.

About five years ago I moved into my new house and left boxes of my old diaries in the garage. Fear of revisiting the past kept me from looking into those pages written so long ago. Almost forty years of my life is documented in those small diaries.

After I celebrated a milestone birthday, I decided to clear out the clutter and organize my diaries by year and put them in pretty photo boxes I bought at a craft store. I labeled the boxes by years. From being a young adult intoxicated by the promise of love to a middle aged woman disappointed by dreams that disintegrated in mid-air, I feel shocked by the power of love, the profound depth of despair, the soul-crushing weight of  betrayal, the mind-numbing repetition of mistakes, and the power of God’s redemption and grace, that have encompassed my existence on this earth.

Why was I so afraid to revisit that long ago world that I had once inhabited?

Fear that I would be reminded of all those dreams that never came true? Fear that I would be reminded of that one love I walked away from and while doing so I knew I would regret it for the rest of my life? Fear that I would be able to connect the dots in that web of deception that my youth had blinded me to? Fear that in retrospect I would hear the whisper of my own voice and get swallowed up by the sorrow over my own voicelessness?

I have spent the past four weeks reading through my diaries. At times, I have cried; at times, I have laughed. I honestly cannot believe that I was that young once. I honestly cannot  believe that I had been so very trusting. I cannot believe the courage that God granted me in the face of the sorrow; I cannot believe the strength that He fortified me with. In retrospect, this life that God has blessed me with is a miracle; it is a miracle that I am still standing after all the sorrow, hurt, loss, and darkness.

Yes, I have taken my diaries and put them in photo boxes and organized them by year. I plan to work on my memoir this coming week. I plan to get back to my writing. I feel in my heart that God has given me the gift of words. He has shown me that I need to extend compassion to myself. He has shown me that the passage of time is a learning experience. He has shown me that His hand is always upon me no matter how dark the night.

Copyright 2019 Jenny W. Andrews

 

 

 

I Stepped Away

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I Stepped Away

Dream, haunting, hunted me down, dark of night.

No longer afraid of that place, it moves faraway on a fast fall down a tunnel, black hole, slippery hand lets go.

I turn away from the dark; life lights up like the break of day.

I can never be who I used to be. 

Climbed, crawled out of the tunnel-sealed it with a kick. My foot print emblazoned in that dark place at the edge of the abyss.

I stepped away.

Jenny W. Andrews, Copyright 2019. All Rights reserved.

Between Two Bridges

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Between Two Bridges

Like a ghost I haunt these spaces, living here between two bridges.

Boardwalk beneath my feet, sags, cracks.

Been in this space too long, just now I have noticed the grime; jarred awake too late to backtrack my steps.

Spring afternoon, sunlight repeats itself, like me in my weakness.

Trapped, I am between these two bridges.

River moves on, connects endless streams-but, me, I sink back, drown my dreams.

Incapable I am of freeing myself, unable to move on.

Stationary, trapped here like steel girders, the pressure bearing down, pulling me to the bottom.

I look into the currents-the river oblivious to me continue to move.

Trapped, I am between these two bridges.

Like a ghost, I haunt this space, incapable of moving forward.

Like the river.

Jenny W. Andrews Copyright 2019 (Original copyright 2018). All Rights Reserved.

My Psalm

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My Psalm

God has blessed me with the greatest gifts; butterflies’ orange and gold wings fluttering along yellow rose petals against sun dappled days.

Late afternoons, warm breezes refreshing me, reviving me.

God has blessed me with love, with memories like precious jewels that sparkle and remind me of endless October days that God in His Grace has given me one more day.

Another hour, another chance to see the sun rise, split the orange and lavender sky.

God has remembered me with millions of miracles that my human eyes have been unable to see.

He has filled this frail vessel with breath, blood, passion, and a soul that hungers, yearns, fails, succeeds, doubts, believes.

God has laid his hand upon me, called me out of the multitudes, called me back to Him.

He has loved me,

even when I turned and ran from Him.

He has gathered me to Himself like I am a wounded child.

He has known my sorrows. He has seen my darkest hours and He has shone a candle in the shadows.

He has lifted me up and He has restored me.  He has loved me; he has forgiven me.

He has given me one more day to get it right, to enjoy the sunlight peeking through the trees.

God has loved me; he has been good to  me.

He is my God; God of all eternity.

Copyright 2019 Jenny W. Andrews. All rights reserved

Sanctuary

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Sanctuary

That moment, the moment you seeped into my soul like poison,

an injection of you.

You shone like a multifaceted jewel, smooth like velvet spilling into velvety darkness.

I, I needed an anchor in the darkness, and you were what reached for me.

And I knowing better reached back.

Now,

when it feels too late,

I recoil from the sting.

Poisoned,

I am.

Your shadow hovers like impending death.

Trapped,

I am and I don’t know how to free myself.

Copyright 2019 (original copyright 2009). Jenny W. Andrews. All rights reserved.