~by Marsha

Mormon woman writes poetry about holiday loneliness with divorceThis poem was written at what was a difficult time, four months before my first husband left after 22 years of marriage. The holidays were difficult for several years until I regained my focus and realized that the holiday was about celebrating what I did have, not what I did not. It was a shift in consciousness that allowed me to once again enjoy.

However, I am also keenly aware that for those in a similar situation, grieving also must occur. Feeling that you ‘shouldn’t’ feel this way isn’t any more productive than denying that you do and pushing through the grief and loneliness.

For me, writing was cathartic. It put in front of me the words of my despair, my need, my hope, and my knowledge that somewhere, sometime out there there would be something better than ‘this,’ where I was.

To those who may be grieving at this time of year, perhaps the most encouraging thing I could share would be the understanding that wherever the loneliness sits at the moment, it doesn’t mean it will always be there, even when it feels like it.  Embracing the love that already surrounds you, recognizing the deep longing, and hoping for a time when happiness will again reside was for me the greatest comfort.  “And it came to pass. . . ” — not to stay.

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Whispers of the Season,
Reflections of the past,
Desires for the future
Bound and held so fast
Against the weary memory
And the green and red hued fray,
Thoughts adrift in misery,
Bound in stress of day.

Tucked amidst the green
Of the merry Christmas tree
Will there be found within a bough
A wish or two for me?

Closing eyes so very tight,
Holding breath against the fear
That Santa has nothing in his sack
To bring relief or cure
For what desires lay hidden
And what sweet passions die
Deeply in a woman’s soul
Expressed in murmured sigh.

Is there a word unqualified,
Acceptance without question
Or the softest feathered touch from one
Who finds my company spun;
With laughter and sweetened muse,
Passion’s dark bold embrace,
Intelligence and confided lore
Smiles upon a tear-stained face.

Tentative vulnerablity,
Giggles of secrets shared,
Inspiration’s’ electricity
Desires subtly compared,
The avid focus of attentive eyes
From one who feels the same?

Look within and see the shadows
Faintest flutters exclaim,
There is a heart unfettered,
Bathed in my name’s echoed cry,
And in enchanted evenings
A baby’s lullaby.

Tell me it be possible
There is one other soul
Bound with whispered dreams
Unequaled, complete and whole.

Is there fashioned another
That will with me share,
Glistening poinsettias, silver bells,
Into a glowing fireplace stare?

I don’t believe that elves have packed
Santa’s bag with things I write
Or that he is aware of the pull
Of scented flickering candlelight.

Shimmering in magical Christmas mist
Does Mrs Santa hint so blissful,
Of limpid pools of breathless wonder
When miracles are possible?

If she does, there may be a chance,
Slim perhaps but still,
Perchance there is something
In Father Christmas’ fill
For a lady with a silent wish
Who can’t quite abandon hope
That one day somewhere amongst the tinsel
And the unsealed envelopes
There will be an unwrapped gift
Tucked in the gleaming holiday decor
The marvelous breathtaking surprise
Of simply being adored.

© Marsha Rose Steed Keller 12/01