After You Left

Shortly after we dropped our daughter off at her new college dorm she asked if I missed her. In response I sent her the 14 poems I had written to help me cope with her leaving. Later these poems became the seed that grew into my book Letting Go and New Beginnings: A Mother’s Poetic Journey.I also included the poems from when her older brother went off to college and photographs I took of the campus. I realized that when one phase of life ends, another begins and those poems are part of the story as well.

I thought it was finished in 2006, but more poems came when our two children returned home like many of their generation. All of us were adjusted to our separate lives and had to adjust to living together. And then, once again, the leaving.

It is a mystery why certain poems pop into my head years later, but this one has been quite insistent lately. Perhaps it is the opening lines…

For you, here is this poem from Letting Go and New Beginnings:

2/24/08

After You Left

Constantly
I am watching out for you.
Even when I am not watching,
I am watching.

I cannot say why this is true
or when it began,
it feels like forever
my love.

So do me a great favor
and become…not less carefree
nor less careless,
nor even more careful,

for being full of care
is not it exactly.
Be more aware of your choices,
more in tune with your inner wisdom.

For you are wise
dear one.

And if I am selfish
and want you to stay with me
when it is clearly time to go,
forgive…

and go.
Call me when you arrive.
I will be waiting.

Margaret Dubay Mikus
Copyright 2008

Self-Kindness

Self-Kindness

For a dear friend (and me)

To let yourself
be yourself
even encourage those aspects
that have been hidden
to come into the sun
even those facets you thought
you could reveal to no one.

To baptize the whole
with kindness
that is enough
you are enough
on your chosen journey
of loving acceptance.
Be gentle and kind to you as if

you were someone else.
Remember you cannot give
from your essence
depleting your core strength
but only from your excess.
So practice just this one thing:
self-kindness

to build the reserves
from which you can draw
in service.

Margaret Dubay Mikus
© 2014

This poem ends my book, Thrown Again into the Frazzle Machine: Poems of Grace, Hope, and Healing. It has been popping into my head for a week, so here it is. For me to remember…and maybe you too?

THROWN AGAIN into the FRAZZLE MACHINE: Poems of Grace, Hope, and Healing

Another Day

4/14/20

Another day
another news briefing
depending on who says
the weight of it all
heavy or heavier
in the daily fog
of uncertainty

I am choosing
and again and again
to mostly not listen
not in denial
head in the sand
but in determination
to not drown

Margaret Dubay Mikus
© 2020

Every day trying to find the balance between knowing enough, but not too much. Perhaps you too?

The Bridge

Bridge Reflection, from my Life Support Cards (TM)

9/25/20

The Bridge

Way back
I would stand on the bridge
or stand by the river
and throw petals on the water
letting my troubles float
downstream.

It was a relief
I often sought
the peace, the beauty
the soft insistent water
sometimes higher level, sometimes lower.
I no longer remember

the last time I went
or why I stopped going
why that place of solace
ceased to bring comfort
but though I still live near
I never go there.

Margaret Dubay Mikus
© 2020

I wanted to post a poem that was not about chaotic current events, but reflection. Maybe some peace and calm.

Tulips and Grape Hyacinth, on the Bridge, from my Life Support Cards (TM)

Amanda Palmer: Song in Progress

10/18/17

Amanda Palmer: Song in Process

what do you most fear, part 2

Every fear
ever invented
is stuck in
someone’s throat
as if
everything is darkness

All the fears
loneliness, isolation
not-enoughness
the doom of the times
we seem to be in
and yet…

on the good days
we breathe
on the good days
sun shines or rain
falls on the wild fires
on the good days
we can sleep and wake
before we remember fear

And the bad days
we all have
we won’t speak of here
but to acknowledge them
as part of universal life

As I scroll down this list
of over a thousand comments
not reading each word
but blessing each
vulnerable human

who took the time
to write on the chance
it would matter
to someone reading
or someone praying
or someone writing a song.

Margaret Dubay Mikus
© 2017

IL Route 22, Sept. 2017, copyright MDMikus