Invite Fear to Tea

Sally Barris, in her lovely concert at WFMT in Chicago last Saturday night, sang a song that reminded me of this poem of mine. I wrote it at a rapidly changing, chaotic time in my life when fear felt particularly dominant. I was considering how to neutralize fear’s hold over me. (The second poem was the very next one I wrote, a vivid description you might recognize.)

How much power do you give up to fear, repressing, denying or pushing it under? What if we could…


Invite Fear to Tea

What would it look like, feel like,
to invite fear to tea,
warily circle, then sit, sipping?
No judgment, no struggle,

only acknowledgment and being with,
not to understand or accommodate
or even talk with,
not to lessen or wrestle with.

Just to sit, sipping tea,
graciously, neutrally,
looking eye into eye,
quite normally.

Invite fear to tea,
sit down naturally,
calmly, not as with an enemy,
engage in social niceties:

Sugar? One lump or two? Milk or lemon?
Glance away thoughtful,
not stare or press for conversation,
not in curiosity, not in capitulation.

If ever I could…

Margaret Dubay Mikus
© 2005
On my CD, “Full Blooming

And the next poem:

The Edge

Too much has changed
to find the old balance.
As I try to move back,
spikes shred my tires.

The edge of the cliff
is not where I left it.
Can you wonder why
I keep falling off?

Margaret Dubay Mikus
© 2005

One of the most powerful ways I currently deal with fear was suggested in a Facebook post I read a few months ago. It is an affirmation: “I am free from…” fill in the blank with whatever is troubling you. So in this case I say (aloud or to myself): “I am free from fear” or “I am free of fear.” Immediately I feel much lighter. A way of stating a fervent intention. It may seem too easy, but it is easy enough to do the experiment. Let me know how it goes.

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2 thoughts on “Invite Fear to Tea

  1. Midge

    Dear Margaret, What a lovely visual…sipping tea with fear. .. I will try that. And thank you for referencing the FB post of ” I am free from fear of…” I made a screen shot of the post and refer to it frequently as my brain seems to have developed a black hole.
    Keep writing dear friend!

    BTW, we will not be at Folk Stage tomorrow night as Frank is still ill with a bad cold and uncontrollable cough. He is better than last week, but still not healed.


    1. Margaret Dubay Mikus Post author

      Thank you, Midge! Do you remember who originally posted that affirmation? I just used it to help the anxiety in anticipation of my recent checkup (routine and all good). “I am free from fear.” Definitely helped me. I hope Frank feels better soon. Seems like a lot of respiratory stuff is going around. I will feel like I’m getting sick, but then shake it off. So far so good. See you for lunch.

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