The Invitation – A Trenta Sei

Invitation hung overhead

Immobilized, I can only stare

Insistence dressed in red

Urging me to take the dare

What will happen if I open

Adventures to make my heart soften

Immobilized, I can only stare

Yet slowly, my hand grabs the prize

My heartbeat skips as I tear

Deliberate actions, my disguise

With breath held, my eyes scan

An exhale discovers the grand plan

Insistence dressed in red

Has worn me down to my delight

Tickets and suitcase are on the bed

Hurry, pack then catch the flight

No need to bring so much stuff

A dress and a dream will be enough

Urging me to take the dare

My furrowed brow contrasts your smile

You grab the bag and my hand with care

I hope my trust is not juvenile

This trip, a leap, my fear returns

Should I deny my heart that yearns?

What will happen if I open

This door to a place unknown

What will it say on my coffin

If they knew that I had thrown

An opportunity to transcend my fear

What will I find in a different hemisphere?

Adventures to make my heart soften

To see, eat and feel something new

This dream I have had often

So fears – I bid you adieu 

With love and trust I spread my wings

Ready for the adventure this invitation brings

Image credit: Simona Sergi @ Unsplash. For the visually challenged reader, this image shows an envelope hanging by a white tread. In the background there is a house entrance.

Image credit: Timur Kozmenko. For the visually challenged reader, this is an image of a girl dressed in a red swirling frock walking towards open gates. The gates are very tall and appear to be Asian in origin. From the open gate you can see mountains visible through a cloudy sky.

Sometimes you see or read or hear something that you know would make a good poem or a good story, yet it doesn’t coalesce until something else brings it together. This was the case for me with this poem. Sadje had two beautiful pictures for her What do you see #64 and What do you see #65 (links are to her round-up posts so you can read all the wonderful submissions for these prompts). I loved the pop of red in each picture! The pictures seemed to be connected and, since I missed the deadline for the first prompt, I wanted to bring their stories together for this past week. Alas, the words and ideas were not fitting together.

I had almost given up when I ran across an unfamiliar poetry form called the “trenta sei” introduced by Donna Matthews at the Go Dog Go Cafe. Viola! The story came together and I think the cascade feature of the trenta sei form really worked with this poem.

Fear, bravery and prudence have been themes that we’ve discussed as a family during this pandemic time. We don’t want to live our lives in fear of this coronavirus, however should we be brave and risk getting sick or practice prudence and abide with all the pandemic precautions? I know every family has to take their own individual circumstances into consideration, yet it makes it difficult when my definition of bravery or prudence conflicts with someone else’s. For example, my kids have been asking about play dates because their friends are now going on play dates. But unless the playdates are outside with masks, my answer has been no – it’s winter so unfortunately for my kids….(sigh)….

What I wouldn’t give to get back the days when being brave meant trying the level 7 spice instead of the level 3 or signing up for that ballroom dancing class or traveling to a new and different part of the world…

©️ 2021 iido

My Greatest Fear

This post was inspired by the Go Dog Go Tuesday Writing prompt: write an acrostic poem that spells out your greatest fear. Wow. Good thing my greatest fear isn’t disclosing too much or being too vulnerable. Seriously.

I had to think about this a lot – what am I afraid of? Not any type of animal or insect (although I will scream if it means someone else will do the dirty deed of killing the latter). Not really any activity although I’m not thrilled about things that involve heights especially if I’m being dangled on said heights with just nylon between me and the swan dive of death. Thinking of death, I don’t feel afraid of dying either. It happens to us all. Dealing with loss – I’m surviving that.

I remember a moment after giving birth to my twins, Lucas and Larissa, when they were only 22 weeks old – just a week shy of the “age of viability”. The doctor told me, “They’re really small and at this stage of gestation, they only have a 50/50 chance to live. Do you still want us to do everything we can to save them?” My answer, of course, “Yes – anything, everything!” My children didn’t survive, but it was at that moment that I thought to myself, “If I had to die so my children would live, would I be willing to die for them?”

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My Greatest Fear

Crying will not help

Only sacrifice

Will be enough

Am I enough?

Realizing that

Death is an option

I am afraid

Courage escapes me

Eternity will know I failed

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What I really fear is being a coward – being afraid and not standing up or speaking out when I need to, especially when it comes to protecting my children or others who I care about. It’s being afraid to make the ultimate sacrifice if it comes down to me or family/friends.

I know people have given their lives to protect others – as part of their job or because they felt compelled to. I know people put their lives at risk to speak out for those who are unable to. I know people intervene when they see injustice or see others getting hurt.

I am afraid that when the time comes, I will not be one of those people. I will cower in my comfortable life and leave the heavy lifting for others to do. I am afraid deep down inside of showing the world how much of a coward I really am.

Although, when it’s written as an acrostic poem, it doesn’t seem so scary….

Sola 

My recent post about my self-professed “fish love of running” has stayed in my mind since I posted it. If you know me IRL, you know that I am not a natural runner. I only started running when I was 30 so it’s been only about 13 years since I laced up my first pair of running shoes.

This week, I did a couple of quick miles while my girls were at their horse back riding lesson (yes, I am living vicariously through them – what little girl didn’t go through a horse obsession?).

The spirit of grace and speed…oh yes, and there are horses in the picture too! 🤣

It was my first sola run in a long time, probably almost a year since we moved to our new locale. As much as I love running with my group #MRTT, having this time for myself was something I didn’t realize I was missing.

When I first started running, I ran exclusively alone. I was worried about being slow and didn’t want anyone witnessing my walking or jiggly body parts. As I was able to run farther and faster and became more confident, I joined my local running group and realized the awesomeness that is the group run. Now, I usually always run with my MRTT group and do stuff like this:

#sportsbrasquad #mrttbodsquad

Running has definitely given me the gift of confidence not just in my body but in mind and spirit.

And that’s something I really need right now.

As lovely as the farmland surrounding me during this run, I couldn’t help but think of the people living in the area who might not welcome me running through, who would think of me as “other” and attribute any number of negative qualities based on my skin and facial features. Would they even see me as “just” a runner? I couldn’t decide whether I should try to run faster for safety or run slower to prove that I, too, deserve to be here.

As my footsteps found their rhythm, my breathing became my focus and I was finally able to enjoy my run. This is the second best gift I have received from running: the ability to have a few moments of freedom.

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