Wednesday, April 24, 2019
National Poetry Month: A Royal Flush
It is not uncommon for people to gasp when they hear about the challenges I experienced as a child and adolescent. At the tender age of 5 years old I contracted paralytic polio. My mother was addicted to prescription pain medication and wouldn't/couldn't care for me as I lay paralyzed on the couch from the neck down. She glared at me while smoking a cigarette. Three years later, my father became alcoholic and inflicted unimaginable acts of violence against my little body. I endured 9 years of violence at his hand along with abuse from my maternal grandmother until his suicide when I was 17 years old.
Yes one could say I was dealt a crummy hand. But there was my guardian angel and earth angels who helped me get through those years and planted seeds of possibility for the champion I was always meant to be.
Those seeds began to bear fruit shortly after the diagnosis of Post-Polio Syndrome in December of 2006 when, on a cold dark day in February of 2007, I discovered the gift of poetry in my soul! Through the power of my pen, my Divining rod for healing, I was able to free myself from the shackles of my past and imagine a future very different than the one predicted for me by Western Medicine. I was able to take stock of where I had been, where I was and where I wanted to go all through the imaginings in my mind.
From "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems to Heal Your Life":
One could say I was dealt a hand of crummy cards to play
at first blush I would have to agree
bluffing became my way of life
playing my cards close to my chest
do I continue to play or fold?
The stakes were high
I could no longer up the ante
living on the edge
waiting to find freedom only in death
every day a living death
something had to give
releasing fear by experiencing fear
losing self consciousness
opening my heart.
I bet everything I had
riding on hope, faith and a prayer
“I’m all in”
putting my cards on the table
there it was
a royal flush!
The Mountain of Trauma
Weighted down by baggage
I trudged up the mountain that loomed before me
believing I needed all these supplies in order to survive
protective clothing and gear
heavy blankets of fear and panic
sleepless nights in the cold
unable to appreciate the starry night
walled off from all that surrounded me
in solitude I trudged onward and upward
carrying hope in my heart that I would find what I was looking for.
Little by little shedding baggage
leaving the trail of what no longer serves the soul
no need to look back
stomach lurches with uneasiness
thrown off balance
eyes gaze upward.
Turning my face to the summit
sun radiating warmth
feeling Divine Love on angel slides
my heart quickening its beat
knowing this is the place
seeking no more
planting the flag of my freedom
staking my claim on my birthright
drinking in the moment
no longer a victim
Come Back From the Edge
It is only by going right to that moment
when consciousness is about to be lost
returning to the scene of the crime
no longer a victim
compassion for the enraged one
restless tormented soul
seeking to end his own suffering
snuffing out my light and love
carrying the pain in my body
tightly bound wound around in each nook and cranny
releasing the pain
come back from the edge
into the fullness of life.
May you play your hand with grace, ease and gratitude for all that happened for you and for the infinite possibilities that lay before you.
From my heart to yours
In Health and Wellness,
Be sure to visit my website at www.marymcmanus.com
Hear my interview with Kendra Petrone on Magic 106.7's Exceptional Women Show by following this link
My books are available on Amazon and at Paper Fiesta in Natick on Mile 10 of the Boston Marathon route.