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Limp

Limp,

Tossed about by nature's breathing,
When not too busy or indifferent
To spare me even a breath.

Cold, exposed to elements attracted more
to the colorful parade than I,
Faded and tattered remnants
hugging a cold, stiff pole
on an unseeing street corner.

Ignored, eating the meals tossed by
"empty" ghosts, glittering shells,
begging bowls filled with nails
and crosses.

The winter cold and snow freeze my
very foundation,
sleet starches the very flow of me
and makes of my heart a
cold, icy thing dressed
in fearful shivers.

Carers whiz by en route to their
emergencies
while I flail my prayers, my
hurts, my forgottenness to the darkness.
Sirens scream, horns blast, 
onlookers curse the noise but love
the adventure of it all.

Bright lights shine satin upon
patches of still clean snow
but all I see are crusty,
dirty dog-peed stains
carelessly allowed by
angry mongrels.

I'm left endlessly fluttering,
reaching for what?
a rainbow over there
offering some hope,
some beauty to my world of
beggars, hustlers, "thieves"

Who have stolen the dance
that was once mine?

Limp,
the heavy flag
has hidden my jewels
in locked closets only to be
displayed on special
holidays.

What's next, Valentine's Day?

by Vivienne L. Lund

(written during Winter Solstice Retreat 2015 at Zen Life & Meditation Center, during Practice of Immediacy in the Arts®, inspired by looking out a Zen Center window and seeing a flagpole with a limp hanging flag, mirroring my emotions at the time. 

Robert Althouse

Zen Life & Meditation Center, Chicago, 38 Lake Street, Oak Park, IL, 60302