Rust and Ice

It seems that fragments of our fractured Winter have mixed into Spring.
And another cut off low is on its way.
So by the side of the house in a wet brown lump of frozen mud.
— these pliers rescued from under the melted snow will never be useful.
Chipping the ice. The jaws are stuck
And  the two parts welded by rust. Corrosion. Flakes and deep pitting.
From what 3 months?
And in this I stare as if the jaws will open and speak truth to me.
And I feel the sun and the cool breeze
And listen to the blue sky

And this I know that I am stuck.
Whether by ice or rust
I know that there is corrosion and decay
Or dissipation.
And by no act of will can I be freed.
So I swallow that lump in my throat
And take a very conscious breath.

Did this look forward to Spring? To be rescued– this tool?
Did it want to be found?
And it is desperate to be fixed?
I tap the frozen jars on the crumbling concrete wall here…
And it sounds dull. But it is stuck.
And I imagine in that gap that it has my expression.

Sadness and disappointment.
That it has lost its usefulness and will be discarded.

Do you know that I think of this? That one thing that I will not tell you:
That some days… I know I have lost my usefulness.
That I am stuck by ice or rust
In this part of life, and that in it I have no purpose.
My jaw left open.
My eyes stare blankly
And I think about being discarded. Even now. Even in Spring.
Because under this muddy ice and beneath that layer of rust
There is nothing. Nothing of use.

Part of every day, I think on death. And I drop the old tool into the blue bin.

Fragments of winter are drifting into Spring and we may see more snow on Saturday
And I will watch it fall, if it falls.


2 thoughts on “Rust and Ice

  1. You do have a new purpose in life, you still have to find it. You are a great teacher. I enjoy everything you write. You are also a great writer and a great painter. You still have so much to give. God wants you here, He has a purpose for you.



  2. I have been reading here, silently, for quite some time now. I just wanted to say that I think of you and of your son, Ethan. He is so present in your writing and your painting.

    I lost my first child when she was a baby. Years ago now. She died in my arms. I failed to save her. She died and I simply watched, useless. And my eyes stare blankly. My jaw still hangs. Ever since. And I feel as though I have no use. I feel sympathy for this discarded tool that you describe, and for you as you draw the parallel between this lost tool and yourself.

    And yet? You are of use to me. A stranger many miles away in utterly different circumstances. I read so many of your posts and I feel . . . . less alone. I know that is no comfort to you though.

    But I seek for those with the blank eyes and slack jaws. Because those are my people.

    It is spring here in England but we have had snow not that long ago. Maybe it will still fall here. If it does, I will watch it. If it doesn’t, I will watch blossom falling from the tree in my garden.

    Oh and I been meaning to say that I thought your tattoo was wonderful. So now, five months later, I am.


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