Author: Tanya Southey

February – Solitude: Peace

February – Solitude: Peace

February’s theme in the #monthlymusings is “Solitude”. This week’s word is “Peace” Peace The calling will come it will arrive on the wind, perhaps, screaming your name as trees bend to add to the beckoning Or not It might take a stroll arrive on a […]

February – Solitude: Alone

February – Solitude: Alone

February’s theme in the #monthlymusungs is “Solitude”. This week’s word is “Alone”. Alone Alone is one of my favourite words, it has no echoes of loneliness, it speaks of endless possibilities of skies that stretch for blue miles and canopies of green cover as trees […]

January – Reflections: Musing

January – Reflections: Musing

Musing

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Mouths of babes”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith.

My favourite thoughts
are simple in their complexity

What if the most beautiful rose
ever formed bloomed in the garden of
a dying woman and no one saw it?
Would it still be the most beautiful
rose to ever have flowered?
What if its petals fell as she left this plane?

What if there were things that existed
that we could not see, but that held
everything we had ever longed for?
Would we still value seeing over feeling?

What if the everything we thought
mattered, mattered not a bit
and all the things we took for granted
were the most important things?

What if you were meant to be an
artist, but you had never held a brush
and all your anger and frustration
lived in the fact that your fingers
had never curled around a tiny
wooden stick with horse’s hair
on the end of it?
Would you have the courage to try?

What if your true home
lay far beyond all that you knew
and called “home” and “safe”?
Would you venture
beyond the familiar?
Would you dare to dance
among the stars?

There’s a reason that wonder
and wander sound the same

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks
#monthlymusing

This is the final poem in the January “Reflections” set. February is “Solitude” and the first word is “Alone”

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January – Reflections: Echoes

January – Reflections: Echoes

Echoes Standing on familiar soil I see the echoes of a time that used to be, time when this soil was all I knew, time when small town dirt beneath my nails, broke the boundary of where I started and the land began Now I […]

January – Reflections: Mirror

January – Reflections: Mirror

In the #monthlymusings series of the #52words52weeks collection, we are in January with the focus on “Reflections”. This week’s word is “Mirror”. Mirror Give up looking in the mirror, hardened glass of expectations Give up judging your own reflection, the flat version of yourself, the […]

January – Reflections: Sky

January – Reflections: Sky

January is the month of “Reflections”. The first word in the set is “Sky”

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Devonshire Road”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith.

Sky

The sky sighed,
breathed above
a land adored,
and when night
set in, punctured
holes within its heart
and called them stars
instead of scars
to still give light

The earth cried
covered in a
veil of clouds,
hid from love
it could not reach

The rain fell,
the sun rose,
the tree knew
mirrored
into water
it joined the
earth and sky

twin souls
unrequited

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks
#monthlymusing

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Week 52: Epilogue

Week 52: Epilogue

Epilogue The clock does not know it will continue ticking but we will be gone; the garden will remain in velvety verdance and someone else will tend the plants and trim their wild ambitions; the birds will arrive at dawn waiting for the whistling woman […]

Week 51: Trust

Week 51: Trust

Trust It is hard to trust when fear leaves your mouth bone dry and your tongue lies locked, words departed and only the whispered prayers of childhood run through your mind rote learnt and repeated like mantras of familiarity Out of nowhere I stumble on […]

Week 50: We

Week 50: We

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Way to go”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith.

We

We who were born
to shift the fog
and clear away
old concepts
are finding each other

We the misfits
the lonely, the sad
the ones who ached
to find their belonging
are connecting

We the quiet observers
who desire something
beyond ourselves,
who want meaning
are stumbling across
each other and finding
solid ground

We the storytellers
are finding our voices
the chorus is rising
and the music is good.

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks

 

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Week 49: Love

Week 49: Love

Love When my bones are bleached and brittle from carrying my stories I hope to say I have loved When my skin has sagged, etched with experience and rivulets of tears, both sadness and laughter, have eroded my face I hope to say I have […]

Week 48: Kindred

Week 48: Kindred

Kindred In all the dust and chaos of the universe I stumbled on you Random particles who happened perchance, to be at the same spot at the same time in the vastness of where we could be In all the millions of probabilities and the […]

Week 47: Fleeting

Week 47: Fleeting

Fleeting

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Ships in the night”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith.

We promised to
meet, a pact made
long before we
were born
when we were light
in the throws
of planning an
earthbound journey

We promised to
meet, a pact made
with love
long before
the movement of tides
fated us to drift
in different directions

We promised to
meet, a pact that
seemed bound to
be broken
and then
fleetingly we strolled
past each other
and smiled

Lifetimes relived
in a shy and gentle nod

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks

 

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Week 46: Refuge

Week 46: Refuge

Refuge It was long ago and memories now lie within a hush of petals fallen to the ground to nourish the earth hungry for beauty It was long ago and the music plays a scratchy memory of a needle on a record going round and […]

Week 45: Manifest

Week 45: Manifest

Manifest I was born your angel not in the sense of the good girl but in my role of fierce protector my tiny hands were made to drag you from your fears to save you from yourself and reignite your laughter when you were in […]

Week 44: Saudade*

Week 44: Saudade*

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Age and other barriers”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith. — with Denise Smith.

Saudade*

Sometimes the mists roll in
bringing thunderous sunshine
and the cicada filled memory
of kikuyu grass beneath
bare feet, cooling in the
summer heat

Sometimes the mists roll in
bringing Delft blue skies and the
clear recalling of the crimson
roses in the tiny garden
that held a grandmother’s efforts

Sometimes the mists roll in
carrying the voices you
thought you would never hear
again, and you recognise
the ones who are gone
but have never left

Sometimes the mists drift in
and transport you back
to a self that lies layered
beneath years of passage
and you are back
to where it all began

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks

*Saudade is a Portuguese word meaning “a bitter-sweet melancholic yearining for something beautiful that is now gone.”

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Week 43: Truth

Week 43: Truth

Truth You came here without a path your role is to forge one for the ones trodden by others do not belong to you You came here with a heart your role is to break it for the only way to protect it is not […]

Week 42: She

Week 42: She

She She who puts herself together with perfection is hiding the secret of her own imperfections; she who steps forward despite feeling “not good enough”; she who smiles through gritted teeth and nods, violently disagreeing breaking inside, acquiescing because she knows she cannot shift the […]

Week 41: Mercy

Week 41: Mercy

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Long distance call”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith. — with Denise Smith.

Mercy

Give yourself twelve moons
start with the fullest point
collect all the things
you say about yourself,
the hardness, the brittle thoughts
the lack of kindness, the things
you would never say to a dearest friend,
but you say to yourself with ease
and learned repetition
these endless thoughts that have
have carved caverns in your mind

At the fullest point when
when the wolves howl
beside those creeks
and the moon hangs
above the fir trees
let those things go
to the milky silence
watch the moon wane
into the darkness
until your vitriol disappears

Give yourself twelve moons,
start with the point of disappearance
when the owl hoots its wisdom
collect all the things that are good,
everything that is gracious
about you, the generous you, the one
who loves tiny things that no one notices,
the one who lights a room
and watch that moon wax until
it reaches its fullness,
just as you too will bear the light

Grant yourself mercy
grant yourself peace
grant yourself twelve moons
of mercy, heal yourself
with forgiveness and release
and perhaps,
having lived these cycles
of intentional contemplation,
the whole world
might just be healed.

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks

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Week 40: Lacuna

Week 40: Lacuna

Lacuna* If you go into yourself and find a patch within that has no graffiti from others, from them, from people who love you and those who do not, if you go into yourself and find a field where nothing is built and no one […]

Week 39: Blessings

Week 39: Blessings

Blessings I create blessings in my head I send them to my hands and stroke them into your hair I tell you nothing of them for you will look at me with your wry smile and tell me I am way too optimistic This cosmic […]

Week 38: Horizons

Week 38: Horizons

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Stranger with a view”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith. — with Denise Smith.

Horizons

Horizons are a calling
a nudging to a place
that sometimes only
you can see far beyond
the misty plains,
way beyond the wooded hills

Horizons beckon and whisper,
“Come, just over the hill
just beyond where
you are at now.
There, look, is
the delightful thing
you have been searching for.”

Sometimes it’s just a patch
of grass that is as green
as the patch you departed from,
but the perspective is different
the views go down to the ocean
and sweep the edges of your world

Horizons pull, they call, they cajole
they know the way.

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks

 

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Week 37: Iktsuarpok

Week 37: Iktsuarpok

Iktsuarpok* There are gentle Spring days when the air hushes the chilled land back from the cold and the hollow blue, sky hums to a tune that was written a million years ago And still in that peace we are pulled to the door, habit […]

Week 36: Well

Week 36: Well

Well There was a time when wells were the only source of water and villagers would congregate and share while drawing life-giving liquid from deep caverns Now we are unaccustomed to coming to the well to slate our thirsts We mindlessly turn on taps unaware […]

Week 35: Belonging

Week 35: Belonging

Belonging

Photo credit: Denise Smith “Leap of faith”. Follow Denise on Instagram @deniselifeart or on FB Denise Smith (Photo Album – My Streets) — with Denise Smith.

I have survived so much
but mostly I have
survived myself
with a deep longing
for true belonging

I have survived my need
to fit in and do the things
that everyone else
believes I was born to do

I have outlived the fear
of being outcast from all
that I love and that
which quietly loves me back

I have found in mossy silence
the deepest root
that lies in the darkest
soil close to the core
of the earth where
sand becomes fire
where nothing lives except
sparks of future life
that hide the secret
all of us have forgotten

We belong to the earth
we are one with the stars
there are rivers that whisper
‘you are mine’
and rocks that recognise
the hardiness of your bones

Now is the time to claim
our belonging
to fight for our place
in the universe
to become
the keepers of the earth
the gazers at the stars
to become
keepers of our own belonging

© Tanya Southey
#52words52weeks

 

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Week 34: Ripening

Week 34: Ripening

Ripening They always told you you were a rose delicate pink and blushing in the morning sun and yet you did not believe all that you were told you held a sliver of an idea that once reached you in a vague and distant dream […]

Week 33: Connection

Week 33: Connection

Connection Invisible threads hold us together stitching us through lifetimes ties that cannot be severed roots of energy tapped into emotion transmitting feelings regardless of where we are in the world regardless of time distance or space numbers dialled at exactly the same time identical […]