We are looking for that meadow —
How will we know it?
It’s…golden. Have you been here before?
The light on it it glows
but does not throw a glare.
It smells…well, it smells of earth.
Or like your forearm as you walk outside
on a warm day, just starting to perspire.
It smells good.
The ground is solid,
neither dusty nor bumpy nor muddy.
It’s big enough to land a small plane in.
And small enough to recognize you.
Call you by name.
Call you home.
copyright Elizabeth B. Randolph
I post this poem today, Thursday, not Tuesday. There is a reason for that. Today’s the day to post this poem. My friend Elizabeth is in her last days, hours. She is a beautiful person and mother and friend and woman and poet and so much more. She has blogged periodically about her journey with cancer, here. The last poem she posted was this one — and I was so struck by the light in it, the simplicity of the idea, the mention of that forearm, the complexity of holding on and letting go. The enormity of it all. The impossibly small moment that a life passes from this life to something else.
The naming of the thing she faces, the thing she is doing.
I am in awe of how my friend has lived her last years, months, days, hours. She has danced and laughed and danced some more. She is surrounded now by love and light. My heart is bursting for her and her partner and her children. And for everyone who has known her. I am very far away, but I am with her, too.
The last post on Elizabeth’s blog is from March 31, earlier this week. She wrote in her quintessentially honest way:
So, even as my body is weakening, my spirit is actually starting to soar. This is part of the wonder, part of what is being revealed. Thank you everyone for the soaring.
Here’s to you, E. Here’s to life. And meadows. And golden light. And the small moments we share.
Thank you, my friend, for sharing your life, your journey, your words. Life is a gift.
Tuesday Poem is a collective of poets who share poetry on a weekly basis across borders and time zones. Please check out the other poets and the main poem at the TP hub this week.
For more Tuesday Poems, go here.