“The aftermath” by Busy Mind Thinking

The aftermath.

My aunt has a way with words I so envy. I often rely on snark and attitude to get my point across, falling back on comedy to mask the turmoil inside. She has an open sweetness that so many people have responded to and I admire her ability to be vulnerable and strong at the same time.

Her poetry is lovely. Once upon a time, I wrote poems too, but none quite so lovely as hers. I had a pleasure of hearing her read this one to me last weekend and I would like to share it with you now.

Find her, follow her — you won’t regret it. She’ll light up your day, I promise.

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Sorting out my life by writing about it.

13 thoughts on ““The aftermath” by Busy Mind Thinking

    1. Your poems are beautiful, just like your spirit. You shine, and you don’t even seem to realize how much that glow uplifts all the people around you.

      You are the same auntie who took my family in, treated me with much-needed kindness and respect, and encouraged me to keep writing my songs. No sickness will ever change that, and I will never forget it. 🙂 You know I love you to pieces!

      1. Thank you for more happy tears. I am very proud of your capabilities Jen, really, so very proud! Shoot me messages when you post, meds making me sick, less and less time on here. xoxo

  1. What a lovely tribute. Class act, Jennifer!

    I’ve written two poems, to exorcise the demons of work ‘with’ a certain group of rather violent individuals from an erstwhile green and pleasant land. I don’;t like to read them now. And I’ll stick to prose – poetry can uncover too much.

    1. I have often felt that poetry is like ripping open your chest and laying your deepest feelings bare. Prose can be the same way, but I feel like you have more control over prose than you have over poetry. I used to write poetry myself, but more often than not those poems transform themselves into songs.

      I admire people who post their poetry — they’ve got guts and aren’t afraid to share them with the world.

      Some poetry is best kept private, but some poems demand to be shared. 🙂

      1. Okay, Jennifer…probably the only time they’ll see the light of day.

        “The Old Provo”

        I’ve no use, now, for public men
        of Orange, Green, or Red.
        My heart’s choked on Bloody Sunday,
        and Eire’s martyred dead.

        We’re parlaying with old enemies,
        in EU’s marble halls,
        while our words are unheard testimonies
        on painted-over walls.

        Have our young forgotten the fight,
        the famines and the dole?
        Is our future now a neon night,
        does McDonald’s feed our soul?

        I’ve seen our clock run down to naught,
        and know how this must end.
        For this old soldier time has brought
        a world of strangers, and no friend.

        “The Long Journey – 1970”

        Sean was shot after his evening meal
        And saintly Patrick’s a fortnight gone.
        Shelaigh’s long cold – boyo, this is real
        And forever. Oh, so long!

        I lived abroad with my enemy’s friend
        And fought their bloody war,
        But it’s no good to play at Yankee-pretend
        When the wolf’s at my father’s door.

        I learned the arts I’ll never tell
        To those of gentle years,
        Of how to turn fair swale and dell
        Into a vale of tears.

        They say that dialogue is best
        For solving all our ills
        For some things, true, but for the rest
        I’ve come home with all my skills.

      2. Your poems are incredible. You have a talent for expressing yourself truthfully and elegantly, even when the subject matter is on the darker side. I, for one, am impressed, and while I can understand why you don’t like rereading them, I think there are loads of people out there (myself included) who would read them time and time again.

        I’m sorry you had to work around such people, but I’m not sorry that the experience yielded poems like these. When you can take pain and anger and discomfort and turn them into something like this, that’s a true gift.

      3. Wow, thank you! I really appreciate the comments, and their sincerity.

        There’s something of a duality about those people – they had a lot of good in them, but it was often and increasingly subsumed by anger that was only partly rational. They were ultimately doomed – but their deaths were a loss.

        Today was rather a difficult day – my mother-in-law, who was the only real mother I ever knew, was taken off life support and died today. It’s not my place, nor my nature to mourn, but it feels as if a mountain range has suddenly vanished from my sight. A void that will never be filled.

      4. I’m so sorry to hear about your mother-in-law! It’s really difficult to lose a parent, I can relate to that. My thoughts are with you, and I hope you know I’m here for you from far away during this difficult time.

        I lost my father when I was 11. I think it’s worse to lose a parental figure when you’re older because really, you know them better. I hope your mother-in-law is at peace, and I really feel for you and your family.

        Sorry for the late reply, I haven’t been well.

      5. Thank you so much, Jennifer. It is hard – my childhood was not of the best, and finding my in-laws, even late in life, was a revelation as to what parental love and care could be.

        I’m so sorry that you lost your father so early – really, that you lost him at all. There are no words, but my heart does grieve your loss. I’m sure you handled it, and still do, with the courage that shines through your written words. But still…

        My mother-in-law, Jean, is at peace, I think. Some aspects of my former profession required me to develop a fairly strong sense of the transcendental. It was either that, or go mad. Death is a doorway to something else, and on occasion I have been allowed to look past that horizon – I’ve had several NDE’s, and other experiences.

        It is odd, though – I tend to deal with it in a way that some people find cold, and I’ve been forced to point out that composure should never be confused with indifference.

        I’m sorry that you haven’t been well – and please know that I am here for you, as well.

      6. I also deal with things in a way that people find a bit disconcerting, I think people need to learn to be a bit more understanding when it comes to people grieving differently.

        While I am sad for your loss, I am also happy that you got to experience the joy of having good parents. 🙂 I’m sorry your childhood wasn’t great — I can DEFINITELY relate to that one (although my parents tried their best to help me through my rough patches).

        I also believe there is life after this, in some way, shape or form. When we die, I don’t think we’re just gone completely. We’re just on to our next projects. 🙂

        Thank you for being here. It’s nice to know I’ve got a friend, even on the internet, who’s so easy to talk to and non-judgmental.

  2. There’s an Irish tradition that when we die, we’ll join the Holy Family, encamped next to a lake of beer. I like that one. (Valhalla works for me, as well.)

    Being here, and being considered a friend, is an honor. Thank you for this, Jennifer.

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