artisticflarings.blog · Audio · Healing · Martha's Artistic Flarings · Memoir · Podcasts · Poem · Poetry · Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul · Prose · Writing

New Look for Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul

I notice that I haven’t completed a poetry podcast since April 2. However, as you can see on my WordPress blog, I have done some publishing. It seemed easier to publish in on line sites than on my own poetry podcast in my own voice. I have to admit, everything of late has stunned me. I have lost focus to some degree when it comes to the intimacy in my podcasts.

Meanwhile, Podbean informed me my site design would not be supported, so I have  chosen a new theme.  Simple and clean.  Kind of like life could be at this time…at least in an ideal world.     https://meelosmom.podbean.com/

What the heck happened? What have we become? I was once a young girl riding my bike and playing with dolls. Now I’m hiding from a pandemic and bullets.

Does this pandemic represent our diseased minds and hearts? COVID-19 has forced us to retreat to the silence of our souls, our heart minds. Can we stand to be with ourselves? Can we cultivate our beautiful garden? Or can we only find comfort in noise (distractions, addictions, possessions). Can we truly see ourselves, love ourselves? Can we truly see and love others? And what about the Other, those who are from different tribes (families, societies, races, cultures).

What is hidden eventually rises for healing as is shown in the response to the murder of George Floyd at the knee of a cop. Racism, social inequities, corporate greed, and other forms of social, economic, and ethical/ moral malaise are symptomatic of another pandemic hidden in our Deep. George Floyd was strangled to death for passing a fake bill, but what about white-collar crime and all the money doled out to corporations while the average American can’t put food in the table with one job? With this pandemic, we suffer from huge losses in income. Our economy is flailing.

Everything that happens daily becomes the memoir of our society and our world. It’s all recorded not just on film (owing to technology) but also in our DNA. The ugly can make us ill. As Caroline Myss writes, “Our biography becomes our biology.”

I want to avert my eyes and deny all that is aberrant. However, I’m simply storing it away, like I do old journals, letters, and photos. Some things trigger joy, while others uproot pain. I think that if I don’t see it, it isn’t there, but it is creating illness.

It’s no coincidence I have taken to memoir writing, exploring my Deep. What have I buried from view? What do I need to heal? Looking at the truth is visceral and, I am told, bold maybe even courageous and healing. However, it is also dangerous. Being truthful to our word can create loss. These kinds of shifts occur because ‘all that is not aligned will fall away’. 

I have feared excavating my soul because of judgment and fear of alienation and abandonment, but I see my life from my lens while others, especially members of my tribe, have their perspectives, which they can explore in their own memoirs.

I hope to continue to explore these themes in my poetry podcast and other wetting, and see my morning awaken, as the featured image of this post shows.
https://meelosmom.podbean.com/

©Barbara Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

Image “Morning Awakening” ©Martha Harris, Martha’s Artistic Flarings, artisticflarings.blog

 

Audio · My Mother · Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry · Poem · Poetry · Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul · Writing

Erosion

This poem is included in an article I wrote for Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry (https://phoebemd.com/2020/03/16/alzheimers-grieving-the-loss-of-my-mother/).

The article is based on my poetry podcast Grief: Fire and Ice (https://meelosmom.podbean.com/e/grief-fire-and-ice/).

Erosion

A garden once planted in spring,

bearing life in shade and sun,

is now tangled with weeds and blight.

A hearty yield once sustained by dew and noon rains,

now forgets in autumn light.

Baskets of Gold, having bloomed and stretched for sun,

now shrivel, scorched by drought.

Honeysuckle, a trespasser in flora

that once nurtured monarchs and bees.

Wisdom of soils and seedlings,

now crumbles to dust.

Once a bounty of bliss, now wild bramble

on depleted soil.

Her secret garden.

399D6FDE-945B-480F-8C5E-27F0EA426F3B

©2020 Barbara Harris Leonhard (Revision of The Garden of Thoughts)

extraordinarysunshineweaver.wordpress.com

meelosmom@podbean.com (Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul)

Images: my end of summer garden

Revised from A Garden of Thoughts

Healing · My Mother · Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry · Poetry · Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul · Prose · Publication · Writing

Grief: Healing Through Poetry — Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry

By Barbara Leonhard [This is the third segment of a 3-part series on Grief and Loss. To read the previous post, click here.] I processed grief over Mom’s struggle with Alzheimer’s through poetry writing. The fact that caregivers—such as myself and many other poets—can relieve grief through poetry supports my belief that poetry is both the […]

via Grief: Healing Through Poetry — Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry

©Barbara Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog; meelosmom.podbean.com

Audio · Healing · My Mother · Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry · Podcasts · Poem · Poetry · Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul · Prose · Publication · Writing

Alzheimer’s: Grieving the Loss of My Mother

Phoebemd.com has published the second part of my article on my mother’s struggle with Alzheimer’s. You can access Part 1 via the link provided before the article starts.
These installments are based on my poetry podcast on this topic.
https://meelosmom.podbean.com/e/grief-fire-and-ice/
Please like, share, and follow. Others with loved ones who have Alzheimer’s may benefit from the information.

 

PhoebeMD: Medicine + Poetry

By Barbara Leonhard

[This is the second segment of a 3-part series on Grief and Alzheimer’s. To read the first post, click here.]


As a way to examine grief and loss, I will share my story of the loss of my mother to Alzheimer’s, one of the most devastating forms of dementia.

What is Alzheimer’s?

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s Disease is a dementia caused by the building up of plaques—deposits of protein fragments that create spaces between neurons (nerve cells)—as well as tau tangles inside the cells of the brain itself.

View original post 1,538 more words

Healing · Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry · Podcasts · Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul · Prose · Publication · Writing

Fire & Ice: The Faces of Grief

My poetry podcast on Grief: Fire and Ice, which shares my journey with Mom through Alzheimer’s will be published in segments on phoebemd.com. Here is the first installment. Check out her site. It is a source of poetry and articles on healing. We all need to bolster our immune systems, especially now with the stress and fear we feel in our daily lives and with COVID-19 spreading. Sites like Phoebe’s offer stories and poems of hope and recovery.

The original poetry podcast can be found at meelosmom.podbean.com (Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul). The episode is Grief: Fire and Ice.

©Barbara Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

PhoebeMD: Medicine + Poetry

By Barbara Leonhard


Robert Frost once wrote:

Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

Online, one can find many poets who sing about their grief. In this lyrical piece, Frost tells us that we face changes all the time. Eden, our paradise, has been lost. Life is temporary, terminal, and short lived. The sun both rises and falls; the seasons change, and we grieve.

View original post 818 more words

Audio · Healing · My Mother · Podcasts · Poetry · Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul · Prose · Publication · Writing

Poetry Podcast on Grief: Fire and Ice

I have another episode up on my Podbean podcast, Poetry: The Memoir of the Soul.

This podcast episode is about grief and in particular, my grief over my mother’s struggle with Alzheimer’s. I describe grief and the havoc Alzheimer’s wreaks on its victims, especially Mom. In addition to my poems, I include a poem by Robert Frost and another by Walter Bargen, Missouri’s first Poet Laureate, appointed in 2008.

Thank you for listening! This podcast is around 40 minutes.

https://meelosmom.podbean.com

©Podcast, Barbara Leonhard, extraordinarysunshineweaver.blog

©Walter Bargen’s poem, “Migration” is from his book of poetry My Other Mother’s Red Mercedes (2018, Lamar University Literary Press)

Robert Frost reading “Nothing Gold Can Stay” https://www.modernamericanpoetry.org/video/robert-frost-reads-nothing-gold-can-stay

See also, Robert Frost, “Nothing Gold Can Stay”, Poetry Foundation

Image and Music: “Fire and Ice”, original tune ©Dierik Leonhard, Ironweed Bluegrass Band, found at ironweedbluegrass.com

Audio · My Mother · Poem · Poetry

New Audio: How Did She Go?

How did she go?
The mystery.
This woman with no memories,
No way to find the path,
No way to recall a face,
No way to know she dreamed,
No way to know the face of Death.
How did she manage?

We held her close,
Go to the light.
But did she?
Light?

Her last breaths like those of a guppy,
Out of the water too long.
Did she know?
Was Dad there?
The chakras still spun
Until spent in the sand.
No wind.

My heart collapsed
In the knowing.
I was then a stranger, an orphan.
Her guide and now
Not her guide.

In a dream, there she was,
Resting on a bed in an alcove,
The curtains draped on either side,
Her shoes placed gingerly under the bed.
I’m lost!
Where’s my wallet?
The bill to be paid.
Three shiny pennies lined up in a row.
Pick them up, she said.
I resisted
The bad luck.

It was 2:05p.m.
When they listened for her whispers
Trapped in her throat
For a different guide.

Copyright © 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: My Mother

 

my sassy mom

Audio · Haiku · My Mother · Poem · Poetry

New Audio: Robin

Robin missing eggs
Mother missing memory
Grief seeking treasures

 

Copyright © 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: http://hylebos.typepad.com/blog_from_the_bog/2010/05/buds-bloom-sunday.html

robin nest

 

Audio · Haiku · My Mother · Poem · Poetry

Robin

Robin missing eggs
Mother missing memory
Grief seeking treasures

 

Copyright © 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: http://hylebos.typepad.com/blog_from_the_bog/2010/05/buds-bloom-sunday.html

robin nest

 

Audio · My Mother · Poem · Poetry

How Did She Go?

How did she go?

The mystery.

This woman with no memories,

No way to find the path,

No way to recall a face,

No way to know she dreamed,

No way to know the face of Death.

How did she manage?

 

We held her close,

Go to the light. 

But did she?

Light?

 

Her last breaths like those of a guppy,

Out of the water too long. 

Did she know? 

Was Dad there?

The chakras still spun 

Until spent in the sand.

No wind.

 

My heart collapsed

In the knowing.

I was then a stranger, an orphan.

Her guide and now 

Not her guide.

 

In a dream, there she was,

Resting on a bed in an alcove,

The curtains draped on either side,

Her shoes placed gingerly under the bed.

I’m lost!

Where’s my wallet? 

The bill to be paid. 

Three shiny pennies lined up in a row.

Pick them up, she said.

I resisted

The bad luck.

 

It was 2:05p.m.

When they listened for her whispers

Trapped in her throat

For a different guide.

 

Copyright © 2017 Barbara Harris Leonhard

Image: My Mother

my sassy mom