The imprisoned women writers utilized Gregory Orr’s poem “Loss and loss and more” as their springboard this week.
Together we reflected upon what the rolling sea can teach us about the art of living our lives. If we concentrate on the ocean’s ebbs and flows, what insights does it reveal to us?
First, Orr’s poem . . . and then the reflections of three incarcerated writers follow. Enjoy!
Loss and loss and more
Loss – that’s what
The sea teaches.
The need to stay
Against the suck
Of receding waves,
Under our feet
Here, where sea
The best of dancing floors.
* * *
The suck of receding waves … its amazing pull.
The power and sheer force of the pulling motion
as you feel yourself being pulled under
the crashing waves of doom and desperation.
It’s all very real now as I look toward my future.
In 11 days, I will be out of (jail) … thankfully.
On the not so bright side, I’ll have a very limited
amount of money and freedom.
I’ve never had to worry about either.
The sucking of the waves is almost too much.
How will I make it with no job and a tiny apartment
that will cost nearly everything I make?
I don’t know how I’ll do it, but I will.
I’m strong and I know how to swim against the current.
I will not fail. Failure is not an option for me.
I can and will fight the suck of the receding waves.
For all I know, I can beat the odds, bleak as they are.
I will not be sucked into oblivion only to wash up
on a deserted beach. I will persevere.
I have willpower and faith on my side.
I shall not drown. -ED
* * *
WHAT THE SEA TEACHES
To be adaptable –
to live life and become your own,
to live for yourself
being happy and confident
whatever direction your life goes.
The sea is everywhere,
unpredictable as to what to expect.
Life is unpredictable
and full of twists and turns.
Waves of emotion can feel
like a shipwreck waiting to happen,
but to stay afloat and keep
your cool will help you through.
Live your life to the fullest
because we never know what around us
will come for tomorrow;
all we can change is ourselves,
not what’s around us.
So we must adapt
to the everyday unpredictable ways of life.
Preparation within ourselves
is key to getting through the worst of times.
Live for the future. -SH
* * *
The sea teaches reluctance
to venture too far,
a sight never-ending,
angry waves crashing,
pulling everything in its rush.
It teaches warm sand
squishing through the toes,
brings so much when
the waves rush in.
Takes a great deal with it
on its way back out.
on the rippled water
and forms its unique
pattern on the shore.
It gives, it takes
and so much more. -AW