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Folding Grief: Four Poems by Ann Christine Tabaka

Feb 22, 2019

Through the simplicity of poetic language that conveys a complexity of unaddressed emotions, Ann Christine Tabaka brings us four poems centered on the theme of rupture and dissolution of relationships. These verses do not exact on particular feelings and resound with an inward silence attempting to break through towards a catharsis never fully attained. The last poem entitled “Reaching for Dawn” ends on a somewhat optimistic note and marks along with the other three the struggle of overcoming the absence of an ever-evasive other. These verses by the Pushcart Prize for Poetry nominee share a common thread of grief and tell of struggling, overcoming and heading towards new beginnings.

Through the simplicity of poetic language that conveys a complexity of unaddressed emotions, Ann Christine Tabaka brings us four poems centered on the theme of rupture and dissolution of relationships. These verses do not exact on particular feelings and resound with an inward silence attempting to break through towards a catharsis never fully attained. The last poem entitled “Reaching for Dawn” ends on a somewhat optimistic note and marks along with the other three the struggle of overcoming the absence of an ever-evasive other. These verses by the Pushcart Prize for Poetry nominee share a common thread of grief and tell of struggling, overcoming and heading towards new beginnings.

Betrayal

What pain is brought upon my brow,
by a knife stabbed in my back?

A friendship done, without a thought.
A careless act of will.

With such ease we block, what we do not
perceive, instead of face to face confront.

How many cry themselves to sleep,
not knowing what was wrought?

Wronged I am, and wronged I stand,
with tears so hot they scald.

Never to know the answer
to the riddle that plagues my bones.

The question WHY, sought out in vain.
The door now shut and barred.

Broken Concrete

Tragedy, written on the
face of a missing man.

Blue glazed pot, cracked
and spilling out its contents.

Time, soaring past
scheduled events.

Praise, sung out
to those who lost.

Upside down, inside out,
words trying to make sense.

Visions dreamt-for fade,
as illusions take over.

One final step, beyond the
edge, careening out of sight.

Green leaves fall one last time,
as the world spins out of control.

Cracks in the sidewalk, spell out
the doom before us all.

Open Door

Once he is gone,
the door will open.
In will fly the summer breeze.

Harrowed life left behind,
a new life to commence.
Change and chance will attend.

Finger worn beads
cast aside at last,
strewn across eternity.

Inhale deeply
invigorating radiance
infused with compassion.

Tattered emotions release.
Feathered dreams fly off
carrying forth intentions of balm.

Learning to affirm,
you walk through the
open door, into acceptance.

Reaching for Dawn

The shades of dawn
falling like colorful feathers
plucked from the sky.

Sorrow, a distant friend with
sodden shoulder and sturdy
pose, no longer needed.

In hand, a timetable of
misbegotten deeds, to be
dispersed to the four winds.

The song was sung long ago.
The echo still remains, of
voices faint and far off.

I do not know the words.

Climbing the mountain,
altitude unknown, oxygen
thin as a noon shadow.

The pinnacle appears.
Breathing in the clouds,
focus begins to dim.

Past fading into the future, as
the dawn now turns pure gold.
The summit is within reach.

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About the Contributor

Ann Christine Tabaka was nominated for the 2017 Pushcart Prize in Poetry, has been internationally published, and won poetry awards from numerous publications. She lives in Delaware, USA. She loves gardening and cooking. Chris lives with her husband and three cats. Her most recent credits are: Ethos Literary Journal, North of Oxford, Pomona Valley Review, Page & Spine, West Texas Literary Review, The Hungry Chimera, Sheila-Na-Gig, Synchronized Chaos, Pangolin Review, Foliate Oak Review, Better Than Starbucks!, The Write Launch, The Stray Branch, The McKinley Review, Fourth & Sycamore.

“Remember, remember
13th of July,
Martyrs of Kashmir
and their sacrifice
who bore witness
with the crimson skies
Heroes of Kashmir
who paid the price.
Remember, remember
13th of July
Remember, remember
13th of July.”

—from: 13th of July, MC Kash

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