Sensuality: Present Even in Silence


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Christi Moon, poet; Pennsylvania, USA:

Christi Moon's sister, Vickie

“She was my older sister. When I was small it was almost like having two mothers. It was an honor and a privilege to be able to care for her. Although such an unbearable time. My daughter was only ten months old when my sister passed away, and my husband was stationed in Korea at the time. My mother had lost her vision and was also living with me. So a lot of searing sadness, grief and unrelenting responsibility. Surely the joy of my child saved the sanity of us all.”

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Unsaid (villanelle)

With all beloved gifts beside my bed;

a dark and haunting ache remains today,

for all the many words we left unsaid.

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ill-fated hallmark letters lie unread;

though secretly one message stowed away,

with all beloved gifts beside my bed.

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Dim nights of eerie silence filled with dread;

our quiet ravaged stillness fear’s foray,

for all the many words we left unsaid.

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Last pages of a story nearly read;

a Whiter Shade of Pale on endless play,

with all beloved gifts beside my bed.

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I’m left to wonder what may come instead;

to grieve we will not have another day,

for all the many words we left unsaid.

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Your picture in a frame here to embed;

a life now held in memory portray,

with all beloved gifts beside my bed,

for all the many words we left unsaid.

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“[My sister] was sleeping in my room–I had moved into the baby’s room–and she couldn’t sleep at night.  I would go in there and we would just sit on the bed and hold hands. I would paint her nails, rub lotion on her feet, read to her. It was just too painful to talk of anything that sounded like goodbye. It was so physically horrific at the end that I thought I would lose my mind watching her struggle for every breath. How do you watch that and still wish them to stay? How do you let someone who has been your biggest supporter go?  Amazing she was, and so dearly missed.”

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Christi did not know it at the time, but she would follow in her sister’s footsteps:

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Waiting Room

cheerful warden waves

white-knuckled I wait

silently squared up against

my mortality.

not ready.

“it won’t be long dear”

I can hear them wonder,

impatient faces stare

as sterilized time t.i.c.k.s.

d

o

w

n

the hall

the needle sticks

through the unsteady glare

of boney chrome branches

dripping Buddha bellied bags

of top-shelf toxins

crafted to smash rogue cells

that slipped stealth-like

past the scalpel.

my fidgety file

s i t s

pathology spits

prolific

like the lyrics

to a bad rap song

I don’t belong here.

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And then: A family reassigned–

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“She used to watch for him every night. Asked me for a year to set his place at the table at dinner. Almost unbearable.  She continues to be devastated by the loss of that relationship.”

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Three

Three clings

to camouflage

and Carolina

lullabies

.
sits small

in a green chair

staring

at the screen door

.

folded hands

wait

on a white horse

ponyride

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but I can’t hide

the empty place

as I set the table

for two

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and cling to Three

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Christi Moom's daughter

Christi Moom's daughter

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“[But] I have learned that once in a while the universe gets something right. And I am thankful for it everyday. My daughter is an amazing child.”

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Editor’s note:

Christi took the photo of her daughter, shown here at age three; and later in turn, her daughter would take the above photo of her mother. Christi also took this photo shared with us here of her sister Vickie,  taken when Vickie was twenty-four.

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•          •          •

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Read more of Christi Moon’s poetry on her blog: Letters to the Moon

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