Saturday, April 30, 2011

"My Heart Sang"

It's been the rare post for me that professes the emotion of loss and longing, regret and reconciliation. I do here. I've sat with this poem for quite a while; now, with the end of Child Abuse Prevention Month, I've decided to share it. Moving ahead, through fear and grief, acknowledging their presence and place along my road, has allowed me to embrace the joys of the heart, even when, long ago, expressing and recognizing that joy was impossible. That, in fact, is one of the reasons I work so hard for abuse prevention; every child deserves to grow up happy and whole, able to fully embrace the vast experiences of life without looking back in regret.
So today, recognizing what woke my senses and had me feeling alive, I honor what my heart held...and I am grateful for it.

My Heart Sang

My heart sang
when he sat with me,
if only for a little while.
I loved his face, his hands, his long, beautiful legs,
the sound of his voice.
We could talk about nothing much
or get on some political bent.
It didn’t matter.
Whatever it was –
the thought of him, the feel of his arm next to mine,
that he chose to be with me for a little while –
it made my heart sing.
I wanted to dance, too,
but I couldn’t.
That wasn't to be.
No song to sing, seven-year-old me cowered deep within.
I have to make my peace with that
and say goodbye.
It’s too late.
Long over.
That young man - he’ll always make me want to sing and dance,
that’s just how it is.
I’m too tired to fight it anymore.
It just is.
That other man – the heart-piercing, soul-squelcher of that little girl –
because of him, I missed my dance.
And yet, all these years later, still, there is joy for when
my heart sang.


  1. Susan, thank you for telling your story in your poem. You are not alone.

  2. a hard write...though i thank you for sharing and all that you do..i do counseling with kids that have been abused...

  3. Sean and Brian,
    Thank you so much for your thoughtful, supportive comments. I truly appreciate. And Brian - for the work you do with abused children - I have no doubt you are making a difference, easing their healing road.
    Thanks again to you both.

  4. There is no one like you in the whole entire world, a true, honest-to-goodness brave soul. The good character, wisdom, inward-searching, thought-provoking dimension you bring to the examined life is like that nurtured by a beloved mother, just irreplaceable.

  5. Carlie,
    Thank you so much. Your words moved me to tears. If I don't accept what was, I will never be totally free to embrace what is and what might be.
    With all my heart - thank you.