Posted in #atozchallenge, Blogging from A toZ April Challenge, Blogging from A-Z April 2018, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, My Poetry, poetry, slices of life, writing, Writing in Freedom

D is for Death’s Doorway: #atozchallenge, Day 4

Doorway of Beckoning

Death has a threshold

Death has a doorway

Doorway between here and there

Doorway between then and now

Now he’s crossed the threshold

Now I stand alone and apart

Apart from the life I dreamed of

Apart from twenty years more

More life and love and laughter

More touching and much more time

Time ran out for us far too soon

Time is endless and yet finite

Finite as the spaces between heartbeats

Finite as the first and final breaths

Breaths that slowed then stopped

Breaths I now take on my own

Own the rest of my life

Own the place on the threshold

Threshold he carried me over long ago

Threshold now between wife and widow

Widow a word I never wanted as mine

Widow a word to strange to define

Define a journey we used to share

Define the steps I will take from here

Here was a marriage seasoned well

Here was my heart my love my soul

Soul battered and bleeding with loss

Soul that must find a way to heal

Heal the hollow echoes of his lost voice

Heal the emptiness that wears his shape

Shape of my life now indistinct

Shape of edges amorphous and blurred

Blurred as the horizon seen through tears

Blurred as this suddenly alien reality

Reality stings with the depths of loss

Reality awaits for I am still alive

Alive and breathing heart beating strong

Alive and unable to simply remain

Remain on the threshold where he stood

Remain where he left me when he moved on

On with life and the stuff of living

On into the future a widow I now go

Go to where our children wait

Go forward on a different path

Path winding away toward something new

Path still unknown but beckoning

Beckoning me on to life my life

Beckoning me to what will now be



When I began the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge, I hoped to keep up to date, posting each day’s poem and the musings that follow on the appropriate day.

However, this week, life’s doorway has led me on several journeys that have resulted in my scrambling to get this poem up a full day late – and I haven’t been on time once.

Starting on a Sunday was tricky. Sunday is the day my writing group meets, and April is the first CampNaNo WriMo month of the year, so it was rather a big day. More, a former member who relocated was visiting, so our night started a little early.

Monday brought an online class.

Tuesday, my daughter’s friend came – we met her mom halfway, so there was a couple of hours’ travel time in addition to the visit.

Early Wednesday, my son and I went grocery shopping – and our regular store was having their floors stripped. We ended up going to the next store, about ten miles from home. We’re not familiar with that one, so things took longer.

Wednesday night, we had a get-together to spend a bit more time with the visiting group member, and, after, a friend and I decided to check out the local health foods co-op. I had no energy for posting by the time I was home, and the purchases put away.

Today has been spent largely in novel writing, cleaning and organizing, and cooking…

What does all this have to do with today’s poem?

Well, life is for the living, and it tends to happen, whether we’re ready for it or not. Jim died, but I’m still alive, and, while the sorrow is still sharp and painful, life does keep on, and fills my days with…well, living, in all its lovely chaos. Sometimes I feel a little guilty about that – but I have a finite time left to live myself, and staying trapped on the threshold between life and death seems like it would be wasting this one wild and precious life I’ve been given.

And so I go forward, posting a bit late, not yet getting into the swing of visiting (though I have a plan!)…and living.

Please come back tomorrow, when I will be Exploring Emotional Terrain.

More daring, delightful D posts can be found here.

On a different threshold, at the other end of a marriage, August 23, 1997.


Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2018, April CampNaNoWriMo 2018, Blogging from A toZ April Challenge, Blogging from A-Z April 2018, CampNaNoWriMo, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round Two, slices of life, The 12 Week Year, The 12 Week Year 2018, The 12 Week Year Three, Writers' Resources, writing

As I Begin Again:  #ROW80 Round 2 /#12WeekYear 3 Midweek 1

Hi there, ROWers and friends!

It’s Wednesday, so that means it must be time to make my first update for this sparkly-new Round of Words and 12 Week Year 3.

In the two days since I posted my goals post for this round, I’ve gotten off to….a start. I’m focused, and have been making daily plans, so I know what I want to accomplish.

But it’s been a bit unsettled, like the weather:

  • I’ve embarked on two writing challenges, and taken an online class.
  • My daughter had a friend visit yesterday; since the girls live over an hour apart, we meet in the middle, but it still added a couple of hours’ travel time to the week, and the visit was fairly spontaneous (we’ve now addressed this by setting up a regular, twice-monthly schedule; in future, I’ll be able to plan for the time spent).
  • My son and I had to go further afield to an unfamiliar store for our grocery run, since our regular place was stripping their floors.

Since there’s no #atozchallenge post on Sunday, I will use that as my catch-up-and-settle-in day, so that next week can be built upon more stable footing.

How did you do with your goals, these first few days?


  • I post my Weekly Action Plan on Wednesdays, and Weekly Wrap-Ups on Sundays.
  • I review/adjust my Round 2/12 Week Year 3 after weeks 3, 6, 9, and a final one after Week 12. These are m opportunities to evaluate my progress, and whether my goals and Action Plans are serving the purposes I intended.

Goal Status Legend:

  • Blue with Overstrike: Goal Completed.

  • Green: In Progress.

  • Black: Still Waiting.

  • Black with Overstrike: Goal Discarded.

  • Red: Goal Change.

Relationships, Family, and Home:

Family Stuff:

I facilitate Miah’s driving at a pace that’s comfortable for him.  

I facilitate kids’ social travel and time with friends as desired.

  • Lise had her best friend over for a few hours Tuesday afternoon. We’ve decided to make this a twice-monthly event.
  • She’s attending this friend’s birthday party midmonth.
  • Plans in the works for Miah to visit his PA friends.

I provide for clothing, materials, appointments, and other things needed for kids’ growth.

I complete all necessary homeschool administration.

  • Spent time with both kids discussing independent learning/ facilitating new learning.
  • Encouraged both to develop a habit of sharing more of what they’re doing on their own, which will streamline reporting when the time comes.

Home Stuff:

I facilitate home and yardtending, asking for assistance as needed.

  • Regular hometending, and clearly communicating with the kids about areas where I can use their help.
  • Chose a week one yardtending goal – declutter and rake main body of front yard. The weather has not cooperated with my plans!
  • I’ve selected three unwanted items as my debut on local yard sale sites.

I research and acquire items that will improve our quality of life.

I research, budget for, and oversee home improvement projects.

I assist the kids in learning to maintain a home independently.

  • I asked both kids what I could help them learn. Miah (16) said he could handle his own learning. Lise (13), wants to learn to mop, bake, and hard boil eggs using the Instant Pot. She baked cookies independently from pre-made dough.

Relationship Stuff:

I schedule time each week to connect with friends/ family.

  • Accepted invitation to join a writing group outing on Wednesday.
  • Spent a little time chatting with my friend, Lise’s best friend’s mom.
  • Interacted w/Jim’s sisters on social media.


Writing and Revising Stuff:

Storm at Song Glass Cabin (flash fiction): Complete first revision pass and return to publishers.

  • New goal(because I forgot to list it in initial post).

I schedule weekly time for the writing development courses I have in progress.

  • I attended the 2 hour online Pixels to Platform Master Class on Tuesday afternoon, and wrote my intro post on the private FB page, as my ice-breaker for resuming the class as an Ambassador.
  • I organized my work in Holly Lisle’s flash fiction course in preparation for resuming this class.

I use the spring writing challenges to advance/complete projects in progress.

I maintain, develop, and expand my connections with both other writers and my readers.

  • I participated in sprints and Tweeted with other writers each day.
  • I took the DIY-MFA Pixels to Platform Master Class; and introduced myself to the Facebook group, since I’m serving as an Ambassador for the full-length course.

I explore new professional opportunities.

Family Financial Stuff:

I develop, adapt, and maintain a family budget.

  • I gathered receipts from weekend purchases.
  • I made some financial decisions to act on in the coming week.
  • I canceled Jim’s website hosting.

I explore the concept of prosperity and what it means to me- and to the children.

Body, Mind, and Soul:

I focus on physical health as part of my daily routine.

  • Mindful eating: I prepared a very simple meal for myself – organic apple maple sausage with sautéed spinach. #babysteps.

I resume focus on my spiritual development.

  • I resumed meditation and journaling: Monday, Tuesday.

I tend to my emotional health in this transitional time.

  • I made time for rest, recreation, and reflection, without guilt: #AllStarTrek, #FixerUpper, and purchased current issue of The Magnolia Journal.I shared my grief experiences in my #atozchallenge posts, and canceledl Jim’s web hosting – another detail that’s been weighing on me.
  • I read an article in a Real Simple special edition: The Real Secret to Happiness. 

ROW80 –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have A Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!

We’re On Facebook, Too!

Let’s wrap this thing up with a little silly fun, shall we?!