Breathing

It’s just a story we tell ourselves

We will be well

And even Gods forged of longing, cannot always save our plea for preservation

And please, some peace

For the weary, are not the old

They are the ones who know the sear of unwanted pain

An ache rising like wave again, merciless in return

The loss of dreams comes softly as snow

We dream ourselves complete

Waking unable to breathe

This sheltering land sometimes permits tornadoes

When all around shakes, we are battered and bruised

And because we still stand, others never witness, the deep sink of our soul

Or indeed, that dark place we go

When night only burdens with unseen fear

A temperature, a loss of balance, this unknowing doctors touch, with gloved hand

As we find ourselves, subject to midnight

We, who have never been this person

Arising, as if we could separate and escape, inevitable places

Was it really me? Who gasped for breath and cried out to spirits never tested?

As has always been for each life line

Thinking invulnerable, tugged back to truth

All of us wear a harness, all of us hold an allotment

It is the wicked mirth of terror when first we gaze into our future and see the end

No amount of protest will stave

But maybe, maybe with light and courage

With nothing more than salved persistence

We can hold back that day and spend one more

Breathing

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124 thoughts on “Breathing

  1. Hey you, individuals like you are (especially like you) are my oxygen take of life….as I go scuba diving below in the murky depths…you keep me well supplied with a rich air supply…..:)

    I thank you for that Miss Oxygen….. ๐Ÿ™‚

    big hugs little sister..

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  2. If compassion & love equaled physical strength, your heart would be the strongest of all. Thatโ€™s how it should work. Let me know whatโ€™s happening when you can, I care and want to know. แƒฆ

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  3. Maybe it’s how I’m feeling this week…or not feeling might be a better description but I think this is one of my favorite poems of yours. Touches deeper than my heart. It can make me cry as it is me. Thank you more than I know how to say!

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    1. I knew it would and I am okay and want you to know that. It was a scare. I didn’t say much as it does resonate too closely with your experience of late so I wanted to be sensitive to that but please know I’m okay and thank you dearly you lovely one for your care

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  4. Beautifully written. Really relates to how I feel right now. I noticed you never responded to my previous comments on other works, hope I didn’t offend you. And hope you’re well. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. I’m so sorry if I did not write back to something I get quite a lot of comments and sometimes the stupid WP cuts some off if I have not written back in time, I don’t know why and then I lose track of them. I try to write back – and you and I had been talking both here and on FB so I feel cross that I didn’t find those comments – forgive me. Thanks for liking this one. I was sick and so it came from that fear of physical frailty.

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    1. Thank you R. I was very sick and so not online – and this poem reflects my experience to some extent. Thank you for noticing my abscence it felt like nothing was real, that days were passing (I had scheduled some poems to be posted but haven’t actually been online in a long time) and I felt like I was slipping away. It’s good to feel I’m not. Funnily I wanted to write you anyway yesterday because I was having a conversation about someone close to me considering retiring in Australia. I told them I had taken the emigrate to Australia points test and failed because of (age/education/relevance in work and experience related to most recent job/work/relatives in Oz etc) and how funny that was as I got into Canada but I was younger then and working in a different field. It is harder to get into Australia. I really would like to, not Sydney though definitely not, the countryside for sure. But I think it may not be possible until retirement even then probably not because it would be expensive. Ah well.

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      1. Seriously?! On both counts. Sorry to hear you’ve been so sick. Truly ruly. Australian immigration policies suck. They are inconsistent, let people in who shouldn’t be, kick people out who DEFINITELY shoudn’t be – like in the last two weeks one 92yo widow with dementia who has caring family here and has gone through all the loops to keep her with them, yet someone forgot to mention one minor issue. So she’s had to leave! Grrr. And just the other day a young family who have integrated into the community, are highly respected, love the country, have jobs – but the husband failed the english language test, despite being THE most trusted employee in a small family based business ! Why??!! And now you aren’t being approved ?! WTF !!!! apologies – I get a tad worked up about these stupidities ๐Ÿ™‚ Glad you’re feeling better xx

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    1. Truly I do not think I could have either except I experienced a horrible health experience/scare the other day landing me in the ER at midnight and so I think the words came afterward, otherwise I don’t think I could have either.

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  5. Just breathe! How many times do I tell myself that and when I can’t my daughter usually has to remind me to. I wonder if in that one extra moment of breathing there is something so deeply profound that we can’t even begin to understand! Perhaps it is a quicksilver awareness of a door on the other side, or a saving grace, or a respite from the storm till we can stand again and breathe in enough hope to carry on our own again??? I miss you and would so love to sit with you especially when you are feeling low! We are connected in some way, you and I! Je t’aime, N ๐Ÿ™‚ โค

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    1. Your daughter is very lucky to have a mother like you. I know you would disabuse that but I know it to be true. I love your use of quicksilver I think that says so much. I would so love to sit with you also – I don’t feel low it was a confluence of medical issues that really kicked my ass but I’m recovering. We are connected in many ways my sister of purple and I value your quicksilver in my life and your continued existence more than you could imagine

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      1. I am extremely blessed to have her and you too. It’s simply impossible to assess the value in terms of degrees the people that we love. That’s why I’ve never liked the term “best friend.” Everyone that I cherish has a very special place in my heart and I would never want to diminish the importance of that by making comparisons. God-given gifts must always be revered and given their due. Do take care of yourself and know that I have climbed back on the planet and shall try not to be absent and in the dark my dear sweet, quicksilver friend!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ โค โค โค

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  6. Pingback: Breathing – SEO
    1. Dear Dawn. I have long felt that ‘knowing’ comes faster than we think. I have ‘known’ friends for years and come to find they are emptied pockets, whilst I have ‘known’ a stranger a few moments and seen more true compassion in their eyes than a decade of someone I was familiar with. I guess I mean ‘knowing’ can come in the compassion we have for others, and yours is heartfelt and most appreciated. Thank you – I knew a girl called Dawn growing up, she was adopted into a prestigious family who did not treat her well, she was a truly lovely person who had a hard life but truly lived up to her name and never lost her light.

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      1. My name is an alias, as I need to protect myself and my children, mostly from their father, but also from the Big Wide Web…
        But I chose it when I finally started to find my light again…

        I lived as an expat for many years, and in that life, you quickly learn not to lose time before opening up. And you also learn quickly to figure out who you can really count on and who is just an acquaintance. Though sometimes you get surprises, one way or the other.
        I must say the biggest one when I finally accepted I couldn’t trust the one person I should have been able to.
        It took me a while. I’m starting to get over it.
        I wish you the best, because I can relate to the pain and struggles you describe.
        Hence the hugs.
        XO

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      2. I’ll still call you Dawn because it’s a good alias ๐Ÿ™‚
        I’m an ex-pat also so I totally related to what you said here. I’m sorry you experienced that – I have also and it’s well … damaging in a profound way to be let down by someone you really should be able to trust. What you said also about acquaintances versus something else you can trust and count on, well that is very true. I have not been so fortunate in the latter, although we make our own luck don’t we? I expect it’s because having been burned with friendships I haven’t ‘gone there’ sufficiently to really engender it. I don’t know though, people are easy to read and hard to predict – what an oxymoron! Thank you for the hugs they are very, very appreciated and I return them to a girl of strength and inspiration x

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    1. Thank you my friend, it’s good to see you here. I had a little run-in-with-the-bone-man and it got me thinking about the fragility of things. I appreciate you writing here and reading my stuff because when you are gone you really feel you are gone and when people notice it’s a validation that you are not gone.

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      1. It was a very existential moment you could appreciate, sitting at 2am in the ER contemplating my sum and turn on this planet. I think I’m ‘getting there’ in terms of being ‘all right’ but maybe I don’t know. Thank you – for just caring – because I adore the person of you.

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      1. An interview I did was published this week. She asked me whether there were any blogs that I love to follow. Yours was first. “The Feathered Sleep โ€” Candice Louisa Daquinโ€™s writing is elegant, exquisite, and emotionally resonant.” I am just as much of a fan girl now as I was when I first read your writing.

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      2. What can I say to that? Especially as YOU are far more the child of silver than I ever will be. Lately what with being pretty sick I came to a place where I asked myself, if I wasn’t around much longer (very dramatic I know, but you kinda do that when you’re sitting in the ER at 2am!) would I be okay with how I was in this life? Did I want more? The answer surprised me. I actually would be okay. I always saw myself as discontented, but truth is, I’m probably too content (if you are too content you are liable to strive less hard for things I expect). At the same time I felt I should regret not being closer to some people. I always feel I’m looking through a screen darkly, and never really attaching. Maybe to attach is just too much to ask for, too intense, but that would be my wish, to be involved more with the psyche of another and really feel we were melded as a result. I think I admire that you are able to do this regularly with a wide swath of people, you not only bring out the best in others, you cause them to come together. You are a lightning rod. So if anyone is the fangirl (does that mean I have to give up Kate Bush? Oh but you don’t like her so maybe that was your plan all along you Devil!) it would be me.

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      3. You always see me so differently than I see myself. I think I spent too much time being afraid to succeed, to want, to shine. I woke up at 50 and thought to myself: I WANT to make an impact. It isn’t too late. This may not be the way I expected to make it, but I trust my gut. I invest in people and relationships because life feels too short not too. I am so sorry to hear that you have been so ill. I know how scary and out of control that can feel. Know that you were missed and and that you make an impact, you have weight.

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      4. Maybe because I’m very, very different to you, I can see you in an untainted light. We often cannot see ourselves in an untainted light because we’re too close for comfort. I’m not success-orientated at all, I don’t want to shine, I don’t want to make an impact. So because of those things I can appreciate when someone DOES make an impact because I’m not trying to I’m not in the running, I’m on the outside observing. I think you succeed in your goals thus far and will continue to. 50 is by NO means old it’s just beginning. Many people have 3rd/4th/5th careers, many become notable or famous after a certain age, it’s not just for the 20 somethings. I think you have the wisdom and gravitas of having lived and the urgency and eagerness of youth, and you need both of those. When I was very young I was semi-ambitious, I did a LOT in a very short period of time, a LOT, and I think I burned out on that, and need for myself, a very different pace, direction and directive. But we’re all different, that’s something I didn’t understand when I was younger, stupidly I thought if someone didn’t feel as I did, I was strange or they were strange, I couldn’t understand why someone would be ambitious, another not, and both be okay in their own milleau, I expect because of being an only-child I intellectually understood people but not emotionally. I still don’t ‘get’ people – when it comes to lying (which I think deplorable) and cruelty (ditto) thus, I feel a stranger in a strange land, but I’m also a huge champion of people who try and haut damn woman you TRY but moreover you succeed. If you keep on at your pace you will continue to succeed and grow, that I know without a shadow of doubt. You are right, it IS NOT remotely too late. You are also right to invest in people, I used to be very popular and sociable and did just that but it didn’t work out for me so now I don’t but that doesn’t mean I don’t see the value and the pay-off of doing so, after all we are social animals. Yes my illness woke me up, I need something too I’m just not sure yet what it is. Meanwhile if you ever want to give me a job I’m up for it because the day-job you do is my dream job ironically! I am 100 percent behind you C, I just plain am, and that will not change. I see you. The real you. The you that you don’t always see but somehow know is hidden in there.

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  7. A powerful piece Candice, sensing you came to a cliff edge, I am thankful that you caught your breath and took that great intake of air my friend.. Such trauma often catches us unawares,
    “As we find ourselves, subject to midnight- We, who have never been this person
    Arising, as if we could separate and escape, inevitable places- Was it really me? Who gasped for breath and cried out to spirits never tested? ”
    Sending you continued thoughts as another name is added to my little book Candice.. Sending Love, Healing and Blessings your way my friend
    โค

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    1. Thank you Sue, it was a bad time, unexpected, awful, but I’m back in the seat again and appreciative of anyone who noticed my absence and is glad for my return. Thank you for your kindness. I saw a bumper sticker on a car as I was going to the ER it said ‘be kind’ I thought that so understated in a wonderful way, I’m sure many people revel in being a bitch and a bastard but I so admire those who are quietly kind. Many healthcare workers do incredible things each and every day without any notice, you really appreciate it when you are the one on the patient table. Thank you dear one.

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      1. So thankful you are on the mend.. and yes, despite all the media coverage of how bad this world is.. They only promote a small portion into our homes that repeat on the hour, to make us believe the whole world is bad.. While there are many a silent Angel working in the background helping others in small ways.. So pleased you are OK.. love and warm well wishes xxx โค

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      2. Wise words and Sue I know you are right. They do dwell on the terrible and less on the goodness of people. I know I’m guilty of this also. I find less and less to believe in and yet at my core I do believe in people’s mercy – it’s just hard when what we are shown is mostly cruelty, sarcasm, greed etc. It takes a strong person to rise above that and see the rest of the picture. I admire you for being able to do so and I shall say I ‘strive’ to emulate this perspective honestly, because I know it’s the only way to make the most of our existence and not fracture ourselves from the possibility.

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      3. Loved your words that you used here too Candice.. “I know itโ€™s the only way to make the most of our existence and not fracture ourselves from the possibility.”
        It is easy to say I know, and for a long time I was in a dark place.. But you know what when you reach bottom, the only way is up.. and I send you lots of Love in finding that energy dear Candice.. You can and will succeed.. xxx

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  8. “And because we still stand, others never witness, the deep sink of our soul” one of the most profoundly well-penned lines I’ve ever read. You have such an incredible gift with words but sadly it costs you great suffering. Je t’aime, N

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    1. Thank you. I’m not down mentally right now, I had a real kick in the pants health-wise and a bad ‘scare’ I guess, that landed me in the ER and has me reevaluating things I took for granted as we all do (health). You never know. So this poem was about the experience – I hoped the ending showed, there is hope even when perhaps there is no hope. Thank you my friend it feels like ages since I heard from you I have not been online much I took a real beating, it is good to hear from you.

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      1. Oh sweetheart I am so sorry to hear that you’ve been that ill! I pray that you are indeed on the road to recovery and that it comes swiftly. I know I have been remiss is commenting lately and now I’m even more sorry than before. Please forgive me.
        I let life get too busy and lost sight of what’s really important and that is my people garden. I’ve also had a couple of health side rails but nothing as serious as yours. But we shall breathe, you and i and stand for many moments yet to come. Candice, you are brilliantly gifted in word and spirit and I adore you!!! โค โค โค

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      2. Are you okay? When you have a chance (and not before, no rush, although you do owe me an email, ha ha ha!) please let me know what has been going on? I had thought you were a little quiet, but since I too was, I didn’t act upon it, I should have. I’m sorry for that, as I did notice. Please write me privately when you can my friend. I CARE (and never ask for forgiveness you NEVER need to do that with me EVER)

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    1. That is a really, really valuable and cherished comment because I try to do that. The other day I began to read The Book of Joan, as it had been touted as this new Iris Murdoch style (or Ursula le guan – sp?) Sci-Fi novel that was so brilliant. After 100 pages I gave up, I just didn’t FEEL for anyone in the novel. Yes technically it was well written, a little dense (the first line was 200 words without any punctuation and they say I’m bad!) but it did not make you care for the situation or people involved. I suppose I feel you need to. I realize that’s not always the case, maybe it’s a more female style of writing, maybe that’s sexist, I don’t know. But it means a lot to me that you felt this and it helps me enormously. Thank you my friend

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  9. Words deep and touching. How are you miss thing? I would email but I remember you haven’t been feeling well. So I didn’t want to disturb you. But, just know you are always in my prayers C, love you sister

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    1. Love you beautiful girl – miss your beautiful face on your picture. Hope you are doing okay. Sorry for being remiss in writing emails just been pretty sick but trying hard to feel and get better. Hugs and also know you are in my prayers always as I believe in you (is the new semester starting in a couple of weeks?) xo

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  10. “maybe with light and courage”

    I know exactly what you we’re feeling sis.
    The dark times and coming back to a place of ease and serenity.
    It’s difficult to separate away from the negativity and frustration that surrounds us. I will always be there for you and I am you light and courage that you and I, hold together and bring about hope to ourselves and the people we care around us. ๐Ÿ™‚ Love you sister.

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    1. When you meet someone you feel you have known all of your life you really are not alone. I remind myself of that when I feel alone. You are one of those rare souls Asimov whom I have felt I have known since we stepped on this earth. I hope I know you all of my journey and yours.

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      1. You’ll always be on my journey sis. We are family and will always be family forever. You are my twin and my blood. We we’re meant to be on this earth and know each other and be there for one another. I love you sis. Always thinking of you. ๐Ÿ™‚

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