Thursday, October 21, 2010


After a long day, and most days are long, too long, I dress Sophie for bed and place her on her left side, where she curls into a fetal position and lies, quietly, for a minute or two.

Wherein the deep night sky
The stars lie in its embrace
The courtyard still in its sleep
And peace comes over your face

I'll lie next to Sophie, my body curved around hers, one arm thrown over her a vain attempt to calm the twitching, the leftover seizure, the cumulation.

'Come to me' it sings
'Hear the pulse of the land
The Ocean's rhythms pull
To hold your heart in its hand'

 The twitching doesn't stop even when I slow my own breath, close my eyes, the heat from my mouth in the curve of her shoulder. Breathe, I think, I slow my breath, breathe I think.

And when the wind draws strong
Across the cypress trees
The Nightbirds cease their songs
So gathers memories.

The velvet night lends prayer a release; my lips might form the words of one, a plea a promise a bargain an inchoate longing.

Last night you spoke of a dream
Where forests stretched to the east
And each bird sang its
A Unicorn joined in a feast

The dark is all around us but palm to palm I imagine swimming in light. Heartsong, I think it's called. The song of the heart.

And in a corner stood
A pomegranate tree
With wild flowers there
No mortal eye could see

Tears drip down and into hollows, breathe I think and breathe.

Yet still some mystery befalls
Sure as the cock crows at morn
the world in stillness keeps
The secret of babes to be born

From where come miracles?

I heard an old voice say
"Don't go far from the land
The seasons have their way
No mortal can understand."


The italicized words are from Loreena McKennit's song Courtyard Lullaby. The rest of the dreaming is mine. You can read more of my words over at a moon, worn as if it had been a shell.


  1. This is lovely Elizabeth! I hear your heart and it speaks to that longing in all of us for peace and wellbeing for our children. Thank you so much for sharing!

  2. What a gift, this time for just the two of you, your hopes and dreams for her transmitted through your body as she settles in to sleep. I send you both love and light and hope that understanding and relief come more every day.

  3. This is so very beautiful. I feel as if I'm in the room with the two of you, breathing, praying and dreaming. The poem/song, your longings, all are sacred. Sending you much love from here.

  4. So lovely and wistful

  5. "No mortal can understand."
    I wish we could though. I wish all good things for you and Sophie.

  6. Beautiful, thank you for sharing.
    Many of us have been right there with our child.

  7. Miracles come from the same place dreams come from. Believe that. With all of your beautiful heart.

  8. A beautiful lullaby, full of longing, yet lovely and soothing.