Reflections of a Caregiver

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What colors are your heart?

Are they grays for the clouds hanging there?

Or red for the anger you wish you wouldn’t feel?

Shades of maroon to bruising black and blue?

The dirty browns of the mounds of guilt

guilt for the selfish indulgence of these colors

when she is the one with the wound?

Heavy shades of sadness and pain?

The strained purple of anxiety

or its magenta cousin fear
                                on the cusp of a foggy frontier?

Dullness extruded from muscle-exhaustion

                that beckons you into sleep?


I pray the loss of twilight

and this journey into night.


I am grateful for the early morning light

where shades of sadness fade

the frights of the night are past

and I am keen
with shades of green.


Red with the oxygen of Grace,

I thank the Spirit

who sorted my dreams

sewed up the seams

to make whole my soul

and renew my heart.


What color is your heart this day?


Author's Note: 


This poem was read at a special workshop where Janet McClanahan the founder of Weekend at Rickey's held her first public workshop (September 2018)  to help get her new non-profit organization started.  The organization will give caregivers a weekend off from their duties to give them some respite from their usual pressures. 

Please see and contribute to Janet's non-profit organization: 

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Originally written  4-25-16