Flapper Press features original poetry submitted by our readers and writers from around the globe. We are always thrilled to see so much creativity and poetic output. Thank you to all who submitted. Keep writing and sending to us and we'll happily feature your work on our site! Stay tuned for our May poetry prompt!
April's poetry theme: "Renewal"
My favorite writing prompt is, “Describe yourself in two words.” It’s my favorite because it is so difficult. How am I to summarize my entire being into two words? Personally, mine are “everything” and “nothing.” My words are empty and meaningless, Monosyllabic melodies used to fill the silence. I say so much but mean none of it. I recite quotes I don’t believe in, perhaps to make myself think I do. Roy T. Bennett wrote, “A smart person knows how to talk. A wise person knows when to be silent.” Humans are intelligent, but we are not wise. We use words to mask the silence because it holds suffering we cannot fathom, so we use pretty words to cover it like flowers on a tombstone. But no amount of beautiful words can turn something into anything other than what it is. These are the things we haven’t found the words to describe. Or those we don’t feel the need to find because we cannot bear having them on our lips. Our words are so meaningless, but they are our entire beings. I am not a person—I am a name on a birth certificate. A name on a tombstone. I am nothing. But a small piece of time and Words.
— Grace Brewer
AFTERNOON OF LIFE
The meaning and purpose of the Afternoon of life is just as important as the Morning, even though its meaning and purpose are completely different. This Eldering Afternoon is the shadow side of incapacitating old age in that it brings us to the threshold of a mystery as profound as that of birthing and procreation, namely the mystery of death and ego dissolution. The challenge for all of us, no matter our age, is to not frame it as an “anti-aging” strategy but as a “pro-aging” journey to a happier, healthier, and longer "elder" life. Aging becomes a spiritual journey, exploring images and fears of aging, harvesting wisdom from life review, finding forgiveness to release the past, and finally facing one's mortality.
The sun is beginning to set in life.
There is a chill in the afternoon air.
The warmth of the day lingers in the mind,
But there is a new feeling in the land.
Speaking to a change in life-climate,
Felt in the heart of the aging,
Unexperienced yet in the young at heart,
Yet palpable in the metabolism of many.
Felt surely in the setting of the sun,
Felt surely in the aging of the elderly.
However, where there is a setting there is a rising,
On the side of this now there is a new now.
The movement of growth is a gene in the cosmos,
The larger scale blueprint of hope for mankind,
The visual and hidden testament to "next"
When our sun rises on a new world of life,
Caught in the manifestation of this body,
Yet patiently waiting the opportunity,
Anticipating the moment of shedding this now,
Open to the potential of a new climate change,
Movements of the soul to new levels of consciousness.
The afternoon of one’s life is not the ending midnight.
There is an energetic boost to such late-bloomers:
The integration of wisdom learned in the morning,
Applied in the evening of insight fermented after siesta.
A genetic and cosmic built-in opportunity to maximize life,
The final gathering of strength and commitment to live,
To carry life into the final battle rounds of competition,
Practiced in the art of growing beauty where there was none,
Dedicated to bringing new life to the end of life with graciousness.
— Roger Desmarais
Time and again
lost and returned
a friendship true blue.
So can you.
— Gerda Strobl
Hear My Voice
Hear my voice!
I cry out;
Die to be heard;
Drowned out by the
Reasoned and unreasonable;
Male and female;
Demanding I change my thoughts
To their own;
I am denied my voice!
There are many ways to look at nature for insight into one’s own natural development and understanding of life. The evolution of our species flows from our historical connection with developmental stages in supporting foundations through time of the evolution of the world. We all live our lives, experience the beauty of our beings, and then gradually move into our end time. The last evolution of our trajectory contains much beauty not seen immediately in the experience.
Born to silently command the sky,
Touching the sun in the clear blue,
Sweeping through the wind currents,
Majestically surveying the world.
Unbending in its plunge to capture,
The Eagle exults in its freedom,
Wing span shadowing its flight.
Nothing escapes its "eagle eye,"
Peering from the heavens
To see the minute and significant
From the heights of flight.
Today, my friend touched my soul
From the heights of sadness,
Speaking from the depths of loss
Still with the steely eye of insight,
Struggling to swing into flights of glory,
Grounded without hope of resurrection,
Reaching out into the finite world,
Searching for the terrain of infinity;
Yet, captive to the merciless evolution
That demands a gradual denouement
Out of a vaulted sky to the lowly perch,
Grounded like the old eagle
Wanting to soar but reduced to folded wings,
Watching other eaglets soar,
Missing the majesty of the soaring,
Sitting on a captive branch,
Waiting for infinity.
Out of the sadness of the gradual ending,
There is still the spark of soaring,
The desire to fly out of sight into insight,
To transport the soul to another heaven,
To continue to be what one once was,
To find the glory in the heart of the soarer,
To find majesty in the soul of the eagle,
To be what once was,
To taste the power in the soaring.
Today, there is another phase from the captive branch,
Another extension to the old evolutionary projection.
An opportunity to “shed the bonds of earth”
And enter the mystery of life beyond the soaring.
To experience an infinity beyond the known finiteness,
Plumbing the depths of existential realty
To find the gold in the hidden vein hidden deeply,
To refurbish the meaning of the old soaring,
To enter the realm of a new beauty,
To become an Elder with another goal in living
Behind the ordinary and beyond the possible.
— Roger Desmarais
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