Promoting rapid sheltering of unsheltered & unprotected women.
Sweater is pulled over her head like a hat
her middle aged face lost in the ratty fabric
talking to herself as she stands in the midst
of a chaotic hallucination
a world she experiences as real as she stands
in the middle of traffic.
Cars whirl by in morning frenzy to get to their destination
ignore her schizophrenic screams
their car windows shut tight and
their eyes stare ahead unblinking.
Myopic moments in collective cars agree
to ignore her fragile plight.
When she emerges from the bushes
the harsh glare of reality is too confusing;
she covers her face with a sweater
to mute the loud morning bustle
that crowds her mental fog.
Barefoot and unkempt
her calloused soles of collected miles
make her gait off kilter.
She ambles in haze of vacancy
battling demons she sees and believes surround her.
She ducks and swerves from her interior traffic as
cars swerve to avoid her.
Aimless she wanders in a world only she
can see and hear.
(c)2018 Dayna Leslie Hodges
Listen To My Story
In inebriated urgency, she spills
to an audience of three;
tumble like rapids to the sea.
Wednesday’s woes churn
as bottle holds her captive.
“Listen to my story”
stumbles in puzzle piece animation
words rise without landing
rhyme of reason drowns
in murky waters.
Bare knees kneel upon cement floor
she knocks on Heaven’s door
like it was her neighbor’s house
she expects God to answer
she curls quiet; waits
for wind to whisper His voice.
Psalm 23 opens the door
with promise of rest,
the good Shepherd invites her in.
She lost her footing, forgot faith
retreated back into the bottle
slipped sudden to the streets
in garments of delirium.
In intoxicated logic
she speaks like a runaway train
“Listen to my story” she interrupts
in derailed refrain
as hour nears midnight.
In rapt attention, we stand in frigid air
sidewalk our broken church
we will go home to warmth
she will remain in cold air clutches
with only a coat.
“Hallelujah” she smiles to God.
She is an abstract painting
whose blurred language
we endeavor to understand;
I listen with my ears and eyes
to decipher colors amidst haze.
One love, her desire
one love, her belief
she visits drum circle
with other worshippers.
She implores, “Listen to my story”
with a fist bump to each of us;
we respond, skin to skin.
Her toothless smile lights the darkness.
We are like a raft upon a chaotic river
as she muddles her monologue
in these perilous waters;
we will not drown,
though this Wednesday woman may.
She needs a lifeboat;
we lean in, as she unravels.
Her “Hallelujah” hangs midair.
With open-ended monologue on pause
she ambles to the park
where she will nurse vodka
chatter to the wind and fall asleep
on damp grass beneath street lamps
mumbling, “Listen to my story.”
(c)2018 Dayna Leslie Hodges