I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

22 June 2016


Is it a bird that, battered by storms,
rises again to soar on strong wings?

Is it a beast of burden – an ox, say –
that rests at the end of the day
to recover its strength and resume?

Is it, perhaps, a sliding, zig-zagging snake 
moving through grass unseen, at speed?

Or a tough lizard with hard skin
who can freeze to invisibility, then dart …
or shed its trapped tail, only to grow a new one?

Does it even describe me, still here after all?
Does it describe humanity? And is that good?

I like to think it will be our planet
long after the batterings, the burdens,
the need for speed and hiding, 
and maybe our very selves, are well gone.

Image © Sharyn Williams 2014. This is the cover illustration for one of my e-chapbooks (see right sidebar) and must not be reproduced without permission. I thought it a good illustration for this poem too.

The poem is written in response to Poets United's Midweek Motif: Resilience.


  1. Me, too, kiddo. One thing for sure, Mother Nature is resilient! We all are. We survive childhood, then adolescence, then impossible marriages, raising kids alone, watching said kids go off the rails, then somehow find their way back onto the track........then we are rewarded with old age. And we wouldnt refuse the trip for all the world. Smiles.

  2. this one's a beauty and truth Rosemary...love the examples and also Sherry's comment :)

  3. Really hope that we don't have the horrible ability to destroy it beyond repair.

  4. Amen to that! I like all the questions, and especially the reminder that sleep gives us the rest to rise again.

  5. Resilience is all those things and much much more i think...if we are still here perhaps it does mean us - i hope that is good

  6. Sigh.. such a wise and profound write, Rosemary and such stellar examples too.

    Lots of love,

  7. The carelessness of humanity in caring for the Earth is horrific. What we are doing is akin to matricide.

  8. Loved all the examples. A very thought provoking poem.

  9. Oh, how we bend and endure...and then rise!!Beautifully written and so deep!! Loved it, Rosemary!

  10. As comedian George Carlin said "The plant is fine - the people are fucked. The plant has survived all kinds of natural disasters, but not the people." Great lovely poem.

  11. I wonder if the planet can survive or will it age at the hands of man and time.

  12. Earth is finite....it will end in time and hopefully a long way off !

  13. Indeed we are resilient, I think. Ha, I think many of us have grown new tails at different times. Smiles. And, alas, so far it does seem that both we AND humanity ARE resilient!! (And I hope humanity remains so!)

  14. Very thoughtful indeed! I actually think there will be a time when we are gone from the surface of this planet. When you look at how antibiotics are failing with the new super-bugs it's possible. But will super volcanoes and rocks from space it's hard to say what will last, us or the planet. Thought-provoking poem!

  15. I love your examples - also the stone that will not budge tho time wills its alteration.