Sunday, January 10, 2010


September, 2009

She was practical.
To avoid passersby,
her bed was situated in the center of her apartment.

It did not solve the problem, but it did help.
The further from the walls the better,
especially when longing for sleep.

She would often wake, limbs stiffened,
body and blanket precisely where they had been
when she'd tucked in
the night before.

Stillness did not mean sleep.

I knew none of this,
back then,
when she first sat down in front of me
and smiled.

I did not know her name,
old like her soul.

My joy and my discomfort,
she felt them. There were no observations,
but sensations. They pulsed through her body,

I rested my needles
and she worried about what would never be.
I nodded off
and she breathed a sigh of relief.

She held it all, for everyone,
like that spot in the river
swirling with debris.


  1. What a perfect visual, the swirling debris in the river. Amazing, Denise.

  2. stillness does not mean sleep
    i know that.

    beautiful image

  3. Amazing picture. Such an amazing blog. Love it.

  4. Your writing is wonderful, Denise. I always enjoy stopping in here even if I can't find the words to comment on each of your posts.

  5. like that spot in the river.. beautiful.

    Makes me curious about Helen.

    Keep writing friend.. love to read!

  6. Yes, I loved that last image... And I am quite taken with the photograph, too.


  7. You are a good bunch. Thank you for reading and for all of your kind comments. They make me smile.

  8. Denise:
    you are a kind soul, with great empathy for others. That is special, unique. Your words are touching and your photographs "taking" (like Maria said). I am a closet poet writer too... have not gotten the guts to spill it out though. one day, maybe. thanks for sharing.

  9. Hi, new reader here. I just saw your picture in the comments section at Eyeblog, and I wanted to tell you what a great picture it is. And now I find that your blog is pretty great too.

  10. i really love "Stillness did not mean sleep." as well :)

  11. Amelia, What a beautiful compliment. I am truly touched. Thank you.

    Anna, Chris (my husband) took that photo when we were taking a break in a diner after a day of wandering around the Chicago neighborhood where I grew up. I hadn't been there in years and it was such a fun day.

    Jessie, Thank you for stopping in. Your comment makes me feel as if I should mention something. The more I think about some of my husband's nights of tossing and turning, the more I think stillness may not mean sleep, but it is definitely a step in the right direction ;)

  12. such beautiful words. reading this, i want to know more yet i am thankful for the gift of resting inside the words...

  13. Liz, Thank you. Helen was intriguing and being in her presence moved me to write this poem.