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SUSAN JOHNSTON OWEN-JAZZ  /  SITE OWNER/MUSICIAN, WRITER,ARTIST, ELEMENTARY AND SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHER (RETIRED)

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LIFE

POETRY-LIFE S.J.OWEN  ©

 

 


 

 

The River Ride
The susurrus trees appeared serreptitious
as our ship floated down the Hudson River.
Perhaps it was the sign of an omen or
panacea of help entering our travails.

The day had had a summery, sumptuous feel;
more delicious than deep, rich chocolate.
It was as pleasant as a possible walk
along the nearby inviting shoreline.

Yet, there was an undercurrent seemingly
inappropriate for the particular winter day.
The rippling water had lulled us into
much needed insouciant leisure.

An ethereal feel began to creep on the deck.
Passengers busily engaged in the mellifluous
beat on the band's enjoyable music
bore no heed to the foreseeable disruption.

The clamoring of dishes, dancing partiers,
blocked any need to feel guarded during play.
As the effervescence of the night filled spirits,
a loud concussion suddenly caught their attention.

The guests had lost track of the time; rowdily
clapping to the sky's magnificent display.
Happy New Years and laughter emoted from the crowd.
The fireworks display had begun it's entertainment.

sjo/jazz

Finding Her

 

Speaking with force

which has  filled

 a life few would

 understand or believe,

grabbing an ear

when possible,

to halt the intense pain

that takes her

to a dark place,

traps her in time

 until a nudge

brings her back

 to face the day.

 

In this reality

she accepts choices

that have brought her

 to this place,

where she stands

 in silence,

until a time when

she can scream.

 

Is the proof on

the pages of a book,

or in the lines on her face

where her smile

 hides a frown?

Unguarded,

thinking of her days,

joys keep her from

crossing to despair.

 

 Children's laughter

lifts her,

releasing the horror

of the shocks,

brought on by

the grind of existing,

as she moves forward.

 

Hiding in the humanness

that she is,

hovering to belong;

normal, real, true

covered by a mask

worn for evil minds,

quick to judge

 a story for which

they have only read

 one of the chapters.

 

She'd share

fear keeps it inside,

for just like others

 there's dignity, pride.

Holding her together

 as a day begins,

how can she know

her needed  strength?

 

Will the passage of time

 show a new light,

ease her terror,

reveal her harmed plight?

When asked why

 she is a certain way,

 she smiles warmly

 changing subjects.

sjo/jazz 3/9/2012

 



 

Eluded

 

Stairs are too high today
they must touch the moon.
I stumble down, tumble down
the night has come too soon.

My legs are weaker by the hour
feeling like I'm climbing a tower.
I stumble down, tumble down
why can't the sun come soon?

Why are my arms weak so frail,
why do they never cease to fail?
The soul struggles to survive;
the pain seeps in; I wail.

I stumble down, tumble down,
Oh! DAMN the wretched night.
Hours are dour, minutes slow;
the clock the enemy I know.

I stumble down, tumble down
praying for some sleep to keep.
My body longing, aching
for bliss all lost in down.

Wishing for pain to please subside,
upon this thought I frown.
I stumble down, tumble down,
a hideous site like a clown.

I climb the stairs up to that
distant, blurry, damn moon.
Perhaps, eluding sleep arrives
allows me to hide from pain soon.

sjo/jazz

FIBROMYALGIA



       Lost Little Boy

Belittled, tormented, crucified, enraged,

angry, pained, troubled, weak inside.

Lost in bitterness and hate, so sick of his

own behavior he never hesitates to hurt

those who are successful, happy in their lives.

 

He can’t envision a life like theirs

he feels he is not wise.

Thumbing his nose at all the rules,

he’s thought of as a fool.

The little bit I saw of his heart

he could have been a jewel.

 

It seems so trite to write it this way

small are his actions what else can I say?

Maybe someday before he’s too lost,

being vindictive will have too high a cost.

It’s hard to imagine he ever feels joy,

he locked compassion away

when he lost all his toys.

 

Sadness surrounds him,

his heart has turned to stone.

Yet he once had compassion

where it’s gone has him torn.

How can you hate him he hates himself?

 

Can you hear him screaming?

He’s been left  on a shelf.

sjo/jazz© 2009

 




Journey Through Depression

 

Until the day my heart

sank to the bottom of a desolate pit
no one could have explained

the devastation of depression.

Denial was on the top of the list,

it must be just the blues.
As days turned into weeks

  spirits could not be lifted,
the truth became a reality

unable to be faced or believed.
What tore the heart so deeply

that days were a dread?
Why was this a sadness

too deep to face,

too hard to attack.
The years had passed

believing it was understood,
not one clue was available

to understand this deep sorrow.
Medication would be slow

 attempting to ease the pain,
while most doctors didn't

embrace empathy,
their text book knowledge

did little the assuage the fear.
Would this ever pass

turning a lost soul  home?
Months have now passed

leaving those who don't comprehend
confused, feeling 

no longer loved or cared about.
Nothing would end love for them,

this heart was torn.
Perhaps everyone would

abandon the confusion.
  Impossible to explain,

the books barely know the hurt.
When did it happen,

why did it tear this soul to shreds?
All that can be explained

is the need for caring patience.
Those with depression

  never  the same that you knew.
What can be done;

kindness, consideration?
Had this knowledge struck sooner,

care for the injured
would have shown more

thought.

How does one know;

until they walk the miles in darkness?

sjo/jazz 10/1/2010


Journey of a Lost Soul

Walking away, not one more tragedy can be endured,
the wind blows, scrambling her hair, she’s troubled.
Left adrift in a sea of worry and despair, she lingers
in the wasteland of destroyed, torn dreams floating off,
 reminding the giver of past indisgressions, on the brink

in a cesspool of bewilderment, unable to go forward.
Holding onto a heart that has failed in the billowing winds,
surrounded by the other  voyagers seeking refuge
in the aftermath of life as they sink or rise into a cavern of
lost dreams or float to the sky, resting in its’ glory,

Some souls set on this path to meander into oblivion
by lusting desires they seldom choose to control.
Would they thrive in selfish choices or rot in greed?
She floats in this treacherous sea, slowing slipping away
one more piece of her gone causing her to swell

tear to escape back into a world of joy and relief.
She longs for removal from a pond of desperation,

 trying not to wrap her thoughts around her wrongs.
Rowing hard and deep, she pushes the despair to
its appropriate place, tucked in the hole she saves
for her plight towards a life she’ll no longer squander.

Susan Johnston Owen


 

 
"PICKING UP"

 

DON’T MAKE HER YOUR REASON

TO CRY YOURSELF TO SLEEP

BLAMING ALL YOUR PROBLEMS

ON THE COMPANY YOU KEEP.

SHE IS NOT THE REASON

THAT YOUR LIFE HAS COME UNDONE

FEELING YOU HAVE TO SUFFER,

MAY YOUR TRIALS ALL BE WON.

 

SHE WON’T BE THE EXPLANATION

YOU GO ABOUT YOUR DAYS

DOING THE THINGS  YOU DO

TO GET YOUR VERY WAY.

SHE WON’T BE YOUR RATIONALE

IF YOUR LIFE GOES UNFULFILLED

YOU KNOW HOW TO GET YOUR WAY,

WITH THAT YOU’RE VERY SKILLED…

 

NEVER WILL SHE BE THE MOTIVATION,

YOUR TEMPER’S NOT IN CHECK.

TRY MAKING HER YOUR EXCUSE,

SHE'LL LEAVE YOU ALONE IN YOUR WRECK.

SHE WILL NEVER BE YOUR MOTIVE,

THE CHOICES WERE ALL YOURS.

WHEN YOU “PICKED” UP,

YOU THREW HER DOWN,

HEAD RIGHT OUT THE DOOR.

S.J. OWEN © 2014

 

 

 

 

 

Pedestal

You put her on a pedestal

like an untouchable statue;

benign of emotion.

Human

person

being

individual

creature

soul

Have you confused her with perfection?

The image in your mind has forgotten her soul.

It is cold, lonely foreboding

this position you have given her.

She is not a statuette which requires occasional dusting.

She is woman

living

animate

perky

vibrant bustling

vivacious

full of life

Is it fair to expect perfection?

Try making love to a statue.

COLD

Susan Johnston Owen ©2011

 

 

 

 

THE INTERNET

 

Confused by bewildering changes,
uncertainty brought chaos into a
complicated situation..
a puzzle in the world she
tried to conquer as mayhem
running through her thoughts
slowly began to erode reality.

Approaching a
mass of buttons and screens, able
to delete a person on a whim.
It was enchanting when she began
click a button, find a friend.
With time, addiction settled in.
Hastening to read the day's news,
this was a comfortable place,
to get in the way of common sense.
How much trouble could it cause

clicking the keys of a machine that
in itself is harmless until some
hapless abuse trolls in?


With the words, "it's only the internet", the
realization of its' intensity
if one allows it to be, is clear.
None the less many friendships
have gotten past the barrier of the screen
Gossip, misunderstandings, joy, laughter,
perplexed, bewildered, saddened.
Emotions never leave.

With that, she punches a few keys
The knowledge that dealing with people
is the same no matter where she settles
opens her to continue the journey.
She is who she is, just a person attempting to
find happiness in an uncertain world.

After all, if someone

chooses not to believe what she says,
speaks ill at her back,
that can't be fought.
The truth will remain the truth.
Susan J. Owen 2015 ©
Confused by bewildering changes,
uncertainty brought chaos into a
complicated situation..
a puzzle in the world she
tried to conquer as mayhem
running through her thoughts
slowly began to erode reality.

Approaching a
mass of buttons and screens, able
to delete a person on a whim.
It was enchanting when she began
click a button, find a friend.
With time, addiction settled in.
Hastening to read the day's news,
this was a comfortable place,
to get in the way of common sense.
How much trouble could it cause

clicking the keys of a machine that
in itself is harmless until some
hapless abuse trolls in?


With the words, "it's only the internet", the
realization of its' intensity
if one allows it to be, is clear.
None the less many friendships
have gotten past the barrier of the screen
Gossip, misunderstandings, joy, laughter,
perplexed, bewildered, saddened.
Emotions never leave.

With that, she punches a few keys
The knowledge that dealing with people
is the same no matter where she settles
opens her to continue the journey.
She is who she is, just a person attempting to
find happiness in an uncertain world.

After all, if someone

chooses not to believe what she says,
speaks ill at her back,
that can't be fought.
The truth will remain the truth.
Susan J. Owen 2015 ©

 

How Dare You

 

It's true she's no angel, not even close.
but you thought she was the best thing ,
you'd found on this Earth.
You knew she wasn't free but that was a blur.

You had some nerve chasing her,
using your lovely boyish charm to hide
the truth you did not want her to see.
You did not want  her you wanted a prize,
unattainable, so it seemed in your eyes.

How dare you act like a wounded pawn,
you played the game like a pro all along.

She kept saying no, you kept saying alright,
yet kept waiting for her night after night.

You had a good time you know that it's right,
yet suspicious  she'd never be true.
How dare you act like a small pained child,
you pursued HER, you weren't meek or mild.

How dare you put it all on her?
Wishing her well but continue your slur.
She's guilty, she's shouted, I know it's true.
Yet the things of which she's accused
aren't accurate nor close to true.

Ever think twice of what she could lose?
Not just her heart; her family and child.
How dare you keep at her she knows she did wrong,
this break was rough she's no longer strong.

She'd never known one like you, yet she tried

You wanted perfection, she had to tell the facts,
you had no right to ask for that, your character lacked.

You will not speak, you won't talk this thing through,
yet your assumptions will never be true.
She admits it, she hurt your tender pride,
it's time to dismiss it she's paid for her crime.

Friends listened daily, they heard how she cried.
She knows that you're trying to prove her a fake.
The truth of the matter she kept telling you,
was she needed time and assurance,
so this wouldn't blow up in her face.

Why do you need to leave her in disgrace ?
You were a liar, yet dump it all on her.
All she wants now is to just let it be.
You really loved her, she really loved you.
Why can't they save a piece of the good?

In the wee hours, when looking back,

you sang to her heart; it will never forget.

sjo/jazz© 2008

 


 

Replaceable?

 


The vase fell

shattering to bits.

Strangely the incident

didn't trouble,

can be replaced

Objects aren't important,

unlike hearts; no double.

 

Staring at the pieces

easily dumped in trash,

knowing they're expendable

not worth thinking

of the crash,

they only gave memories,

some pleasure.

 

Worldly goods may make

one feel fortunate,

this deception often

causes us to forget,

true riches may get lost

in this coordinate,

when acceptance of self

is denied, not met.

 

    Valuing belongings   

understandable;

not worth strife,

why don't we value

each other more,

it's just, "life"?

sjo/jazz©

Tired

 

Would you mind

if I cried?

I’m so tired

of the games,

competition,

gross ambition,
let me write

without the fray.
Read a book,

let down my hair.
Senseless banter

not to address.
Ignore this machine,
write in my journal.
Sit on the deck

breathe fresh air,
not meet my deadline,

not care.
This assault

to make me perform
isn’t my style,

I’m getting worn.
Words will come,

I guarantee.
Today’s for me,

I’m taking it back.

sjo/jazz
5/29/2009 ©


 

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Pedestal

You put her on a pedestal

like an untouchable statue;

benign of emotion.

Human

person

being

individual

creature

soul

Have you confused her with perfection?

The image in your mind has forgotten her soul.

It is cold, lonely foreboding

this position you have given her.

She is not a statuette which requires occasional dusting.

She is woman

living

animate

perky

vibrant bustling

vivacious

full of life

Is it fair to expect perfection?

Try making love to a statue.

COLD

Susan Johnston Owen ©2011

 

 

 

 

THE INTERNET

 

Confused by bewildering changes,
uncertainty brought chaos into a
complicated situation..
a puzzle in the world she
tried to conquer as mayhem
running through her thoughts
slowly began to erode reality.

Approaching a
mass of buttons and screens, able
to delete a person on a whim.
It was enchanting when she began
click a button, find a friend.
With time, addiction settled in.
Hastening to read the day's news,
this was a comfortable place,
to get in the way of common sense.
How much trouble could it cause

clicking the keys of a machine that
in itself is harmless until some
hapless abuse trolls in?


With the words, "it's only the internet", the
realization of its' intensity
if one allows it to be, is clear.
None the less many friendships
have gotten past the barrier of the screen
Gossip, misunderstandings, joy, laughter,
perplexed, bewildered, saddened.
Emotions never leave.

With that, she punches a few keys
The knowledge that dealing with people
is the same no matter where she settles
opens her to continue the journey.
She is who she is, just a person attempting to
find happiness in an uncertain world.

After all, if someone

chooses not to believe what she says,
speaks ill at her back,
that can't be fought.
The truth will remain the truth.
Susan J. Owen 2015 ©
Confused by bewildering changes,
uncertainty brought chaos into a
complicated situation..
a puzzle in the world she
tried to conquer as mayhem
running through her thoughts
slowly began to erode reality.

Approaching a
mass of buttons and screens, able
to delete a person on a whim.
It was enchanting when she began
click a button, find a friend.
With time, addiction settled in.
Hastening to read the day's news,
this was a comfortable place,
to get in the way of common sense.
How much trouble could it cause

clicking the keys of a machine that
in itself is harmless until some
hapless abuse trolls in?


With the words, "it's only the internet", the
realization of its' intensity
if one allows it to be, is clear.
None the less many friendships
have gotten past the barrier of the screen
Gossip, misunderstandings, joy, laughter,
perplexed, bewildered, saddened.
Emotions never leave.

With that, she punches a few keys
The knowledge that dealing with people
is the same no matter where she settles
opens her to continue the journey.
She is who she is, just a person attempting to
find happiness in an uncertain world.

After all, if someone

chooses not to believe what she says,
speaks ill at her back,
that can't be fought.
The truth will remain the truth.
Susan J. Owen 2015 ©

 

How Dare You

 

It's true she's no angel, not even close.
but you thought she was the best thing ,
you'd found on this Earth.
You knew she wasn't free but that was a blur.

You had some nerve chasing her,
using your lovely boyish charm to hide
the truth you did not want her to see.
You did not want  her you wanted a prize,
unattainable, so it seemed in your eyes.

How dare you act like a wounded pawn,
you played the game like a pro all along.

She kept saying no, you kept saying alright,
yet kept waiting for her night after night.

You had a good time you know that it's right,
yet suspicious  she'd never be true.
How dare you act like a small pained child,
you pursued HER, you weren't meek or mild.

How dare you put it all on her?
Wishing her well but continue your slur.
She's guilty, she's shouted, I know it's true.
Yet the things of which she's accused
aren't accurate nor close to true.

Ever think twice of what she could lose?
Not just her heart; her family and child.
How dare you keep at her she knows she did wrong,
this break was rough she's no longer strong.

She'd never known one like you, yet she tried

You wanted perfection, she had to tell the facts,
you had no right to ask for that, your character lacked.

You will not speak, you won't talk this thing through,
yet your assumptions will never be true.
She admits it, she hurt your tender pride,
it's time to dismiss it she's paid for her crime.

Friends listened daily, they heard how she cried.
She knows that you're trying to prove her a fake.
The truth of the matter she kept telling you,
was she needed time and assurance,
so this wouldn't blow up in her face.

Why do you need to leave her in disgrace ?
You were a liar, yet dump it all on her.
All she wants now is to just let it be.
You really loved her, she really loved you.
Why can't they save a piece of the good?

In the wee hours, when looking back,

you sang to her heart; it will never forget.

sjo/jazz© 2008

 


 

Replaceable?

 


The vase fell

shattering to bits.

Strangely the incident

didn't trouble,

can be replaced

Objects aren't important,

unlike hearts; no double.

 

Staring at the pieces

easily dumped in trash,

knowing they're expendable

not worth thinking

of the crash,

they only gave memories,

some pleasure.

 

Worldly goods may make

one feel fortunate,

this deception often

causes us to forget,

true riches may get lost

in this coordinate,

when acceptance of self

is denied, not met.

 

Valuing belongings   

understandable;

not worth strife,

why don't we value

each other more,

it's just, "life"?

sjo/jazz©

Tired

 

Would you mind

if I cried?

I’m so tired

of the games,

competition,

gross ambition,
let me write

without the fray.
Read a book,

let down my hair.
Senseless banter

not to address.
Ignore this machine,
write in my journal.
Sit on the deck

breathe fresh air,
not meet my deadline,

not care.
This assault

to make me perform
isn’t my style,

I’m getting worn.
Words will come,

I guarantee.
Today’s for me,

I’m taking it back.

sjo/jazz
5/29/2009 ©


 

 


 

 

 




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