Tag Archives: “Saying Goodbye”

. . .

the need to withdraw
from the present the future
to be able to let go
the nagging angst
over agonies of the past

three balloons were stashed away to last
color-coded in advance with care
favorites but only for me to bear

Erie was vicious that day
the wind was not letting me be
the leading path all frozen up
turned out to be quite a display
over-the knee-deep snow
escorted me from the side
together they put on a dangerous show
to prolong my long-awaited rite

on my poorly prepped frame
the cold felt like a shower of icicles
oozing through every closed-up pore
each tiny drizzle staked to my life its claim

i had never before realized
i had so many orifices
after a while i simply gave up
trying in vain to hold on to my layers

with two crystallized fingers
i held one balloon at a time
which color came first
did not really matter in the least

my lips continued to renounce
even a mumble of that dreaded word
heart’s tongue however
had bloodied tears to pronounce

none of the balloons went very far
one by one they landed on the shore

quite suitable for the beloved two
who had deceased in that distant land
surrounded by three ancient seas

though it too first hugged naked trees
arriving then on familiar soil
the third was to become
my soul-paralyzing challenge yet
it had to be buried along the dead
for that beloved had made
an indefensible fatal mistake
by time and time again setting ablaze
even the debris determined to survive
from among the resilient remains
of my few rebounding cells still alive

© hülya n. yılmaz, 5.16.2017

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Elegy – 2

sense of paralysis

gaps in comprehension

rapid heartbeat

dryness in the throat

the mouth as well

eyes flashing

one memory after another

gasping for air

as if stabs here and there

 

could never say goodbye

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Elegy – 1

body numb

mind on hold

tremor in the hands and voice

fingers and feet on ice

stomach churning

head spinning

lips dried out

 

when will the ears have to hear,

or, the eyes read

what must have been long in process

 

how hot, the blaze on the corpse?

how deep, the cut in the heart?

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NaPoWriMo Challenge: Day 30

 

sense of paralysis

gaps in comprehension

rapid heartbeat

dryness in the throat

the mouth as well

eyes flashing

one memory after another

gasping for air

as if stabs here and there

 

could never say goodbye

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To the One to Whom My Writing Mattered the Most

For how long did you feel that familiar pain inside whenever my birthday was nearing?  Were you always filled with mixed emotions of joy and sadness while you were preparing those love-filled celebrations for me?  Did you ever resent my unexpected presence in your womb for preventing you from your process of mourning?  You surely must have suppressed its extent for fear it would hurt me, your unborn yet.

It is that time of the year again.  In fact, I am writing this on the day my birth-month arrived.  And, once more, instead of any anticipation for anything good, I feel sadness taking over me.  With all its usual might.  I suspected it then, I suspect it now: I must have taken in your immense internal suffering over your mom’s dying, while transforming into a human form inside you –  the way it is claimed we register music and words from the outside at our pre-birth stage.  Whatever it is, I don’t look forward to my birthday.  I haven’t in a very long time.

But, I have some good news, ‎mom: I am writing!  Maybe not in the way you had always wanted me to write but, still, I am writing!  You see, mom, I am leaving something concrete for my daughter after all.  A hands-on memory you seemed to have wanted me to create for us, for myself and for my future offspring.  I am so sorry for not having understood back then probably the only reason behind your fierce desire for me to sit down and write down my memories.  I should have known how belittling you would have found the way you were forced to be remembered: With a chiseled generic note on concrete stone.  In a somewhat privileged very old family cemetery compound but still, in a place where visitors are at risk of stepping on someone else’s grave, already three decades ago.

I felt so guilty, mom, for having been away for so long.  I still do.  I always knew how lost I would be in that place.  Still.  Then, there came along a news blog post by Eric Pfeiffer: A man’s dog not leaving his owner’s grave for  years.  In my shame, inspiration for a Haiku came to me.  Back then; I had no idea about this poetic form the Japanese gifted us with.  I am very new at my experimentation with it but like the prescribed form very much.  Besides, every time I try to compose one, Tunç dayım enters my heart with his repeated passionate plea to you, and then, I smile: “Please, please, Hesiko, don’t let Hülya marry someone from here.  I’m telling you: the Japanese are such refined gentlemen.  With Hülya’s extreme emotional sensitivity, only a Japanese man can do her justice as her husband.”  Anyway, mom, here is that poem:

in mourning

my mother’s grave, lost

too many look alikes since then

yet, his dog finds his

Just like you become alive in my memories, I, too, will live on in my daughter’s.  With one distinction: I don’t want your granddaughter to have a lingering reminder of the physical loss of her mother.  So, long ago, I determined my post-death matters and my wish is official.  This subject is, of course, a difficult one.  With you, it was taboo.  My choice in this matter is still far from being a conversation piece with your granddaughter – whom you would have respected for everything she represents but also for her immensely versatile life-view and acceptance and understanding of any and all of my differences.  The earth-shattering shock I lived after you is an experience I don’t want my daughter to go through.  Therefore, along the way, I have been gathering real-life evidences to leave behind as to how one can find peace after the loss of a mother – a book, a film and words of wisdom from different world cultures.  My latest find, Megan’s Way, is a novel by Melissa Foster and it equals to what I define as “eerie”: It is as if the author had known many from those sorrowful specifics of our lives.  I remember how impressed you always were with the amount of my readings, and how well you thought I could sum up their contents.  I am not going to tell you more about my newest discovery, though.  Instead, I will wind down my letter to you, holding on to my fantasy powers to imagine you are here to listen to me.

I know from dad how sad you were at first to have born a daughter – having witnessed your mother’s loss of her battle against cancer before my birth.  I have surpassed that dooms-day-age, mom, when our losses to cancer happened for several generations.  Including you.

I was never given the chance to say goodbye to you, mom.  I wrote about it in a story.  This time, I am the one who chooses not to bid farewell.  In about two weeks, you will have welcomed me to your arms way back when with a “hello”.  Today, I only need that warm welcome from you to let it accompany me before, on and well after my birthday yet once again.

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Filed under Weekend Reflections