Posts Tagged ‘death’

Halted by the complexity of time
to wonder now where this moment
came from and why; and how long it

What matters is how you conquer Eternity

will last before the next.

Concepts seem to eternal their way
through the mind, a continuous flow
of meandering confusion.

fluid uneasiness, warm
frightened blood
passing vein to vein.

Where there can’t be time
there is no question
but life and even death
evolve that cycle

of numbed units….

that you eventually Die on a
Wednesday at noon makes no

From then on what matters is
how you conquer Eternity.

~ *•.¸♥♥¸.•*
© Susan Joyner-Stumpf

(One of my earliest poems, written at age 9. With this Poem, I won my first Writing Contest. The rest is history. I think even the Teachers were shocked.)


Nothing will ever compare

To that tremor,

That fragile, dripping quiver

Reluctantly from

Your shadowy lip,

Burning, for now,

Our goodbyes

Oh Darling!

The fragments of my weeping

Soul as I stood there,

Numb as sunlight

Caught trapped in the pulled

Shades, struggling despite

Incredible odds

To remain strong, steadfast,

And bright.

So I fall into you limp, a

Ragdoll, pleading,

Begging you,

Please don’t


“It’s only for a few days…”

The sweet breath

Of your whisper speaks

Into disheveled strands

Of my blonde hair.

The door~

That cursed door

Between us now,

Your suitcase and attaché

In either hand.

I hear the engine

Roar.  That last roar…

Tulips in snow have

Nothing on me.

Their wintry surprise at

Least will thaw.

I stand here frozen now,

A mummy, no

Place to


Oh Darling!

And then that fatal call,

Telling me you’ll never come home….


Horrible accident.

Oh Darling!


I still hear your

Words now,

“It’s only for a few days…”

…….And then days turn into a lifetime.

No one ever told me

Waiting for Eternity would

Be so slow…


© Susan Joyner-Stumpf


Lay down your infinite fears;

I hold you.

And I feel the rumblings inside,

a chasm of unspoken tears

            never before this day cried.

So I weep them all for you.

I see all the living that stayed


great moments you wanted to run but instead fell,

when you reached out for the sweetness of Heaven

but ended up tasting bitter Hell,

worry not, I breathe it all for you.

Let go of the pain,

I’ll drain the bleed

of your wounds from you.

I’ll take the knives that carved your heart,

and mend back the pieces torn and ripped apart – –


as sure as I found paradise behind broken eyes,

soared with your tortured Soul inside rain-drenched skies,

keep on going when the Grim Reaper knocks, too,


you’ll never know

that I Died for you.

© Susan Joyner-Stumpf


The earth wobbles from a shifted axis.

Today, a bird lost its sonar, crashed into

My windshield.

We pay for air, for space, for water.  Shouldn’t that be free?

~ we’re on edge.

Roaches have been here over a million years; they’ll out live us by millennia.

Stock markets fluctuate.

Cost of living spirals out of control.

Salaries stay the same.

 ~ we’re on edge.

Starvation is on the rise.  Why?

Yellowstonenational park is crumbling.

Antarctic glaciers are melting.

Rain forests are being butchered.

Natural catastrophes are becoming more frequent.

 ~ we’re on edge.

Animal cruelty is rampant.

Prejudice still exists.

I saw a kitten thrown from a speeding car.

I heard of a puppy drowned in the

River; he had been locked inside

The coffin of a suitcase with no way out.

Today, on prime time news, it was

Reported a young mother stuffed her

Newborn infant inside a draw-string

Trash bag in the city dumpster

Where it ended up at the local landfill.

 ~ there is no more edge.

                                                we fell off.


© Susan Joyner-Stumpf



Cornered bedlam

Does even hope’s sharp-edged shrapnel

sleep its dusty milestones away

Much less live here anymore

Beside those beautiful yet fallen stars

The ones that burn down battles

In our Heart

Of want and tears


Scope of pierce

Outrage of silent scream

Crippled memory to faltering aorta

Spilled like nuggets of hardened courage


Are we all to blame for the gold that is lost

In each of us exists the lava of molten dreams

Cursed for the sword of reckoning it bleeds

Stabbing through sinew and bone


I hear you across channels of ancient mist

No avalanche can freeze such driven lust

No tundra’s stillness can out-vast

Your lips devoid of stolen kiss


Only the less of me, now dismantled,

Dying distant from your fumbling arms

And so afraid that even eternity is not


Near long enough to bury what is

Left of us both in the same space

That ate our fragile glory into the abyss.



© Susan Joyner-Stumpf


In the Nursing home,

my father seemed so small,

not the towering burly figure

I remembered as a child,

the whiplash of his tongue

tall as Aspen Pines;

the crest of his anger

rising and falling

like the Man in the Moon.

Now he peered out from

behind glazed over eyes

barely recognizable except for their

surrendered blue

which was hard to accept.

Just five more years,” he said to me.

“All I want is to live five more years.”

He was 85.

I think three weeks passed when he

stated this.  Then the

dreaded pneumonia, which seems to

rob the elderly most


well it found, and claimed,

him too.

One rough night of painful

breathing and never saw

the dawn of his 86th light.

He had never asked for much,

except, perhaps, that I be perfect,

which of course I wasn’t.

And if he came back alive today,

he surely

would have said,

that’s what killed him.

But despite the relationship

we never had,

the embrace that would never come,

the shadow of his voice,

(which is all an echo is),

won’t leave me.

The memory of his one

little wish

never leaves me.

Are we all to end up an

echo inside someone’s head?

Five more years…

                             Just …five…more…years


© Susan Joyner-Stumpf

Kiss the sky


Why have you fallen

I asked of the baby bird

Only days from its shelled cocoon


And now fallen from its nest of siblings

In mother’s fated absence.


Oh! What she will find in her regal dismay

When she returns from her diligent


Hunt for elusive worms

Now stuffed ever gently in her beak

For two chicks, now,

Not three.


(I wondered sadly if she would notice.)


I had learned as a child

Not to handle fallen chicks ~


Not to drench them in human scent

Or mother might possibly, and

Most probably,

Will reject.


When she circled out of the sheets of space

And close to the nest, I backed into


Brush so as not to frighten her at

Finding once less child to feed.


I heard her chirp change to

A frantic octave


Beady eyes darting this way and that,

Knowing something

Surely was



She satisfied the other starving mouths

But she never once

Stopped fluttering nervously,




Calling, for something she

Didn’t know quite yet

She’d never

See again.


Why can’t she pick him up, what

Good are beaks and wings

If not to save your own?


And he laid there so still on the

Leafy ground, tiny

Twig feet pointing

Degradingly upwards.


How I could identify: an instant

orphan, shocked, and dazed.


Forget all I’ve learned!


When mother took off once more

Into the unknowns of

Her world,


I gathered him in my coat



And carried him home.


He will grow, take wing some fine day, become

The flight and fury

That never looks back to thank me ~


But that’s okay

That’s okay



As long as he has the chance someday

To kiss

Something that belongs to him:


That distant,

Elusive sky.




© Susan Joyner-Stumpf