I want to draw a wide circle,
wider than my hurt,
wider than the grudges I feed and fuel.
For when the heart is aggrieved
we feel ourselves so small,
boxed into corners framed by self-made walls.
When the heart is aggrieved
we draw our circles in,
each tending to our wounded-ness alone.
And if there are visitations,
they are from those confirming our stories,
for a story needs a listener to grow.
And although love sits at the gate,
we keep it at bay with a bark,
such that peace becomes a hostage to our pain.
But if we try, we might
find a circle can draw itself,
becoming wider with ripples
as a stone in a pool.
Love has a way of enlarging
when given entrance to the heart,
and softening to allow another’s admittance.
Until we find ourselves in a circle
wider than our griefs,
and wider than the wounds we keep from healing.
And peace then carries a flag
that it brings to its new domain,
to place it deep in the pliable earth.
Yes, so that love can be what we are known for,
peace must take dominion
and love breach the defences
beyond which we’ve grown.
Ana Lisa de Jong
Living Tree Poetry