A Poem: New Leaves

Death and life, I think we choose each day.
That defeat is not so much an enemy
as a parent, a friend endorsing us to raise our heads,
opening the curtains by our beds
speaking of newness.

And life? Sometimes it fully unravels by night time
and the only thing to stop us tossing
and despairing in our sleep,
or our attempts at it,
is the promise of the light returning.

And death? Death is often that moment
in the water we’ve outswam our endurance
and begun to sink,
until our bursting lungs find relief from a lifeline tossed,
a re-emergence on the surface.

And whoever saw a shoreline so very beautiful
as those who thought they wouldn’t again
feel sand underfoot or receive
the welcome of a lightening dawn,
or turn over a new leaf

in spring.

Ana Lisa de Jong
Living Tree Poetry
December 2020


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