Footholds and Handholds

As the light starts to leave the day
I feel that familiar sinking feeling
– loneliness in an empty desert.
I know it will pass.
I look around for the handholds
and footholds to help me climb
out of the emptiness and spot
a corner filled with primary colors –
a blue map, a red poster, and yellow
National Geographics – and they bring
a weird, satisfying my troubled

Home now. A walk in crisp air, snow
sparkling in the fields, swans winging
overhead, and a half-moon smiling
down at me. I put in a movie I’ve seen
a gazillion times – Music and Lyrics – not
deep, neither tragic nor inspiring –
simple background noise and personable
people. And I find another handhold –
something I’ve never before noticed
in this movie I’ve seen a gazillion times –
a celebrity magazine cover with the words
“I stopped thinking. Now I just exist.” A
parody of the smugly profound. And I
find myself chuckling.

And then I start looking for other
things I’ve never noticed in this movie
before – and that occupies my thoughts
for awhile and brings me up the cliff wall
and out of the desert to safety.
– Karen Molenaar Terrell



2 thoughts on “Footholds and Handholds

  1. I can relate a lot to this. I often find that my mood can rapidly change with the onset of darkness in the sky. It’s also gratifying to read that you have coping mechanisms in regards to this. Even better is the fact that they flow seamlessly throughout the piece!

    Thanks for sharing this 🙂

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