Many things went bump in the night, and my child – who’d gone to bed with an earache and a sore throat – whimpered occasionally.  I was in and out of bed until I gave up the hope of slumber and took up my bedside copy of Anne Michaels’ poetry, The Weight of Oranges.  Bad move; I wanted to gnaw at my wrists within minutes.

It occurred to me that I should cook something.  With my husband away I was free to make a noise in the kitchen at 3am without fear of waking him; good wife that I am.  Sinaed O’Connor’s lyrics came to mind ‘Since you been gone I can do whatever I want, I can see whomever I choose, I can eat my dinner in a fancy restaurant …’ and I pondered the constraints and disciplines that occur within marriage.  Slightly cross at being alone, I set to making a batch of wraps.


Tandy’s ingredient challenge for the week is mushrooms, I’ve met the challenge, good friend that I am.

And the child’s lunchbox is packed, good mother that I am.


Pre-menopausal, sleep-deprived, and headachy; I’d best climb into a cupboard for the rest of the day…

The straps of my backpack cut a crevice
into my curious young and selfish shoulders,
when I was free.

My journey brought calluses from carrying
the weight of wisdom collected with greed,
until the bag was full enough
and my steps slowly searched to settle in a place
where time brought a shackle that did not chafe,
but liberated me to selflessness.

I’m drifting now at anchor,
comfortable in the chains that bind.

For now I choose not to think that ties will loosen;
and my cargo drift away…


42 Comments Add yours

  1. the cargo will drift away and return to change the bonds that tie, love can not be denied it always finds a way back to port

    1. theonlycin says:

      Lovely comment, thanks Sidey.

  2. Tandy says:

    thank you my GOOD friend! I both hate and love it when Dave is away – I hate the empty space in my bed, but love the freedom to eat what I want, and spend the day in pj’s 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      I know what you mean …

  3. buttercup600 says:

    God, how well I know these feelings…can’t wait to read all that I’ve missed my friend, will ease into it slowly!! btw…I thought you saw the 2nd Masterchef (even better than 1st one) but also love Julie…such an emotional ending it was right? I will be posting the Masterchef Cookbook (volume one) with Julie to you later this week!!! I have missed you so much!! Love you girlfriend xoxoxo

    1. buttercup600 says:

      Give OB a hug from me and hope she’s feeling better today 🙂 xoxoxox

      1. theonlycin says:

        Oh Amanda, you’ve no idea how I have missed you!
        massive hugs xxxxxxx

  4. deepercolors says:

    Very nicely said. 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thanks Caro, feeling a little emo today, will pull myself together.

  5. really liked your writing – especially touching in on the familiar but not often spoken of conflicted feelings that come when our partners are gone. nice flow. lovely food! yum! keep on.

  6. Nzwaa says:

    Hug hug hug…

  7. Adeeyoyo says:

    I agree – conflicted – but enjoy and live for the moment nonetheless… 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      No other option really 🙂

  8. “They cut down all the trees and put ’em in a tree museum,
    Then charged all the people a dollar and a half just to see ’em. . .
    Don’t it always seem to go?
    You don’t know what you got til it’s gone!
    They paved paradise and put up a parking lot!”

    See what YOUR insomnia does to me? You decide to “pass it on,” and I’m compelled to catch it! Your Sinead O’Connor lyrics prompted these in my head, and now I’m singing Joni Mitchell. . .on and on it goes:

    “Marci leaves and doesn’t tell us,
    where or why she went away.
    ‘Red is angry green is jealous,’
    that is all she had to say.
    Someone said they saw her Sunday, window shopping in the rain,
    Someone said she bought a one-way ticket, and went west again. . .”

    thanks so much. . .

    “I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now
    From win and lose, and still somehow
    it’s life’s illusions I recall
    I really don’t know life at all.”

    Uh oh – here comes Billy Joel. . .H-E-L-P!!! Save me!
    “And this is why my eyes are closed
    It’s just as well for all I’ve seen
    And so it goes, and so it goes
    And you’re the only one who knows

    So I would choose to be with you
    As if the choice were mine to make
    But you can make decisions too
    And you can have this heart to break

    And so it goes, and so it goes
    And you’re the only one who knows.”

    And so it goes. . .

    (Gotcha! ;-P)

    1. theonlycin says:

      Oh Paula, uou are too funny, thanks for the laugh 😀

  9. leigh says:

    Turquoise 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      Crabby, a brooch will lift my mood 😀

      1. leigh says:

        Indeed. Hard exterior, soft interior.

      2. Talk about ego-centric! I thought Leigh was referring to my choice of cast colors! No matter – I’m adding turquoise to my list of choices. . .

        Remember everybody! Voting ends Monday, November 22, 2010 – 7:00 a.m. EST – USA

      3. theonlycin says:

        Terrific colour, Paula, my daughter used to pronounce it ‘Turkey-was’ …

      4. leigh says:

        Paula, I relate to your entire comment…sometimes it’s fun to think in shades of blue – or yellow, too 🙂

      5. theonlycin says:

        Paula has to have her arm in a plaster cast and is open to suggestions on what colour the cast should be. I am rooting for a nice plummy shade of shiraz.

      6. leigh says:

        Shiraz plum, a good choice for a stain-free sleeve.

  10. Kavita says:

    LOVED the metaphors in that poem..
    You really ARE the best Cin to have around, my dear 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thank you Sweetie 😀

  11. I SO know how you feel and what you’re saying. And I know those emo days … and wanting to spend the day in a cupboard. Ahhh, hugs from London!
    Sunshine xx

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thank you Sunshine, enjoy your day 😀

  12. suzicate says:

    Sleepless nights drive me crazy…wish I had the stamina in the middle of the night to dish up something like that! Yummy! yes, I have those days I wish I could climb into a cupboard…love the way you worded it!

    1. theonlycin says:

      The day has been a trial, suzicate, and I’ll probably sleep like a stone tonight and only cook in my dreams 🙂

      1. You lucky duck! Whereas I will probably have to bother someone else now with a run-down of lyrics that are floating around in my head – lyrics such as:

        “Life begins, and spirits rise,
        and they become memories that vaporize,
        and the vapor becomes the dreams we devise,
        and while we are dreaming, time flies” (Don’t I wish!)


        “A man is walking on the highway
        A woman stares out at the sea
        and light is only now just breaking

        So we carry every sadness with us
        every hour our hearts were broken
        every night the fear and darkness
        lay down with us

        But I am holding half an acre
        torn from the map of Michigan
        I am carrying this scrap of paper
        that can crack the darkest sky wide open
        every burden taken from me
        every night my heart unfolding
        my home ”

        and so it goes. . .
        Thanks. . .

        (Cin, do you feel properly guilty now for adding to my insomnia?)

  13. nrhatch says:

    Looks like you put your insomnia to good use ~ here’s to the liberating bonds in our lives.


  14. gospelwriter says:

    That wrap does look good! I expect you’re a good everything.

    Love the poem

    comfortable in the chains that bind

    Footloose and fancy free isn’t necessarily what it’s cracked up to be. There are times when I envy my chained-up friends. 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      And vice-versa, I envy those who can up-and-go at whim, but I always go back to being grateful for my anchors.

  15. Those sleepless nights were dubbed “White Night” in my family. I learned to give myself a day off the next day, to the greatest degree possible – for the sake of all those around me. 🙂

    Your poem, Cin, is very deep and I love it. The line that really speaks to me is: “but liberated me to selflessness.”

    Don’t spoil my delusion that pain is my precursor to beauty! Besides, your poem is evidence…

    1. theonlycin says:

      I’ve decided to take today off, Amy, the lass is still poorly and I think pancakes are just the medicine!

  16. Oh, wish you would write poems more often.

    Hope the kidlet feels better now. Mom too?

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