PAD 2021 – Day 30

It’s almost over! Do I write this with happiness or regret? Maybe both. Certainly finding the motivation to write some days this month has been a challenge, but it’s also been a kind of comfort to have a routine, and so many other new poems from others to inspire me.

The final NaPoWriMo.net prompt challenges you to write a poem in the form of a series of directions describing how a person should get to a particular place. It could be a real place, like your local park, or an imaginary or unreal place, like “the bottom of your heart,” or “where missing socks go.” Fill your poem with sensory details, and make them as wild or intimate as you like.

How to Get to the Back Deck to Drink Your Coffee

Never assume a short journey is an easy one.
Begin by preparing for diversions — a phone call you
don’t want to answer; the broken glass you’ll have to carefully
pick up, when a too-quick pivot to answer a child calling
from another room results in an elbow knocking last night’s
wine glass from the counter. Allow time for a loud expletive,
then a sigh. Embrace exasperations that end in small relief.
When it seems there is quiet — a gifted moment when no one 
remembers you’re there — pour coffee into your favourite mug, 
or your favourite right now, one that knows the shape of your hand.
Take soft steps toward your destination. Watch out for
the squeaky spot between the kitchen and the dining room. 
Keep your hip clear of the metal chair, pushed back from the table 
after someone’s hurried breakfast, now collecting sun 
from the bare window. Casting shadow on an unswept floor.  
Turn the lock on the deck door cautiously, with one foot out to
the side, that experienced stance to block escape artist cats.
Open only as wide as is needed for you to slip through. Don’t 
pause at the threshold, overcome with birdsong or 
the welcome wash of cool air. Just get out there. Sit.
And stay. Even after you’re needed on the inside again.
Stay, sipping hot coffee and staring at clouds.
Let a part of you remain.
Deck Break by Me

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