Thursday, 23 September 2021

F Fic, Non-fic

As Yourself

By Marianne Evans

as yourself pic


How many times

            have you heard

                        “Love your neighbor

                                    as yourself?”


Right away, I am pulled backwards to my first deep love

            how mom and dad every childhood day

                        held me inside their hearts

                                    as I walked to school lean as a picket


I feel a whole childhood

            fall through me

                        see teachers compassionate eyes

                                    remember people along the way loving me strong


Lately, I sit back and watch

            sometimes I witness a crush of sorrowful faces

                        friends, acquaintances, unknowns

                                     caught in a chorus of self-hate


And I begin to think about “as yourself”

            I ask you how do you love yourself?

                        a relaxed latte, a European river cruise?

                                    a new car, second home?


Do they satisfy?

            When was the last time you held yourself?

                        When was the last time you felt loved?

                                    Or loved someone so much it was as though


you were loving yourself

            Maybe you felt a warmth

                        like rays of summer sun

                                    Maybe an ecstasy washed over you


and maybe that joy-filled abundant giving to another

            converted you into believing you were lovable too

                        and you began to turn your eyes inward

                                    and cherish your own beauty as well

Marianne Lyon has been a music teacher for 39 years. After teaching in Hong Kong she returned to the Napa Valley and has been published in various literary magazines and reviews. Nominated for the Pushcart Prize 2016. She is a member of the California Writers Club, Healdsburg Literary Guild. She is an Adjunct Professor at Touro University Vallejo California

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