Hardened By Life’s Unexpected Twists



Weather-hardened eyes

Staring emotionless through

An unguarded door

With a broken hinge


The hardened heart

Accepting the circumstance

But any acknowledgement

Waits with silenced patience


Never blinking yet telegraphing

Loss without compensation

And strangely

The absence of anger


Analyzing the spaces

Lined together in invisible rows

That empty feeling

Without connections


Severed abruptly

In a rush of thinner air

Hard to breathe

While falling


Author’s Note

This piece is representative of how emotions can become so bottled up that they have a physical change on a person’s appearance; as in my example, a hardened look to observers on the outside.  I must digress and do some “stage setting” for you, the reader, to see this work the same way I intended it to be revealed.  It is not about suicide, as the final stanza might suggest.  In fact, it’s just the opposite.  For a few moments, I found myself looking out at the world through the eyes of an older man; a man that had lived many years in tough conditions.  He fought the good fight each and every day, whether the battle be with the weather, the soil, or the elements; yet through those tough times, he always had an anchor in his life.  That was until today, the day he watched the slow procession solemnly walk past him carry the casket of his beloved wife.  After a lifetime of bottling up his emotions, he finally comes to the realization that his mind was filled with empty spaces where there could have been relationships with other people and from that moment forward everything would be different; hence the ending and the proverbial falling.

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