Tempering

As I have aged, my flames
have tempered my steel,
my temper has blazed, then waned,
my temperature flared
and lowered and raised.

I have strutted and fretted
my hour on the stage
written my rage on the page,
and wielded my words like a sword.

Now I stay in a more temperate range.
I attempt to remain more balanced today.
A gentler temperament has pacified
the brash face of the past.

Temperance need not steal the voice,
nor make a canary of the screeching harpy.
Simply, the word-sword no longer slashes
with indiscriminate hacking,
but a well-balanced metal
now guides the blade.

###
I am pushing myself to work outside my comfort zone, to shift out of the mind-rut that has caught my wheels this last week. It’s hard for me to assess the strength and weakness of a poem when it steps so far out of my typical poetic spaces.

TOMORROW’S PROMPT:
It’s such an orderly progression. The Fool must learn about Temperance before she encounters the Devil. What bedevils you? What holds you bound? That’s the Fool’s encounter tomorrow. Addiction, cruelty, bondage to fear and uncertainty, repeated cycles of patterned behavior and habit that keep us from growing: that’s the bedevilment.

Gratitude List:
1. Chapel today was an outdoor celebration of Earth Day: drums, art, poetry, sheep shearing, fly fishing, and all sorts of other interactive activities for students to be in nature. They returned to class with winsome smiles and wind in their hair.
2. A thousand shades of green
3. Ferns. They grow inches every day.
4. Pushing outside the boundaries of habit.
5. Tiger swallowtails

May we walk in Beauty!

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