Before the spinning, out of control, the shattered glass flying,

and my brain rolling upside-down…

I’d set an alarm

to wake myself from dreaming,

splash water on my face, 

throw on my fashion of the day,

distractedly down dripped coffee,

then, dash into the frenzied machinations

of the weekly blur of the marketplace.

But, that ordinary day,

bathed in beguiling sunshine,

had dissolved into clumps of uprooted grass,

that flew past my crumbling windshield,

hypnotizing my psyche.

Not a mark was on me.

But, inside…

worlds had collided.

Where I had entered, carefree and laughing,

I stumbled out, stunned,

scraping soft skin on razor-sharp glass,

blood dripping onto the green grass.

My sole comfort: a sign standing mutely,

across the highway, in front of a little church,

stating simply, “Jesus: The Way. The Truth. 

The Life.”

In a collision with catastrophe,

I had emerged


Later, I slept,

until burning liquid pain began pouring

out the back of my brain.

With no such thing as house calls anymore,

my only option:

careening over hellish highways.

Medications. Tests. 

Medications. Surgeries.


Then, it was 9/11, 

and I watched…

and felt



Dazed days

dissolved into years.

Tears stopped falling…

an empty chasm remained.

The sticking doors and windows of my silent house

arrested me with their stubbornness,

having to be shoved open by force,

due to a lacking of use.

Countless mornings were spent,

with curtains drawn, 

shunning the light.

Cobwebs hung, mocking me,


At night,

the blanket of dark and silence enveloped me

like an ethereal shroud, as I wandered from room to room,

while my mind shouted for me

to awaken. For what?

This morning, this ordinary day,

I caught a glimpse of sunshine,

first silent, then, shouting,

through trill of birds and chortles of squirrels,

all oblivious 

to my morosity.

I leaned, lethargically, toward the dewy windowpane,

resting my head against the cool solidity of the thin glass,

the self-imposed prison wall, that kept me 

safe from 

unexpected harm.

One little bushytail stopped his furious scratching,

amidst the fiery flush of fallen leaves.

He stared at me, unblinking, but for a moment.

Then, he bounded, uncaring,

on his merry way.

But, oh!

The unmistakable twinkle of that beady eye

sparked an ember, 

deep inside.

I thought it had been long-extinguished

by torrents of tears, over long years,

or had surely been smothered by the ashes, of

all that remained, of

everything that had been



the sun had sound,

the light had movement,

and my soul, long silent,

began to sing.

With renewed strength, 

I threw open the window,

scattering the chorus of a dozen birds,

and felt the warm sunshine, mingled 

with the crisp breeze of a new day…

a day in which I would dress myself,

and call a friend,

and drive to meet her,

to converse over coffee

about how nice it is

to be alive.

Copyright 2015 Regina Plimpton Quinn


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