February 2, 2023


Writer's Showcase

Simple Acts Of Balance

2 min read

Simple Acts Of Balance

Of my poem “Consummation’s Colours” I said, “it was a time I shall never forget”. Well, guess what? It happened again in my life, completing the duo.


Her breath is easy
and her eyes are closed,
as is her mouth –
for she breathes through her nose.

I am tremulous
inside my body
(which I hold firm
so that nobody knows.)

Her fear of dying
is no longer there –
for in her dreams
such conception is lost.

I stroke her forehead
with my tired knuckle –
softest gestures
of familial love.

Somewhere deep inside
she hears my soft voice
make mellow words
to guide her soft away?

There is much to say,
all of it chosen
for the right time:
For this parting place.

From where is my script?
Borne perhaps by Care?
Nowhere written?
From out of thin air?

Closing on the void,
her breathing stutters –
just now and then –
most like a child’s sigh.

‘Don’t be fearful, Mum,
you can now let go –
though I love you
as you surely know.’

How could I not wish
her struggle to end?
Sepsis invades –
starves her very core.

My new eyes see her:
her fragility
washes my heart
free of imbalance.

She sees my father?
With arms outstretched wide?
To welcome her
in some secret space?

To balance outside,
my inside motionless,
knowing the horn
is about to sound.

Together we slide:
Her to ever sleep –
knowing it’s love
now making me weep.


The nurse sensing death:
‘Can you see Fred, Rita?’
She feels for a pulse…
such gentle fingers.


There is a stillness
come to her body.
An ocean of
emotion comes into mine.

I confess that then I quake: Falling, I slip with the end
of the string still in my hand. My balance is lost, and the
string slides effortlessly from my grasp as it becomes an
amorphous silver cord rising through the air.


“Every morning we are born again, what we are today is what matters most.”  [Gautama Buddha]

That is all.


© Allen Ansell 2022


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6 thoughts on “Simple Acts Of Balance

  1. When published by UKAuthors ‘bhi’ commented “This is such a powerful and moving write. It honours the memory of a loved one and you for creating this.”

  2. Sometimes I just get lost in the poem and the same happened here, the way you wrote , the way you express the things in detail is amazing. Keep writing!!

  3. I love how you took great care in describing the final moments between a person and their loved one on the death bed. While one is fighting and holding on, the other is saying to let go and embrace the peace that comes with death. Lovely poem, Allen!

  4. Lovely poem allen, the way you have described the final moments with your loved one creates a sense of emotional pain and makes one recall his own memory. A year ago when my grandfather was on his bed taking his last breathes I was with him, i saw him in that condition in which i never imagined him in. Indeed it is painful, the way he was breathing and struggling to move his hands, very emotional moments they are, and you have described them very nicely i can feel the rawness in it.

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