Friday, February 27, 2009

Poetry-What I mean when I say forever

What I mean when I say forever

You are mine and I am yours
Even if you live in some far-flung place
When I say I will always love you
I mean it, sugar-pie, forever.

You could live in Timbuktu
Or take canoe breakfast in Bora Bora
You could be one hundred years old
And I’ll still love you, wherever I am.

You could sell me the stars I get for free.
You could be living in the street.
You could be any kind of person in the world
And I would still love everything you are.

Even if it breaks my heart
Even if I sell my soul
If you can still know I love you forever
I’ll do it. Just for you.

© Stacie Ferrante

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Poetry-When the Lilac Blooms

Lilac-fragrant grassy expanse,
The long and curving driveway to your house,
In my dreams the only place of safety
That in waking life I can no longer go.

Bricks and mortar in my blood
So much so I can enter without knocking
And at my heels, I bring chaos
The chains of worry that drag behind me.

Oh! The demons I drag into your tranquil repose!
As if to fight them in that lanquid space
Will render me victorious more readily
Than in the dark alleys of my psyche.

Even though you are no longer there
Except to lovingly haunt the walls,
I still go there in my mind's travels
Hoping just once you will answer the door.

The one place I felt always welcome,
Always adequate, always dear
Even in tatters, even in tears
Soft and weathered hands to bless me.

I could never live in your house again
But a part of me will always linger
Over the scent of old books and cedar
And when the lilac blooms I'll think of you.

(c) Stacie Ferrante

Happy Fat Tuesday!

Tomorrow is the beginning of Lent. Since I am not particularly Christian, I still observe this 40 days, but in a different way. Last year I wrote a poem for each day of Lent. One poem every day for 40 days. I intend, even with my totally horrific schedule, to do it again. Some really funny poems came out of it last year, as well as a few poignant little gems.

It was hard last year, and I wasn't in the Nursing Program. This year I expect it will be harder still. But writing is very good for you when you are under stress. If I end up with any good ones or amusing ones, I will post them.

My poetry book is still theoretically in the works. For some reason I am having a hard time sorting through the decades of work to select a few to print for posterity. Some of the older stuff embarrasses me, not so much because it is bad poetry, but because of the raw emotion I was experiencing about people who in the broad sense don't factor into my life any more. I am a bit of a doomed romantic, I guess.

Anyway, if anyone wants to do something other than giving something up for Lent, I challenge you. Create a piece of art, however small, once a day for 40 days. I guarantee you will learn more about yourself than if you just give up chocolate.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Here's for Hallmark Holidays!

I disapprove of Valentines' Day on general principle. It seems, on the surface, to be a harmless enough holiday. But my male friends all seem to hate it because it seems to be a sort of trap or test they will fail no matter what they do.

That and the inflated prices on seemingly mandatory roses and cards and chocolate that have all been out on display since the day after Christmas...the whole thing adds up to a big commercial scam.

The last thing I want is for anyone in my life to have to keep up with the Jones' with regard to expressions of "love". That is just weird. I mean, flowers and chocolate and sparkly jewels are all well and good, but some mandatory holiday expression is just funky. Being romantic should be an everyday thing, born out of genuine affection.

This isn't worth an actual rant, but I am glad we are not making a big deal out of it this year.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Enchanted, I'm sure.

There has got to be something sexy about confidence. Something has been going on with me in the last few years, where the most unexpected things are coming full circle. It must be the shift in the energy around me, because I am pulling in resolutions of some very old things in my life.

I am becoming. In the sense that I am making bold and deliberate strides toward my new career and, in some ways, my new self. I am making concerted attempts to shed unhealthy habits and modes of communication. It isn't easy and is sometimes painful to let go of long-held baggage. Some of it is actual objects, such as the clutter that was littering my office closet. Some of it is in the form of erroneous assumptions I have made about situations or people. I can see so clearly now that in my adolescence and young adulthood I was a very poor communicator. I hurt people without a backward glance, out of sheer carelessness most of the time. Or worse yet, out of a morbid curiosity about what would happen if I poked at the innards of another person.

Now I feel like I am going through another kind of adolescence. I am flowering into a new kind of woman and gaining confidence in many new areas. I am shedding my phobias and nervous tics to a degree. However, like adolescence the first time around, there is awkwardness in my new skin. I feel unfamiliar in the changing landscape, and don't know what the future holds. I feel at once entirely conspicuous and totally invisible. I am waiting for the world to stop spinning so fast so I can get a look at my new surroundings.

It feels enchanted, like I have fallen into a fairy ring. The world is the same but entirely other. Things are the same but not the same. Old faces are coming up in new situations, as I find myself mixing with people I have known forever in curious new ways. So I must not be the only one going through it. People around me are processing. That is the only word I can think of to describe it. We are all turning 40 and looking around and going "Whoa!" like in a Keanu Reeves movie.

It keeps coming to me. Or rather they do. People I didn't even realize I needed to be forgiven by or whom I need to forgive. Or people who I always wanted affection from, and now I am getting it in a different but somehow more satisfying way. It is strange.

Are these the first gushes of albumin-rich fluid to come out of the cosmic egg? The first pin feathers on my nascent and untested wings? It just keeps getting bigger and bigger. The vibe is like a revving up. It spurs me, even when I feel tired, to do more.

Do more? Really? I already feel like I have a jet pack strapped to my back. Just trying to control my trajectory seems unlikely. Yet here I am, pressing for more throttle, and feeling the engine leap under me. I have a map and a vague idea of where I am going, but with a million possible roads to get there.

I am grateful for the future, even if getting there is going to be hard. I have a feeling I am going to be worth knowing when I grow up again.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


The first two weeks of this semester are what the instructors called "front-loaded". That means extra lectures crammed into an already packed schedule and double the clinical lab time. So, if you have been wondering where the heck I have been, that's where.

Next week starts the "normal" schedule. So I will only be crazy busy and not insanely crazy busy.

I'm loving school and my classmates and professors are awesome. But I am TIRED!!

Monday, February 2, 2009


I hate having secrets.

I mean, I don't mind keeping other people's confidences, but I hate having things about myself that I can't share with the world. Not things I am ashamed of, but things I can't say because I am prohibited by laws governing confidentiality.

There are so many things I wish I could say about my experience as a foster parent. About the frustrations of dealing with an overtaxed system that can only give partial justice to anyone. The truth is that everyone gets hurt in some way when a child gets taken into foster care. But the worst part of it for me is the various gag orders that seem to prevent me from working for reform. Honestly, I wouldn't know where to begin.

I can't discuss the particulars of the case I am involved in, or talk about the experiences of other children in foster care that I know. I can't address the endless court delays that stand in the way between children in limbo and some kind of permanence.

It is a very helpless feeling to watch the machinations of the lawyers, the judges, and the various interested parties struggle over their disparate needs with regard to a child who is too small to voice her own opinion in a legally meaningful way.

As for my own needs, they have no place in this process. That I continue to be permanently altered by this experience seems moot. I wish I could tell you. I wish I could spray paint on a giant wall for all to see how many fears this stirs in me. How much pain I quietly swallow so that I can show a calm face to a little girl who just needs to focus on preschool and her continued resistance to eating vegetables.

Some days it is easier than others. But there are days when I want to scream. I want to scream at all the people involved with this. This isn't my fault. I didn't create this situation. I just agreed to help, to shelter a child who needed a home while her life gets sort of sorted out for her. That I have fallen in love with her and she with me isn't anyone's fault either. That I would do anything in this world to protect her would be natural in any other circumstance. But my maternal instincts do not dictate public policy and they never will.

I wish I could tell you all of it. But it is probably a good thing that I can't. This post is depressing enough. I want to lighten it. I want to give you a Hollywood happy ending so badly, but I can't. And this is just ONE child out of the hundreds in foster care in my county alone. I want to make it okay for you to be involved in my story, because then maybe I can make it okay for the amazing and beautiful little girl this affects. I want it to be okay for me, too.