14 February 2014


Star Valley Flower Farm by Toril Fisher at  Second Cloud on the Left Farm

Back when I was sane
I labored at the Mum Farm.


Back when I was insane
I labored at the Mum Farm
to find what I had lost.

It's hard to tell the truth.

Back then I found myself
squatting between rows of color
knees and hands brown from being
kind to roots and buds while
upper teeth held my bottom lip
and a drop of saliva waited 
to parallel salty ones 
from the corners of my eyes.

Back then, sweat from my forehead
moistened my forearms, my shirt stuck
to my back, and my hands found
the healing heart of the Mother.  

Posted for Artistic Interpretations with Margaret ~ "Queen Bee" Art Project with Toril at Imaginary Garden with Real Toads on Valentine's Day.

Copyright © 2014 S.L.Chast
PUBLISHED in First Day Press


  1. Hard work such good way to help bring healing to hearts.

  2. No better place to find healing than kneeling on Mother Earth , tending her blooms. Loved this one, Susan.

  3. This is perfect, Susan. I don't hope to read anything that touches me more. Learning love of self through love of nature is something worth writing about.

  4. wow, everyone of us has a different perspective, such a diversity

  5. Beautiful, Susan. I love "the healing heart of the Mother" ...perfect.
    Love, K

  6. And then you left. But a better person for doing that manual labor of caring.

    I grew up on a farm and we tended our corn like they don't do it anymore,
    weeding by hand were the cultivator wouldn't. Now they spray, insecticide.
    Also I rode a horse to high school, three miles. When I left the farm I vowed,
    my corn would be on the cob from the store and my horse would burn gasoline.

  7. loved this... in so many ways we have forgotten what can be food for the soul... getting your hands dirty ,sweating, making that plant a part of you....

  8. As I read this, Susan, I felt like I was looking into a life-mirror. I spend hours upon hours in the garden and feel nourished and healed. My sweat and tears have mastered the dance across cheek, off chin, into soil.

  9. This is lovely, Susan. I, for one, would love to be working with those rows of color.

  10. sane, insane - seems you are a seeker of truth. A beautiful poem that, if truly listened to, would bankrupt all the psychiatrists!

  11. Your vivid colorful writing suits this piece just right. Your closing stanza is all encompassing. Beautiful embodied work.

  12. i find much healing in putting your hands to the earth...in cultivating life...
    its not always easy to talk about what we are going through...
    and in those times...the earth listens through our touch...

  13. I love the painting you chose and your words are lovely I want to work on the land I love, love digging haha

  14. The choice of words embodies the emotional/physical relationship theme so well. And the conversational immediacy of that 'false start' provides a real authority to the poem's voice.

  15. This is lovely, Susan. I feel this one.

  16. Back then, our hands and feet can easily find mother nature's healing heart ~ Now, we have so many false starts ~

  17. oh very cool... i love the play of sane/insane/finding yourself in the healing touch of the soil.. garden work...earth..it surely brings us some of our roots back a bit

  18. I spent a few summers throwing bails that reminded me of this poem

  19. I really like this, Susan. ~

  20. Great as usual, I also love the play with sane/insane and if that is something that really happened, I am so glad to hear you worked the soil and found yourself there, you too growing with the rows of color. <3


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