you do that kindly
forgotten to do today;
you go to the friend in
striving along life's way.
a friendly word of
help him to face the strife
hello or a welcome
his path in life.
off till some distant
that you meant to
lighten the burden of
and extend the grip
of a friend
take but a moment or
help him to know that
we have followed the
near life's setting
count for naught what we
kindly deeds we have
My Heart Bleeds Purple
When things go wrong,
as they sometimes will,
When the road you're trudging
seems all uphill
When the funds are low
And the debts are high
And you want to smile, but you
have to sigh
When care is pressing you down
Rest if you must...but don't you
Life is queer with its twists and
And everyone of us sometimes
And many a person turns about
When they might have won
had they stuck
Don't give up though the pace
You may succeed with another
Often the struggler has given up
When he might have captured the
And he learned too late when the
night came down
How close he was to the golden
Keep Just Love
(written by a woman with Bipolar Illness
to her schizophrenic lover)
Intense, beyond my wild dreams
Little boy, he cried for so long
One true magician
Venous pumping blue-black
Empathy at once
Invitation to another level
my deity-demon lover
Innocence was stolen
damage to his shell
restrained his light
enveloped him with lies
A life of screaming
misery was learned
in his ear
Mouth stitched tight
Steering beyond the past
Running to find his life
ignoring his nightmares
Grabbing his pencils and brushes
he paints his picture
Why does he run?
How can I slow his rising?
Courage is something I taught him
And you taught him Hell
Not a day goes by .....
that I don't think of his journey
Yearning to be loved
One little boy
Understands for a moment
written by D. K. Dalton, 1999
Hard and fast
Desperate and falling
The gray edge of pain
I can look back and see the softness
I look ahead
You are too many
Never the same
Heated and frightened
One small tear
My heart bleeds purple for you
Written by D. K. Dalton, 1999
These next couple of poems were written when I was pregnant with my
The Yellow Apple Dance
I eat yellow apples and you dance
I speak and you touch me from inside
I walk and you follow
I rest and you awaken me for more
You are with me always
You move in me with grace
We are bond
You are not yet born, but we will never be this close again
I eat yellow apples and you dance
Written by D. K. Dalton, 1989
Faces (Apples Revisited)
Will you have it?
Will you take mine?
Will you kiss it?
"How are you today, my face?"
"Apples, apples!" you say
We share the same face
Written by D. K. Dalton, 1989
'Tis two weeks till Christmas and all though the
Not a thing is prepared and its quiet as a mouse
The children are sad cause their mothers not there
She's ill in the hospital- its surely unfair!
But its happened before, and the kids have no hope
That this will different - they'll just have to cope.
It's been two long weeks since this relapse began
When she went without sleep for a house spic and
Her speech was so rapid, they scare understood
Her excitement and restlessness more than it should
And her irritable mood, her anger and fear
Were way beyond normal, that much was quite clear!
Her family decided (it wasn't too soon)
To hospitalize her that same afternoon...
When they went down to visit the following week
She no longer smiled....and would barely speak
Her mood was so low she just wanted to sleep
To be left all alone to think and to weep
She stayed in her bed refusing all food
Nothing they tried made a change in her mood
The depression grew worse and the pain grew inside
Till the only solution seemed to be suicide
Then gradually the medicines given her worked
She emerged from the dark to the world she had
The professionals call it manic depression
Or bipolar disorder...but thats just an expression
The people who have it really know best
How this illness can be an impossible test
To get back to the family I'm talking about
It seems they will have to manage without
The gifts and the turkey, the music and tree
Given up happily all will agree
In exchange for a wife and mother most dear
Who'll be home from the hospital just in time for
Messengers cluster together, cornered, confused...
I become Bleak.
A step off.
Thoughts gather at the junction, waiting for direction.
Ghost whispers..."step here, step there, smile, nod,
complete the day."
I know the rhythm...distant, but familiar
I do it in my sleep.
Gears grind, shift.
One guard releases it's hold. Then another.
Clear, open road scenery. Light peeks through.
I move purposefully, confidently...there are tasks to
The shadows explode!. Brilliant radiance smashes
in!! Washes the soul with
glorious, delicious, escape! EVERYONE is my
friend!!! I CAN DO ANYTHING!!!
Eyes wide, breath clear...I AM INVINCIBLE!!!
I scramble to the side.
"Maybe I can outrun it this time."
Stumbling, sliding..down to my knees.
Fingers blanch through tightened grasp.
"no"...DID ANYONE HEAR THAT????
Messengers return from the round trip.
Patiently waiting instruction...
needing to know..."what next"?
- Linda Staples
i swear I just don't
this shapeshifting business
my morning shave tells me
who I am
yet as soon as I'm away from
mirror it starts
my wife calls me honey and
do I really resemble
a shy, sticky forest creature?
the telephone thinks I'm a
my daughters say get ahold of
and pour some milk
could I do both at the same
my sons call me pop
is that 7Up or Sprite?
my cats talk to me in cat
and I can understand them
at the repair shop they tell
i'm made of money...
is that 20's or 50's
and why won't the bank
this shapeshifting tires me
i think i'll carry a compact
in my purse
Curled in a ball, at the bottom of a hill
Plumbing the depths of my spirit
And calling forth my psychic energy
To start the climb once again.
My eyes focus on a spot, just 3 feet up the hill
I dare not look to the top
Too far away to contemplate success
Too easy to concede defeat.
I try to rise...to walk...to climb,
My legs still weak from the fall...crumble,
So I crawl..my fingers grasping the dirt
Tear stains on my cheeks...to my mark
And collapse exhausted on the path...spent
Weak and tired...the hill seems so high
It's crest so far away...self doubt fills
My concious thought...so far to go, so far
I rest a while, clinging to my spot on the path
Till confidence returns...another mark is set
This time six feet up the hill
(Still not daring to look to the top)
I stand, and marvel that my feet hold my weight
As I slowly climb toward my mark
A little more sure-footedly than before
I reach my mark, sagging in relief and joy
Excited now, I mark a spot, further up the hill
And rise to climb, no thought for rest...
The need for height consuming me...and I stumble,
Slipping and sliding four feet down the hill.
The trip up that hill was long and hard
Fraught with gains and losses...I despaired
Of ever reaching the top...sometimes I gave up
Till one morning I awoke to set my mark...and looked
There in the silvery mist of the breaking dawn,
The sun just breaking through...was the top of the hill
I'd been toiling toward...majestic and serene
Beckoning to me..."Take those last few steps" I almost heard it say
It took all day, with slips and slides
Till I clambered over the top...and kneeled to kiss
The damp cold earth...enfolded in comfort and serenity
Peace and Joy...I had reached the top of the hill
Holding it to me...exalting in the good feeling
Yet, always aware that a misplaced slip or slide
Could pumment me down to the bottom again
To dark, hopeless, unending misery and grief.
Oh God, how I wonder at times like these
If this was your plan for me...to be tossed about
On shiftless sands...at the bottom or top of the proverbial hill
With struggles and fear in between?
Death seems the painless way.....
I know I cant go on another day...
If only I could see his face?
NO! I must leave this place.
Here I"m not meant to be...
It"s really very clear to me.
Death whispers to me taunting....
It:s life that I find haunting.
They say I have joy to look forward to...
How..? I just can:t see it through.
All my life theres been something missing...
I close my eyes, it:s death I"m kissing.
Tonight I feel his gentle breath...
Perhaps I"ll pass his final test...
And with the rising dawn.....
All the pain at last gone.
In angels arms I will rest.