SELF-COMPASSION
with thank you to Joi Sharp

It’s like the scent of rain
after a month of drought-
the way it rises up and fills the lungs
and quiets the body
and softens the mind—
that’s what it’s like
when, after grasping
and spinning and reaching
and clenching, at last,
exhausted with my own fear,
I lay my hand on my own heart
and see through my thoughts
and practice loving
what is here beneath my palm:
this frightened woman
and the life that lives through her—
not a single promise that she will be safe,
but oh, as I press my hand
into the beat of her anxious heart,
I promise, she will be loved.

– Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer