Becoming

-Gina

I marvel at these old cottonwoods
Some with gold and brown leaves
Few still with green
Branches misshapen
Broken
Scorched
Age has only made this Bosque
More engrossed, tangled, wise
Small shoots regrow, becoming
Reaching for bird and sun

I cannot filter the trees into perfection
I can only wonder at their time in history
The chipmunks and squirrels who have
Made their home in the hollows
Of these old tree bones
Worn with time

My feet walk the path unseen
Comforted by this space in nature
This Bosque along the timeless Rio Grande
I stop to feel the grooves of a downed tree
I too am as worn
Wrinkled
An age spot on my right cheek
Gray hairs have rooted
I am fortunate to have reached this age
Still standing
Still becoming
Reaching for bird and sun

(C) 2022


Photo by my daughter, M.J.M. | “Becoming” | Taken in the Bosque

More Trees Than Stars…

poem & photographs by Gina Marselle

What I love about birds

is that sometimes they travel alone on a Path

and sometimes

there’s a whole flock.

What I admire most about the bird–

it’s singular.

To survive:

  • food
  • water
  • shelter
  • hope.

Each morning he begins with his Song.

Sometimes only heard

inside the whisper of God’s tender breath.

By each evening,

the golden hour

comes flooding with light upon the earth.

More quiet than a bird of prey hunting.

Or a mother bird nestling before the night comes;

she hides her chicks and song from all to hear.

Perhaps, it is is I who is lonely,

perhaps, it is I who is depressed,

perhaps, it is me who fights–

it’s me without song,

without flight,

alone.

I envy the bird when he’s high above

floating between clouds and rays and stars.

Stillness on this earth as it moves around the sun.

Wind in my hair.

Stealing breath and time.

There are more fish than birds,

more trees than stars,

more tears than laughter,

more hope than despair.      

The Sunset in Black and White at USS Bullhead Park in Albuquerque, NM |(C) 10.13.2022
The Sunset in Color at USS Bullhead Park in Albuquerque, NM | (C) 10.13.2022

Did you know: “It may surprise you, but there are more trees on Earth than there are stars in the Milky Way. According to a study published in Nature there are about 3 trillion trees on our planet. This far outpaces the “measly” 100-400 billion stars estimated to exist in the Milky Way.”

https://spaceandbeyondbox.com/four-things-you-probably-didnt-know-about-space/#:~:text=Trees%20outnumber%20the%20stars&text=It%20may%20surprise%20you%2C%20but,exist%20in%20the%20Milky%20Way.

Goodnight, Sun

Miraculous
colors crashed
into the horizon.
Fire ablazed
and the sun burned.
The air was silent.
It’s stillness
perfectly
held my heartbeat
between God’s hands.

Goodnight, Sun.

Until next time.


I have been inspired by the sunsets lately and inspired to write
tiny odes to each.


Remembering 9.11, then on Monday, 9.12.2022, I learned of a colleague’s sudden death. On 9.13.2022, it was my mom’s one year anniversary of her death from a battle with breast cancer. I also learned my cousin is battling cancer this week.

Today, I wonder why I am so tired. Grief is exhausting.

Goodnight, Sun.

Be kind to yourself, and today is precious.

Poem and photograph by Gina Marselle

Published, September 17, 2022

Sunset

by Gina Marselle

The beauty of a sunset
is that it doesn’t wait for you.
If you wait a minute too long—
poof, gone.
Then you have to hope
for another chance, another day.
So don’t delay.
Take the time now.
Tomorrow isn’t promised.

Photo of the sunset taken by the poet on 8.6.2022 around 8:10 PM

Follow me on Instagram @musings_by_gina

The Fatigue

By Gina Marselle

“I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship.” ~Louisa May Alcott

The fatigue is real.
Inevitable,
like a ship sinking
or falling red wood.

My eyelids must close.
Even as I write.
I have to stop.
Place my pen down.

On the pillow
my head caves.
My body curves
into a fetal position.

Meds to high.
Meds to low.
Autoimmune
has a mind of her own.

Sadly, they come in pairs.
With marching orders:
“Take her down.”
“Be invisible so others don’t know.”

Napping is for babies.
But I am a mother of a 22 year old,
A nine year old. Nap I must.
Why does my body betray?

I sit so quiet. Eyes closed.
Meditate like still clouds in the sky.
I am the storm.
Wounded, but not defeated.

Fighting for a quality of life
that is more than
one foot in the grave.
That isn’t lead by anxiety & depression.

It is always exhausting—
to the point I am just alone.
No one wants to be around that doom.
It’s okay! Look away.

Turn the page. Walk away.
Forgotten–
like desert dust
after a monsoon.

I am not offended.
I don’t even want
to do anything anyway.
I may cancel our planned coffee date.

I may call to just cry.
There is nothing you can do,
but I sure appreciate
just knowing you care.


>Did you know:

“Nearly 4% of the world’s population is affected by one of more than 80 different autoimmune diseases, the most common of which include type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, Crohn’s disease, psoriasis and scleroderma.

National Institutes for Health (NIH) estimates that they collectively affect between 5% and 8% percent of the U.S. population. For unknown reasons, the prevalence of autoimmune diseases is increasing.”

>Personal Note:
I am personally still learning about my disease. It took 14 years to finally get diagnosed with Hashimoto just 12 weeks ago. It is suspect that I have another autoimmune disease and will find out this week after other blood work.

I am sharing my story because people with invisible diseases or disorders often suffer alone. It’s sad and horrible. It is also difficult to get out and be around people. I also have severe anxiety and depression (depression comes and goes, maybe affected by Hashimoto and my mother’s death). Newly diagnosed with PTSD. Suffering from GI issues, it is challenging to find health. I have stayed silent for the most part, minue close friends and family. Sometimes it feels like just complaints, and humans don’t want to listen to complaints, especially without hope.


Image from:
https://www.quotemaster.org/autoimmune+disease

Some Kind of Hero

Without a cape,
he flies.
Boundless love,
holding my heart
in his eyes.
He waits for my cue.
And he walks beside,
or follows with humbleness.
A gentle nudge or hug—
exactly what I need.
While he breathes,
I’ll never be alone.
My German Shepherd Dog,
never one more brave.
While I sleep, he guards.
Loving and loyal, his lifelong love
selflessly gifted to me.

~gina marselle

Follow my service dog in training, Beowulf, on Instagram: @be_like_wulf_gsd.

Beowulf. 6.5 months old #servicedogintraining

BURNT OUT

by Gina Marselle

“We are learning that before the body can become a temple, it first must become our home.” ― Lucy H. Pearce, Medicine Woman: Reclaiming the Soul of Healing

The field is black
The clouds are white
Burnt out
I’m alone
Dreams fade
The tunnel narrows
Like a river
And I move
One way
I’m walking
And there are no sounds
Other than footsteps
Breath
It is as if the world is empty
And death is scary
Maybe life didn’t frighten Maya Angelou—
But here I am at a crossroad again
What do I know?
What advice do I have?
Other than–

Wisdom fades with memory
Or brain fog
My autoimmune disease
Attacks relentlessly
Hashimoto is its name
It has turned my world upside down
It starts with my thyroid–the mother of my house
This disease kills my hormones
Boosters my anxiety until it is a Jedi
Until I am bedridden with a fatigue
Unexplainable to anyone not fighting for their very life
It is death with eyes open and shallow breaths
It has been too long since the green fields of joy
Touched my toes

Spring Garden

g.marselle

3.26.2022
I root and dig for bone, shell,
and radishes.
I find potatoes and worms.
The peppermint is sprouting.
Its green, creeping stolons
are stark against desert dirt.
My dogs dig.
They find little treasures.
A bird’s beak,
a steak bone.
It’s like a witches brew
instead of a spring garden.
Still, I dig
allowing the cool earth
to slip like blood
between my fingers.
The spring air is unseasonably warm
and hope travels
as songbirds whistle,
as ants wonder in and around the mint.

Sunrise

gina marselle

“The moment is constant. The moment seizes us.”

from the final scene in the film, Boyhood

moonrise at the end of the day

it’s such a miracle to see the bright

sphere through

naked tree branches

just this mornin’

sunrise swimming through

creamy clouds

we all witness this wonder

but how many actually marvel

knowing it is this moments

reminder of life

your breath

should not he taken for granted

carpe diem, better—

carpe omnia

or better, less cliché—

allow the moment to seize you.

Light

Selfie 1.28.2022

That Brilliant Blue Sky, image copyright to Gina Marselle

New Mexico Sunset, image copyright to Gina Marselle

The Last Ride, image copyright to Gina Marselle

My mom and I on our horses during a visit home from college.

My son and our dog, Strider, from 2016, image copyright to Gina Marselle

A slide in Las Vegas, New Mexico, image copyright to Gina Marselle

When I was in college in the mid 90’s, digital cameras were a novelty, maybe a bigwig newspaper had one. I had a SLR Canon A-1 35 mm Film Camera.
My dad bought it for me at a used camera shop in St. Louis, MO.

I felt like a
professional photographer.

I took a photography class
and became  obsessed.

The dark room
became my haven.
Light became my love.
Shadows and tones my drama.

Without light,
there is no photo.

35 mm film only has 24 or 36 shots per roll, and there is no room for manipulation
nor apps to fix mistakes.

In college, I worked to improve each shot, followed Ansel Adams The Zone System to determine the grey scale in all that I saw.

Fast forward to 2022, and iPhones make everyone a professional—-Instagram allows us to broadcast life with #hashtags and viral reels…

Now about that light—

I love that moment in the day where the light is so perfect. I don’t have to do anything more than aim, click. There’s my shot, a moment in time to share life for all to see.

A marvel.

Timeless.

A necessary light
to overcome despair.

A sunset to offer hope.

A selfie to offer self love,

a photo of a child to offer joy. A portrait of our favorite pet. The image of our love, a parent to remember lessons learned—-

O, to live in a time when photographs offer a distraction from anything.

And light is everything.

Gina Marselle
1.28.2022