Waiting to be Saved

By: Ann Christine Tabaka

Time walked off … taking me by the hand.

She knew my struggles - all too well.

Not everyone will understand.

I was alone again / even with you there.

Devoid of dreams / devoid of love,

I took a walk.

Lost to myself / I traversed a woodland trail.

Approaching the stream / there stood a covered

bridge / stripped naked. Its lattice bared like an

immense wooden screen. Peering through its

skeletal frame / I knew how it felt. Exposed

to the elements / exposed to life.

Barren and forsaken.

Waiting to be saved.

Light was fading / I knew what I must do.

I continued on. But now it was I who took time

by the hand … showing her the way home. 

Ann Christine Tabaka was nominated for the 2017& 2023 Pushcart Prize in Poetry; nominated for the 2023 Dwarf Stars award of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association; winner of Spillwords Press 2020 Publication of the Year; selected as a Judge for the Soundwaves Poetry Contest of Northern Ireland 2023. She is the author of 16 poetry books, and 1 short story book. She lives in Delaware, USA. She loves gardening and cooking. Chris lives with her husband and four cats.

Reflective Engagement

  1. Solitude and Understanding: The poem opens with a powerful depiction of solitude, even in the presence of others, highlighting a journey of personal struggle that might not be visible or understood by those around us. Reflect on a period in your life when you felt alone despite being surrounded by people. How did this experience shape your understanding of solitude and companionship? Consider the ways in which these moments of isolation have contributed to a deeper understanding of yourself and how you connect with others.
  2. Vulnerability and Exposure: The imagery of the covered bridge, stripped naked and exposed, serves as a metaphor for vulnerability and the rawness of being open to the elements of life. Think about a time when you felt exposed or vulnerable, either emotionally or in your circumstances. How did confronting this vulnerability impact your journey towards self-acceptance and strength? Contemplate the importance of embracing our vulnerabilities as integral parts of our identity, leading to growth and resilience.
  3. Self-Empowerment and Agency: The transition in the poem from being led by time to taking time by the hand symbolizes a shift from passivity to taking control of one's destiny. Reflect on a moment in your life when you transitioned from waiting for change to actively seeking or creating it. How did taking action impact your sense of self and your path forward? Explore the idea that empowerment comes from within and consider the steps you can take to reclaim agency in your own life, guiding yourself towards healing and fulfillment.

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