Poetry Friday – Life-Drenched Promise

It has been an emotionally-full month or so. My last Poetry Friday post was in November, and I haven’t written much since.

Now, here we are in a new place, having uprooted from a home we loved and moved to another place we love. One that has always given us life-drenched promise. I have been coming to the southern California desert sincw before I was born. When I was still in my teens, I brought my future husband out to visit my grandma’s place. He loved it too. Now we have so much shared history here. My mom moved out here to take care of Grandma in her last years, and my children grew up visiting their grandma, my mom, in the same home. One of my daughters was married out here. Now I find myself living  here, ready to be a grandma. Life goes so fast, but there is also Promise!

Though I haven’t been actively posting and commenting lately, I have occasionally been reading your posts. Margaret’s (and the Inklings) challenge from last week has been on my mind this week. I loved “The Lost Lagoon” poem by Emily Pauline Johnson.

However, I didn’t try writing a poem until this morning. Since it’s the first poem I’ve dared to write in months, I am posting my first draft today.

Monday’s sunset in Yucca Valley, California

Promise
(After Emily Pauline Johnson)

Sunset is blanketing the high desert,
And we two dreaming the dusk away,
Beneath the memories of dear ones laid–
Grandparents, parents and more. They
Point to life-drenched Promise.

It is morning in the high desert,
And Grandma starts the wood fire.
Later, the post-rain creosote inspires
Our play. L.A. kids’ delight soars higher
In this land of life-drenched Promise.

Our honeymoon in the high desert
Was a last-minute choice when we heard
My grandma’s dying of cancer. She preferred
The ceremony go on without a word.
Her faith strong in Jesus’ life-drenched Promise.

O the draw of the high desert
Which brings us to our last chapter.
Decades of visiting has made us captor–
Holding this place in our hearts. Adapter
Soon to this life-drenched Promise.


Mary Lee Hahn has today’s poetry roundup. Her poem about pomegranates is a wonderful conversation starter.

11 thoughts on “Poetry Friday – Life-Drenched Promise

  1. I love how you repurposed a phrase from an earlier poem AND used “The Lost Lagoon” as a mentor text! Your images and memories make it clear the strong pull that the high desert has had in your life. Here’s to beauty and joy in this next chapter/verse/stanza!!!

  2. Denise! Welcome home…your newest home. What a treasure this area of So. Cal. is for you to arrive at. I’ve only stopped by on my way to or from another place. So, your deep familiarity with LA is a window for me. A morning wood fire sounds cozy and lovely. Isn’t it funny how we think of our Grandmas more and more as we age? I miss mine so much. This is a great draft of the challenge. Bravo!

  3. I’ve been thinking about you and your move, wondering how it’s all going. I’m happy we Inklings inspired you to express your love of your now new home. Welcome home. It must feel good and safe as a life-drenched promise should.

  4. Denise, I am glad that I can reconnect with you as you follow your stars to a new place and keep in your heart your life-drenched promise. Your draft is filled with wonderful images and reminders of life past. Good luck.

  5. What a joy to read your post and poem. It must be a grounding and grateful experience to be so connected to a place that has been important in your family. I loved the repeated phrase “life-drenched promise.”

  6. What a beautiful sky. I adore the high desert so much. “life-drenched promise’ is powerful.

  7. Denise this is beautiful! As is that spectacular sunset… So glad you’ve had a good transition from your old home to the new one, and that you have so many new and exciting things to look forward to.

  8. Best of luck as you settle in to a place that is new, yet so familiar. What a joy to have such lovely memories. The phrase “life-drenched Promise” holds so much love and hope, and the way you’ve weaved it in repeatedly makes it stick.

  9. Thank you for your poem! Wishing you a quick and smooth adjustment to your new home.

  10. It feels like with your poem, your move, your past, have all connected in a beautiful way, Denise. I love how you crafted this from last week’s poem, collecting all that you love so much. Best wishes in this new (not really so new) home.

  11. I’m glad you found the Emily Pauline poem inspiring, Denise–and you really gave a great feel of a place I don’t know well, and the way that it has grown in importance in your life.

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