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I invite Sadness

to sit at my hearth

give her expensive wine

a cushion near the fire

a place to rest her feet.


I pray my welcome

will invite her to

move through

rather than stay,

but invite her in I must

for she rules this season

of cold full moons.


An attentive hostess

I serve her

stew from my cauldron,

bread from my table,

cake from my cupboard

meat from my heart.


I refill her glass, smile

knowing these gestures

risk permanent indwelling –

but hoping instead

for a gracious shift

back to whole shadow

or a bare sliver of light.


Even in full wane

I will still feel her,

this tearing pull

to emptiness

this flowing ebb,

this littoral zone,

for she dwells nearby.


Warmed by firelight

she nods,

smiles slightly


in our arrangement.

I am not.

But even I

am capable of change.


2 thoughts on “Hospitality

  1. Alison Wilson

    This is such a beautiful expression of how to embrace life’s more difficult moments without resistance, whuch only serves to increase the pain. Thank you River for this luminous poem.


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