a poem about Chronic pain



A low throbbing pain in my back

Is my constant reminder that

My body is in rebellion

Against age

And all the should have’s.

Should have eaten better.

Should have exercised.

Should have stood up straighter.


But all that doesn’t matter now

Because the pain likes to linger

Just out of reach of serious,

Or terrible. Although it threatens…

With piercing stabs and fleeting pings

And sometimes tightening contractions of

Muscles that I don’t have.

But instead, it lingers more in the category of

Always and forever. Never ending.


Sometimes in the morning when I wake up

There is a moment when it is missing.

I feel… nothing… no pings or twinges,

No dull throbbing or piercing stabs.


Just… normal. Like my back is whole and

My life is ok.

And I lie very still – not wanting to disrupt

The moment.

I pray for it to last  – to stay.

Please stay.

Maybe today I can leap from the bed

And skip to the mirror

And I will see a five-year-old

Who can twirl and spin

And climb up a slide.


She lives inside me that


She hangs out with the 15-year-old.

And the 30-year-old.

They dance and run.

They jump and hike.

They shop and garden

And all the things that

I can’t do.

At least for now.


And tomorrow

I will try again.