Your Stoic Heartbeat

A little too thin, you move with quick feet

Low profile allows you to steal what you eat

Hunkered down in the corner, you take sleep

A different drummer drives your stoic heartbeat

===========================

Silent night you bed down away from main street

Under the moon, the same, with a twist offbeat

Loved in turn by the quiet brood you keep

A different drummer drives your stoic heartbeat

====================================

Heavy eyes surrender any fear of a hasty retreat

Life in the wild demands you make you own heat

Moment to moment runs a new balance sheet

A different drummer drives your stoic heartbeat

====================================

Wary by nature demands the utmost discreet

Wish for wings sans footsteps that spoil the treat

With hope to lessen the dangers you cheat

A different drummer drives your stoic heartbeat

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Dignity lives in the small needs that you meet

God's destiny fulfilled in a life that's complete

With antennas that render footprints in fleet

A different drummer drives your stoic heartbeat

====================================

Although, I live for comments that reveal personal interpretation, I wanted to leave my inspiration for this piece with you. As most of you already know, I finalized a divorce and in rapid succession, as life tends to do, I was laid off two-weeks later. Having never experienced the degree of uncertainty that is now a part of my daily life, I have become acutely aware of how precarious life is.

Now, living in an apartment, where my financial circumstances will soon dictate cheaper digs, I spend time outside, under the huge magnolia tree, accommodating the needs of my canine companion. I miss gardening so I do something productive by cleaning up the huge daily pile of dead leaves and blossoms discarded by the beautiful tree. MacGregor, being the terrier he is, was relentlessly scratching at the ground a week ago when I heard faint, cheeping sounds. I quickly investigated to find the surface of the ground moving up and down. My neighbor pulled some of the loose nest away to find tiny, newborn critters, which I quickly covered back up. In talking with my BFF, she told me that they are probably newborn rabbits. Since finding them, every evening when I am out with MacGregor for his final break before bed, I creep quietly to the front yard and see the mother rabbit over her nest. I have been stealthily putting fresh water and carrots or fruit under the magnolia tree for the nursing new mama. I will be "on the alert" when I see the grasscutter come!

This stoic little rabbit, is following instinct for not only her own survival, but that of her family, against overwhelming odds. She will never know how she inspired me and what she taught me about doing what I must. And, despite the cruelty of nature, it holds promise, great beauty and valueable life lessons. It gives me hope.

Thank you


Comments 30 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

Amy, we take hope anywhere we can find it. If I had a couple hours and you had a couple hours I would tell you about some of the amazing things that happened that kept me from ending it all...just seemingly random everyday stuff that came to me at just the right time to keep me moving forward. Life is amazing and there is a serious plan that I am not knowledgeable of...and maybe that's just as well. My job is to accept, keep fighting the good fight and love.

Blessings to you my friend! Great poem with a wonderful message of life.


Cheeky Girl profile image

Cheeky Girl 4 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

A stoic heartbeat is an interesting title to this nicely written hub. Sometimes on the end of a line, or rope, our best ideas come to us and we can create plans that can transform our futures for the better. Wonderful things can come from dark moments in life.

Our key in life is to live it as much as we can. We are allowed mistakes. That's why we are human. Wish you good vibes on this day. :)

You keep it real!

Cassy


Lucky Cats profile image

Lucky Cats 4 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

Hi Amy...this is, as always and a day, beautiful. I can tell you a little about baby rabbits...the other gives birth in tall grasses or digs a shallow hole in dirt which is protected by growth. She does not stay with them in fact, she often sleeps elsewhere...they feed off her poop during the earliest days and weeks. They stay under the ground or in thickets but, in no time, begin to roam and forage....it is a very "iffy" existence. Rabbits are, practically, at the very bottom of the "food chain;" being a feeder species. They are subject to so much predation. If you did, indeed, find baby rabbits, the mother will return, deposit her poop and carry on. If the mother's presence is not obvious during a 24 hour period; it is possible she has perished (God..I hope not)...We almost mowed over baby rabbits one season during our first mow...the grass was taller in some areas and, in one of these; the babies had been born...they ran in all directions after I actually pushed the mower right over the top of their dperessed nest. They all were unharmed (Thank God, again!!! don't know how I would have handled it.)

I hope your situation improves soon, Amy...You are SO very talented and intelligent..there is BOUND to be a position/place for you...your abilities are a premium and someone must discover the positive effects you will bring to any career/employer/establishment.

Bless you for caring for these babies, and I will keep very positive thoughts comin' your way for a better future.

Your friend, Kathy

UP Awesome Beautiful


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

So true, Bill. Just in the knick of time seems to happen all the time! Thank you for the way you share and the way you care. Just know that you have an impact with everything you write. And just like here, your comments matter profoundly.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Cassy, Your words are amazing, real with the ring of truth. It's funny, because before I lost my job, I was too busy to notice the things that are inspirational to me now. Only thing certain is that everything changes. I've discovered I am adaptable, because I have to be...much like the rabbits I found. I've passed through the stages of grief to acceptance. Sometimes, it feels more dead than the early stages of anger. But, acceptance is necessary in dealing with reality and doing what one must to make change happen. Flailing against "what is" is empty energy, cathartic, but useless otherwise. "Keep calm and carry on" is where I'm at. Thank you for your insight, Cassy.


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

Voted up and awesome. Glad you found that magnolia tree. Trees in themselves have a soothing nature. That mama rabbit and her babies sound delightful. It's also great that you have such a wonderful companion in MacGregor. Keep up the faith you know the Lord won't let you down and before you know it things will take a turn for the better. God bless.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Dear Kathy, Yes, that is exactly what I've discovered with the rabbits. My drunken neighbor insists that rabbits nurse, but I was doubtful. Now I understand why she hovers over the nest just beneath the ground surface. She stays nearby under a bush in the front yard, but comes out at night and during the day when she senses predators, such as the crows cawing in the tree yesterday. I am on the alert for the sound of the grasscutters, as I will run out to stop them from going over the small area where the rabbits are in hiding.

I am helping my mom out quite a bit now, Kathy, along with my ex mother-in-law, too. They both pay me, which doesn't amount to a sustaining income, but it's better than nothing. My problem now is "not wanting" to ever work in an office again. I hated it and don't miss the petty bullshit I endured for so long. I figure "one good idea" or one oppportunity can change everything. I've not given up. It's part of my journey. And, I am certain that it will turn out exactly as it is supposed to.

As always, Kathy, I am so happy to see you here. You've made my day. Thank you for standing by me and being a true and awesome friend.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Dear Gypsy, I will always "keep on keepin' on." I know there is always hope. I am confident, that one way or another, things work out. Thank you for your kind inspiration!


drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

Today, just one word for you, Amy. Brava!!! Why? I am applauding not just your creative, poetic talent but your move over time to acceptance. No, it usually does not come easy and can be difficult to sustain - in the beginning - but I believe with your intelligence and strength you have survived. Another brava!


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

A beautiful story. I raised rabbits at one time so especially endearing to me. Animals really are proof of a greater being.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

I truly respect your opinion on grieving, drbj. Thank you so much for expanding on your statement, as I wondered about vacillating, straddling the stages, so to speak. I am encouraged by what you tell me. I never fully felt or comprehended the 5-stages until I was leveled personally. I mistakenly believed it only applied to death and dying, but I discovered that any loss can throw one into the grieving process. When I thought about the fact that I had not only survived divorce, but losing my job, I gave myself permission to grieve (since I was going through the process anyway) LOL. It finally dawned on me that what Elisabeth Kubler-Ross wrote about is what I was experiencing. It's the blockhead in me, drbj! So, thank you for reaffirming what I thought, but was still doubting. I think I am emerging better for the journey.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Dear Jackie, I am so glad to hear you are an avid animal lover. The animal kingdom never ceases to amaze me with their purity, intellect, instinct and lack of malice that allows them to live exactly as they are destined (unless man intervenes).

As a sidenote, I also feed the birds in an area behind the apartment building. There is a grassy hill with a ledge where I put black oil sunflower seeds. Since I've been putting my offerings out, there is life in the alley! Today, when I looked outside my bedroom window to see who was enjoying the bird food, hoping to catch a glimpse of the beautiful pair of Cardinals I've noticed, I saw a young boy standing opposite the hill, using his bow and arrow to target the animals I've been feeding. Of course, the birds and squirrels took off and the little brat got bored and left too. If I see him again, I'm going to tell him to have his father take him to a range where he can practice with paper targets away from residences. I'll be damned if I bait the wildlife for his live targets. As an animal lover, I tell you this because I am sure will understand my disgust and, yes, indignant rage.

Thank you, Jackie. I appreciate your support.


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 4 years ago

You are as amazing as your beautiful and powerful poetry. There is no way you can lose. Up and awesome.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Dear Pop, Your words carry a lot of weight with me. Everything you write makes me think. I can't tell you how many times you have and continue to influence how I look at things. That said, I appreciate your message to me, because it not only boosts my confidence in my ability to stand on my own two feet, but stand tall. My life is so much better for knowing you.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

This is a beautiful story. I thought at first you were writing about the homeless. The baby rabbits were blessed to be born where you can watch over them. You have a pure heart. I loved this. Thank you.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Thank you kindly, always exploring. Yes, I tried to align the perils of wildlife with homelessness for humans, but wanted the fact that it was a rabbit family to be a kind of twist. The nest in the yard where I live was the inspiration. Today, the grasscutters came and the man that lives in the basement of the apt building, bless his soul, made sure the maintenance crew knew about the baby rabbits and Charlie in maintenance put a barricade over the location that needed protection. I am now ashamed that I get aggravated with the man in the basement that has an alcohol addiction and staggers through a good part of everyday. I neglected to remember what a good heart it has. I am sorry for that and will remember that fact forever now.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

You know , I've noticed that alcoholics do have good hearts. They just have a disease. I know an alcoholic who would do anything for anyone. Thank's again for a sweet hub...


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

I know exactly how you feel, I even have a couple of brothers who are like that, but I also have a couple that make up for them, and love animals as I do. I have been building up some visitors too, just watched them from a window fighting over bread and drinking water and soaring around from trees to ground, showing off. Such a love, maybe I will try to put it to a poem someday. I wish I could.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Dear always exploring, You are absolutely 100% correct in your observations. My neighbor, who doesn't remember what I told him the day before and repeats the same verbiage, day after day, tries my patience, yet I don't dislike him. He is very lonely. He keeps insisting that my Scottish Terrier should traverse the stairs himself instead of me carrying him, and I've explained about 25 times that Mac fell as a puppy down a flight of stairs and structurally, he cannot navigate steep stairways. Then, I'll catch him trying to bait Mac down the concrete stairs to his basement apartment. I've begged him not to try to coax Mac, as he will suffer if he falls and I can no longer afford huge vet bills. My neighbor then does the same thing the next day. When my mom was having difficulties after her bypass surgery while in the ICU, I got a call from her nurse asking me to come to spend the night with her. I had no options, so I ran my key downstairs and asked my neighbor to let Mac out in the morning when he got up. He forgot and I couldn't get him to come to the door with my key to get back in when I got home. I found another way in, but it is disheartening and aggravating. But, things are what they are and I don't judge, as I've not walked in his shoes. However, I am human too and cut myself some slack in the fact that he will probably always aggravate me. But, he was not put on this earth to make my life easier. I am aware now of how his addiction affects him, so I know what to expect. I am responsible for my own life.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Jackie, You have such a beautiful heart and great writing talent. I am certain you can write poetry or gorgeous prose on what you just wrote here. You just reminded me that I need to pick up some more bird seed or suet for my friends. I adore watching them from my window. I have even managed to entice a beautiful pair of cardinals. The alley way behind me is now alive with wildlife!


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

That is really great and thank you. I do believe I will try and if I succeed I will dedicate it to you.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Oh, Jackie. How sweet. Don't ever doubt yourself. You are such an intelligent woman and you write like a dream. If you find poetry is not your forte, don't give it a second thought. We all have our own unique brand of talent. I've read your work. It is beautiful. I only tried poetry here after I read some of the other writer's works. I wasn't a fan until I joined hubpages. I found it pretentious and obtuse. But, the beauty is...it can be whatever you want it to be. Don't be afraid to do it your way. You've got it goin' on, girl.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

Oh, no it is not poetry I doubt, I do love it too, but can I put into a poem what we have been speaking of here and make it magic? That is what I would wish to do. And I will try.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

I can't wait to read your words, whatever form, Jackie. They will be beautiful and I know I will relate. I can't remember if I told you, but yesterday I was gazing on the wild escapades between the squirrels, birds and bunnies and I saw a child from the neighborhood outside trying to spear the critters I feed. The animals flew the coop and the kid with the bow and arrows left right after. It enraged me. He needs to find a place with his dad where he can safely practice target shooting that doesn't involve the local wildlife in a residential area. If I see him again, I will approach him nicely once, but thereafter, he can deal with the police. It is unbelievable to me that in this one-way, obscure alley way, someone has to find a way to create chaos.


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 4 years ago

Dear Amy,

I will never get over what you wrote to me. Your words moved me more than words can say.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Thank you, Pop. I meant every word.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

Seems there is always someone to try to ruin something beautiful, who knows why. Everything and everywhere. We just have to make the best of it. Maybe you could befriend this boy and get him interested in saving instead of destroying. I hope so.


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Good idea, Jackie. The last thing I want to do is make him or his dad angry. Then, the critters would be a target for certain. If I see him outside my window again, I'll take bird food out and ask him if he'd like to help me put it on the ledge for the birds!


Deborah Brooks profile image

Deborah Brooks 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

My dear Amy.. I am so sorry about your divorce.. unfortunately I know how you feel.. I guess a lot of us does.. but it does not make it any easier.. I love your poem straight from the heart. Your poems always make me feel like you write from the heart.

Blessings to you Amy

Debbie


Amy Becherer profile image

Amy Becherer 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO Author

Don't be sorry about my divorce, dear Debbie. I wanted it, I asked for it. I was all set to live by my own rules for the first time in my life, when I had the rug ripped out from under me, and 2-weeks following, was laid off from the job I'd held for 13-years. I had just signed a lease on an apt near my workplace and was happy to be leaving the 2-1/2 hour daily round trip commute behind me. In the blink of an eye, everything changed.

Thank you, Debbie, for your sweet words that always encourage me to keep writing.

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