Friday, 23 August 2019

Journeys of the Heart by Steve Gladwin

Hi everyone,

I've spent a highly enjoyable four years blogging for this site and I now want to take a break. I hope to be back in a year's time with a few fresh ideas to impart.

But as a great many of my blogs may have gone on a bit, I thought I'd leave -as it were - silently, allowing a whole load of image which have accompanied my during my blog journey since September 2015, and a couple of poems which were part of the blog in September 2016, which meant the most to me. You can find both the heart and the lobster pot which gives the condition its name further down.

The second heart poem I placed at the end of the same blog, which dealt with my personal responses to Future Learn's Mental Health in Literature course in Sept-Oct 2016, at a time when my partner Rose was in hospital. Rose won the inaugural DAC, (Disability Arts Cymru) poetry competition. I hope you enjoy them both as much as I have.

And for all your comments, the friends I have interviewed, Sue and Penny and all my fellow bloggers, I do hope you've enjoyed my often unusual and sometimes too wordy ramblings.

Thank you

Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy
I’m reviewing a left ventriculography
from a man with chest pain, MI ruled out,
his wife dead for a post-crash hour.
The scan shows his cardiac apex
bulging with each beat, shaped
like a takotsubo, an octopus trap
a Japanese cardiologist recalled
from his childhood fishing village,
the scan just another broken heart’s
beaten down story of futility and resilience.
And I will say, “I am sorry for your loss,”
explain the image, reassure him
his heart muscle will recover in a week,
all the time wishing I could hug him
with eight strong arms instead of two.
Richard Berlin

I once had a heart

all red muscle and hard work. Battle-
scarred and bullet ridden. Never the
victor, always the victim. Wouldn’t
win a beauty competition. Yet full of
spirit. But that’s what matters most
isn’t it?
And so intricate. Would shame the
universe's complex plans. Ad infinitum.

tiny arteries that whispered a claret-
red, rich sussurus in spiral after spiral.
How aptly named you were. And worked
as a heart should. But for one thing.
That endless thud. Thud. THUD. Too
many memories trapped in the blood.
echoing. Echoing. ECHOING.
For sanity’s sake, I traded it in.
The new one- a beautiful thing. Hand -
carved. Some said it had a hollow tick.
A heart void of any characteristic
important to life. But in time, I grew
to love it as my own. Then –
in a heartbeat, Woodworm.
Countless tunnels, raised up like embroidered
So the choice was made. One last fling
in the arms of fate. What seemed a faultless
trade -
a heart to die for. A ‘work of art.’
And what’s better – no flesh, no wood,
or boiled up blood.

But it had a single flaw. A long-held
tear shattered its core. Fractured red
into yellow and green, bled blue into
indigo, edge by edge into nothingness. Like
all the atoms that have ever been.

Rose Foran 

And on that note -- Boom - Boom! x


Sue Purkiss said...

Interesting images! And Rose's poem is very powerful.

Heather Dyer said...

Intriguing photos, makes me want to go back and look up your posts...!

Penny Dolan said...

Good wishes, Steve, and thank you for all your ABBA posts.

Joan Lennon said...

See you when you get back!