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What I’ve Learned From the Dark

When we walk in the world, we take in its beauty in some fashion. We may not notice it in the immediate moment, but taken away from us home, family, and the world are more alive. We find the hidden beauty in the stripping of skin. This beauty is beyond the skin deep of superficial which we often soak in only to find that beauty has its flaws when looked at more closely.

Julia Fehrenbacher reminds us it in disruption, as the sky pours and the sun extinguished, we find our way to deepest beauty. We find beauty and wealth in overlooked nooks and crannies noticed when the light is dimmed and absent, even briefly. The candle of the holy invites us to look more closely recognizing the overlooked uplifting the ordinary, taken-for-granted in our lives.

It seems we must be stripped

of the skin

of all we think beautiful

before we open to the kind of beauty

that can’t go away

it seems sky must pour

and howl like it will never stop

before we notice the smile

of our own forever sun. It seems

we must hunt with starving

hungry eyes before we know

this belly is and has always been

full. It seems this wall

deep in the center must be hammered down

before we let soft, breathing hands

curl in around us.  Each drop

of dark carries

with it a candle of holy

light – with each miracle breath

we are invited to turn toward

the nearest whispering spark

and, like momma bird sheltering her baby – like a pebble

in stream’s safe lap



About ivonprefontaine

I completed a PhD at Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA. Previously, I taught for 20 years and taught for 15 years in a wonderful hybrid school. My dissertation topic and research were how certain teachers experience becoming who teachers. In teaching and leanring, I am a boundary-crosser who understands moving ahead is a leap of faith. Teaching is a calling and vocation to express who I am as a person. Currently, I am waiting and listening to what calls me next. I am an educator, phenomenologist, scholar, boundary-crosser, published poet, author, parent, grandparent, and spouse.

8 responses »

  1. What an amazing poem! Loved it. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Beautiful, thank you for sharing it.

  3. Immensely in love with this poem. I am not sure of the appealing factor here…………..its not about the outer skin of this poem …..guess, it is the deeper beauty which is really wonderful. Absolutely beautiful!

    • That is what I like so much about poetry. It is not easy to explain what attracts us individually. It is in the silent spaces that meaning opens up. Thank you for a beautiful comment.

  4. That’s a really inspiring poem!♥ It is odd that we have suffer to some degree to appreciate and see more clearly the good in our lives, but it seems to be just the way it is. But if it makes us notice those things we otherwise wouldn’t, it can’t be a bad thing. 🙂


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