January 14, 2021

Yesterday was an ordinary day.

I don’t mean that I spent it

marching through the mundane,

looking for glimpses of something new

to steer me off my road of routine.

I mean that I never lifted my head to check.

I don’t mean that the rhythm of my steps

was in ticking time with my cadent pulse.

I mean that some moments

I couldn’t feel my heart beating at all.


I mean that I had nothing to say,

and that I never opened my mouth to try.

I mean that I felt a little less

like a person with purpose, and a little more

like a stray with lost passion.

Yesterday was an ordinary day,

and I mean that I’d long forgotten

how to let words start dripping after the tears.

I mean that even poetry

seemed too far for me to reach.


Yesterday was ordinary—

but today, perhaps, is an otherworldly day.

I don’t mean that it spills sunlight from another planet,

or that maple trees have started growing daisy petals,

or that my heart has started feeling light again.

Today is an otherworldly day,

and I mean that the snowflakes on my skin

feel more like balm than frigid burn,

and my roommate’s guitar

makes me miss places I’ve never been.


I mean that I’ve started wishing for words

I’ve never heard of

so that I can stop feeling lost

in the empty labyrinth of language.

I mean that I feel a little less

like I am drifting, and a little more

like I am searching.

I mean that I feel a little less

like winter woods stripped of life,

and a little more like brittle branches

waiting in silence to grow their green again.


Today is an otherworldly day,

and I don’t mean that it makes me wish

for more moons or colored rain.

Today is an otherworldly day,

and I mean that the wind is gentle,

that the sunlight makes me feel warm again,

and that the strings of my roommate’s guitar

fill the hollow spaces

that I hadn’t known were empty.


  1. Zachary Holbrook

    Beautiful and moving. I love the imagery— snowflakes, a set-aside guitar, trees awakening after the winter.

  2. Jenny Chasteen

    Couldn’t have been more perfect for today–both because of how my week is going and because I came here straight from the conclusion to Andrew Peterson’s Wingfeather Saga readalong! 😭 Amazing combination.

  3. Kathleen Stewart

    Very motivating. Reading this poem jostled me out of my morning stupor and opened my eyes.

  4. B

    This is lovely, as always, Cindy!!
    It makes me feel that there is always still goodness and joy to be found, even here. That here is still a good place to be.


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