The Sunday Whirl

Journey Of Resilience

Today, with the inclusion of the word “resilience” in the word list, I couldn’t help but continue the story I started two years ago. See “process notes” following the poem for more details…


Nearly two years have passed
since my husband’s body
was shipped home
from the land of infidels.

That’s what they are, right?
Surely a war like this could not be
because of their true belief in God?

It was such a shock, at first.
To know that the love of my life
had been taken from me…

from that spot on the hill
where he had no shelter;
no protection from the barrage
of bullets; roadside bombs,
hidden, in wait for him;
there was no way out…

…and then to read the last words
he wrote to me. He wrote of
resilience. He was urging me
to not just survive, but to thrive.
I made that promise to him
as I read his words.

I’ve spent two years in the struggle
against letting these events harden
my heart and, for the first time,
believe he was right.

I am resilient.

P. Wanken


Inspired first by The Sunday Whirl #105: shipped, shelter, shock, bomb, promise, struggle, spent, infidels, land, resilience, against, thrive, and harden. However, the story really goes back to prompt #2 at The Sunday Whirl, for which I wrote the poem Resilient on May 1, 2011. Three months later, I continued the story with I Am Resilient.

Posted for day 50 in 100 Days of Spring – 2013.




Special Note:  I’m celebrating week #104 in a row of writing to the prompts at The Sunday Whirl — that’s right, two full years without missing a week! Thanks, Brenda, for the weekly inspiration!



Upon reaching the threshold
of her limits, for the ninth time,
a slight sigh escaped her lips;

with all her might, she drew
her sword. Skeptical of her own
control, yet bold in her effort,

she plunged the sword deep
into his heart (as she had often
imagined before). Tears saturate

her broken heart once again.

P. Wanken


Inspired by The Sunday Whirl #104: saturate, control, bold, unwind, sword, often, skeptical, slight, might, sigh, ninth, and threshold. Posted for day 43 in 100 Days of Spring – 2013.


A Stellar Day



with a smudge of delicious
fudge on my chin, and inquisitive
children tucked into bed,
exhaustion settles over me

my body urges my mind
to activate my evening mantra,
an effort to bring unity
to heart, mind, and body

I merge reality with dreams as
modern technology projects
sweet sounds in my ear,
my favorites sing me to sleep

P. Wanken


Inspired by The Sunday Whirl #103: merge, project, activate, technology, unity, mantra, smudge, sing, delicious, inquisitive, urge, and stellar. Posted for day 41 in 100 Days of Spring – 2013.


Call Of Love



Long after
staff have filled the pit,
written on
the stone, and
dried petals turned to powder
are lost on the wind—

drifting like
snow from a mountain’s
peak— my un-
dying love
is locked in the beauty of
the sun, moon, and stars.

P. Wanken


Inspired by The Sunday Whirl #102: peak, powders, lost, calls, locks, pit, moon, staff, stone, after, written, and petals. Posted for day 31 in 100 Days of Spring – 2013.


Yesterday’s Wound



She stirred
ever so slightly
next to me.

My stillness
disguised as sleep,
and my mind raced.

It doesn’t take much
to jar memories;
in a hurry I am

across the world
in a foreign country
surrounded by sand.

The forgotten sound
of the whispered breeze
through the tree

that was to be my shelter,
is now the whispered sigh
of my sleeping bride.

P. Wanken


Inspired by The Sunday Whirl #101: disguised, forgotten, country, hurry, tree, wound, mind, sand, stirred, jar, across, and yesterday. Posted for day 22 in 100 Days of Spring – 2013.