I heard Janet Wong speak at the National Book Festival a few years ago. She said four words that stuck in my mind. “Writing relieves the memory.” I thought how often that has been true for me. Whether writing in a journal, on a calendar, or on a list, there is an accompanying peace knowing that whatever “it” is, is written down.

This week I found that writing not only relieved my memory, it relieved something much deeper. I woke on January 26 with heaviness I could hardly bear. It took every ounce of willpower to get myself to work. I had a full day ahead and was anxious about the weight I carried with me.

I entered my classroom and shut the door. I sat down at my computer and drafted bits and pieces of what I was battling inside. Then I left it on the page. Writing was the relief I needed to be able to proceed with my day. I returned to that writing tonight and revised a bit.

I think I will share it here and thank you for reading.


Winter demons pound on my door.

Seductive voices call me to yield to the dark.

“Just slip into our arms and rest,” they say.

“There’s no expectation here.

No growth required.

Nothing to care for.

Give in.

Just give in.”


It might be easier.

It might be warmer under blankets of darkness.

After all, I know these demons—

These familiar foes–whose cold oblivion never provides.


The sun smirks as she withholds heat.

She allows wind the upper hand.

I draw inward and glimmers of light

Hush the demons’ alluring call.


4 thoughts on “January 30, 2018

    1. It’s late tonight, but thank you so much for the invitation and I will surely take some time to try to participate. I’m new to writing poetry and feel very inadequate, but I love reading poetry and am trying to learn!

  1. Wow! Your word choice, pacing and imagery is so powerful in thie poem. Thank you so much for sharing it. I am battling some “demons” now too and truly appreciate your willingness to let writing provide relief for your memory.

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