a poem a day in the month of may
You, me, her, him, them
Beyond our ingrained preconceptions
Inclusive of everyone
Vowing to press on until all humankind experiences equality.
Karri Temple Brackett
May 20, 2023
You’re the liminal arc
bending, stretching through my life
a multitude of colors
full spectrum manifest
Our ancestors named you Bifröst
a bridge between two realms
mortal Midgard and celestial Asgard
connecting human and divine
We chose you as the coda
our wedding recessional
arms tightly woven together, beaming
singing “Somewhere over the Rainbow”
fully illusion and fully real
an alchemized ellipsis
punctuating the circle of life
My children are wrapped in rainbows
without the weight of worry
about a god who would promise peace
only after dealing destruction,
or who would create life and love
only to decide that some were sinful.
Someday, they'll learn all about
the Bible, genesis and Jesus,
queer liberation and pride parades,
and the reason they, themselves,
are called rainbow babies, but
for now, they'll wear clothes in every colour,
and smile at every stranger,
and when they see the sunlight
reflected and refracted in raindrops,
they'll know nothing but momentary magic
and the bliss of being both
innocent and ignorant of ignorance.
Don’t get me wrong-
I love a pop of prisms
as much as the next person,
color streaks arching across
I don’t believe
it’s the colors that draw
others to claim rainbows
as their own.
It’s the hue that glows
within hearts that see
each rainbow as a promise
projected, as hope
that good things
follow the rain.
is a sign of God's promise
even in my flickering, faltering, evolving faith
I hold on
to that promise
that arc of colour brings
my pot of gold
at the end of the rainbow
colorful and enchanting
curious and inviting
as a boy searching
for the end
and the pot of gold
how many of
by jumping in
puddles of water
laughing and playing
as the you
the spiritual realm
from which you came
we were taught of
a promise attached
not only beauty
but a grace
that I didn't understand then
and now as an adult
when the rainbow
has more meaning
for so many friends
and loved ones
and people I do not know
I understand and support them
hopefully, they see me as
as someone safe
I long to return
to a time or is it age
where society wasn't
trying to force me
to pick "sides" as if
the world were so
simple and uninspiring
black or white thinking
of "us" versus"them"
I am so weary of this
outdated and harmful view
I long to find
the time and place
after the long rains
wash away the
powers of death and division
with a new life
where I can gather with
old friends and new
of all the shades and hues
with a variety of languages
and expressions of love
with no barriers keeping
holding hands and hugging
laughing and giggling
and there will definitely be
in the puddles
as the music
of resurrection (from our old lives)
fills the air
and did I mention
a proud plank-owner
in the close-knit fellowship that is
an eagle fly-by,
an unexpected kiss,
violin grace notes in the subway.
a god wink,
a jolt of breaking family news,
a fresh car wreck.
stuff like that.
I don’t want my life to be
the superficiality of
"rainbows and unicorns"
Don’t get me wrong I love
rainbows and unicorns
But no thanks to
confined to a Golden Cage
My life includes the shadow
depth and texture that
colors my life bold
Darkness is not to judged
just something to meet along the way
It is the night to the day
Dusk to the dawn
Birthing a deep
power and Creativity
AND, give me a rainbow any day
That glorious arc of
pure prismatic sunshine
Unrefined multicolored joy!
With a smile painted upon my face
awe in my heart
I rejoice in this iridescent gem
Red is the car I drive around the town,
Orange is overwhelmed by being poetic daily.
Yellow is the sunshine that permeates my soul,
Green is the grass on both sides of the street.
Blue is the summer sky that stretches on forever.
Indigo is a sunset backdrop for fireflies.
Violet is the popsicle, dripping down her chin.
These colors, the rainbow of my soul.
Thank you so much, again, for this space, Kaitlin. Today truly feels like a turning point in this particular journey, and I've made some amazing decisions that are wholly inspired by your supportive and encouraging space.
I'll also take this moment to say, I ADORE all you folks I've been "meeting" day after day, or even just some days. This has been truly one of the most magical and organically engaging creative experiences of my life (maybe you can tell I'm relatively new to Substack still haha), and so I'm taking this energy and rolling farther and beyond with it!
I didn't feel quite as sparkly writing my poem today, but it nonetheless definitely captures the ecstasy of my joy right now, being here with you all. I don't want it to stop <3 (and so, I'm concocting a treasure such that, in some way, it won't <3)
The rain falls gently around the house,
And I’m glad for this moment.
Glad to be sitting here,
Muse and tea and rain,
Warm and well and nourished,
Excited for all the rainbow rays
That’ll soon be unleashed.
Soon, my baby,
My littlest rainbow,
We’re going to be fields of wildflowers,
Splatters of paint on open canvases,
Cacophonic symphonic melodies
Dancing between the ears
Of those praying for glorious unbridled return.
For now, we’ll sit,
Happy and warm and nourished,
Sipping tea, writing a note or two,
Laying the foundation for the King
Who will soon be marching through.
Our time will come to
Bounce around as
Curly Q’s and whispering shoes,
Giddy and excited as squirrels on harvest day,
Fractal and colossal,
So radiant in effervescence they can scarcely believe their eyes.
But they do so, anyways,
As though gazing on angels,
As though willing the portal to be just a little wider, just for now,
Because baby, you see,
We are rainbows.
when it comes to Light
rainbows contain everything
We promise, We do
I’ve always loved
The rare occurrence of rainbows
showing up in an average ho-hum day
calls for my attention.
Their sheer beauty is enough
for me to stand in awe.
Yet I’ve learned the colors are there
all the time.
There doesn’t even need to be a storm
to see a rainbow.
When light is traveling along
and encounters something
like water or glass,
the light slows down
and changes direction.
The light bends.
And then we see
what’s been there all along,
a spectrum of colors,
each unique and different.
Beauty, always there in its essence,
can be visibly seen
when something, someone,
chooses to slow down
and change course.
When the rains had ended,
and the flood waters began to recede,
A rainbow appeared.
A promise, a commitment, a symbol
that a new day was dawning.
A rainbow appears.
The prophets speak of the arc of God,
bows appearing in the sky,
Revelation of hope and redemption,
Epiphanies of light across shadows,
Storm surges leading to cracks in the sky,
Calm following chaos, hope flowing from despair.
This symbol of hope and resilience,
a beckoning of peace and centering justice,
Wherever humans have left their marks,
For better and worse,
Symbols pf promise and peace,
of inclusion and diversity expanding narrow constructs,
kindreds finding their worth and value,
clothed in multi color splendor.
peeling back layers, shedding skins
of the old, deepening understanding and trust.
Ezekiel saw them in the sky, Noah did, too.
Jesus embodied the fullness of the colors,
as the humblest of us glimpse our beauty
in the smallest steps we take.
Avatars, seers, wisdom guides and prophets
old and new, understand the signs:
A new dream is emerging into view.
White supremacists, Christian nationalists
purveyors of hate and spinners of lies
breathe out hate and call it love.
Their angry violent ways even take hold for a while,
but they never last.
In the harshest of storms,
The rainbow always appears somewhere.
The untouchable feels the embrace of compassion,
The reviled find the open arms of welcome,
The battered soothed by the warmth of kindness,
The wounded healed at the broken places.
Love blossoming long after the light has faded,
joy flowing to the children locked in despair,
hope singing in the halls of resignation,
hands holding years after all touch has ended.
Light following darkness following light into darkness,
forgiveness found in the ashes of remorse and resilience,
bowed heads rising into the dawn,
As a rainbow appears.
One of my very favorite words and symbols! I lovde your poem, Kaitlin, and marveling at the wonder and mystery of science!