Written for:  dVerse Poets Pub:  Haibun Monday – “Transitions”  (guest host:  Merrill)
“For this Haibun Monday, I want you to write about change, but specifically, I’d like you to write about a transitional time in your life. It could be something profound—a near death experience, for example. It could be about starting or leaving a job, getting married, or having a baby. It could be how you feel when the seasons change. How you define transition is up to you. It could even be about how you helped someone else through a transitional time.”

At twenty years of age, due to circumstances,
I wound up in a hospital. While my eyes were closed,
I could see a tunnel filled with light. Though not awake,
I thought I detected murmuring sounds around me.

A flicker of light came through, the voices grew
louder. My eyes opened, and the first thing I saw
was a number on a white wall. I thought I was dead,
and was assigned this number in some sort of afterlife.

broken-winged bird
unable to fly away
mends on summer morning

About purplepeninportland

I am a freelance poet, born and bred in Brooklyn, New York. I live with my husband, John, and two charming rescue dogs–Marion Miller and Murphy. We spent eight lovely years in Portland, OR, but are now back in New York. My goal is to create and share poetry with others who write, or simply enjoy reading poetry. I hope to touch a nerve in you, and feel your sparks as well.
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28 Responses to Between

  1. Oh, that experience has such connotations to it — it can both be scary and peaceful. I remember one such incident.
    The mending of the broken-winged bird is beautiful. Well penned. 🙂


  2. Very much as others have described near-death experiences. We’re left to wonder what was the number you first saw! Great write.


  3. merrildsmith says:

    The tunnel with the white light is a common theme, but the number is interesting. I wonder if it had other significance? The haiku links perfectly with your prose–wonderful image of the broken-wing bird healing in the summer morning.


  4. V.J. Knutson says:

    Numinous moments that alter our perception – how were you after?


  5. Grace says:

    I wonder too if we will be given a number in our after life. This must have been an unforgettable experience and changes your perception of life. I love the mending of that broken winged bird, a beautiful haiku!!!


  6. rothpoetry says:

    It is interesting how medication affects our minds. Glad you were mistaken!


  7. kanzensakura says:

    Interesting that you saw a number on the wall. I saw my father at foot if my bed and was peaceful knowing he was there waiting. The image of the broken winged bird is beyond gorgeous.


  8. jazzytower says:

    Wow!What an experience. Numbers, eh! Interesting write.



  9. This one is so mysterious… I would maybe be different if i had ever seen anything like that… do you remember the number?


  10. lillian says:

    The haiku is perfect for the experience you’ve described in the prose. People still ask my husband if he saw or heard anything during his 6 minute cardiac arrest; during the time he was on life support in the CICU — until he miraculously opened his eyes and was back on earth to join us. Thankful for every day.


  11. Gina says:

    a broken winged bird says so much, when the spirit just wants to lift off but the body cannot be coaxed. your haiku is priceless.


  12. Frank Hubeny says:

    I like how you described this awakening or coming back to consciousness.


  13. Ah these are the moments one could never forget. You wrote this experience so well.


  14. rivrvlogr says:

    What a scary moment!


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