by Patricia Reynolds Sorbye

…Of course, you have to stop the bleeding, that’s a given.
It could get messy if you didn’t –
It could be the end of you.

But after the brief frenzy, exhale –
look at the light – count remaining limbs
And notice how wonderful the air feels
On a patch of open skin.

I have no room in my pocket for
Decaying thought, or a stab collection.

Musing over needles
I ponder fine, clear lines –
The thin, straight twigs of metal, finally finding meaning
In my warm ground.

There is no one to blame.
A leaf, leaving a tree
Holds no grudge –
Just drifts, and drifting – sees another place.

And I need not soak in the cold, hate pool –
It would be work to name a culprit.

I come to the parade
To hear the music of other voices
Not to focus on despair
But to bring my small warmth
To the larger body of life.


In the summer of 2008, Patricia Reynolds Sorbye was diagnosed with breast cancer, resulting in a lumpectomy, chemo and radiation. Patricia credits hypnotherapy with making the experience easier than it might have been otherwise. Currently cancer-free, she is a Certified Hypnotherapist, living and practicing in Oakland, California. Patricia’s website is Watervox Hypnosis & Hypnotherapy,