Please note: I wrote this last week when D-day was still looming and freaking me out a little. I scheduled it for today, because this is where it belongs, but it doesn’t reflect my state of being. Rather than a quivering, keening, irrational mess, I find the peace I came home from France with still on me. It’s a bit intense, but…I’m okay. There are always tears. Every day. But this peace…it’s like he’s got his big arms wrapped around me. Pain can’t get past him. Whimsical, maybe, but…anyway. ❤ 

There is no avoiding triggers, because

I don’t know what they are

until they’re pulled

And the bullet flies

And the blood spills in trickles

or rushes

a waterfall from my body,

my brain tossing  memories:

chemical spatters on the wall where he once blew himself up

conducting experiments in the basement,

thrilled beyond words,

tamed–the crowding thoughts.

The roof he built

The tools he bought

The songs he sang

The love he gave

The sorrow and the sorrow and the sorrow he never meant to cause,

that added to the thoughts ever churning

a frenzy of joy and despair and back again.

A trigger is pulled, and down I go

Getting back up again is rote

Like breathing, like laughing, like remembering.

It’s been a year. It’s been a year. It’s been a god-damned bloody year.

The first of forever. And here I stand.

Braced against the next trigger pulled.

Willing to take that bullet.

Because, by now, I can.



Filed under poetry

18 responses to “Triggers

  1. i feel this feeling and it is terrible. i share your pain and live with it every day. you aren’t alone when you feel this way.


    • Terri-Lynne DeFino

      I’m sorry for your pain. I hope you have enough joy to temper it some.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m trying. The only thing that has worked with me for my PTSD has been anti-anxiety medication and medical marijuana. That’s it.
        Though, I am indulging in purchasing more art. And, that makes me smile (:

        Liked by 1 person

      • Terri-Lynne DeFino

        PTSD, anxiety, depression–so misunderstood. I’m glad you got your medical marijuana card. It has the potential to help so much. It gave my son ten happy months, and not because he was perpetually stoned; he never was. It was because he finally got to live without feeling like there was a train barreling down on him with no way out.

        Buy art. DO art. Smiling is good, as long as you feel it on the inside, too. Peace, love.


  2. My thoughts are with you as you hit this first anniversary of Chris’s passing. As you know, our day is Monday and I am numb. I think it remains bottled in me, with the damn holding the water works back. Been a busy month with home projects, the new pup and relational problems with my daughter and our whole family. Too many diversions for my grief to be realized. Hang in there…you amaze me with the speed with which you keep pounding out those books. Chris no doubt is your wind beneath your writing wings…Love ya


    • Terri-Lynne DeFino

      I’ll be thinking of you Monday, Jackie. And Glenn. I understand that “numb” feeling, but I choose to accept it as peace. It roils, just under the surface, threatens to bubble over sometimes, but…it doesn’t. Life distracts, and it fills empty spaces at least somewhat. I’m sorry for the trouble with your daughter, though. Sending hugs and sparkles. Love you back.


  3. ❤️ My heart is with you and Frank this week.


  4. Mark Nelson

    All good thoughts and words, always.


  5. Dena Davey

    You have such a way with words, amazing. I’ve been thinking of you and Frank, knowing that this day was approaching. Much love to you xo


    • Terri-Lynne DeFino

      Thanks, Dena. Your kindness and love are appreciated. I still think about that dream you had, and wonder. ❤


  6. Fran

    Don’t know words other than sending love and hugs to you and Frank. Cry if you need to. I believe it helps to wash away the poison inside. XXOO


  7. Beverly Diem Fasig

    How do you find the words that so perfectly define your emotions? This is tear jerking lay beautiful. I send you much love and hugs upon hugs.


  8. Carol Lovekin

    Cariad. Shero. Love. xXx


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