Excerpts from poems in my new book, Just Show Up:
“Clarity comes from that space
between sleep and waking.
It creates who I will become each day.
My mind and arms are open.
It is up to me to notice.” Stillness
“How do I recognize
the natural end/of love?
How do I find my way down
a different road
to somewhere else?” Husband
“I will not remain the same,
and the sign on the wall
tells me what I must do—
‘For the Dead and the Living. . .
We must bear witness.’”
At the Holocaust Museum
“Confidence coils like a spring,
pushing me up/pushing me out,
a shift in my mind that feels
like hope stands up in me and is alive.”
Something Stands Up in Me
“I wake up because I must
into the certainty of loss,
facing it head on,
weeping into the dark,
giving up my heart to grief
in this moment alone,
knowing it will pass. . .
until it comes again.”
What are people saying about Just Show Up?
“As a poet and editor, I was grateful to be able to read Dottie Joslyn’s Just Show Up, a book written by a grown woman of great eloquence and hard-won wisdom. Whether she’s exploring how our lives change over time, meditating on the vagaries of romantic attachment, finding surprise and sustenance in nature, or demonstrating the fierce and compassionate maternal love that grapples with great loss, Dottie Joslyn summons us to be present and accounted for in our own lives, day by day—to ‘reach out your hand/and pull yourself in.’ Her poetry reaches out its hand to you. It will pull you in.”
“Your writing is so eloquent, touching and sometimes heart-wrenching. I started crying at the first poem and continued crying as I read about Chris. I could certainly see how therapeutic your poetry could be and how it could help you and others express themselves through life and through hard times. . . . A brave, intimate portrait.”
“I finished reading your book and wanted to express to you how heartfelt it was. Reading poetry was hard for me to understand but the way you write it flows with grace that you don’t want to put it down…. simply beautiful. . . . Your writing ability is indescribable, very beautiful.”
“. . . It’s a very brave publication. I was so moved reading and riding the waves of your life. There is so much there for many to relate to, real life experiences.”
So great to see them in a collection. I’m very moved by them. So much heart and plain talk. Your heart speaks deep truths in a direct and gentle way. Lovely the poems about Chris, and depression and the family portrait.