Patterns Paused

By Jennie Chapman Linthorst

I hold my responsibility

heavy in my hand tonight,

resolute to own my part

in our marriage’s rusty performance.


I have been the starring role—

an overwhelmed heroine

who cries out to my hero

to fix small dramas in my days.


Oh, but let me tell you,

the martyr inside me

makes me mean,

lashing out against his kindness.


The rage is my solo—

a self-monologue

of judgment, over pleasing,

and old beliefs of unworthiness.


Finally broken,

I throw down the tattered script.


The audience no longer fills the velvet seats,

our finale has fallen flat.

Drama doesn’t work anymore. 


I must stand

in the ambiguity of life,

be in the not knowing,

and stop pushing and pulling—

daggered projections of self-doubt

onto the one man

who has never wavered.


Jennie Chapman Linthorst, MA, CAPF is an author, advocate, Certified Applied Poetry Facilitator, and founder of LifeSPEAKS Poetry Therapy.  Jennie works with men and women exploring personal histories through reading and writing poetry.   She is the author of a book of poems, Autism Disrupted: A Mother’s Journey of Hope.  More information is available on her website at

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