Poets logo

Safe Place (in progress)

Poem by t.r.h. blue

By t.r.h. bluePublished 2 years ago 1 min read
"A Safe Place (in progress)" by Barbara Stevenson // Used with permission

An old woman I love

sits with her arms

full of paintings she

made long ago,

made with the same

beautiful, bony hands that

hold them now (though

they were younger then).

With tears in her eyes,

she turns to my sister and says,

“I can’t believe I thought these were bad.”

(It’s as though she’s never seen

her art before, not really).

She calls this stack her

“Practice Pile.”

In it, one little girl sits and

wonders at a watercolored world,

where blues and reds and pinks

appear to call to her from the void.

In it, another little girl sits and

stares at who-knows-what

from warm in the arms of her father.

“This was meant to be a present,” the artist says,

“But I felt it was never done.”

It’s named “Safe Place” (in progress).

How strange it must be to grow old and then

to take inventory of what you’ve created.

One by one, she passes paintings

to her granddaughter,

who wonders at this watercolored world; this

all-but-forgotten stack of awe and attention,

of hope and admiration,

of too-wet rippled centers and

creases in the corners,

and of chroma and practice and time spent trying,

and of beauty and of love.

Of “Safe Place” (in progress).

To me now, she says

“I wish I could start all over again.”


“I might have more fun with it now,

and not try so hard to be

something I’m not…”

And can you see the way she has

colored my life?

Take inventory of what she’s created.

Watch me now, as I sit in the sun,

my belly full of warmth;

my heart, of awe and attention.

Watch me now as I smile and

let this never-done poem be

exactly, exactly what it is.


About the Creator

t.r.h. blue

torri r.h. blue is a writer, poet, artist, photographer, and advocate. She writes poetry from West Michigan, where she lives with her wife, Alex, and their son Auden.


Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

Sign in to comment

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2023 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.