"She refused to be bored, chiefly because she wasn't boring." Zelda Fitzgerald

Friday, March 14, 2014

Poetry Friday: Turtle Medicine

Happy Poetry Friday! We made it through the one last full week of winter. That is worth celebrating! Lets have a poem for dessert since we made it, shall we?

On vacation I bought myself a small carved turtle figure, a personal reminder of the life choices I was making and the lessons I keep being reminded of right now.

In Native American teaching, animals can be instructors and messengers sent to teach us things for a while or coming alongside us as tangible reminders of our identity and role in life. I have been learning turtle lessons for a while now and feel like God sends me turtle encounters as gentle nudges of His Presence and my own strengths and callings.

So today, a little turtle poetry...

Turtle Medicine
I am a turtle woman.
Placid rover, called to grounding
Needing slower paced out stalking
Hearer of the ancient wisdom
Trees and rocks and river talking
Drawn by God through paths of effort
Dredging through the channel blocking
Peace within, a well of comfort
Holy salve where fear is knocking
Long-lived being made for always
Eternal creature never stopping
Bearer of the world around me
Pillar-legged never balking
Wearer of my home and haven
Belonging present at each docking
Tortoise, Hawksbill, Slider, Terrapin
Loggerhead, Box and Painted teachers.
God's cold-blooded, scaly speakers
I am turtle woman listening.

You can click through and read more of my poems where I am slowly collecting them, on my Original Verse page. 

Tune in for the rest of this week's participants and see what other poems are out, waiting to speak to you. Our esteemed host for the collection this time around is Kara Newhouse, over at her blog Rogue Anthropologist. I always think a nice dose of poetry browsing is a fantastic way to celebrate a slower weekend morning. May you enjoy the same....



  1. Thanks for reminding me that a turtle makes progress by sticking out its neck.

    1. Good call! I need that reminder too.

  2. I love your turtle lessons, and the Hiawatha-like rhythm in which they're presented.

    1. "Hiawatha-like rhythm?!?" Such a lovely compliment. I am the oldest of six kids, all girls but my one younger brother and I remember reading aloud the entire Song of Hiawatha to them around age 12 or so. Love that poem. I hear one of my ancestors actually helped Longfellow gather info.

  3. I like the rhythm, too, and your choice of words, such as "pillar-legged" and "well of comfort." Nicely done.

    1. Thank you, Tabatha! I have mostly written just free-verse so this foray into the world of steady rythmn is a little intimidating. Good boost to hear that you can stand my attempt. ;)

  4. Lovely, Carlie. My younger daughter is a fan of turtles...I will share your poem with her. = )

    1. Thank you for sharing it! I hope she enjoys...