Cristina M. R. Norcross | When we strive together

Please forgive yourself.
You are a plant in need of water.
Learn to celebrate your leaves,
your roots, and each new growth
just beginning to unfurl.
Expectation drains too much,
like a funnel drawing things away from the soil.

Please forgive your tender self—
the one who is still healing—
the one who shrinks from unkind words
and needs time to rebuild.
Nurture the inner structure of connected meridian lines.

Please forgive your neighbor,
the one with downturned eyes.
Be the one to smile first and wave.
Have you noticed that her leaves are shy to grow, too?
How beautiful are the plants that bow together in the sun—
reaching for the same glow of light
available to us all.

Please forgive yesterday.
There are small pebbles huddled in groups.
These are the days that have gone before—
the ones we sometimes look at with regret
or with longing, wishing they could return.

Please forgive mistakes—
both yours and those which others have made.
The you of former days is reborn with each rising of the sun.
In this imperfect, bruised, and wounded world,
we strive to be better than the day before.
We strive to share the same soil
and breathe the same air
in union.

Cristina M. R. Norcross is the founding editor of the online poetry journal, Blue Heron Review, and the author of seven poetry collections. Her most recent books include Amnesia and Awakenings (Local Gems Press, 2016) and Still Life Stories (Aldrich Press, 2016). Her works have been published, or are forthcoming, in: The Toronto Quarterly, Red Cedar, The Avocet, Your Daily Poem, Lime Hawk, The Poetry Storehouse, Right Hand Pointing, and Pirene’s Fountain, among others. Cristina’s work also appears in numerous print anthologies. She is the co-founder of Random Acts of Poetry and Art Day. Find out more at:

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2 Responses to Cristina M. R. Norcross | When we strive together

  1. Richard Havenga December 4, 2017 at 3:12 pm #


    We all need time to rebuild, and it all begins with forgiveness. Each new day is an opportunity to forgive and grow.

    Thank you for your words of compassion.



    • Cristina Norcross December 5, 2017 at 5:39 pm #

      Thank you so much for your kind words of understanding and thoughtfulness, Richard. You always connect so well with topics of spiritual growth. Your comment is a true gift to me.

      With kindest thoughts,

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