Tuar Ceatha

These days,
the uncertainty stretches
as far as the eye
can see,
rolling and unfolding
like Ireland’s landscape:
pear, juniper, and seafoam greens
never-ending, shades blending
a rainbow is revealed
through the mist.

Spanning from valley to valley,
colors alive, it reminds me:
where I look, lives what I see;
my eyes, they are
my agency;
somewhere out there
the gift of gold
exists where sky meets land,
……….and there,
it is waiting for me; there,
it is waiting for us all.

Notes from the interview that inspired this poem:

He was a physician and medical educator in The Bronx, New York. “I’d like my poem to be about the tolerance of uncertainty,” he began. “Most of the students I teach aren’t used to having an unclear path, or situations where the rules aren’t clean.” He shared that he believed the ability to be adaptable, and to delay inferences and let information come before making meaning, was a critical part of a medical education now. “With everything we’re seeing this year–from the pandemic, to social injustices, to the political climate, to the loss of RBG–there’s been an onslaught of sadness and heartbreak. This makes it even more difficult to hold ambiguity and uncertainty,” he said. “It feels uncomfortable; sometimes even crushing, especially as we start to see another uptick in COVID cases. Sometimes I have to compartmentalize. At the same time, we have to be able to envision our future and focus on what agency we do have. When I watch how my children are rising to the occasion, I know more hope is coming. I would like the poem to remind me of that hope amidst the discomfort of all the uncertainty.”

Interviewee: Anonymous, Educator
Listener Poet: Jenny Hegland

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