Horizon interval (haibun)


© clr 2014

© clr 2014


what beauty above

artist paints the horizon


Working in the helping profession can be challenging but it is an extremely validating career.  To listen to someone who has no where else to turn, no one else to trust and bravely dials an anonymous help line is liberating and at times, life saving.  I am fortunate to work for such a great organization that offers so much hope to youths and young adults.

A counsellor has to practice self-care to avoid compassionate fatigue.  That entails taking time off work periodically, spending time with family, friends and mostly finding activities to unwind and experience joy. Life is not all about pain and sadness but when you work in a field where you are facing darkness in the eye too often, it is easy to distort life’s reality.

But what must one do in between those “times off”?  Some watch comedy clips on-line, read a good suspense thriller allows the mind to tune out real quick, go for a walk on the streets of Montreal, talk to a colleague, sit in a park for half an hour, journal, write and some take the elevator in our building to go  up to the roof and just breath in the crescendo of colours created by the Great Spirit.

I often hurry up there when I take a sneak peek while on a phone call and see through the window the sun starting its performance and I rush upstairs to witness the concert playing out along the horizon.


© CLR 2014

© CLR 2014


quelle vision là-haut

l’artiste peint l’horizon

gouache coloré

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/06/13

 Submission for: Carpe Diem #491 Horizon

Don’t you feel sad?

Since last December I have had many class interviews on the phone students about the work I do, working on a youth help line. One question that came out often, just warmed my heart. The fact that these youths were concerned about me!  So when I saw this prompt to write a poem and start it with a question, this came to mind.



Don’t you feel sad when you go home at night
listening to unhappy stories about this or that?

Why I guess sometimes I do feel sad alright!
That is really sweet of you to ask me that.

Do you cry sometimes?

Why yes, I may feel a tear
run down my cheek
from time to time.

So how do you feel better?

I think you are wondering
how I practice self-care.
I am very much aware
I need to be mindful
of my feelings as well
or else I would not be capable
working here as long as I’ve been able.
I talk to my supervisor
some of the time
or a counsellor friend,
they always will lend
a good listening ear
so I can continue working
day after day right here.
I walk a lot, write a lot too
I read for distraction
and love comedy shows
like The Big Bank Theory
gets me laughing quite loudly.
There is always a counsellor
or manager available
to allow me to debrief
which is a great relief!
Thank you so very much
for asking and caring such!

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/05/10

Submittted for: PookyDailyPoetryPrompt # 9 Open with a Question

The Cluttered Mind

Street Art, de Gaspé, Montréal, Qc. - Cheryl-Lynn

Street Art, de Gaspé, Montréal, Qc. – Cheryl-Lynn

Any clutter

causing turmoil,

attempt to toil

and scrub keenly

rinse liberally

wipe cleanly

look gingerly

It’s Spring!



Remove the mess

missing calmness

too much there

too little where

it really counts


Futile movements




sight see

in your chi!


corners and  inspect

under crannies




do not tolerate

things that loiter

fester and disintegrate

left with useless rubbish

causing souls to tarnish,

losing life’s clear luster;






can be daunting

awful or amazing…

times even


Feeling outrage!?

don’t dispirit

seek a sage,

catch the culprit

of doom

and gloom

and misery!

trash the felon

forever gone !


Now, there’s room

for finer things

like hope and love

long-lasting peace


… and,


© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/03/16

To read more about clearing the mind of clutter check out my blog at StopTheStigma and click here

Inspired: When The Student Is Ready by Dorothy Chiotti