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Michael In The Garden

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Below is the poem entitled Michael In The Garden which was written by poet Keith Bickerstaffe. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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Michael In The Garden


...dedicated to Ralph McTell


Michael is a prisoner
committed to an institution,
all he has, his senses and his schemes,
a gentle soul with no hard feelings
tries to find some beauty
to emancipate his dreams.

The routine is predictable,
bed checks, meds and three square meals a day,
so little margin for imagination.
He avoids the general population
and stays within himself,
knowing life will be sustainable this way. 

One day he finds the Garden,
a paradise of plants aplenty,
and birds who twitter, tweet the day away,
in comparison to lethargy, to apathy and loss,
a world apart, with wonders to behold,
a font of pure pleasures that never grow old.

He knows that people can be bitter,
can be selfish and unkind
but he's determined to be resolute and strong,
He tries to make a friend or two but mostly he's belittled,
his efforts are rebutted or ignored.
The hopes and aspirations in his mind

find culmination in the Garden that he loves,
he talks to flowers, birds and they respond,
he's consumed with equanimity and grace.
So tell me, who's confined
and whose life is unfulfilled,
is it Michael in the Garden there, or is it you or I? 



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  1. Date: 8/28/2012 3:35:00 PM
    Oh Keith, what a treasure this is. I see these folks so often and most of them wander like lost souls, no focus and no interest and the transformation when something happens like this is wonderful to see. Amazing write dear friend! Love,Lizzie

  1. Date: 8/3/2012 11:40:00 AM
    Tremendous message. Very thought provoking. Every time I've read your work you've have always had an amazing way with words.

  1. Date: 8/2/2012 6:37:00 PM
    A wonderful remonstration for reevaluating priorites Keith! Great concept evolution too -thanks for reminding me about introspection - J.A.B.

  1. Date: 7/27/2012 1:50:00 AM
    This is great !!!! I love how you show the gentle nature of Michael, I grew up near a mental illness home and there were some lovely people there and Michael could of easily been one of them, this really took me back to those days. And you ask the most deep question at the end of which I think we know the answer Jon

  1. Date: 7/23/2012 11:13:00 AM
    A proverbial question, Keith! I think he's probably the most happy, but we are also when go beyond the restrictions of imagination? There are no 'restrictions' :) Enjoying this write a whole lot!!! love, Mikki

  1. Date: 7/19/2012 4:45:00 PM
    I like this. I think we all have our own way of finding peace and enjoyment. To each his own. There are some very lovely people who find their fullness in Michael's way.

  1. Date: 7/18/2012 3:43:00 PM
    A lovely story/poem, yes I talks to my flowers in my garden....but they do not talk back to me...they only talk back to Michael.....lol.... - oxox love Anne-Lise

  1. Date: 7/17/2012 8:03:00 AM
    Interesting question buddy. Peace is in the mind and soul. Guess you already know that. love, Kathy

  1. Date: 7/16/2012 12:44:00 PM
    Hi Kieth beautiful write my friend asks a question to which we each have an answer, all the best Owen

  1. Date: 7/14/2012 11:18:00 AM
    Happy weekend to you Keith. I enjoyed reading your amazing poetry this morning. Thank you for sharing your writing with us. Love, Carol

  1. Date: 7/14/2012 10:15:00 AM
    great write Keith,loved the journey,life and love is every where in every thing.....

  1. Date: 7/14/2012 5:37:00 AM
    Thoughtful, enjoyed reading the story. Good question to ask oneself.

  1. Date: 7/13/2012 8:33:00 PM
    Love this piece. Long ago, I talked to the bugs, and I believe they understood me better. I am blessed to live such a life today, where friends and loved ones so endeared. It reminded me of an old friend of mine. Thanks. Cindy