One Step at a Time

The first weeks of interior life were hard:
only one real person with whom to share
my troubling thoughts, my hope, my fear.
I spent weekdays with me, myself and I,
those dubious sisters of doom and gloom
who haunted my pandemic room.
The silence outside was as deafening
as my twisted sisters’ chattering,
and the only way I could escape
was by the front door, step by step,
across the empty road to the football pitch.
In a grassy spot, I paced a steady rhythm
to clear my head of internal voices, which
soon disappeared, left only heartbeat,
breath and birdsong and the disciplined,
daily measured tread of my own feet.

Kim M. Russell, 3rd June 2002


My response to Poets and Storytellers United Weekly Scribblings #22: It Takes a Bit of Discipline

Rommy tells us that she is being a little more disciplined with food and would like us to shape our words around the idea of discipline: when it’s helpful, when it’s harmful or any take we have on the idea of discipline.

32 thoughts on “One Step at a Time

  1. Living by myself I found I was getting quite bored with my own company! I would be good to walk in the countryside but being in a city that is not so easy but hope to get there early next week! Great piece of writing Kim.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. It does lift the heart to go outdoors. I am trying to do that more often now. I like your “disciplined measured daily tread”.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is beautifully deep and eloquent, Kim! I agree, walking amidst nature does make one feel better 🙂 I especially love; “I paced a steady rhythm to clear my head of internal voices, which soon disappeared left only heartbeat, breath and birdsong.” ❤️❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I don’t live alone but can certainly relate to “me, myself, and I” as not always the best company! “Dubious sisters of doom and gloom” sounds accurate when you get stuck in your own thoughts…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. My escape is my computer, arm chair traveling and researching curious things! It can take me away for long periods of time, just as your walks take you away!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, Rosemary, the computer is a lifeline. I spend all morning on my laptop writing and reading, some evenings too, and I look forward to my twice daily video chats with my daughter and grandson.


  6. Hey Kim, all day I’ve been meaning to send you a note here. But when you aren’t living alone, things happen.
    Before I married I lived alone, for three years. I do fine in the days that way but I don’t sleep well alone. Anyway a friend divorced but kept his three bedroom because his kids would visit for some days. He invited and I moved in with him. One habbit he had developed was talking to himself. When he related his conversations, he would say, “I said to myself, ‘Self, blah blah, …'”. You reminded me of that, I have picked it up some.
    Long story, after three years divorced I remarried and Mike was my Best Man. We still are FB Friends but seldom see each other. He finally remarried also.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Jim! I’m only alone during the daytime, while my husband is at work, but it is very isolating when you can’t go out to do the things you normally do with other people. I volunteer at two local libraries and two schools, and miss the children I used to see every week. I might be able to continue with volunteering due to the virus. I was very lucky to have visited my daughter and grandson before self-isolation. The only other real person I have seen was a doctor who treated me for shingles – everyone else has been virtual! I hope you and Mrs Jim are both safe and well. 🙂


      1. Thanks for asking, we both are fine so far. We hardly go out, our younger daughter grocery shops for us and every two weeks or further apart we shop groceries at the small local Walmart store which is open for seniors only from 6-7AM.
        And my teaching except for a few years Sunday Morning Bible classes for 5th and 7th graders were all adult students. The last 22 years were teaching at a local college. These students I tried to instil good study habits discipline in my students. I got pretty good at that.
        Lastly, I had been thinking you were also married but I had a small doubt after this post. Perhaps i didn’t read it good enough.

        Liked by 1 person

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