One Moment of Madness

by Ethel Mortenson Davis

One moment of madness
in a thousand is enough
when the brain slips
back into some old wound,

a wound made almost painless
by the shading of years.
Yet the old grooves
are easily found—
like a seal of shame
worn open in the sun.

And in the splitting of madness
all is lost to one emotion,
but regained
in the clear-formed thought

as seeing the precious stone
occasionally in deep rock.


Filed under Ethel Mortenson Davis, Poetry

8 responses to “One Moment of Madness

  1. Oh wow, Ethel–this is incredibly good, and I so relate. God bless you today–love, Caddo

  2. Self-management.

    Here’s a thought-provoking article I came across today, which you might find interesting.

  3. Don’t be put off by the headline. It is about much more than that suggests.

  4. Julie Catherine

    Wonderful and profound poem, Ethel, and I too can relate to this. Have a wonderful day. ~ Julie xox

  5. Wounds heal but leave scars…

  6. Anna Mark

    Ethel, I think this is a very strong image of madness and, thankfully, one that ends with clarity — the precious stone in the deep rock. It very aptly describes the “episodic” nature of dealing with difficult memories and trauma. This is a brave poem.

  7. Ethel, I too can really relate to this powerful poem. I agree with Anna, it is a brave poem!

  8. Love these lines, Ethel:
    ‘a wound made almost painless
    by the shading of years.
    Yet the old grooves
    are easily found—’

    Very deep and powerful verse.

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