Pic and a Word Challenge #180: Courageous

I like the word, courage, as well as its meaning. Here it is in various forms.

I like the courage of Patrick, the Pic and a Word challenger, who went to Barcelona from Canada without realising how much they wish to break free.

I like the courage of Donna Stiles who decided to paint my portrait from a photo when I was 17 years old. She has spurred on the double poem which follows.

The portrait below, entitled You promised, was the first work of her that I adored. I recognised something familiar in her eyes. If you are on Instagram, you can give her a follow.

I like courage so much that I signed up to write one poem each day throughout April for the second year. It starts tomorrow but here is the poem for Day 0, an early bird challenge that calls for “a poetic self-portrait … in which you portray yourself in the guise of a historical or mythical figure“.

I will call the women below mythical figures, one more than the other.

First the young one. Donna posted this on Facebook without prior notice that she was working on it and it blew me away. She calls it Sweet 17. Thank you so much, Donna!

As I always say: what we do ripples. Things lead one to another. And so next week she and I are going to visit this place together:

Torre Mozza. Photo: Riotorto Toscana Italy

And now finally, to the poem. It has two parts: in the first the girl above is telling you about courage, and in the second the woman as I am in my mind’s eye takes over.

 Courage, twice

There is courage
in talking back,
she would tell you.

In holding your own,
staring them down,
taking no crap.

There is courage
in opening up,
not holding back,

allowing yourself
to become the butterfly
you always were on the inside.

There is courage
in living your life
following the signs

that only you can see.
Others must trust
your inner vision.

There is courage
in beginning
what once will end.
The basis for the painting. 1987.
Adolf Müllner: Roma gypsy smoking a pipe, 1901
There is courage 
at the end of the line,
she would tell you.

Everyone can lead.
It’s at the end
where the dead drop.

There is courage
in stating your opinion 
and preference. 

There is courage 
in admitting defeat,
mistakes and fears.

There is courage 
in asking for help,
maybe the greatest.

There is courage 
in leaving all you know
to start anew.

There is courage
in watching life change
without panic.

There is courage 
in holding your own hand
as required

when other hands and paws
are not available 
or busy.

There is courage
in staying alive:
not succumbing,

never crumbling,
only a little bit 

In response to Patrick Jennings’ Pic and a Word Challenge #180: Courage

and for Day 0 of NaPoWriMo


/None of today’s photos was taken by me./


    1. Thank you, Deborah! 🙂 It’s not about competing and nailing it, I’m just glad to take part. To clarify: it’s Roma Gypsy or Romani but not Roman (which would mean from Rome). My grandma used to tell me that many would pay a lot to have my lips. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. She was right, and I stand corrected Romani. Thank you!

        Truth…I have from time to time had one side of my upper lip plumed out to match the other side with filler. I’ve been thinking I’m overdue! My lips will never be as lush and full as yours though.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Very inspirational. I really like how your refrain builds and how your courage keeps swelling, growing, evolving, giving us sincere sentiment of digging deep within us and embracing our own courage to see us through difficult situations. The pictures you have included are stunning, a fantastic piece that works well with the prompt and is so inspiring too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh, thank you, David, for your kind words. Welcome to my blog! Most excellent to start my day reading this. Especially good to hear inspiring. And kudos to you for finishing what you start. I like to but don’t manage it always.


    1. Ahhhh! Please do that, Francesca, continue! Your blog is so important for everybody to see how we should all be living before it’s too late. ❤

      I started this blog with the new year, it's my fourth. I keep feeling them up with so many photos. Thank you, I'm glad you like it. I must say I like it the most of all so far.

      Liked by 1 person

I will not ask you questions at the end of posts to trick you into commenting. So when you do it on your own, it's that more appreciated. Thank you!

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