Meryl Streep

meryl-streep-1001-05Wisps of smoke hang about her:
a halo of age old tendrils.
Fine lines stretch out from
her eyes.  The fading orbs
have lost their eager glow,
but now they swell with
the wisdom of days gone by.
Thinning skin lays delicately
across her cheekbones – once a chiseled feature.
No violent rouge or harsh tangerine
is stretched across her smile.
Instead, her lips are awash
with the kiss of a rosebud.
She does not grasp for her youth.
She will not cling to the past.
No, she embraces each new year.
After all, there must be something said for
Graceful Aging.

~ Cordelia Caelum

In Flame


My dream consumed me –
a fire burning in my soul,
pushing me to never give up.

Sprinting with every fiber
I devoted my life to this
idea, this fantasy of the future.

And then, one day
I woke up and realized
my future had evaporated.

The inferno of my dream,
the passion I had chased it with
had devoured my life.

~ Cordelia Caelum

A Whisper of Hope

Writing came as naturally to me as breathing.  From the day I was born my mum and dad read to me endlessly.  I lived in a house that was overflowing with books and that was all I knew.  As a homeschooler, I had buckets of time on my hands and I would pour them into reading.  Before I was seven years old I had started writing my own stories.  Flipping back through my old journals, you can see my childish scrawl telling tales about little people who lived in trees and talking animals who had grand houses.  As I grew my, stories grew, and the range of my writing grew.  I went from writing only short stories to penning the beginnings of novels, in depth personal narratives, philosophical papers, and hundreds of poems.  As a freshmen in high school all I wanted was to become a writer.  Then, my sophomore year I went to public school, and that’s when I found out, writers don’t make money.  In the following years of high school, I realized, I wasn’t okay with that.  I needed a way to take care of myself, without relying on a man.  Being strong and independent, was my foremost goal in life.  I wanted to be able to hop in a plane and go to Venice and France, without worrying about money or getting someone’s permission.  So quietly, without much of a struggle, I gave up my dream of being a writer.  I stepped into the financially stable shoes of being a Legal Assistant on the path towards a Law Degree.  I graduated high school number three in my class and everyone spoke of what great things I would do.  I believed them with my whole heart.  When people asked what I wanted to do “when I grew up” I would say “Change the world of course.”  And then, two short months before I was supposed to jet off to higher education and a Bachelors in Political Science, my parents informed me they would not be cosigning my student loans.  I was devastated.  I cried.  I screamed.  I punched a few walls.  But, finally I accepted the fact that I could not attend college in the fall.  I sat down with a calculator and a pen and started crunching numbers.  If I worked three to four jobs for one year, I could pay for college.  When people asked from that point forward I told them I was taking a “gap year.”  It sounded better than saying, “my parents are refusing to co-sign on my student loans and I have to pay $20,000.00 per year by myself.” It turned out, that in the end, there was a good reason I didn’t go to college.  That summer I met a kid who wanted to be a college professor.  It was an idea I had never thought of.  I loved teaching, but again, teachers get paid nothing.  He talked about how he would write in the summers and get to live his dream.  That’s when I began to realize how very much I detested the idea of being stuck in an office, working as an Attorney for the rest of my life.  However, at the same time, I didn’t think I was a good enough writer to ever actually write anything that people would enjoy or learn from.  Yet, I changed my major from Polysci to Literature and started to think of being a literature professor as my life plan.  Then, in mid autumn, I posted a poem I had written on Facebook.  I almost deleted it minutes after I had posted it, because I couldn’t stand the failure if no one enjoyed it.  I write for my own peace of mind, but at the same time, I want people to like what I write.  On Facebook, the reaction to the poem was immediate and overwhelming. Thirteen people shared it with their friends, thirty people commented in support and telling me I should submit it to my newspaper, and eighty people “liked” it.  All of a sudden, I found something I had never really had before: confidence in my writing.  Finally, I believed, that just maybe, what I wrote could really “change the world.”


Someday I’ll travel to Venice,
and someday I’ll visit Paris.
Someday I’ll fall desperately in love
with someone who’s heart is true.
I will hop on a plane and jet off to Cali
and never look back.  Someday I will.
And someday my eyes will open
and the music of the ocean waves will greet me.
Yes, someday I will live in a world
where all my dreams have come true.
I wonder what I will have to live for then,
when I’ve finally reached someday?
I guess it doesn’t matter much,
because in the history of our world,
not a single soul has made it to

~ Cordelia Caelum

I Was Dying


First, I was dying to finish high school and start college.
And then, I was dying to finish college and start working.
And then, I was dying to marry and have children.
And then, I was dying for my children to grow old enough for school.
And then, I was dying to retire.
And now, I am dying …
and suddenly, I realize I forgot to live …

~ Anonymous

I remind myself of this each morning as I wake, because as I wake I am already dying.  Dying to get out of Michigan.  Dying to get to California and my dream college.  Dying to travel.  Dying for it to be summer.  I’ve spent my whole life racing towards this moment or that, and yes I’ve lived, but at the same time I was always holding myself back, waiting for that moment when everything would be perfect.  So here, as I float through my gap year, I remind myself to live.  To live for this moment, because it is unique and special in itself and can never be replicated or repeated.

~ Cordelia Caelum – a girl who isn’t dying, but living

Up Before the Sun


Silent sleeping houses,
One-by-one in rows,
Quietly stand at attention,
In the early morning.

The sun has yet to rise.
The birds have yet to sing.
The school bus has yet to pick up its cargo.
And yet, here am I.

The cold bitter October air
Bites my exposed legs.
My white earbuds slip out
And then are jammed back into my ears.

My chest cavity aches for more oxygen.
My nimble feet slam into the pavement,
Again and again. In and out I breathe.
Up and down my legs pump.

Another mile. Another mile.
My addiction, that I force upon myself.
My enemy, who I try to embrace.
Early morning run, up before the sun.

~ Cordelia Caelum