Daddy, why did you go away,
Don't you know I wanted you to stay!
Daddy, when you left mom,
Don't you know you left me too.
Now all I do is cry and cry
--- I want to die!
Daddy, mommy say's it's better this way,
What does she know!
There's not enough band-aids to cover up the blues
Mom's kisses can't heal this kind of pain.
Daddy, I look around
No one stands in your garage
Daddy, You took every tool
Except the hammer and sitting stool
Daddy, I still miss you
--- I love you.
Dear Daddy, I'm all grown up now
Haven't seen you since I was 10
Daddy, I sit on your favorite chair,
No longer do I miss the way you caressed my hair.
Daddy, I'm taking the old hammer and this BRAND NEW saw,
It's time to patch all the holes mom punched in the wall
*The day you walked out on us*
Daddy, don't worry about the times I tripped and fell
Mom, found someone to fix the loose boards,
Got tired of scraping my knees
Daddy, I finally realized I'm okay,
I agree with mom, it's better this way.
like visitors from outer space
they came with tears, and lined the sidewalk
long in face, and arms embracing
some (I have no inkling) who
they were or why they felt compelled to come here
dozens came with casseroles
a few with flowers, wads of tissues
tender words of helpless mutterings
many acts of generous offerings
don't get me wrong, I watched the suffering
expressed in words or acts of kindness
I watched it all, and felt the love
did not dismiss the warm compassion
returned it all, with pure compliance
a thankful heart, a swollen throat
I hugged these strangers at the door
to comfort them, who shed their tears
upon my shoulder, offered them
a place to share their sympathies
a place to spend their mercy, pure
but, this was my child who suffered loss
impossible........I can't express it
protected from the very start, by
loving hands, her dad's and mine,
we watched her grow, and let her go
she grew from the vine ....into a rose
but life composed a tragedy with goals
beyond our reach...beyond our wildest dreams
and left her with a loss beyond control
like visitors from outer space we watch
as others come, and others go
they blow into their tissue wads
and empty the boxes one by one
and cry with us, and then they all go home
do we cry........? Oh no, not yet...
instead we smile a grateful smile
and thank them kindly for the while
and for the ways they share their love
but we can't cry into our own clenched wad
of tissue from the tissue box
she needs us to be strong, somehow
and so that is the way it is, we vow...to hold back all the tears for now
for, this was my child who suffered loss
impossible........I can't express it
*GRANDMA WAITS IN THE GARDEN*
Hi, grandpa it's me again!
Your dentures sit in an open glass
Do you remember the tears grandma sang before she passed?
The way she looked into your eyes,
Moments before she said her goodbyes
Grandpa, I found a note from grandma, she doesn't want you to cry.
Hi grandpa, it’s me again!
The rocking chair is old and dusty
Do you remember the way grandma sat me on her lap?
Read many stories before I took a nap
How she enjoyed brushing my hair with her hands
Love the way she rocked me to sleep every night until I grew.
I stored your hearing aid away
Do you remember that special musical box in grandma's drawer?
I opened it last night, to watch the ballerina dance
I wish you could hear the tiny chimes grandma lived in
I hope you don’t mind, I’m keeping grandmothers favorite scarf.
I'm caressing grandma’s picture frame
Do you like the way she looked in that pretty sundress?
Grandpa, I miss the things grandmother did for you
I like the walking stick she handcrafted, the day your needed support
It kept you in balance every time we took long hikes in the woods.
Hello grandpa, it's me again!
Here I sit holding your hand
I have no more tears
Soon you will see grandma
Please tell her hi, and I know you will be there the day I die
Give grandma a kiss, and tell her I miss her
I carry my mother
like a rock in my pocket
that I just can’t seem to throw away
It serves me
it just weighs me down
When I first found it,
when I first picked it up
and started carrying it with me,
I thought it so beautiful –
I could look at it for hours
But, like my mother,
it never looked back at me,
never grew warm under my loving gaze
For the longest, I was blind to that,
Blind to anything but the beauty,
blind to the cold, hard,
beyond-remote nature of the rock,
of my mother,
I carry my mother,
a thought without weight
And she’s heavier
and she’s colder
than all the stones
By the time I recognized her
immutable, emotional unavailability,
I had run out of joy,
felt depleted of hope –
But I could not,
for the life of me,
stop seeking a beauty, a warmth,
inside her heart
Could not stop
that one day this stone,
deep inside my pocket,
Might just become
its own opposite –
Change from hard to fluid,
from cold to warm
But my rock, my hard burden,
will only turn to water
When my mother
My sweet child
Be on guard
Be on guard of the man
Who plays on your heartstrings…
Not with flirtatious smile
Nor with flexed muscles
Not with devouring eyes
Nor with intellectual prowess
Or clothes so fine
No, these you can resist
You can set boundaries
And be done
The threat, false alarms
Their charm easily undone
Your defenses will withstand
The groping hand
The false charm
No, don't be alarmed
Oh, but child
My precious sweet one
Be on your guard
I beg you
Be on your guard
From the man named, “POET”
A man who wields words
Who crafts and designs them
Like a carpenter with wood...
Who makes them into jewels
With a jeweler’s touch...
Who makes them sweet delicacies
That simply melt in your mouth
He can shape and design his words
To fit your every need
He writes down your dreams
As though they were his own
His words an homage
To your beauty
The light in your eyes
The way you entice
Your captivating smile
Your dark tresses
Or the curve of your hips
BE ON GUARD
Oh, dear one
Be on guard
For he means to take you
To sweep you away
In the tide of beautiful rhymes
The rise of fall of passion
Making your body move in time
He means to ensnare you
To capture your soul
He means to dominate
To slowly undress
Intoxicate with his words
So you forget common sense
He wants you to eat from his hands
Choice morsels of love
While he whispers in your ear,
“There's more where that came from.”
Be on guard
For words cannot pay
Your rent or expenses
Cannot save your day
Words won’t be there
When you cry in the night
They won’t be able
To turn on that light
Words won’t be your lover
With hands nice and slow
That touch you in places
Words can never go
Listen to me
Stay away from those poets
They’ve got potency
They will woo and bewitch you
Throw fairy dust in your eyes
But at the end of the day
Only a few don’t tell lies
My child, my sweet
Get a man who will be
THERE IN PERSON
BODY and SOUL
With hands that caress
And with eyes that speak
Of your body in that dress
Spoken words make you weak
With lips that touch yours
That say you’re divine
That lick from your navel
That sweetest of wine
Stay away from those poets
Be on Guard
Save your life!
For a poet, my child
Is the greatest danger in life
The greatest beauty
The greatest dream
The greatest heartache
The greatest strife
Be on guard
BE ON GUARD
SAVE YOUR LIFE!
Eileen Manassian Ghali
Memories of the North Sea
sift in like sand kernels
on a fast, frigid tide -
events that transpired outside
the confines of rhyme,
instead, unfolding exactly
as they were meant to.
I had never before seen
so many shades of gray.
This monochromatic splendor
within an absence of sunshine
that was perfectly fitting,
instead of being bleak and bleary.
The smell of salt and seaweed
awoke deep within me
something dormant and eternal -
a surging desire to flush
from out of my blood
with an inverted force of pride.
Salty blood and water
coming together in a communion
of distant relations and movements.
A flash of bright red
digging in the sand beside me.
My child is wearing the only
vibrant colour to be seen for many kilometres.
The colour matches
her enthusiasm and energy,
as she moves from one spot to the next
like a dancing flame.
My own fire burns in my eyes.
I had unconsciously dressed
in the same colours of the sky and sea,
blending into the scenery
as a chameleon --
an illusion thicker than clouds,
an illusion of stone
for me to melt and reinvent
at the spinning speed of thought.
I look over at my daughter
who is wearing a wide smile of wonder,
for she has not ever seen the ocean before.
She can see the chameleon
walking alongside her in the frothy surf.
Together, we collect shiny stones and shells,
our pants rolled-up to the knee
as we wade through waves.
I wonder if people onshore
can only see a solitary dash of red out here,
or if the chameleon is more
noticeable than I had thought,
while we watch sea-birds
cover the steep cliffs
in a blanket of black and white feathers.
~(2012 North Sea Remix)~
It will hurt like a tattoo guns sting
as the ink infiltrates your skin.
Your first love will be like a tattoo on your heart,
always remembering the blessings and pain he gave you.
Be with a person who fills you with fluttering hummingbirds
even after the first and second and tenth kiss
who drinks the nectar of your demons and sucks them lifeless.
There will be men who you think will carry you forever
but after so long of holding
your feet above the water
they will throw you down.
They will not reach out a hand to pick you back up.
They will turn cheek,
kissless and forgotton.
You will stand with dirt palms
and fall back into his inferno.
There will be loves like this,
who convince you to prick yourself with safety pins,
the ones who carry guns on their backs
but never shoot to protect,
only to hurt.
The ones who drink all the water,
leave you parched in the desert of his mistakes
telling you that they are your own.
The ones who shoot arrows in your lungs
and you lye bleeding
believing that the color of your blood is true love for him.
The hour hand will spin around the clock
too many times before you leave him.
It will hurt.
You thought it was true,
but after the death of it
you will realize you deserve someone so much sweeter
than a bitter apple.
Love the one who doesn’t cheat you blind,
but instead comes to you with truths in his wretched palms
and waits for you to
but never gives up and never stops wishing that the past could rewind
that he could change the things wrong that he did to you.
Love the one who feeds your heart warm apple pie,
who cries in front of your children,
who drives them to school and hugs them when they get home.
Be with someone who doesn’t ask for you to change
but instead loves your mistakes
cradles them within his fabric lungs
breathes them in with a grin.
Love is an interesting thing.
You will be thrown out of a moving car to the side of the road.
Some will come running back to you.
Don’t jump back in the front seat,
until you find someone who buckles the seat belt for you.
Drives five under the speed limit,
takes things slowly and waits for you to be ready to accelerate.
I am here for you.
Remember me, the one who loved you first,
the one who will never stop loving you.
Come to me after he breaks up with you.
You can cry on my shoulder,
and ill wipe your tears with my sleeve.
Find a love who loves you the way
that your father and I love you,
the way that your grandmother loves you.
Find a love who already considers you family.
Who meets you
and looks into your ocean eyes
and drowns peacefully into your heart.
Please love yourself,
My daughter wrote
As we chatted away
About my upcoming trip
And yet my tears spilled over
As I bared my heart
To my 19 year old daughter
The joy of my life
The light of my eyes
The reason I go on with life
It’s for her
I try to survive
And push on
For she still needs me
And she wrote…..
You need to appreciate yourself more mami
I can't imagine my life without you
Just thinking about my life without you in it
just makes me wanna break down
Please mama for me
Please love yourself
I dunno why it's so hard for you to see how incredible you are
She knew all my reasons
And yet she asked
Desperate to pull me out
To help me see the light
To remind me of who I was
Who I still am
And I soothed and comforted her
Knowing she’d worry
Her daddy away
And her Mama all alone
Locked in her room
Crying the night away
Yet she was the strong one
A shoulder to cry on
And after all the tears those words of hers brought
I thanked her for loving me…..
And she wrote
I can't help it. You're amazing. You just need to give yourself a chance
Come here mami we'll have so much fun
And I smiled through my tears
Grateful for the blessing I have in her
And my heart decided
For a little while longer
To fight the good fight
To let the vivacious Mommy she knew
Come to life
The one all her friends loved
And said was “so cool”
I'd ask her to go on
And to try...
To love herself...
...For the love of a daughter
Eileen Manassian Ghali
sometimes i talk to myself,
my mind is racing,
i dont know what to do...
so hard to explain.
depression isn't a stage
or a faze some kids go through
it shatters you...
i saw it all.
she cried silent in her bed,
blood stains covered her favorite jeans,
her every shirt,
long sleeve ofcourse...
she suffered through it all with few people to call friend
and more to call enemy
even more to say where quite dissappointed....
her first name in school,
not started by a bully
or a mean rival,
but by her sister,
and it echoed through her soul,
repeating in her mind... over and over again,
like the ripples of still water
when a pebble is dropped
flash frozen in time
over and over again...
It was the first name they gave her,
millions where created over the years,
some repeating again, just as the first had..
gothic they called her,
emo, fat, ugly....worse things.
but in her mind, things where worse.
everything was repeating,
over and over again,
finally she believed it.
she asked for help, from everyone
tried to explain to parents she wasnt well,
got called a psycho for asking to see a theripist,
not from a teacher,
not from a class mate,
but from her own father, who wouldn't, couldn't,
believe there could possibly be a thing wrong....
finally, crying, she confessed her bloody secret to a teacher.
rather then giving her time,
she is sent back to class crying her eyes out, as if she wherent going through enough...
she is sent to the principals office a few minutes later, after breaking down in class...
the princlipal says she needs help,
sends her and her dad for a risk evaluation,
her dads crying as she shows him her cuts...
they walk into a hospital room,
it smells of chemicals and hand sanitizer,
the lady at the desk gives her a smile.
then she goes into a room with a lady,
her cheeks are sunken in and shes wearing way too much makeup,
the girl is gaging on her perfume,
and she looks really intimidating....
her dark brown hair looks dead and flat
even though its a bit wavy,
and she wears somewhat of a mocking frown.
asks her all these questions,
is mommy beating her?
is daddy raping her?
is she doing drugs?
is anyone beating her?
did anyone molest her?
oxcarbezapine, trazadone, citalipran, clinazapam, colonipan,
valium, lithium, more.......
and thats what they gave her,
some numbed the pain
some brought it out
tearing through her organs,
she became an addict by the time she was fourteen....
over dose after over dose
some for pleasure
some for pain,
gashes on her legs getting deeper,
this time she didnt tell a soul,
not even those she had come to call friends....
wakeup she screamed in her head over and over again
as she dropped weight like it was nothing....
you cant controll it she argued as things became worse.
at age fourteen she attempted suicide,
she didnt quite succeed.
the medication took away her aappitite....
she liked it
she hated her body
felt out of controll
found a new way to cope
as she shoved tooth brush after toothbrush down her throat
to keep her body from nuitrients...
as she whent weeks and weeks spitting food into napkins and making excuses
I ate at my friends house....
spoken as a whisper
heard like a sentance
echoing in her mind over and over again,
along with that word, all the words,
ugy, anoying, stupid, fake, worthless, nothing...
one bite she would say
rocking back and forth
craving nothing but food
her body racked with hunger pain
one bite and there she was again
over and over and over again
back to a toothbrush
this time she sees blood
she saw her ribs
she saw her bones,
it wasnt good enough,
she almost died, again....
choking on this deep dissappointment in herself,
gaging on everything they where pushing down her throat,
their words, and their insults, their criticism.... their drugs
all shoved down her throat like candy
and just as she was was trained to do she swallowed despite the bad taste
or the hurt
or the fact that at the rate she was going she would be dead soon...
and you know why?
because daddy yelled
and couldnt accept what was happening
not because he wanted to hurt her
but because it hurt him,
and she let him believe,
because she could take the hurt if it meant he didnt have too.
because mommy didnt want to sit in her room all day
practically having us raise ourselves,
she didnt mean to take anger, or frustration or hurt out on her daughter
she suffered everyday in her solitary confinement,
and from a young age she accepted her bedroom was the cage
her mother had created for herself.
because sister didnt want to effect her the way she did
she was just frustrated
fed up with the way things where
scared, she needed someone to take her cruelty
and to help heal her pain...
because people in school
who where so cruel
had to have learned from somewhere
and she wasnt going to play into their games,
and they knew she was an easy target
because she would never attack someone so weak
and she accepted her suffering was a sacrafice
to help all these people....
to help her dad,
every person who was beaten abused or hurt
and felt so weak at home they wanted to feel strong in the one safe place they had.
because depite the fact she had died inside,
and almost passed away on the out,
it was a saccrafice she was willing to make
so that no one else would have to feel that kind of pain,
and they all inflicted it and broke her down'untill there was nothing left but a shell
of somthing that could have been
and never had the chance
because she would take it and wouldnt strike back,
because sometimes "just taking it"
isnt so much about the weakness not to do anything
but about the strangth not to hurt others the way they hurt you...
Be proud of your scars
oh daughter mine
now a mother of children dear
Remember the time
they suckled your breast
gorging on the food of love
Worried lines on your face
anxious frown on your brow
a love story you cannot erase.
Oh daughter mine be proud of your scars.
Pendulos breasts wear with pride
your babies now full-grown and wise.
Stretch marks remain to tell
that you carried your babies well.
Oh daughter mine be proud of your scars.
A badge of honor
that's what they are.
Thickened waist and cellulite disgust many
yet tell a story so sweet so true.
Oh daughter mine be proud of your scars.
Uptilted breasts shapely hips
elegant thighs tell a story of their own
but you gave your babies all you had
with love and tenderness.
When they're grown and gone away
you will remember them still
by the scars you bear today.
Oh daughter mine be proud
Be proud of your scars.
A precious gift! Joy unimagined fills my heart
She smiles! My heart races, leaping!
And like a butterfly in spring, gliding,
It dips among new blossoms
Like a sweet melody playing softly
in the cool of the evening, I soar!
My baby, my first, like an angel sleeps
Soft, warm and brown
I stare in awe of this most perfect gift from God!
Tiny almond-shaped eyes, sparkle- searching
Nothing as beautiful have I ever seen!
She cries and her teardrops like crystal daggers
Pierce, my joyful heart!
And like a wounded sparrow it plummets
Free-falling, and I am left puzzled...confused
Nervous, I gently hold her close to my breast
I am sure she can feel my heart beating..
Suddenly our faces brush... she turns-
Our eyes lock, and smiles ripple!
My first born--all is well in my world.
red splotches on her night gown
still oozing down her face
“I fell again.”
She looks at us
with that same wobbly smile
“I’m Ok! Don’t worry. I’m OK!”
I can’t see
a clear liquid oozes down my face
Mama is dazed
clutching her face
Couldn’t light the stove fast enough
We thought a bomb had hit the kitchen
War time years
Everyone running around
Mama burned her face
“I’m Ok…I’m fine.”
She tries to smile
I can’t see clearly
watery haze of tears
along with the smoke
Mama gasping for breath
Mama going red in the face
“Mom, are you ok?”
Another coughing fit
Can’t get the food to go down
I pat her on the back
Will this be it?
Will she choke this time?
Muscles that don't work
Tears streaming down her face
I’m…Ok…..I'm OK now."
That lying smile
Her hand goes up
I can’t see
Double tear vision
Life is unclear
“You’re afraid I’m going to die, aren't you?”
Kind brown eyes
Looking into mine
They are filling up
the wobbly smile is gone
she lets her tears speak
Oh….to talk to talk about it
What can I say?
What can she say?
She crushes my body to hers
Neither of us can see
Blinded by tears
She’s in a place I can’t reach
“Mama, can you hear me?”
“Mama, listen to me!”
“Mama, do you believe?
Jesus can heal you!
Do you believe?”
“Yes,” a whisper
I can't see
Eyes of mustard seed faith
“Forgive our sins!
In the name of Jesus
Be healed, Mama!”
Eye lids fluttering open
Mama is still on the wheel chair
She’s bound…not free
I don’t see anymore
My head drops to my knees
I get dizzy
I drop things
In the shower
“You have MS TOO!
It has come for YOU!”
I can’t see
Shower water mixes with tears
Do you SEE?
DO you HEAR?
DO you FEEL?
No wobbly smile
No one to be strong for
I'm not alright!
In dedication to her MAMA, Angel Manassian!
Her whimsy stirs even water
The pool reflects pure incandescence;
she toys with a newfound buoyancy
My school-less angelfish
flouncing in elements and
shimmering in pink ruffles
while sun ripened ringlets dance
A minstrel disguised as a
red-winged blackbird returns
her endless chatter, won-over
Despite sun block and a mother’s care
she is tan and her young skin reminds me
of toffee, butter-soft and wonder-warm
My tiny sprite swings
between courage and caution;
I circle her
as somehow she encircles me
we remain within reach of each other
learning to let go...
the lessons of daughter
Oh, I am moved to be her moon.
Summer lies with its long hours,
afternoons dripping like vanilla cones
as cicadas lull lazy tiger lilies
with their heat-hymns
It is easy to forget
this season has margins
It is easy to forget
all the margins she will face
Soon, she will board a bus
walk hard-halls of independence
be outside of my reach
be far from my gravitation
and the security of my embrace
It is easy to forget September
as her lengthening legs chase
these turquoise days
these exquisite turquoise days
OH, SUMMER! SWEETNESS TREASURED!!!
A little girl full of life
With so much love for her papa
It was love at first sight when papa laid eyes on her at her birth
Being her nanny papa never laid her down but cradled her in his arms until it was time to leave
He was mama until she was two
When he would say “No, “Papa”
She would say, “No,” Mama”
He taught her to ride her first tricycle
He taught her to throw her first ball
He helped her with her homework when she started school
Once in a while she calls and asks “Papa would you come to school today and have lunch with me.”
And of course Papa cannot say no to his little girl
Her first baseball game was a t-ball team of all boys and one girl of course she out shined them all and took home the winning game ball
The next few years she’s made the all –star softball team
At eight years old now coaches are watching her to get her on their team
By Eve Roper
My one burning wish -
I want not to fade away
like rotten lace, dumped
onto a trash heap and forgotten.
I want to leave myself behind,
for those who come after
to inhale during breakfast.
Not money, like my mother,
who judged it to be the only thing
of worth she had to leave behind,
as though her love meant nothing,
as though her virtue didn't count.
A nonpareil pattern of motherhood,
of personhood for that matter,
written in permanent script,
propagated in layers of goodness,
flung onto her progeny
with the glue of infinity.
As long as I live, so will she.
I want that,
when it's my turn to go.
Tribute to My Dearest Daughter
My darling daughter,
Precious child of my youth,
Dearest to my heart -
From that wonderful moment
When I first felt that fluttering of life,
Rhythmically beating beneath my expectant bosom,
I knew that I would unconditionally love you forever.
With deep motherly pride
I helped you develop into womanhood
Watching you become a strong, well-rounded woman.
A loving mother yourself, you are not only a blessing
To your own children and your family,
But you are also a blessing to others -
Those who hurt in life and need care and compassion.
With its ups and downs, life has transformed you,
Challenged, nurtured, matured, and molded you.
You are kind, thoughtful, generous, patient, and understanding,
Unselfishly expecting nothing in return.
You are a wonderful human being -
You are a true angel.
God bless you, my dearest daughter, my love!
Entered in contest “Relationships” sponsored by Regina Riddle
She searches through his remnants
Trying to find her broken pieces
Had she been important to him?
She finds a single piece of yellowed paper
Her name written in his elegant hand
Those hands that had held her once
She had felt safe in those hands
Unaware of his weakness,
Why had he left?
She kept looking though drawers and boxes
Feverishly searching for answers
Only one photo
Taken so very long ago
Proof that they had been part of his life
The proof felt like a knife
Those young faces smiling at her
Blissfully unaware of what was to come
Daddy was leaving
He wasn't coming home again
She hands the photo to her sister
There must be more
She keeps searching
Unaware of what was important to him
Wanting more clues
Another piece of paper
Her sisters name with her children listed underneath
The grandchildren he never got to know
She can't help wonder
Why were they not enough
And she realizes it was his lacking
It was never theirs
There was nothing they could have done
They could not be better girls
Good enough girls!
He was broken
Lonely long before them
His remnants scattered
She looks at her sisters
They cry together
Sad for the loss of what they did not have
Yet beneath the tears they smile
Holding each other's delicate hands
For they possess a strength he never had
They have stayed together
Loved each other
Carried each other's burdens
They have survived
If he had known them
He would have been so proud
Dedicated to and inspired by Bev Smith.
It is quiet, save for the sound of the wind and the
lullaby thoughts turning like the mobile she’d had,
Something that hovered, as I did.
Piles of her things surround me,
Freshly washed and smelling somewhat like
babypowder, cuddles, first smiles.
Little sleepers, one plucky giraffe,
Dozy pink bears and ducks and lilac butterflies
tell me bedtime stories, suck thumbs.
I cluck over receiving blankets,
Carefully fold a toothless grin and my hand
lingers, smoothing the soft flannel.
A white sweater I’d rescued from a thrift store,
Hand knit and beribboned, feels content.
The yarn is a kitten, but it has curls
and eyes that I’m told look just like mine.
It asks in such a beguiling way that I
pick it up, place it tenderly in my lap,
Then snuggle its delicate pattern,
Recalling chills and prudent struggles.
Then I lift a green, velveteen dress,
Mommy caresses a Christmas babble, a milky
mouth on a wet cheek, giggles spilling.
I buckle the jean overalls,
Pluck at one long, silky strand of embroidered
tantrum, threads that held like a toddler's fist,
Refusing to leave its toy until tomorrow, a denim so wilful.
A rubber boot is cool against my palm as though it
retains that rainy day when she pranced through asphalt ponds.
I am gifting all that has become outgrown,
Knowing that down the road, another, unmet, will also
hear the window quiver and hesitate.
Yes, there will be a jacket for the first day of school and bashful
skirts, far too short, that will hide from me in the back of her closet,
Sleeveless frocks that will slide through my proud fingers.
There will be torn tees and holes in the knees,
late night Oh-Dear-God-let-her-be-okay pleas and
perhaps a wedding veil, beaded with things I’ve told her,
And all these treasures will be held and then I’ll need to let go.
Looking at the bags half filled, I move, empty their contents,
Wrap my arms around motherhood, smile into babyhood creases
that touch my face until lace releases childish tears.
All this seems too large for one who
suddenly feels so very small.
God’s Cleansing Tool
Cloud-Concerto… How Cool !
Plop-Plop Plopping into Pothole Pools
On the Grass, Pavements and On My Own-Sweet- Fools…
who, don’t have Sense enough, to get out of the Rain…
… I think I’ll go Join Them… Again
Year of the Acorn
(For my Father who
has Parkinsons &
Out on a winter walk
you solemnly put an
acorn into my hand.
Something in my head
"Keep it safe
and he'll be safe".
I kept it to this
One candle on my
burned into my
mind's eye forever.
You took a
to keep me in the
My sister arrived in
You took me to feed
she greeted us with
I fled, covering my
Mother told me the
facts of life.
You kept well out of
A disco at the end
of a long, quiet
You always drove me
safely there and
You were judge and
of all boyfriends.
Year twenty three.
You gave me away
to the best
boyfriend of all.
A montage of eras
replay in the bright
lens of memory
till the year of the
and the acorn.
And I kept it safe
so you'd be safe,
only now it looks
cracked and old;
not quite like an
and you are not
quite like you.
He is now a band of sky,
a bird, a cloud, a stream of blue
drifting by in midafternoon,
a dragonfly, a butterfly, a speck of light dancing by,
an abandoned sheet of loose leaf paper
with a poem scribbled on it, or maybe
a grape ripening on the vine
sweetening to perfection in the summer sun;
he is now a feeling deepening, gravity, energy, peace, commotion, the tide –
forever August, forever June…
an ocean wave never reaching the shore (the sand and sun evermore),
a smile, a tear, laughter that never ends,
a child’s open, inquisitive mind, a friend, the welcoming voices of home,
the cracks in the walls holding my secrets,
the comfort of a favorite blanket or familiar pair of warm arms.
Perhaps, he’s eternal summer, youth running with ease
in his favorite shorts and flip-flops, hair sun-bleached tumbling free,
or perhaps, he is one feather floating high on the ocean breeze.
I often see his face in rain clouds mixed with tears,
singing the Grateful Dead or a great hymn.
He is the music forever playing in my ear and
the sweet tropical air filling my lungs;
He lives in the cozy log cabin in a clearing of pines
and the largemouth bass jumping from the lake at dawn’s break,
He’s the tortoise sunning on the shore, the buck running wild,
the heartbeat of a father holding his baby for the first time,
the joy of my morning, the pain of night,
and the wind calling my name, dancing with the leaves on the trees…
he is the trees, the air, he is in my eyes and theirs.
He is in Heaven but his love is everywhere.
Written, 3/7/15 for The Pain of Night Contest
I wish I could blow air into your little lungs,
The day my daughter brought your stillborn body into this world.
Hold your little body warm,
And tell my little girl you have her cute little nose....
Count your little fingers, and kiss your little toes....
I could look into your daring eyes,
Facing a little boy, who's ready for this world
I could tell my daughter you have her beautiful brown eyes...
Sadly, it’s not like that.
How can I tell my daughter everything will be all right?
When a piece of my heart was stolen with her's,
When giving birth to her son, my grandson
March 25, 2013---- How it Hurts!
O’ how I wish, you entered this world crying
Instead, we're the ones left in tears of sorrow
How I wish you could be,
And not this feeling you left inside
How I wish, God could explain why o' why o' why?
I wish I could find the reasons now, and not wait until I die.
Mostly, I WISH Mommy could fix this.
Bael Lesley G.
Born March 25, 2013
RIP March 25, 2013
To be called ..
~ Grandma is a Honor ~
I have been blessed with 4 Grandchildren
~ one lays in Heaven " Kaleb " He is God's Angel ~
~ His twin brother he will always watch over , and be in his soul~
For he loved his Brother so much in the womb ,
he chose Heaven which gave life to his twin
~ I feel his spirit when I see the other Grandson ~
Time passed another gift to see
we are " Mickes" and Loved
Our Dad held the title in Baseball
~ that's how we roll ~
those children are Grandmas hero's
The Irish they love big and Family is everything
The brothers will protect the beautiful sister
~ as many lads will be calling ~
Every time my Grandson hits a home run
There will be a Angel watching proudly in the stand
It will be as if the Angel lifted him when he runs
~no one runs faster then my Grandson~
either baseball or Art ~ you shall find your gift given
These children have been blessed~
~ a beauty to hard to describe
If you think not ~~ Take a look at the Mom
That girl can stop Traffic
after raising three and still~
"Inspired by the gift and loss of Grandchildren "
May our precious " Kaleb " softly rest where Angels only Dwell
In my father's eyes, I'll always be his princess,
No matter how old I've grown, he still sees
His little girl, dancing across the invisible stage
A living Cinderella in miniature form, whom
Will never grow up, and thinks her dad is prince
Charming, and the strongest man on earth.
Cradling within this wondrous heart, is devotion’s
Biggest fan, the man I call my father, he's protector,
Comforter, and the everlasting image, of the perfect
Man that I idolize.
No wizard's wand or sword, holds more magic
Than his tender words of wisdom, as I stroll
Down the yellow brick road of life, I'm his
Dorothy, and he is, the Wizard of my oz.
Oh Papa, you've instilled the wonderment
Of this world within me, and I know, no matter
Where I roam, he shall always be a part
You've always said, no matter how old I get
That within thy heart, a princess remains, timeless,
Ageless, as if Alice, hidden behind the looking glass,
Peering through from wonderland, magical world.
Perfection's cherished rose, whom never loses it's
Petals, but blossoms nourished by loves fertile soil,
That only a father's faith can provide.
I'll always be his princess, no matter what bad
Choices I may make in life, I know he'll pick me
Up and smooth out the wrinkles in my velvet gown,
Wiping away my tears, turning them instantly into diamond
Shards, and letting me dance away again, clapping
For this his darling princess.
So let the musical waltz of life, play forever forward,
As I lightly tip toe, across destiny’s ballroom floor.
My dancing card remains eternally full, written within
One name stands out, it is yours dearest sweet man.
He is after all my prince charming, and I am
His dearest little girl, and of coarse in his eyes
Always his little princess.
BY: CHERYL ANNA DUNN
A solitary piece the diamond
precious rare gem most treasured
by those lucky enough to hold
Once in possession it is rarely out of grasp
Like the gemstone the mother
requires very specific conditions
in holding fast her (family/) childrens love
Treasured forever in her heart
she will go out of her way
to preen and protect them
holding them dear to her
deep within her maternal safe – the heart
closely guarded by the mind
Her infatuation of all treasures to her
are totally understandable
especially when you think to the complexity
of structure and process taken in creation
Just as from the ‘unbreakable’ in ancient greek
this alletrope of carbon
with strength of bonding between atoms
is representative of that strong love
between mum and child
The maternal being could be compared
to the superlative physical qualities of the stone
Even the characteristic luster
of this gem so prevaient from its ability
to disperse light and colour
compared to the many strengths, roles and qualities
of the mother
seen by the many she deals with daily
A most high pressured job
versus the high pressured temperature
within the Earths mantle
that forms the delightful rock it gives birth to
Infants delight and ignite the forbearer
just as the jewel would dazzle the room
a mother’s love encaptures the magical luster
of those she’s birthed and nothing
stands inbetween this richest of cargo’s
I sit in awe
As the music reaches my ear
My 19 year old girl…..
The woman in the other room
Home from university
In her own world
And yet it seeps out to me
What moves her
And I listen
At the beauty that emanates
That floats to me on the notes
The music of her soul
And I wonder...
What did I ever do
To deserve this gift of heaven
This woman who is a part of me and yet
So much more
Her voice more mellow
Her thoughts more lucid, clear
Her talent, no mere trickling stream of words
But a torrent
Waiting behind the doors of her heart
I ask her
To leave all she is doing for a moment
And come into her mother’s arms
Glory of glory…
And nestles in my lap
Sensing my need
And I bury my head in her neck
And wrap my arms around her
Her long curly black tresses
That reach down to her waist
Still wet from the shower
Fall all round me
Touch my face
With refreshing joy
And because these feelings
Are so profound
I try to capture my thoughts
To articulate them in a way
She will understand
The depth of my love for her
And all I can mutter…
As we rock back and forth
Are these simple words…
“I love you, baby.
Let me hold you a while
I know you are a woman now
But I’m still a Mommy
And my Mommy heart
Needs to be needed for a while.”
And she holds me
Till I've had my fill
“I love you, Mama.”
And I am content
For I know she is strong
Stronger than I ever was
Stronger than I will ever be
Able to speak her mind
To stand for her rights
To be who she was meant to be
And I pray for more time
To be there
After she has satisfied her desire
To travel the world
I long to be there
To see her wed
With a little child at her breast
Fulfilling her ultimate dream...
Should God will it
For I know
She will be fine
This child of mine
That I live on in her mind
I’ll smile before I sleep
She’ll remember the lullabies
I wrote for her
On some night
She’ll sing a similar one
To her little girl
As a tear escapes
And she remembers
Words that I whispered
About how MY world
Was made beautiful
By her smile….
Eileen Manassian Ghali
Their tongues are laced with poison.
They stretch and crane their necks,
Trying to get as many licks in as possible.
Their rule is unstable, always shifting.
They licked the wrong person this time.
She had beauty and power in ways they never could.
Their lick did not make her scream out in pain,
It made her roar with frustration and anger!
She sat quietly, playing with the animals.
She was waiting for her mother’s return.
Her mother’s roar shook the very ground beneath her.
The sky turned a foreboding gray as she raced toward her mother.
“I will not stand for their ignorance!
I have stayed in this land for too long.
I will move to where their rule can’t touch me.”
The mother, upon seeing the daughter, smiled softly.
“You do not have to come with me if you don’t want to.
The choice is up to you, my love.”
With that, the mother went to her house to pack.
But, she will not leave until the daughter has made her decision.
“What should I do? The people here have been so nice to me!
I don’t want to leave them, but what about this ruler?
Do I really want to support someone with no sense to rule?
Maybe if I just live a quiet, reserved life here, I’ll be okay!”
Word had gotten around that she was thinking of leaving.
The ruler decided to try to use her against her mother.
“Why leave your MANY friends because of one person?’”
Out of all the works she has done, this is the only one they commented on.
They must think she’s stupid.
She never wanted to get involved,
But they are trying to force her into this.
They have over stepped their boundaries.
The announcement about her and her mother had been taken down.
After, an announcement was made indirectly saying that theirs were irrelevant.
She had enough of this pettiness and had made up her mind.
She is leave side by side with her mother.
I brought her into this world,
But she is like a mother to me,
Darkness is the only colour for me,
Though I see the beautiful world,
Through her eyes only,
Every morning she holds my hand,
She walks with me in the garden,
Tells me the beauty of nature,
I see the magical creation of God,
Through her eyes only,
She sits next to me,
Tells me how water changes its colours,
When sun’s rays fall into the pond,
How swiftly the fishes change their directions,
There is only darkness all around,
Though I can see some light of hope,
Through her eyes only,
I can smell the roses,
I can feel the intense heat of the sun,
I can listen to the mystical sound of chimes,
But I can see none of them,
She clasps her little fingers around mine,
And makes me see beyond the darkness,
I remember to live every day,
Through her eyes only,
I cannot see my child,
But she is the apple of my eye,
I live because she is in my life,
I feel my existence in this world,
Through her eyes only,
I might give up on life,
But her indomitable will,
Helps me to survive,
I fall in love with the darkness,
Because it brings me closer to my child,
And I can see a beautiful life ahead,
Through her eyes only!
Yesterday when I stood before him, he spoke my name
Today, I still stand, but the floorboards are cold
and he no longer knows the color of my eyes.
With each spoonful of the steaming grey I lift my arms,
Up, then down, again and again, a repeated motion – weeping,
My arms are trembling with the weight of the spoon
that holds in its cupped womb my raw, injured soul.
Father, I say, in a voice cold from straining not to break
I prod away the soup dribbling down his chin, gently.
The wrinkled hands are limp at his sides, lost.
What should be mad and free is caged within me; fluttering
feebly, thumping about in a circle of broken pieces
The look in his blank eyes has labeled me a stranger
But when they are closed my name is written on his face.
The morning dew gently caresses you
like the faint whisper of a young child's kiss.
Your limbs yearningly reach for the sun
as if awaiting a long lost lover's embrace.
Only a pair of vacant eyes could fail to see
the wonderful symphony of color waiting to be.
If allowed to come into full bloom uninterrupted,
butterflies will dance liltingly across your awakening splendor
as honey bees sing praises to your blossoms burgeoning bounty.
I can only pray your thorns grow sharp and rugged enough
to defend against the groping hands of life's wickedness.
Only the desires of the most savage hearts would ravage
a still unfolding beauty and extinguish a spectacle yet to be.
Only a vile pair of ears could fail to hear a shattering heart
and the soul deafening screams of a rose picked too soon.