It seems that only yesterday we were planning your future and promises to be fulfilled in years to come...we started with a baby shower and gifts from everyone. We dreamed of a first birthday, a dream of your first graduation and first dance. A mother and fathers hopes of things yet to come. Now, here we are standing before God, asking him why has he taking our future of a child we had yet gotten to know, yet whom we had already loved. He, answered us with a fathers words of love..."They whom you have loved, yet have never known is never gone, a promise you long to fulfill is always yours to have...as long as you trust in me and know that I have never placed more upon you than your hearts can stand, know that I'm a God of purpose and planning...and all that which I promised will be delivered unto you if you just trust and believe in your hearts and know that my love for you, was formed before you were even placed in the womb. Nothing leaves or enters this world without my permission, sometimes with great anguish, but nothing leaves or enters without a purpose." Keep planning for the future with an unbending love!
1889 – 1918
I saw the town rise up
Like a single blade of grass after a spring rain.
I played a multitude of hop-scotch games
With my best friend Hannah on Penn Street.
And sipped a hundred ice cream sodas in the Mercantile at sunset.
My mother took me to Jacob’s Grocery every Monday
And it was I who picked the plump oranges
From the big rickety crate.
On Saturdays we worked the fields at Strong’s Ranch,
Harvesting the pampas in the walnut fields.
And on Halloween I was the girl in the moon-face costume for five straight years.
When Christmas brought its luminous lights to the town,
Mother dressed me in red with a bell on my bonnet.
And father sang the carols with a guitar and a tambourine.
I graduated from the big high school in 1907
And in celebration,
Rode my bicycle to Bassett
Still in my starched graduation petticoats.
He being five years younger than I,
Was the love of my brief stay on this earth.
But when he ventured to steal a kiss that day in Black Canyon,
I used my calloused hand to convey my stern disagreement.
But what wild regrets I’ve entertained since Jesse drowned that day.
In the wild currents by Pio Pico’s crumbling Adobe,
His body bobbing like a sea bird
In the punishing plume of that old deep river.
Beyond the muddy banks and the wild flowers,
Jesse Forbes left this life with a surprised frozen grin.
Why Jesse? Why?
You never knew the truth, my love.
You never really understood what I meant
When I said nothing.
I said No to you when I said nothing that day in Black Canyon,
But I really meant Yes.
The influenza incinerated my heart and soul
With a 106 temperature in the winter of 1918.
Twenty nine years I dare say
Is nothing in terms of eternal life!
I had so much more to do!
I had so much more to dream about!
I walked and talked on the streets of my town,
And on the funeral-dark avenues of my innocent days.
And I planned and I schemed
And all for nothing!.
Indeed, I felt the pulse of fleeting time
And the never-ending,
Ever-turning circle of endless days.
But now I rest here in Clark Cemetery… a virgin corpse
Flirting shamelessly with the bow-tie worms,
Still wild with regrets.
And forever haunted in reverse
By the same recurring memory
Of Jesse Forbes holding a rose.
Under the old oak tree in Black Canyon..
Show me who you are and i shall paint out broken columns on the valleys of her back as if such figure is un-common
i have found no beauty bending as the vines that are her hair and the frailty of man upon her back is what she bares
bleed her body for the harvest let them feast upon her soul for the nurishment of mother is leaps beyond so bold
she is like the flower growing in the deepest of dark forests,amongst the ivy and hemlock but her skin is much too porous
to concern herself with games that tantalize the men, as they marry on crusade it is her children that she tends
sheath your swords with her ambition and tip your arrows with her will, craft your armour from her strength and in the battle you will kill
come now children from the pasture and lay each upon her side, suckle gently at your mother although theirs pain she does not hide
though the water leaks from rooftops her leaves are thick and block the rain, as the water level rises cling to her branches with no shame
she is the stone upon the beach, once a mountain pound and breached
yet still her disposition clear to love her children that are near
inspired by Roots Frida Kahlo, 1907-1954
I do not know?
I Cried Today
I am thirteen today
You would think I would be happy
Yet it is hard to even crack a smile
With everyone wishing me a Happy Birthday
To me it’s not that happy
As today strange voices carrying on inside me
They say I don’t deserve to live
They say I should die
I am thirteen and
I Cried Today
My sweet sixteen isn’t so sweet
I just want to hide
Go back to sleep
Or simply disappear
What is a girl to do?
When she feels so sad, lonely and depressed
I don’t even have anyone to turn to
I am sixteen and
I Cried Today
Today I am nineteen
It is my graduation day
And while I am smiling on the outside
I feel like I am crumbling on the inside
Those voices don’t give
Never a break
No rest for the wicked they say
I am nineteen and
Today I Cried
I am twenty-one
No drinking for me
I am in a hospital as my first sip was almost my last
Who knew I could be so allergic
I am twenty-one
In a hospital and
I Cried Today
I am twenty-five
I thought I was in love
Until I walked in on my fiancé
In bed with my best friend
My heart feels so cold
I am so alone
As my world has just turned upside down
I am twenty-five and
I Cried Today
I am thirty
I am working hard
To get back my life
Take control of my future
And actually see the possibilities of a tomorrow
It is a lot of work
With a hard road ahead
I am Thirty
I Never Cried Today
I am thirty-four
In a few short months I will be thirty-five
I am not alone
I realize I never was
Surrounded by people I love
People who love me
Married to the love of my life
My dreams are coming true
I feel so happy
I am almost thirty-five and
I Smiled Today
By: Jean Shular
Dramatic Verse (Verse Drama)
I heard an angel speak last night and he said "write"
With lantern light weary I write this morbid night
The moon above the meadows move in gloomy mist
With pen in hand, hermit a man and death amidst
Oh shall I walk the aisles of graves and hundred names
With flowers full of life financed on furnished frames
Below the wind and warmth of night do whispers woe
In fear I'm not for I care take of those below
For I have seen many a man and woman cry
And I have seen many a man and woman lie
Distilled in death with only breath of the beloved
Mourning above...mornings above heavenly loved
But something is a happening around the night
If not a dream how dost darkness so quicketh light
How frogs appear around lilies that left the fog
Where branches dance with trees beyond their childrens log
As ponds appear upon plateau of grave and sand
And stars above nomadic night come down to land
And voices of the birds play like a violin
And whispers of the wind hum like a hundred men!
It is at this moment that wings appeared to be
Uplifted from the back of her in front of me
Dear Angel, ye are he that spoketh write of thee
But in the nude in front of me am I to flee?
With hair in waves and arms extended out to see
Appeared to me...appeared to be...a flame of sea
That swept the cemeteries floor with torch and fire
And all in death consumeth life 'twas her aspire
A paradise on earth and wedding full of life
As they I have buried myself were full of light!
Women and men and children spread
A graduation of the dead
Ceremonious gift of beings
Thy conquered death, thy wearest wings!
Forth in her hands were flowers of a thousand-fold
And when she walked her footsteps formed a flood of gold
With every step a flower from her drew to ground
In mystic motion as she moved her wings would sound
Just like a brush of wind, angelic crystal wings
Face of fertility that wore a crown of rings
Unselfish all in all with fingernails of fire
Did pierce my heart into my soul a strong desire
To learn to love and love to live and live to give
Yes even in the dire darkness something lives
Believe me not and no one shall when I doth tell
The timid night I heard an Angel's voice exhale
Oh Angel it is thy that is in sacred stone
That came to me in flesh and now thy flesh is gone
June 17, 2011
Angels In Cemeteries
As little John went out to play
On a warm, beautiful, and sunny day
He heard his mother to him say
"I love you, my little John."
And then quite tall her Johnny grew
His graduation cap he threw
She said "My son, I say adieu,
and I love you, my little John."
He visited her in the town of St. Beth
Around her wrapped the arms of death
She uttered with her final breath
"I love you, my little John..."
I OPEN HER OLD DUSTY BOXES
FILLED WITH HER MEMORIES
PICTURES OF FAMILY, FRIENDS AND LOVED ONES
MANY OF THE SAME PEOPLE AND SOME NEW ONES, ONLY CHANGING CLOTHS. HAIRSTYLES AND POSITIONS
OVER THE YEARS IN VARIOUS HOUSES, ROOMS AND LANDSCAPES
AND THEIR PLACES IN THE STACK OF PHOTOGRAPHS
THEY POSE, THEY PLAY, THEY PARTY
FROM BIRTH TO BIRTH
THE WEDDING, BABY AND SCHOOL CLASSROOM PHOTOGRAPHS
WERE ALL KEPT NEATLY IN CARDBOARD FOLDERS WITH CUTOUT FRAMES EXPOSING THEM TO HER
IN THE MIDDLE OF THE PILE BETWEEN THE BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHS
AND THE COLORED ONES
NEXT TO THE MARRIAGE, BIRTH, AND GRADUATION CERTIFICATES
ARE DEATH CERTIFICATES AND MASS CARDS
GIVING US THEIR NAMES
ALONG SIDE PICTURES OF SAINTS
MANY OF THE EARLY BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPH OF HER PARENTS, BROTHERS AND SISTERS USED TO BE KEPT TOGETHER IN TATTERED MANILLA ENVELOPES TOWARD THE BOTTOM OF THE PILE
AT THE TOP OF HER MEMORIES
A FEW OF THOSE MEMORIES
VERY SPECIAL TO HER
USED TO BE KEPT IN SIMPLE VICTORIAN FRAMES
ON HER BEDROOM BUREAU
ALONG WITH EARLY PICTURES OF ME, MY BROTHERS AND OUR DAD
THE LATER FAMILY PICTURES OF BLACK AND WHITE AND COLOR WERE KEPT IN TACKY ALBUMS
THAT AGED WITH US OVER TIME
AS THE PEOPLE PASSED ON
NEW ONES TOOK THEIR PLACE
ALONG WITH THE NEW MASS CARDS
GIVING US THEIR NAMES
ALONG SIDE PICTURES OF SAINTS
THE NEW WEDDING, BABY AND SCHOOL CLASSROOM PHOTOGRAPHS
WERE ALL KEPT NEATLY IN CARDBOARD FOLDERS WITH CUTOUT FRAMES EXPOSING THEM TO US
I DO NOT RECOGNIZE MANY OF THOSE IN HER EARLY PHOTOGRAPHS
BUT THERE IS NO ONE LEFT TO ASK AS TO WHO THEY WERE
THE DIARIES, SCHOOL AUTOGRAPH ALBUMS AND PERSONAL PHONE BOOKS IN HER WRITING
THAT I HAVE FOUND IN THE BOXES
WILL GIVE LITTLE CLUE AS TO THE REAL PAST
THEY, LIKE THE POSED PHOTOGRAPHS
WILL GIVE TO THOSE WHO WERE NOT THERE
ONLY THE VAGUENESS INDICATION OF SPECIFIC SNAPSHOTS IN THEIR TIME
WITHOUT ANY OF THE CONNECTING TISSUES.
PART OF THE MEMORIES FOUND IN THE SMALL BOXES WERE THE PERFUMES, JEWELRY AND PILLS THAT SHE WORE
THAT GOT HER FROM ONE EVENT TO THE NEXT.
THE MEMORIES THAT WERE IN THESE BOXES
ARE ALL GONE
OUT INTO THE WORLD
AND ALL THAT REMAINS
ARE THE PAPERS AND THINGS THAT ONCE WERE
LAYING IN THE BOXES IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER COLLECTING DUST
AND WAITING FOR SOMEONE
TO PICK THEM UP
AND WONDER WHAT AND WHO THEY WERE.
So now let us converse about this chase
The dreams in life we try to acquire
Have been instilled in you by whose desire
Most of you been taught it’s a race
Coming to the revelation that something is a miss
The heart and mind will either become distraught
No matter to whatever belief you have bought
As always the choice is up to you to dismiss
These words penned will lead to devastation
Now once again I ask all to choose right my friend
Forgiving all the time or continuing to offend
With or without graduation
It was late in the afternoon, it must of been about an hour that I had arrived
As I took the first step into the facility already I felt my body overwhelmed by chills
I stripped to the nude, and I felt as if the scene had touched me all over, their sight belittled me
I stood wearing nothing, eyes set their sight upon me, for they saw a criminal with no heart
They made me dress in orange
Full jump suit and feather-light slippers
I was escorted to my cell
Upon arrival I met my cell mate, Peter
The walls seemed to take life and spoke
Words of death I came to understand, and I feared for my mind
Insane I was going, for I began to hear voices of sorrow and broken hearts
The walls caved in almost and I felt death's grasp on my back
The clock ticked and ticked, every second seemed to turn into hours
Locked up where no where to go I recalled all of my fair memories
When the sun once caressed my face, lips and dreams
An animal I had become for nothing mattered behind those bars
"Lights out" and my heart grew weak
Not knowing of how to react, I began to see death as an answer
For if I died I would not have to live as a caged animal
Dark, lights had been out for an hour and again my eyes betrayed me
I saw thousands of spirits walking the empty halls
A million snoring souls slept
It smelled like death was walking among the spirits of the deceased
An awful sight, and I was trapped in it for the next 15 years
It was now the next day and I stood inline for food
Color was all inside
Brown I am for that was my ticket to group
Called horrible things, same sex predators all savored to my soft face
It was shower time and I grew in very much fear
As 100 men walked in nude to shower
I fresh meat
I couldn't bare it, so I entered not
I met my cell mate again in the recreation room
And all was learned
I was to be jumped in
And if I lived I would be graduation day
The clocked ticked it was again 7:45pm
My heart was beating really slow now
The men came into my cell with chains and bats
Guards stood idly by to my screams of fear
I saw a bright light in all the blows I was taking
I was drowning in my own blood
An angels hand took me out of my body
The clock ticked 8pm, may I rest in peace
Big boys don't cry they say
But that is simply not true
For I have shed a million tears
Since the day that I lost you
It's been a year now since you were called away
I will always remember the sadness of that day
I did what was expected of me
Of a strong and loving son that you wanted me to be
I held up straight and tall
My emotions unseen to all
But my tears flowed free the moment I was alone
To see your loving face once more I would give all that I own
Friends wonder how I'm doing now
As if the pain would disappear somehow
They don't see my grief and despair
But it is always there, seen in my lonely silent stare
With each day that passes the pain ebbs and flows
Comforted by wonderful memories that took a lifetime to sow
I remember your gentle touch
How you loved me so very much
I see your smile, the laughter dancing in your eyes
And I marvel at how swiftly time flies
Looking back to when I was a mere child at your knee
Of all the times you comforted and rescued me
From shadows in the dark, to bullies at the park
Through scrapes and bumps and loves first thumps
Kisses and hugs at graduation
The looks of total adoration
You were always there, taking care of me
Guiding and molding me into the man I would be
All of these memories and so many more
Are forever and ever lovingly stored
They help ease this pain that I feel all the time
Because you are always on my mind
Don't worry Mom, I'll be alright
Soon the darkness will fade leaving only your light
I know you'll be waiting for me up above
Until then I know you'll watch over me with love
So until that day when I am in your arms once more
I will treasure all the memories that I have stored
So I will say so long, for it's not truly goodbye
For you are always alive deep in my mind's eye