Long poem by
Trisha Sugarek | Details |
The Ash Can ©
I got the call on Sunday night. I was traveling on business. When I looked at the caller ID
I wondered why my husband’s boss would be calling me. I was unprepared for what
he told me and my legs turned to water when he said that my husband was dead.
‘A heart attack? An accident?’ I asked. ‘No’, he said, ‘John committed suicide.
They found him in your garage this morning.’ I heard someone screaming and
wished that they would stop so I could hear the rest. His voice was very far away
and the woman just kept screaming. ‘Shut up! Shut up!’ I need to hear. I clapped my
hand over my mouth when I suddenly realized it was me who was screaming.
I don’t remember hanging up or getting on the plane. (beat) Yes, John and I were having
problems and we had been separated for about three months but nothing was official.
After thirty years of marriage I never believed that we couldn’t weather this and share
the rest of our lives together. This was just a phase he was going through…some sort
of mid-life crisis. This had to be some horrible mistake, a case of mistaken identity.
My John would never do this, leave me like this. (beat)
I stumbled into our home around nine the next morning. The house looked like a woman
hadn’t lived there for months. Dirty dishes in the sink, groceries half put away, empty
beer cans and a full ashtray by John’s chair. Seeking comfort I walked over to his chair.
Out of the corner of my eye, I caught a glimpse of a reflection in the mirror over the
fireplace. Some wild looking woman with mascara smudges under her eyes and smeared
lipstick looked out at me. I walked closer to inspect this stranger in my house.
She looked old and used up. Who was she? What had life dealt her to look so worn out?
Oh, God, it was me. Staring out with those eyes bleeding hot, raw pain. (beat) I curled
up in John’s chair and closed my eyes. Was this all I had left of my husband? This slightly shabby piece of furniture that still smelled of him? How could I tell our children? Could I bear to go into the garage? What would I find?
I knew that they had taken his body away but what had they left there for me to see?
Maybe something there would prove that this was truly a mistake. I rose to my feet and
walked into the kitchen and through the laundry room to the garage door. (beat)
I slowly opened it and was knocked back by the remaining stink of gas fumes.
John’s car sat in its parking spot, the garden hose hanging from the back window like
some obscene snake. I gagged and pressed the button to open the garage door.
The passenger side window was open so I could look inside without having to touch the car. And what I saw on the seat told it all. There was John’s cell phone, an empty bottle of Vodka and a bottle of Excedrin. (beat) And something else…a second cell phone…what in the world? I was only allowed five seconds of blissful denial before it all came crashing down on me. The second phone…the secret phone that men who cheat keep to talk to their lovers. All those protestations he offered during the time that we were apart. ‘No, there was no one else’, ‘I just need to find myself’, ‘I don’t want a divorce’, ‘I just need some time’. ‘I love you; I’m just not in love with you.’ Lies, all lies! How could I have been so stupid? Then I notice a crumpled manila envelope on the floor of the car. Anger driven, I opened the door and picked up the envelope and the two cell phones and went back into the house. Sitting in John’s chair once again, I smoothed out the envelope and read what was written there.
‘Ricky, tell Sherry I love her. Tell Sherry I can’t live without her. Tell Sherry not to cry
for me. Sherry, I’ll love you forever. I’m sorry.....John-Boy.’ Who the hell was Sherry?
Did my husband of three decades kill himself over some tramp? Some other woman
whom he barely knew? I picked up the second cell phone and scanned the history of calls.
Where was area code 864? As I set the phone down my eye caught the partial title of
a book lying on the rug under the table. Picking it up, I read: ‘How To Keep A Long
Distance Relationship Exciting and New.’ I opened it to the first few pages and found an
inscription, ‘To my tiny dancer, until we meet again. Love forever, your John-Boy.’
My God, John, how could you? How could you do this to us? I yelled as I threw the
book across the room; will this hellish nightmare never end? (beat) I picked up the
cell phone and scrolled down the history; Sherry Hoffman, Sherry Hoffman, Sherry Hoffman, Sherry Hoffman. No other woman, huh, John? South Carolina…hence the long distance relationship…you’re such a fool, I told myself. There was voice mail saved and I listened to the most current ones. Those messages told a story of a married woman who had a son and a new grandchild.
Another sad, pedestrian story of a restless woman trapped in a loveless marriage but
unwilling to leave. The daughter-in-law apparently would not let Sherry see the child.
It seemed that John, in a misplaced attempt to help, called Sherry’s son to insist that
he let Sherry see her grand-baby.
Only to succeed in blowing up that family. The final message was not so sweet and
sexy from his lover. Sherry had dumped my husband. (beat) I didn’t know whether
to laugh or cry. I seemed to be trapped in a crazed, unbelievable soap opera. But what
is it that they say about truth being stranger than fiction? I sighed. John had always
wanted to rescue anyone in trouble…even when they didn’t ask for help. He had crossed
the line calling that woman’s son. Oh, John, what were you thinking?, I asked the empty
room. Didn’t you know? You were her dirty little secret.... (more)
(from my book, Monologues 4 Women)
Long poem by
Richard Lamoureux | Details |
You might wonder what happens during the course of the day with a profiler. I'm known as the watcher. Little insignificant things can make the difference in cracking a case. A subtle glance, a dilated pupil the tightening of a jaw. Let me take you back to yesterday so you will understand.
"Rick I need you to come in here." "Alright captain, what do you have for me?" "We have an Arson on our hands, Rodrigues is interviewing the family now." "What do we know about them captain?" "Husband and wife are separated, the daughter was living with the mom in the family home. Nothing left of the home, burnt to the ground." "Do we know where the fire started?" "Yes it looks like it started in the girls bedroom. Enough talking Rick lets pay attention to what's going on."
Captain Branson is an impatient man, he thinks this watcher stuff is a pile of bullshit. He's all about old fashioned police work. Still here I am detective first class with a pile of successes under my belt. So the upper brass have thrust me upon him. He tolerates me, in private he tells his buddy's I'm a lucky sh*t and one day my luck is going to run out.
I looked through the one way glass into the interrogation room. The dad was sitting furthest away. He is dressed impeccably dark blue suit, white shirt and a red tie with matching handkerchief. He also sports a hundred dollar haircut and speaks with controlled precision. While he speaks he looks at Rodriguez with a certain disdain. His arms are folded and he keep looking down at his watch.
The daughter is a contrast in opposites, unkept purple hair and wearing a black loose fitting dress. There are scratches on her arm that she is picking at. Several piercings adorn her lips nose and eyebrows. On her shoulder there is a broken heart tattoo that says Daddy's Girl.
The wife is a thirty something beauty with long blond hair. She is casual yet elegant, a natural look that has taken hours to achieve. She is on the opposite side of the table from her husband and somehow it does not seem far enough. As her husband speaks her left eye has a subtle twitch.
Rodriguez fidgets with the earbud as he asks the dad if he wants something to drink. The dad snaps back " let's just get this over with I have to get back to work." Rodriguez just smiles and asks the wife and daughter if he can get anything for them. The daughter continues to pick at her arm. The wife politely says "no thank you." "Well then we can get started." Rodriguez gets up opens the door and a large matronly officer enters. Rodriguez asks the daughter and mom to accompany her. The daugter rises and walks with a slow detached gait, her mom follows with a practiced elegance.
Rodriguez looks at the man and says, "let's start with what we know, we know the fire wasn't accidental. There was an accelerant used in your daugters room." The dad looked Rodriguez in the eye and said "so why are you talking to me? I don't even live there anymore." Rodriguez asks the dad where he was between nine and eleven that morning. The man quickly responds that he was working at the office with his assistant. Rodriguez asks if anyone else may have seen him that morning. He says not that he's aware of. Talking through the earbud I ask Rodriguez to end his questioning for now.
Captain Branson says, "we checked the Navigation on his BMW, it shows his vehicle didn't leave the parking lot till three this afternoon. Personally my money is on the crazy daughter, I checked and she started a fire a few years ago behind their neighbors shed." "Ok captain we'll start with her next. I'll be back in a minute I need a cup of coffee." I leave the room just as the dad leaves the interrogation room. Rodriguez motions for him to sit down. As he sits he crosses his legs and I notice he is wearing a new pair of shoes and there is a small white stain on his cuff. Once again I notice him looking at his watch. I walk by him to the coffee machine without him even giving me a glance.
Back in the interrogation room Rodriguez is sitting with the girl, she has yet to make eye contact with him. I tell Rodriguez to start the interview. He does the usual attempt at rapport building but it garnishes no warm and fuzzies. Enough of that he asks her where she was this morning. She says she was out behind the bleachers at school. He asks if anyone can verify her being there. She says no, she was by her self. He asks about the fire behind the neighbors shed. She says "it looks like you have already made up your mind. Why don't you just lock me up?" This is the first time she looks him in the eye. Rodriguez says he just wants to get to the truth. "The truth? No one cares about the truth, why would I burn down my own room?" She looks defiant and hurt, the look of someone who has been accused of many things. I tell Rodrigues enough for now. The captain says "what? Is that it?" "Relax Captain she's not your girl. Rodriguez bring the wife in."
The wife looks a lot more relaxed without the husband in the room. She sits back easily in the chair with her legs crossed gracefully at the ankles. She pulls out a lighter and cigarette and asks if it is okay if she smokes. Rodriguez apologizes and says there is no smoking on the premises. She says "that's okay I'm trying to quit." She tells him she started again after the separation. Rodriguez asks her who she thinks started the fire. She says she has no idea but she can't imagine who would want to burn down their home. She loses her composure for a moment and starts to cry. She looks up at him with her big blue eyes filled with tears. Rodriguez passes her a tissue and asks if she is okay to continue. She says sure she just needs a moment to compose herself. He asks her to tell him about her husband.
Long poem by
Just That Archaic Poet | Details |
Betty was bonafide crazy. She had shot her husband after a night of drunken quarreling, and was in the state mental hospital instead of being in the slammer. She'd shot the louse in the stomach and he had lived, fortunately for her. I never tired of hearing about Betty's attempted escape and eluding of the police in the aftermath. Over the river and through the woods she ran, but not to grandmother's house, sadly; she didn't know where she was going; all she knew was that she HAD to get the hell outta there.
Down a steep embankment she had tumbled, right next to the highway. As she attempted to orient herself, a car slowed down, it's lights blinding her as she tried to pick off the brush, debris and twigs that clung like glue to her hair and muddy nightgown. The car stopped, two cops sprang forth and yelled, "FREEZE!". The jig being up, Betty did as instructed, was cuffed and read her Miranda rights. She never bothered to elaborate how she wound up in the loony bin instead of staying in the pokey, but I can only imagine it was due to her obvious derangement.
Betty was a hoot; funny as could be and an excellent card player. She had long, shaggy salt and pepper frizzy tresses that looked more like a Halloween wig than an actual coiffure. She was well into her fifties but seemed much older with her deep smoker's wrinkles and heavy, sunken eyes, like a soul that's known too much wear, tear, pain and heartache and aged prematurely. On more than one occasion I questioned her actual insanity, but on one night, when the moon was full and all the crazies were, admittedly, much more maniacal than normal, my doubts about Betty's "playing possum" dissolved. It's true, you know, what they say about a full moon and the impact it has over the mind; I've witnessed it first-hand too many times in different psych wards to discount it as "old-wives" folklore. Nurses never fail to mention when there is a full moon; they know it to be true as well.
I don't know what set her off. I was enjoying a game of rummy with Angela, a paranoid schizophrenic with a penchant for identifying supposed conspiracies within the hospital, when I heard Betty screaming furiously and cussing up a hurricane. Well, something didn't suit her, obviously, and she was having none of it. This is when I began to wonder if Betty was not part "Bionic Woman". Next thing I knew, she wailed like a banshee, took off sprinting down the hall at incredible, breakneck speed that defied her rather plump figure and stubby legs, and drop-kicked the heavy, locked steel door that barred the exit of ward "Grag". Nurses hit the panic button and made urgent phone calls which signaled the goons and heavy muscle to race toward our ward to subdue the unsubduable. Soon as Angela heard the nurses all in a frenzy, she yelled, "CONSPIRACY LEVEL UP! TOP FLOOR!" ("Top Floor" being the ward that housed the most violent or dangerous loons.) Paranoid schizophrenics are such a suspicious bunch!
As Betty raced by, Angela immediately stood up, cheering her along, chanting "GRAG STYLE, BABY; YEAH!". In total astonishment I watched this Wonder Woman drop-kick this barricade (which was most definitely designed to keep us confined) in total kung-fu, samurai, ninja style with such force that it burst wide open! Talk about jaw-dropped incredulous! By the time Betty the She-Hulk nearly drop-kicked her way to freedom, the goons (as the big orderlies were dubbed) descended upon her, but she fought with such ferocity that for just an instant I thought she might break free, given that she had picked up a nearby chair and was using it to fend them off with the skill of a lion-tamer (or so I mused). But poor Betty was helplessly and hopelessly outnumbered and the whole incident must have happened in the span of maybe two minutes, but time has a funny way of slowing down and stretching in instances such as these, when the eyes and mind are trying to comprehend the incomprehensible. She was tackled on all sides, but not before one of the stooges took a whack upside his empty head. Nurses rushed forth, syringes in hand, and gave Betty the usual knock-out serum of hefty doses of Haldol and Benadryl (don't ask me how I know this!). Then, as was the procedure in all such cases, Betty was strapped down on a gurney and wheeled away to the "Quiet Room" where she was to be closely monitored by some muscle.
As one of the orderlies passed, carting the drowsy Betty past us, Angela barked one of her customary insults of, "YOU SMELL LIKE ASS AND NACHOS!" which never failed to tickle me to no end. The excitement over, Angela and I went back to our game of rummy and she accused me of cheating when I won, flipped over the table, and stormed off (but she always did this whenever she lost.) Ah, Angela; what I'd give to play rummy with you again!
A few days later, after a two week stint, I was finally released and never saw or heard from Betty (or Angela) again. Whenever I see someone fly into a rage, I am often happily reminded of Betty, Super-Woman of ward "Grag". Why was I there? I'll never tell!
Long poem by
Vee Bdosa | Details |
There did they go into the cyberspace
where none but the great of heart
have ever gone before
and they did find great pleasure unto the night
for it was a time of love and understanding
and she did say it is good.
And when they did awake unto the dawn
then he did see a mass onto his shoulder
that had not ever been there before
and he was sore afraid.
Then he did say unto his mate, whose name is Mae,
what is it that has aflicted me in the night
and bonded itself onto the very body of me?
And she did reply unto her husband,
I know not.
And so they did consider the mass
and it was firm and round as a gooses egg,
yet it was of the mass that was thrice the size.
So she did lay her hands onto the mass
and did say,
is it now with pain, for I have given it a great charge?
But he did reply, nae, I feel it not.
And so they did go with the coming day,
even as the sun was high, unto his physician,
who counseled with some of his own, as to the matter.
And they did touch, and poke, and wonder
at the mass, and then they did say
it is a lipoma, and it is nothing more.
But one of physicians did ask
of what great need do you have of this arm,
and the man did reply, it is not the one
with which I write my name.
And the husband, whose name is Fred, did inquire
as to how this mass ever came to be
and so has attached itself onto me?
And there it sits, as if bad things to come.
Then his physicians did reply and say
nae, it is naught to worry about
but we can remove it if you have the desire.
And the wife did say unto the physicians,
who were with great skill in the matter,
this he does have,
so the husband did say, it is so my desire,
I have great needs that it be gone.
But the physicians did reply
it shall be taken away in twelve days,
for that is the only time
that is not already spoken for.
And so they did agree.
Now when the night came and he did lay again with his wife,
there came a great trembling from deep within
his body, and he did shake to his very toes.
And she did say, husband, why is it that you shake?
And what is it that maketh your body wet all over,
as if a rain has fallen on the very place you lay?
And he did reply, I know not.
But he was with great fear and did wonder
as to what the mass could be.
And his wife did then say,
it is a lipoma, and it is nothing more.
But he did think on the matter and then did say,
this must surely be as unto a sign from the maker
that my time is at hand.
Surely my life has been filled with goodness
but has brought me unto this very day.
And she did say,
it is a lipoma, and it is nothing more.
And as the day grew near,
but was even the second day unto the removal,
the husband did worry and say some more,
my life is at an end
for the very inside of me does now quake
and my hands tremble at the sight of the mass.
Yea, mine eyes cannot bear to gaze upon it
and it has become an abomination unto my sight.
But his wife did say,
it is a lipoma, and it is nothing more.
Then there came onto the tube, as if an omen
and a sign unto its own,
that a man had a mass and surely it had taken him away,
as if a robber had come in the night.
And he did grieve, for the day was almost at hand,
but did go unto his physicians and did say,
see how my body is wet and trembles at its' sight?
How is it that this thing has come unto me?
And what are the tingles unto my skin
is it what cometh from a lipoma?
But the physicians did shake their heads
and then they did say
you have the stress.
And so he did wonder at what they did tell him,
and when he looked, the mass was still there.
But the physicians did say,
it is a lipoma, and it is nothing more.
And one of the physicians said
if it is not a lipoma, the betting is off.
And then the man did return to his home
but trembled in the night.
Now when the morning did come
and the woman reached for her husband,
she found his space to be empty
and wet where he had layed.
and she did say, husband,
where is it you have gone?
But she heard not a reply.
And so she did go into the bottom of the house
where she did see him hanging from a beam
and then she did cry.
And so the constable did come, along with the scribes,
but the wife was with great grief
and did say o! that my life has such dismay
because of the lump that has taken him away.
What manner of thing has fallen to me?
And the scribe, who was to tell of the matter,
asked of her, what is it that has made you grieve?
And then the constable did say
is it the mass, that has made your husband
to end his life?
And she did say, it was a lipoma,
and it was nothing more.
....© ron wilson aka vee bdosa the doylestown poet
Long poem by
Erin Soares-Anselmi | Details |
I was born fifty years ago on April 10th 1964
Looking back through the years I began to explore
My mama said when it was time for me to be born
I decided to come early and fast in the wee morn
Born five week premature with jaundice I had to stay
High fevers, convulsions and even a coma would come my way
But by the grace of God I made it through each and every one
I could have died before my life really started or even begun.
And through my fifty years God has shown me grace and mercy
As I look back I’m so glad he loved me and thought of me worthy
I remember my first home in Hayward on Burr way
Memories are a little foggy but my sense of home will stay
Moved to Dixon when I was just four years old
To a big beautiful house where my life started to unfold
This would be the place I would meet my life long best friend
She was playing in our backyard the first day we moved in.
So many memories in this house in Dixon on Marvin way
A Baby deer named Bambi and our first dog named Maggie mae
My life sized doll house my parents gave me as a birthday surprise
I would spend hours in there with my plastic appliances making mud pies
Life was blissful and I had not a care in the world I was living
Until the day my parents sat us down and said they were splitting
I just remember crying and in total shock this was happening
My parents would no longer be together my whole life unraveling
We ended up moving to a two story house with mice and peeling paint
Mom worked long hours to feed us four kids who showed no restraint
My mom struggled to balance work and being home with us four
Soon my brothers moved to dads who’s idea was it I’m not sure
My dad died August 19th 1979 at the age of forty from a massive heart attack
I didn’t know then how this would change my life but now can see its full impact
My teen years were cut short because I decided to become a mom
How scared I was to have to drop “mom, I’m pregnant” bomb
Have you ever heard of the song “Going to the chapel of love?”
Married now at seventeen feeling all grown up; well sort of.
On January 2nd 1982 my daughter Melinda was born fuzzy & screaming
Didn’t know what I was really get into, I must have been dreaming
She was the first baby born of the year and was the winner of two contests
So many prizes couldn’t collect them all but we sure tried to do our best
Isn’t it funny how you imagine how it would all work out in your young mind?
But then reality sneaks up on you and smacks you hard on your behind.
Now a single mother at the age of nineteen and moved back in with my mom
And throughout my life I will make poor decisions but no need to write every wrong
Pregnant at twenty with my son Joshua and Melinda now two almost three
I didn’t know what I was going to do but knew they deserved better than me
This you see will be the hardest thing I would ever have to do in my life
I chose to give Josh new parents whom I lived with until I said goodbye
I was blessed to have pictures and letters sent through his growing up years
I remember the first letter I received from Josh I was so nervous eyes filled with tears
My son Brandon was born on my mom’s birthday he was my biggest and my last
He was my little dare devil and escape artist who was always trying to get past
He would like to climb out of his crib and sneak out the front door for a stroll
I chained and locked the door and even barred the windows thinking I was in control
Till one day two police officers were at my door wanting to see him and talk to me, I guess
They said a neighbor called out of concern and then the police threaten me with CPS.
I have been married more than my fair share to tell the truth and it’s hard to admit
I have walked down the aisle six times and finally found the one to whom I commit
TJ is my husband who I met six years ago and have been married to him for three
Unable to have children of his own he now is known fondly as Dad, Padre and Papa T
My grandchildren make me smile just thinking of them and oh how I miss their precious faces
I have eight all together and love each and every one so much my heart had to grow extra spaces
As I look through my mind’s eye and examine my past adventures, blessings and sorrows
I have come to realize to cherish each and every moment because no time can be borrowed
My fifty ….. In a nut shell.
Long poem by
Nola Perez | Details |
My father died prematurely while away on
a business trip from a rogue blood clot to the heart
I never doubted he loved me, would have liked me,
(not the same thing), adult to adult, provided I
was not too strong a woman for him. He was difficult--
a Henry VIII of the times, two divorces, a first wife
we never knew, one from my mother when I was six,
then heated voices from their bedroom with a third,
heard in darkness beyond my door, hands over my ears.
But, he was DADDY. the god-like person who emceed
his daughter's birthdays, planned games, gave out prizes,
while a backstage stepmom provided cake. Cake
mistress, fond father. Thus, I learned to turn to men.
Tennessee Williams wrote, "My sister was quicker
at everything than I." I was like that, maybe not quicker
than my brothers, but quick to fall in love with cities,
objects, water anywhere: tide pools, oceans, rivers,
mountain streams, stately geese, lake ducks in queues,
the vermillion of winter sunsets, purity of cumulus
in a summer sky, the scarlet flash of a cardinal from tree
to tree. Good luck, always, but with bad luck, I always
fell in love with impossible men, ones who left me, or I left
them. The husband who stayed? He was the true one.
Then, there was Mr. K, my high school principal, a dead ringer
for Thomas Wolfe, with whom the girl I was must have
thought she could go home again. His costume
"de rigueur" was a rumpled white shirt, black trousers
splayed with chalk dust, coal black hair, and an imposing
presence no one took issue with, maybe not even his
British wife, teaching English in the same school.
I sent him my poems by a classmate to his office, too shy
to deliver them myself. Years later, "Poetry mash notes,"
a colleague said, inciting laughter in a poetry audience with
whom I shared my youthful infatuation, the energy lingering
long after he signed my graduation diploma, because Yes,
he read my poems, and Yes, I sat dazzled in his English Lit
class to "Beowulf," "Chaucer," and the Shakespeare plays we
took turns reading aloud. When he chose another to read
Portia instead of me, "for her gentle voice," I was devastated,
yet when a boy spoke out in class to criticize my poems:
"No one can understand what she writes," Mr. K. replied
"On the contrary, she writes about very complex things with
very simple language." This praise never left me.
Years after, moving to Atlanta with my husband and small
children, our paths crossed again. Living there
at the same time, Mr. K. and I found each other in an
Episcopal parish, its satisfying high-church "smells and bells"
the only show in town, "Spiky," his wife said. There, our
friendship deepened, until Mr. K. moved to England with his wife,
she returning home to complete the cycle, finish out the years
at point of origin. We do go home again, Thomas Wolfe not-
withstanding, as did I, seeking toward close of life
the comfort and substance of birthplace.
Mr. K. returned occasionally to Atlanta for a visit with his son.
He would call me, and it was then that we met for dinner,
most often at Zazu's an intimate bar and restaurant on Peachtree.
What did we talk about sitting across a table from each other?
I do not now remember, but once I observed him glancing at
his aging hands and comparing them to mine, younger by a few,
completely irrelevant years. I once asked him as he entered
his later years if he ever felt "old." He said No, he felt the same
as he always had. This was a revelation: I imagined people
felt as old inside as they looked. This is not the case, as
I was to discover in my own lifetime.
On one evening I did not know would be the last time, Mr. K.
and I sat in my car in darkness after dinner in front of his son's
house. As he prepared to leave, he said, "I don't know how I shall
get along without you, though I've been without you all these
years. We never touched, save in the bond of friendship, and more's
the pity. Some time passed. I wrote a letter to Mr. K.and his wife.
It was returned unopened with a message on the envelope,
"Both deceased." In my car, then, that last night, it was Adieu --
To God, not Au Revoir. Now, with "All time, all attitudes washing
away," as I wrote in a poem called "Fernandina," he lives
in the room in the heart where no one enters but me.
No need for a phone call. I hold the key.
Long poem by
Carrie Richards | Details |
Under a tree of wet blossoms, shimmering to life in the sun, one honey bee is circling around two burly men, who wave it off, with childlike dramatics...arms flailing. One of them, wearing heavy leather boots, leaves his deep imprints in the grass, still wet from yesterday's storm. I wince, as the toe of his left boot squashes a purple pansy that is growing along the border. Oh dear, her prized flowers,....they are like her babies! She has always had the greenest, thumb..and the prettiest yard on the block!
a white blossom rush hour traffic... a crushed pansy
lands on her shoulder.... bees circle the tree still beautiful in my palm...
a goodbye gesture droning with noise lines in her face
Both men seem irritated, and anxious to get on the road, as they stand next to the giant truck, which is parked against the curb. The shorter man, nurtures a butt of a cigarette between gloved fingers with such intensity, it's as if he were sentenced to be hanged at noon, and this was a final puff. He inhales deeply, then, after a careless toss of the stub, they both climb aboard, into the cab, and squeeze their husky frames into the cab, like two coiled Slinkys , ready to spring into action. They start up the engine, and trails of cigarette smoke are left to mingle with cloud-white petals, that drift from the tree.
smoke spirals up from a spent cigarette...... truck coughs black exhaust
two nosy neighbors watch from dark windows.... crows gather on grapevine
The moving van,... a huge, battered dinosaur, wearing a big red proclamation, "TWO BROTHERS-VAN AND STORAGE",... looks so out of place, parked along my street. I begin to feel it vibrate the sidewalk and it deafens our ears. Slowly, it begins to roll, and we watch, as it lazily, lumbers down the familiar street. It turns the corner, and disappears out of sight. I lean over to grab her hand, and she is crying
and I find myself breaking the promise not to.
muddy truck tires....
follow from behind
I suppose it shouldn't matter to me now, but can't resist, and lean down to pick up the discarded, lifeless cigarette butt, and walk it over next door, to the trash can, that still waits for Thursday's pick-up. I blow my nose and dry my eyes. It won't help her, if she sees me fall apart.
I remember the day she moved in, over twenty years ago.
We were strangers then, ...but sisters we became.
Now it seems all those years are packaged up inside those cardboard boxes, wrapped in newsprint, taped shut, now moving on to another state, to somewhere I don't belong.
Her husband gently clears his throat, as he patiently waits by their car, giving her one last moment.
Her eyes glisten with tears. Mine sting too...but I had promised I wouldn't cry...so I am biting my bottom lip. A quick hug.. "Yes...we'll write...we'll visit...we'll call!
Soon! I promise,.........soon!"
She hands me a box of tulip bulbs. "These are the red ones... the ones you loved so much, something to remember me by."... I want to plant some in the new place, but have been saving some for you too"...
"Next year when they bloom, think of me, will you? A part of me to keep you company."
She walks to her packed car, turns once more with that familiar smile, the same little wave, that she gave me on that very first morning, as she stood at her mailbox. She jumps in next to her waiting husband. He starts the engine, and soon their car is heading down the street, that is no longer her street. Around the turn at the corner, that is no longer her corner
Tomorrow the SOLD sign comes down.
Perhaps a new wave, another smile, someone gathering mail ...will brighten my day.
But today, .....I will plant some tulips.
my garden awakes coffee brings comfort
from muddy slumber.... sipped from her favorite cup ...
lively red tulips my cat for company
For Deb's Contest: Spring haibun
Long poem by
Therese Bacha | Details |
~A To Z An Amazing Couple~
A is for Allow me to write a poem about my best friends
love affair with an army man, she was 35 years old he was
the same age living together for the past 5 years.
B is for Believing his love towards her as thee perpetual
love of the century their love is amazing, their sharing is
united, intelligence, its endearment, understanding
everything for a wonderful happy life together.
C is for Creative in her work, she is a born philosopher
so much she has patience, she loves her job, she exists
to give all her entity to her lover.
D is for Destiny for a unison hopefully to be able
to have a child of their own. They try each month
the tests come out negative.
E is for Eloping one day when she gets pregnant
marry and settle down in a beautiful country side
mansion that has been bought already.
F is for Forgetting to think about moving now to their
new home until she becomes pregnant. This month her
hopes were high as a future mother would sense that.
G is for Great news was announced on the phone to her
husband she is pregnant. That evening was a unique
celebration champagne dinner for 2 in the most beautiful
restaurant by the ocean. Following that evening was their
love making an enormous pleasure together never happened
before she told me.
H is for Happiness to the beyond, apart her work the buying
stuff for the baby, the babies room was a heavenly event for
both of them, they moved that month to their mansion by the
I is for Induced her delivery in the hospital that day, and her baby
son was born in 2 hours, so healthy and beautiful baby lying in
his mothers arms looking at her with yearning eyes.
J is for Joining close family and friends after a few days arrival
at their mansion.
K is for Kissing the baby and his dream she's a mother & his
disbelief that he is actually a father.
L is for Living together when the wedding took place in a small
church only family and the bride holding her baby boy in her arms.
M is for Married an hour ago their entry to their mansion was an
unforgettable event the house was decorated with roses everywhere.
N is for Never would they both forget how important their sons
career will be. Both vowed to stand by him grow together for the
utmost accomplishment of his success in studying as a lawyer.
O is for Ordering their breakfast after a sleepless night the baby
needing his mum every 3 hours to feed him the amazing sensation
of a full house filled with babies soft cry.
P is for Presents that he had bought for his wife a Diamond ring
with a beautiful pearl necklace which she wore with pride.
Q is for Quitting her job after years of practice was so important
as her dreams for her son to become a senetor in her goverment.
R is for Running for PM after graduating from Harvard University
His parents mansion over the years was transformed into invitations
huge gala for politicians finding him extremely adequate for this job.
S is for Signing papers as her son started to get involved with the
senators and sharing talks about her sons involvements with
politics. She was his right hand.
T is for Turning over to the secretary all the confidential papers
and she was very happy with the choice his son made about the
new secretary, his office was huge and employees everywhere.
U is for Unbelievable but true she was relieved at last and now
that her son is on the right track she will have all the time to be
again with her husband a normal life.
V is for Very close to her husbands office she decided to stop by
and surprise him for lunch at her favorite restaurant.
W is for Where is he the office was empty she has been so much
involved with her son she had neglected her husband.
She was told he went home already.
X is for Xmas was around the corner next month she went to buy
the Christmas decorations to surprise her husband.
Y is for Yelling for someone to come and help her instead she sees
her son in tears running towards her he hugged her and whispered
in her ear I have some news.
Mum dad I am already elected I will make you proud of me.
Z is for Zap will be my goal I promise you dad and mum
he got married and was elected.The first youngest to gain that
Long poem by
Roy Jerden | Details |
Oh sweet Angel of Jesus, wherefore lies your grave?
Your blood that is of Navarro, that Corsican so brave
She was a proud Tejana, such a beauty once they say
That enchanted Santa Anna, so far back in the day
On fairy feet she floated in Béjar’s promenade
Like radiating moonbeams her beauty was conveyed
Mantilla and peineta in the latest Spanish style
Caballeros peacocked near her, each hoping for a smile
But for noble Béjar maidens, any glancing was taboo
Except for caballeros that her family nodded to
A curtsey and a flourished bow were the courtly ways
Of greeting one another back in those golden days
Such a fine tradition was the Béjar promenade
To the Veramendi Palace, perhaps a masquerade
Or to dance a light fandango by the river’s perfumed air
All seemed much more beautiful when close to one so fair
Those were the days of wonder, when Béjar was so sweet
Before the revolution, and the Alamo’s defeat
Before some Anglos came to take with gun and Negro slave
The land that brave Tejanos had bled and died to save
Béjar was filled with drunkards, and rogues of every kind
No promenade was possible in streets so unrefined
And over near the Alamo, where freedom’s price was dear
The price was now determined by the slavery auctioneer
And yet one Anglo gentleman, a major in the war
Touched with noble chivalry, and the ways of a señor
The captured despot’s life did save, upon that victory day
From those who would have hanged the knave, down San Jacinto way
The moment that she met him, in the formal Spanish style
And looked into his honest eyes without a trace of guile
And read his soul so brave and pure, it seemed that time stood still
As nature linked their hearts as one, according to its will
A thousand days of happiness, a thousand days of bliss
Were all that God would grant them both before their final kiss
She laid her hero in his grave, and took their son in hand
And thought of how to speak to him and make him understand
Her gentle eyes had lost their shine; her hair was touched with gray
They wed her to the Dunker man, who took her far away
He never knew her sorrow, he never knew her soul
Inside her lonely citadel of iron self-control
He left her for another wife, and cast them all aside
But a mother’s duty to her sons would never be denied
And at the age of fifty-six, the time at last arrived
When she could welcome willingly the deadly reaper’s scythe
Oh sweet Angel of Jesus, wherefore lies your grave?
Your blood that is of Navarro, that Corsican so brave
By the village of Las Moras, down Rio Bravo way?
No one seems to know for sure, unto this very day
Oh, sons of Navarro! Let not that Béjar rose
Lie with the dust of strangers, where no one ever goes
Join her with her heart's true love, on acres gently blessed
With shady hills below pecans, where heroes go to rest
This historical poem is about one of my HS classmate's Tejano (in the original
sense) ancestors from the time of the Texas Revolution and the story is told
from that perspective.
The main characters are not named in the poem intentionally, and place names
are the old Spanish ones, but I will share with you the names of the
protagonist and her true love, in case you are interested in reading about
them. Her name was Angela de Jesus Maria Blasa Navarro. She was the niece of
Juan Antonio Navarro, one of the signers of the Texas Declaration of
Independence and a member of the important Navarro family of Bejar, present
day San Antonio. She married William Gordon Cooke, one of the heroes of the
Texas revolution, who is buried on Republic Hill at the Texas State cemetery
along with other notables. Angela was buried near Brackettville, originally called
The Dunker man was Angela's 2nd husband, Abraham Geiger Martin. He was a
member of the German Baptist Brethren church, nicknamed Dunkers because
they practiced full body baptism, but required three full immersions before you
were properly baptized. Apparently the marriage was a total failure and he
divorced her, leaving her to raise his son and William Cooke's son alone.
Long poem by
Amber Stratton | Details |
I was blinded by darkness
Not knowing where I planted each footfall
I had a body I had a heart
I had a mind and most of all a soul
I thought I was alive with happiness and joy
Alive with peace in my soul
But I was wrong dead wrong
I was all but dead to the world
It was Death that captured and trapped me
In a grave not letting go of me
In the end not knowing it was little ol’ me
Trying to breathe trying to fight my way out
Thinking I was almost there to the top but not even moving
I thought I was justified by my negativity and actions
Not knowing it was trapping me further down
Displaying the ignorance of my ways without caring for the ones I loved
The pain of it that was caused went noticed
Everyone telling me but not realizing it until now
Letting the deceit and evil willingly roll off my tongue
Thinking I was always right on everything
Thinking that all I need was the trust of man
No matter how long I sat by the fire I was cold
Even when the sunlight was resting upon my skin
I was still ice cold as Death’s very own
I did not think that life would be this dead within
The darkness of the ice cold abyss of the grave yard
Picking and choosing what to do seems right but it wasn’t
Trying again and again until finally picking up the one thing
That I thought would not help me in the long run
Thinking that I had all the love in the world
Knowing that nothing can bring me down was one
Of the biggest lies I made myself believe for so long
Thinking I had fait and love in my life but I was wrong
And in the end all there is was nothing but darkness
Deceit and evil rolling off the tongues of you so called
People walking blindly through the shadows
Of the ever present grasp of Deaths darkest abyss
Of all the wickedness that has been committed in my life
Why now has the Mighty Father and Mother given me a second chance
Why have they forgiven me of my sins without a second thought
Have I really forgiven myself so the Father the Mother and the Divine
To enter my body my mind my heart and my soul
Has the Lord and the Lady really seen that I have been trying to
Change and to become an adult woman mentally so my
Husband can rely on me in the time of need like now
I thought I was ready to begin a life with kids
Until I realized that I am still one myself
How will the Lord and Lady tell me when I am ready to have
The family I want with my husband who is my soulmate
All I can do is wait ever so patiently for the moment
The Lord and Lady will tell me when I am ready
Inside that dark grave a white light came to me
With a hand to pull me out of my hole I dug and saved me
From my own condemned version of hell after praying
They deliver me from my sins and the trespasses I’ve done
What are people going to do when they see me
Completely changed after the long visit to LCJ
God and Goddess thank you for saving my when I thought
There was no way for me to be saved and unworthy of it
Again thank you for everything I currently have
In my life my wonderful loving husband that only
Sees the potential in me all the time and the love he
Gives so unconditionally to me even when I
Do wrong in his eyes or the law’s eyes please
Show him the same lovingkindness and forgiveness you
Have so heavily laid on me to realize and forgive
Myself and those around me like I should
Have so long ago when you tried to show me the light
I have forgiven myself of the anger and hate I had
For my adopted family and now it is in the past I cannot
Change that but however I can change how the future
Goes by what I say and plan to do now today
I can look back not so long ago the darkness that
Covered my eyes then and hope the light keeps the veil away
I can see all the negative emotions that were running
And controlling me I had no idea what to do
Now I am grateful for the things I have for
The things I have come to realize on top of everything
I am the most thankful to you in my life
When I thought I did not deserve the love
And the care you have shown me
Love is for an eternity, not just a second, minute, hour or even a day.