Morning sounds wake sleepy heads in beds.
A thud against the wall...daddy's home, drunk!
Mommy must have given him that mommy look!
Sis and I rush to help mommy off the floor as
daddy flops across the bed with his shoes on
smelling of stale beer and cigarette's stench.
Mommy is too dizzy to finish fixing our sandwiches
of baloney for our brown bag lunch. With one punch
he laid her flat again. When will his cruelty end?
Tomorrow is Parent Teacher conferences but
they both won't show up... again. They never do.
Mean taunts from ugly kids at school, we don't listen.
We watch the clock on the classroom wall that ends
with a clattering of noisy chatter and beat up books being
joyously slammed closed then shoved into back packs
as the bell loudly rings announcing the school days end.
We walk slowly home together with dulled anticipation
to the empty sounds of no one home to greet us.
The television's voice is a welcoming distraction that
elevates our spirits with happy kids in family shows.
The best thing about T.V. dinners is no dishes to wash.
Mommy comes home from work at the diner after dark
still sporting dark sunglasses to hide daddy's shiner.
The last sounds of the day comes from mommy's singing us
old songs she remembers from her youthful years at home.
Connie Marcum Wong
Poem of the Day June 21, 2016
Copyright © Connie Marcum Wong | Year Posted 2016
I watched my mother
Beautiful, petite, smart
Widowed at 28 with three small children
And people said, "Be extra good, your mother is fragile."
A blonde Jackie Kennedy,
Right down to the pill-box hat
The early 60s when women were pretty, songless birds
Protected in their husbands' split-level cages.
Remarry was the only way, "they" said
As she ran for public office, favored to win.
But he wouldn't have a wife that worked
Unless ironing his shorts three times to get it "right."
Glass is fragile. I found that out
As I heard him smashing it when he beat her at night.
Bones are fragile. I found that out
When mommy had broken fingers and toes after loud nights.
My mother was many things.
A victim. A woman. But fragile?
Mommy bird sang a song of invincibility
As she escaped her cage with five children in tow.
I have two girls of my own. Smart.
Beautiful. Compassionate. I am proud.
They know that fragile means breakable
And that women in our family are more steel than glass.
Fragile is for collectibles we buy and sell.
My mother taught me we cannot be owned.
Fragile is for birds without a voice.
But my mother sang, even if in a different key.
My mother was the strongest woman I ever knew.
I hope she looks down on her female descendants
And sees that one Jackie-like woman in a pill box hat
Inspired generations of decidedly non-fragile women.
January 26, 2017
Copyright © Cindi Rockwell | Year Posted 2017
Elegy to Child Lost
Passion's love oft tempts despair
Casts a prideful cosmic dare--
Like Prizing Joy's most intimate caress
Babe snug beneath a mother's breast
Senses at this time are keen
There's no secret kept between
Loving mother, wriggling babe--
Wanted , dreamed of, much delayed
But entwined twin was also loved--
Some say Nature's method proves
That one twin may give all to mate---
But this fatal sacrifice must decimate.
Only mother's eyes would feel babe's smiles--
or sense those legs that wandered miles
And daring feet that danced in tunes while
Arms swam in gentle Celtic croons.
When babe vanished--not a sound.
Mother 's grief was not allowed.
Tempted so to trail behind
Escaping shattered troubled mind.
Squelching sorrow's hungry arms
She Tried erase babe's fluttering charms
Never spoke of-- never mourned.
By her husband she was warned
Was best forget a child so early lost--
Funerals, gravestones--such a cost--
But the years have called babe near,
Mother's journal writ in tears:
'Please forgive my selfish heart.
Repressed from all --this tragic part
I felt your sacrificial act--
You left your cherished twin intact'.
There is no law of random acts
Doctors examine data facts
It may be --that in the womb
When both spring flowers cannot bloom
One bold twin refrains to eat
Compels the other to complete
Hardy growth that life requires---
Sparks survival's crucial hours.
Not an accident 'tis sure--
Boldest spirits blossom pure.
Victoria Anderson-Throop ©
Copyright © Victoria Anderson-Throop | Year Posted 2012
What sort of a mother am I
Who cannot even count
the innumerable bullet wounds
spread all over the delicate body
of her beloved child
However, day and night
I keep counting
the myriad of marks
left by the terrorists' bullets
on his school bag;
I will also keep counting
the innumerable shot wounds
that spread all over
his blood-stained books and uniform as well
provided I have the luck
to live until then.
(translation by mazHur Butt)
STA PA BADAN K DA GOLO NAKHO TA,
CHA HADO PRE NAKHODAM
CHE MA SHMARALLY KHO WAY
STA PA BASTA K DA GOLO NAKHY HUM KHEY DERY WAY
ZEH TOLA WRAZ YE SHMARAM
STA KITABUNO AU KAPO K NAKHY
HAGHA BA HUM SHMARAMA
KHO K JWANDAI PATY SHOM
( Pa 16,December da yo shaheed bachi da Mor sanda)
16 December ko shahadat pany waly aik Bachy ki Maan ka Nooha..
Mein kesi maa'n hoo'n
goliyoan ke nishaan
jism nazuk per tere
ay meri aankh ke taaray
gin-nay ka izn
mila hee nahi
haan magar shumaar karti hoon
subh o roz
tere bastay pe lage
golion ke ghaO beshumaar
tere kaproan aur kitaboan per bhi jo hein
zaalimoan kee golion ke beshumaar nishaan
tere pak khoon se labraiz
mein unhein bhi gin-na chahti hoon
aur gin hee loon gee unhein
agar zindagi ne wafa kee.
Mein Ik maa'n hoon,
(translation by mazhar butt)
Copyright © mazhar butt | Year Posted 2015
quick! grab the soft rose
your hand now aching, bloodied
life's dream isn't always what it suddenly seems in ice cream's melted hope
not when a yearning man is twisted; turning, churning curdles sweet milk sour
carnal captivity, the new little girl's horror, where slavery spreads her legs
life's little trick, survivals mindless instinct, plays it's vicious, ace in the heart card
a zygote's military resolve
an embryo doesn't consider
precious life somehow swims forth in a plastic, kiddie plunge
the wet nurse has no degree, but life hangs, by an umbilical balance
dreams are reality thwarted by circumstance
time bides, love does not divide, it grows feral strong with fowl gazes ever watching
forced sharing, twisted family time, memories remain, an anchor in deepest abyss
forward, for a daughter's faint, possible, distant. infinitely small, maybe someday
light, a pinprick, blind chance, endured, survived, conquered with love alone, hero
"You've been looking for me;
Hurry, I'm free now!"
Copyright © Michael Cahill | Year Posted 2014
I wake up with another tear
for I have again, relived the nightmare
will it ever leave me with any way to see
when will I again be able to see my family
the past is forgiven
so why is it still living
my heart was so broken
but soon after it was frozen
let it lie and the past die
for I have a life to live with
but the past is still being relived
how do I stop this past of torture
so I can find my new future
Copyright © Denise Hopkins | Year Posted 2013
I want to write
This time of that cold night
when I heard my mother cry
When I saw her lie
Flat on her belly
Her back bare and scaly
Her eyes swollen
Her right stolen
By one she called husband.
I saw the tears
I saw her fears
she sobbed between the whips
she tightly bit her lips
And tightened her hips
to swallow the pain
just for her stay.
I want to write
this time of that night
that night without stars
when I saw the scars
On her back
the scars stuck
made a permanent mark
on her back.
I want to write
I want to write
This time of my mother
write her as a victim
tortured by male chauvinism.
write her as a strong woman
Who challenged the stress of a man
Mama who raised us
so rise mama and shine
All will be fine
Mama rise and shine
All will be fine
RISE MAMA AND SHINE.
All will be fine.
Copyright © Griffins Ndhine | Year Posted 2015
Even young people like Fred
went from sad to mad,
thinking that happiness
was a wish not grated;
he succumbed to sickness,
he wished he were dead.
Changing moods in him persisted
and created a split personality;
he showed thoughts of insensibility,
a pitiful man unloved and afraid.
His mother stood by him and cried,
friends and family kept their distance;
once he was so loved and admired,
his grey eyes exuded confidence.
Resigned to his fate, he became a wreck
it got worse until he went completely beserk;
smashing everything he found in his way,
he impersonated an actor in his wild play.
He found pleasure in destroying a memory
too bitter for him to endure with gentleness;
when his fury was appeased by madness,
he calmed down and laughed deliriously.
At only eighteen, his destiny is sealed forever;
in a wheelchair he spends his days in distress,
not even his mom can comfort him with hugs...
he looks at her sadly, then bursts into laughter.
Copyright © Andrew Crisci | Year Posted 2016
I, me, I, myself,
I've become what I never thought I would
The monsters I've worked so hard to fight, are now me, I,
He put his hands on her neck
To hurt me, to scare me
But he scared her
The fear in her eyes, the tears that came running down her face will always haunt me
She was screaming, mommy help me!
I stood there terrified, I quickly agreed with him so he could put her down
I ran to her, she ran to me and we embraced each of us sobbing
Her heart beating fast like mine
Holding her tight, protecting her
Am in love, or so I think
I am so blurred with stupidity that I hurt what is mine
I can't see beyond the lies and the fears
Maybe it's the fear of being alone, being a single parent
Or the fear that am not "happily married" like most of my age mates
Or the fear, that I will be placed on the judgment bench by my culture; once married you have to take the bad and good, you have to tolerate, you shouldn't complain, it'll be a disgrace if you go back to your mother's house, stick to it, look at your mothers and learn
The umbrella of abuse has so many holes
You are always soaking wet with pain and fear
My smiley makeup that I put on everyday, has to be redone every second
It never lasts
Sometimes behind a beautiful smiley, hides abuse and violence
*Written for a friend*
Copyright © njeri hunjeri | Year Posted 2015
You're as mean as a Grizzly Bear and you think that I'll marry you.
Get that notion out of your head because it's something I won't do.
You're so mean and vicious that you actually broke your own daughter's arm.
You injured her when you were supposed to protect her from coming to harm.
You actually believe that you and I will be man and wife.
I loathe you and I sure as hell don't want you in my life.
When you were only seventeen, you were arrested for aggravated assault.
You've spent over a decade in jail for your crimes and it's entirely your fault.
Getting your daughter put in a foster home is what I'm going to do.
Loving you would be like loving a rattlesnake and I'll never marry you.
(This is a fictional poem)
Copyright © randy johnson | Year Posted 2015
Don't be born
Don't see the world
The world is not beautiful as you think
The world has changed from your last birth
They need your flesh not your cute smile
They don't listen to your giggles
They don't smile at you
They come for your flesh
Don't think your mother's womb is the safest in the world
Your mother is struggling to protect her life here
Don't come to this world
Don't come to your mother's womb
Don't be born
Copyright © Jay Dev | Year Posted 2016
Mama – Translation of Kevin Gilbert’s « Mum » by T. Wignesan
Kevin Gilbert (July 10, 1933 – April 1, 1993) - father of Irish-English ancestry, mother an aboriginal from New South Wales - was orphaned at seven. His elder sisters looked after him until he left school at 13 to scavenge a living through hunting rabbits and kangaroo and thriving on what he could pick up from white peoples’ rubbish heaps. He was also a seasonal worker, as he says, « …not just because times are hard, but because I was BLACK and the white man had taken my country from my people and kept me and my people as victims, as slaves. » In 1957, he was sentenced to penal servitude for life for having killed his white wife in a brawl when he was « pissed » in the wee hours of the morn. « …of which I can only say that, I was a Black boy in a white court where the jury, the judge, the lawyers were ALL white. What chance of justice ? » He served fourteen and a half years in prison where he managed to get some training in printing : a good many of his works were self-published at first.
He has the distinction of being the first aboriginal playwright (his first play, The Cherry Pickers, written on toilet paper, was smuggled out of prison) ; the first to anthologize aboriginal poetry ; the first to produce a political tract or dissertation, and the frist to produce an oral history of his peoples in book form. Like his contemporary Oodgeroo Noonuccal, he enjoyed the reputation of being a great talker. This poem and the quotations are from his anthology : Inside Black Australia, Penguin, 1988.) T. Wignesan, december 4, 2016.
Quinze chiens rôdaient
ils hurlaient sans relâche
leurs poils sales
broussailleux et leurs os
désignaient leur forme
rappelant d’un passé maigre
voire, encore plus pénible
autour de leur vieille maison
dont ils restaient toujours fidèles
comme si ils voulaient dire
il y ait quelque chose plus que le manger
que nous retiennent ici
une qualité que nous nous sentons et apprécions
laquelle fait hérisser et briller nos pelages
par l’amour de ceux qui habitent là-dedans
et en entrant par la porte de la tente
je m’étais pris à la gorge
une femme sur un lit
ses jambes pareilles à des boîtes d’emballages
morte – elle resta immobile
le drap d’une couleur jaune sale
la couverture déchirée se trouvant
sur ses pieds
la condition déplorable de sa tente délabrée
des casseroles enrobées de graisse m’ont presque obligé
à pousser des cris d’horreur – mon esprit
divaguait tout azimut - le bruit me tambourinait aux oreilles
j’entendis la voix douce d’un homme : « Ma Mama
elle est aveugle et pendant toutes ces dix-sept
années je n’ai jamais vu
sans rime ni raison la décision
pour ne pas nous accorder un chez-soi
témoigne de cette vérité-là : la tente le lit
les chiens sont mieux abrités,’ lui dit-il.
‘Ma Mama, elle est aveugle, elle dors maintenant
elle réveillera bientôt
la vérité est que
elle n’ira nulle part
ailleurs que restait dans son lit
La Commission décida : pas de foyer
ne pas mérité
ou Noire ou quelque chose et…’
‘les chiens vivent mieux que nous dans ce pays
et nous ne pourrions faire mieux que mourir
ma mère, elle est aveugle,’
© T. Wignesan – Paris, 2016
Copyright © T Wignesan | Year Posted 2016