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Best Julie Heckman Poems

Below are the all-time best Julie Heckman poems as chosen by PoetrySoup members

View ALL Julie Heckman Poems

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

A Pencil's Point of View

We are a jelly jar full of pencils new in town.
From Europe we came heads up, points down.
No fancy names, we shared the same woodshed
and thanked Welches jelly for this practical bed. 

Lead was a number four and fatter than all.
Trim number twos, we all awaiting the call. 
Writing and erasing, sometimes we paid
For frivolous writing the humans had made.

The sharpest point in the jar was funny ole Lead.
His weftage was smooth but his family all now dead.
Lead became smaller and smaller and in time
was nothing but a stub, when #2s were in their prime

It's unfair to be held back once you know our point of view
to trash cans we go for no reason with no expectation to sue. 
Till one day we snap and die from being tossed
A point without a pencil, life is colder than frost

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2011

Details | Julie Heckman Poem


Crimson lips, lovers awaken with a kiss
Creamy white skinned Goddesses resting
In a time where Socrates lusted after Sappho's 
Poetry and art.
The Grecian people worshiped her with
her beauty and exquisite prose. On the wings
of her art she played enchanting music arranged 
for immortality.

Golden chariots in fields of apples bold,
yet, solitary like one fallen from the tree, 
Sappho wrote her memoirs and music
while exiled, her death unspoken.

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2011

Details | Julie Heckman Poem


My grandfather on my father’s side, was a pecker-toothed sidle who raped his 
daughter when she was just ten. He threw down vodka from an eternal well and took my father out to buy prostitutes when he was just fifteen... It was here that my father first learned the true value of a woman. Mercifully, a permanent steel brace got loose at the Pennsylvania steel mill where he worked and crushed Grandfather into a pool of blood and urine.
     My father was a dried seed rattling in an empty gourd… he had grown up 
hardened with leather-stiff roots exposed too long in the sun. My mother knew 
that he wanted to rape me, so I kept guard with knives and ran away whenever I could. I went to bed fantasizing how to sneak into his bedroom and kill him with 
the kitchen carving knife. 
      My older brother hadn’t adjusted well to the chaos either, so he put all his expectations and dreams into a matchbook and burned down three houses in the neighborhood. He secretly, robbed his friends of their valuable coin collections. He grew weary and confessed and was taken to a local Mental Hospital for evaluation. At fourteen, I needed a good stiff drink! I was transferred to two different foster care homes and grew up like a weed.
     My mother Dolly was an auburn haired porcelain bisque, matt finished doll from a
discriminating collections of dolls... her father's dolls. She was not a witty woman 
but silent, afraid and alone. She gave birth to three children who grew up like 
wild dogs while Dolly made Betty Crocker weekends and otherwise TV dinners 
until she grew tired... very tired.
      One day the brothers were playing with Dolly tossing her back and forth… 
like a ball, one to another... until we dropped her. Fragile, she shattered into pieces 
on the gray cement patio. My father came out determined to put the pieces back 
together but clumsily, he repeatedly stepped on Dolly crushing the refined 
fragments into powdered dust.

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2011

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

Prayer Breathes In

Australia down under
Australia under prayers 
Prayers that fly
Prayers that bother
Bother your heart
Bother in swells
Swells into far lands
Swells into rocks
Rocks of honor
Rocks of pain 
Pain of forests
Pain of tides 
Tides circling the cold
Tides breaking waves
Waves of emptiness
Waves of glory
Glory in kindness
Glory in honor
Honor we meet
Honor we see
See the emptiness
See the smiles 
Smiles without riches 
Smiles of a trial
Trials that excite you
Trials that see through you
You are endless
You are poor
Poor in richness
Poor in pocket
Pockets of koalas
Pockets of kangaroos safely
Safely finding nests
Safely from the flight
Flight in forest
Flight in your time
Time past darkness
Time from the heart
Heart opens your senses
Heart opening to God
God sounding the music
God holding our hands
Hands touching our brothers
Hands binding the light
Light as your spirit
Light as your love
Love that dawns
Love that breathes
breathe the waves
breathing the dawn

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2015

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

teach me in a dream

Constellations of values and ethics 
like dancing stars in onyx nights. 
Majestic fields of ideals stay grounded 
in what only seems right. Keenly, I search 
philosopher’s heels to grasp theoretical 
notions, held together by gravity’s scales 
as comets of light circle in tails
and teach me in a dream.

What is the uniqueness of your poetry?
Someone once said to me that “poetry can’t include abstract language.”

Well, that really got me going! As a lover of language and theory I just couldn’t let this one pass. The uniqueness of my poem is that I use abstract language with planetary imagery to lightly illustrate two mega-abstract ideas, ethics & philosophy. The end culminates that all knowledge is refutable (i.e. “and teach me in a dream”).

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2011

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

What You gave

What you gave was the humility
lost now in the starry universe,
dark and gray about to rain. 
A circle of stars shuttering in place,
shifting from season to space,
dancing in darkness. 

What you gave were these arms to
reach out and hold the world close
in an ever changing way, buoyant 
and feisty, or ready to give up. 
What you gave will always be alive
breathing into the surfaces of 
the universe.

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2014

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

Tea Party

Lies glamour gossip and Earl Grey tea 
turbulent tales boiling in China cups 
elegant sacraments of blue-haired ladies 
pinkies stuck up in the air, hiding their 
anger or boredom or feeling their own 

Crimson glass roses feathers and jewels 
crowned with wide-brim hats, trimmed
gloves, lace fans and perhaps some pearls 
are appealing to these extravagant, fast
and proper old girls

The guild does not approve of
             tortilla chips or
                piercings of the tongue.

Invitation is by Tea Bag only. merely 
a device to project the status of a 
proper and affluent wife.
Shaved legs polished nails and GiGi’s 
Brazilian waxing will enliven you as a 
part of the crowd, but may be a little 
bit taxing.

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2013

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

Green Sea Turtle

The sea unleashes its children green 
seeking a sandy shielded defense and 
swimming wings for legs, scraping 
their way from seaweed waters at low 
tide the sea awakens...

Those crusted, frothy shells demand
their way toward the grasses as destiny 
calls. Barely an eye to see, eroded like a 
silver spoon, they plummet forward
jerky as a scared dog, tumbling at each
step... heavy trucks bumping over a
rocky road. As the gods would have
it they succeed to lay their eggs 
on shore.

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2014

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

Blue Marlin

It was my birthday and my partner wanted to take a trip to Mazatlan,
on the coast of Mexico. We decided to go deep-sea fishing so the next day.
We got up very early and headed to the beach. We were in a small 
boat with two other men. We started out and the driver had hooked up 
our lines with leuers as big as my forearm. Well within one hour we hooked 
an eleven foot sail-fish, the beautiful beast took about 45 minutes to capture 
after putting up an admirable fight we landed him and put him inside the boat. 
As he died I remember his beautiful blue color turned to black. It wasn't 
pleasant, I felt a tinge of guilt because they were not eatable but only stuffed 
for show. I could just imagine how ridiculous this giant fish would look on my
small apartment wall, 

We continued on our excursion and not even an hour later we hook another fish...
who ever thought it would be the fisherman's dream...a blue marlin. This required 
some strength  so the five of us took turns reeling her in. The marlin would jump 
out of the water and the captain would speed up the boat in her direction allowing 
us to reel the line in faster. Well we played this sordid game for five hours until the 
marlin died of exhaustion. Now dead it floated to the top of the water, black instead 
of blue from the loss of oxygen. We tied him to the side of the boat...he was over 
eleven feet and weighed 750 lbs. The captain hung out the blue flag  and we drove
back to shore to be welcomed by many from the small town. We were instant
celebrities but my guilt was getting the best of me. How or why did I just kill
these two beautiful animals, just for sport! ...barbaric.

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2014

Details | Julie Heckman Poem

It's a Snail's Life

There is everything ugly about the little creepy snail
he delivers the slime scraping his foot. Maybe it’s his small,
pea size shrunken brain or those tiny eyes, or the way 
he slinks on his flat foot that squirms underneath  
his round tubular body with black eyes on the tips
of the long tentacles two, on his cold little head.

Two more short tentacles are upon the pointed head.
with the shorter pair for feeling around the park. The snail
has two long tentacles that hold his eyes on the tips.
At three years old they lay white eggs so white and small
which stick to them and are buried in the ground underneath.
Holes he digs to hide his body safely tucked away

from foes who know he’s tasty, so he goes on his way.
Piercing black eyes on top of his loathsome head,
s/he is a hermaphrodite with equipment  underneath.
The shell reproduces itself, alone like other snails.
His radula is rough and grainy but still, a foot very small
with a row of tiny teeth which eats leaves on the tips.

If he falls over, struggling, his whole world tips.
Unfortunately he can’t get up having no legs anyway.
So what could be worse than to live life as a snail?
There are African snails who are 15 inches toe to head,
while the body is 2lbs of protein we boil and eat snails
who are harvested by hand in the ground underneath.

He flourishes as a pest in the dirty ground underneath.
The shell slimes along without instruction or tips.
What could be worse than to live life as a snail?
Destroying crops he eats root, stems and fruit on his way,
but if a dog eats the snail there’s death to his head.
A mythical figure and a symbol of deadly sin, so small

he has small dreams, but at church he generously tips,
with holy expectations, underneath he knows the way
to his heart and his head as a martyr enduring life as a snail.

Copyright © julie heckman | Year Posted 2010