I want to hold you back
replace the air mattress
with a comfy bed
and all your favourite things
I want to hold you back
but that is not what you want
or need
and I want what you want

a boy left home
and became
a man of two shores

Advertisements

Monday random: family

  • There was a time I thought I had to get away from my family
  • months and years went by sometimes with only silence
  • forgiveness was a rough lesson to learn
  • There was a time I was so alone I couldn’t bear it, and realized that no matter what, my family would take me in

Continue reading “Monday random: family”

Not a painter

for my children

I.
Then.

I’ll tell you now what you want to know
only lay your head in my lap first
and I will brush my fingers through your hair
while I tell you the story of why we are
who we are and why you are who you are
born into a whirlwind, your mother
a bundle of cautions, and your father
still trying to wrap up his own childhood

I had always wanted to be a painter
or a rock-and-roll singer
someone like Janis Joplin, leaving
her heart on the floor every night
and I’d sing in the bathroom, with
a hairbrush for a microphone

II.
Now.

I wasn’t blessed with that talent
with a throat that could create a masterpiece
I’m no Kathleen Battle or Renée Fleming
I am not Billie Holiday
I am that songbird outside your window
that does not shut up when you first wake
the one that gets in the last word

Blessed with words in my mouth from day one
I’ve learned to give them away
give the world something back
that it gives to me every time I open a book
or turn on the radio
each time I sit in a concert hall
how often in the museum
do I sit down in awe

III.
Posterity.

We all are given something, and this is mine
to tell you about your Father in Heaven
though I am not worthy to truly paint Him
I have faith that I will see him when I am done here
I have a voice to express my love to you
fully and completely
and perhaps if I am really lucky
to spread some words across the land

I have gifts in hand
I must give them away

and if I am very lucky

and I pay attention to the wind
when it blows
I might just get some of them back

To the busy housewife

that set the house on fire
that sought life
and found it was a tomb
the full glass spent
and saw no sun
the revels of youth
melted into air

Feast on thy dish of pain
how women on tv do
this insubstantial
pageant of cares
sleep beyond the grief
old before thy time

demand of it
sunlit, nutritious words
drowsy tinklings
rise! rise!
laughter humming
with flatt’ry’s tides
the owl with his honour
homeward. solemn.

be stubborn o’er thy
homely joys
an anthem swells
rise! rise!
craz’d with love
don’t wander, dreaming
the longing years

you understand
arrays of complex friends
heavy baggage agreed upon
in the same old place
who shall quarrel
in the dark again
thy sunlight outposts
the humming-bees rhythm
the song of life and death

now to live now to run
the fabric of thy towers
leave not thy vision
behind


A word collage, or cut-up poem from this source material

I took the Christmas tree down

I am sharing this out of season, an Easter poem I wrote a few years ago, as we were adjusting to our empty nest.

I wanted to share it with Harry Miller at Yellow Crane in the Rain. You should visit his blog. This is one of my favourite posts:
https://yellowcraneintherain.blog/2018/09/06/in-situ/

Are You Thrilled

on Holy Thursday, because I promised it would not be there
to look at on Easter morning. Dinner, notwithstanding
the ham and sweet potatoes would resemble our Christmas dinner
our eyes on the lovely tree in all its glory
the ornaments shiny and calling out to us, rejoice-celebrate-

Though now they mock us-drinking a toast to grandmas deceased, and
burn the roast and put out the candles, but they have no right
to judge us, those self-serving props of Santa Claus
on that holiest of holy days to look at our slips and slights, and
tell the neighbors, look their lights are up past epiphany

View original post

Our summer carpet

clover

It was the dads
who wanted to be rid of the dandelions
we sat for hours tying them stem to stem
into necklaces
worthy of Cleopatra
bracelets we imagined bangled
as we held hands and danced
and then she would spin
a whirling dervish in a pink headband
the clovers hiding their four-leafed numbers
for then, we were not intended to succeed
too quickly
the grass rich, and the weeds plentiful
but they looked like blooms
from Nebuchadnezzar’s hanging gardens
to us

Monday Random: learning something new

  • Who else didn’t know drinking games were a thing until the show ‘Lost’? The closest I came was flipping quarters into shot glasses. I guess I drank too much in the 80’s to notice there were games. Or maybe they didn’t exist yet
  • Garlic bread is not good date food
  • I am spending a week with my second-born who is 20-something. I can’t help but notice that, like his sister, I didn’t know him as well as I thought
  • I guess that’s because it’s been a year and they don’t tell us everything on the phone. He’s grown–
  • Sometimes it is frustrating to try to make a meaningful connection with our kids at the same time they want to strike out independently. But if we are patient–if we listen–it can be really great too
  • Just not what we were expecting
  • But maybe a little better

Continue reading “Monday Random: learning something new”