creativity · culture · poetry · writing

Spotlights Burn

She amassed children while
he pursued accolades

Family photos display
northern shorelines
tanned faces, white-toothed grins
parents not represented

Lost her childhood
at the bottom of a ravine
laid beaten and shattered
no one came to rescue her.

Guess that’s what drew her
the his light; money, she hoped
would not abandon her.

But muck tracks the same
and children need feeding
and absent a co-parent
she sleeps most days.

Offspring learn independence
a product of adults’ disarray
outlasting the fickleness of fame.

(For Reena’s Exploration Challenge:  prompt is the last line of the poem.  Image my own.)

abuse · adversity · poetry · recovery · writing

Cracking the Code

Adept at uprooting,
conditioned to follow chaos –
know my place there.

Kindness unsettles –
each ray piercing
cracking the crust

unleashing a prism
both painful and joyous –
legacy of dysfunction.

(Poem from Twitter @Vjknutson.  Image from personal collection.)

 

 

creativity · life · Love · poetry · relationships

Chasing Snakes

Who ghosts desire?
I long for a kiss,
my glass belly ice
& concrete clouding
our porcelain peace.

A good woman lingers,
then after voices joy

I, marble angel,
let men like father,
with grass on their hand,
pat eternity,
the door sheer,
timely,

Life!

(Disclaimer:  Fridays I play around online with Magnetic Poetry.  The words are not mine, and therefore; I cannot be held responsible for the outcome…right?! Lol.)

 

Family · life · Love · poetry · relationships

Missing

Have you seen her –
the child we lost,
the one who lost herself?

born to a sister
breasts not yet ripe
for motherhood’s call

a passenger
on a perilous ride,
sweetness eclipsed

by a cacophony
of raised voices
the wails of women

helplessly trapped
a smothering drama;
how easily she escaped

slipped from our clutches
found comfort in the streets
preferred coldness of strangers

to the raging fires at home;
lost her to the lure of parties,
an elixir for the empty places,

found her once amongst
the debris of discarded needles
and the haze of sexual reek

the golden halo of youth
now matted clumps of shame
her beauty sunken in shadows

we’d taught her well, it seems –
the art of submission, how to
betray the self, embrace defeat

tried to pick her up, create
a milieu of normalcy, establish
homelike roots, but shams

do not last and she ran again
the echo of her absence a hole
ringing in our hearts, we are

guilt-ridden, apologetic, fear
the power of our inadequacy;
try to forget, justify, cringe

for the child we lost,
the one that got away,
the one that lost herself.

(Submitting this for Ragtag Community’s daily prompt: needle.  Computer is going into the shop so I may be MIA for bit.  Missing was first penned in October of 2017.

Family · poetry · recovery · relationships · Uncategorized · writing

Family Portrait

Did you know that life would come to this?
Flattened memories pressed between wax,
the essence of our efforts forgotten, the dreams,
so carefully construed, lost.  You leaned toward
the conventional, and I was ever the sentimentalist
and yet we ended up in the same place – shadow
selves standing at the banks of our disheveled lives,
survivors, nonetheless, tokens of a past riddled
with so many lies, so much heartbreak, we are
ghost sisters, haunted, hunting, unable to step
away – drawn in, pulling apart – all that remains.

blogging · creativity · Family · poetry · writing

Two-Storied

A two-story, red brick
set on the edge of town
was our castle, tall cedars,
like a moat, separating us
from unwanted onlookers

Strategically placed intercoms
tracked our movements, and
walls that moved revealed
forbidden spaces – passageways
that led to covert rooms

Our King was not benevolent,
and nor was our mother his queen –
for the woman he worshipped,
who held his heart’s throne,
dwelt in the shadows, and reigned.

Elizabeth, she was, regal
and bejeweled, long white gloves
brandishing a silver holder,
red lips blowing rings of seduction,
her presence a disquieting menace

She would not stir from our fortress
and none of us would speak of her
lest our kingdom might crumble
Our castle was two-storied: one
a man’s the other his alter ego.

(Written for Laura’s Manic Mondays 3-way prompt:  castle)

 

abuse · Family · life · poetry · recovery · relationships

Tangled

Father told me I had no problems –
didn’t even know what problems were,
so I tucked away grief, pretended,
mastered the art of suppression –
what did I matter, after all?

Failed to grasp the underlying message –
ignored the extent of his personal pain,
translated indifference into selfish agendas,
set up walls to protect myself, against him,
projecting rejection onto others.

Too late now, I understand, hurt for the
distance created by misunderstandings,
recognize with deep sorrow that our timing
was out of rhythm – society unable to fathom
the secrets that we held – unnecessary burdens

Wonder if I will ever unravel the deceit,
unwrap the loss of self, the shame, recover
a sense of self-worth that allows for acceptance
of problems without self-reproach, or guilt;
will gain the capacity for far-reaching forgiveness.

 

 

abuse · Family · poetry

Koolaid

Yellow was the colour
of their house, green
the lawn upon which
we played – the house
of boys where fun lived.

Ours was two-storey,
red brick with black,
the colour of our air,
privacy fences blocking
outsiders, girls within

Never heard a voice raised
there, was served only milk
and cookies in the kitchen;
could not understand why
Mom said don’t go inside

but they had mini cars, and
trucks with working parts,
better than our dolls, and I
wished I could be a boy –
less complicated it seemed

And I wished my mother
played tennis with the ladies
and watched from the kitchen
as children played baseball
offered Koolaid in the heat.

Had a friend there, a boy
so kind and gentle, taught me
respect, protected from harm,
let me be me – was it love
I felt, at such a tender age?

We moved away, though,
left that sunshine house
behind, lost touch with
friendship, never again
to connect with neighbours

Everyone has something
to hide, Mom said, implying
ours was the better devil,
drank her Koolaid, too old
now to undo childhood’s lies.

(Image: suburbman.tumblr.com)

abuse · Family · life · Love · poetry · relationships

Missing

Have you seen her –
the child we lost,
the one who lost herself?

born to a sister
breasts not yet ripe
for motherhood’s call

a passenger
on a perilous ride,
sweetness eclipsed

by a cacophony
of raised voices
the wails of women

helplessly trapped
a smothering drama;
how easily she escaped

slipped from our clutches
found comfort in the streets
preferred coldness of strangers

to the raging fires at home;
lost her to the lure of parties,
an elixir for the empty places,

found her once amongst
the debris of discarded needles
and the haze of sexual reek

the golden halo of youth
now matted clumps of shame
her beauty sunken in shadows

we’d taught her well, it seems –
the art of submission, how to
betray the self, embrace defeat

tried to pick her up, create
a milieu of normalcy, establish
homelike roots, but shams

do not last and she ran again
the echo of her absence a hole
ringing in our hearts, we are

guilt-ridden, apologetic, fear
the power of our inadequacy;
try to forget, justify, cringe

for the child we lost,
the one that got away,
the one that lost herself.

(Image: alwayslonliness.blogspot.com)