Family · poetry · relationships · writing

Looking For Silver Linings

Shoulder to shoulder
we contemplate clouds, hunt for
silver, my brother
lost, then found, ponders what ifs –
clouds become threads, unite us.

(Tuesdays, I borrow from Twitter @Vjknutson.  Photo mine)

Family · poetry · relationships

Parental Passages

Carefully we construct
security for offspring –
add luxuries to entertain
accommodate growth
play host to revolving-
door friends and dates.

And yet, we are graded
on performance – met
or unmet expectations –
held up against a stack
of other super parents,
silhouettes of perfection.

Still, we celebrate goals,
sprouting family, ignore
the slanders, and ease
into age with a tad of kook,
or wild inappropriateness –
all expressions of our love.

(First edition of this poem appeared Feb/’18.  Image from personal collection.  Submitted for Reena’s Exploration challenge, choosing the prompt: silhouette.)

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.)

art · Family · Love · poetry · relationships · writing

Birch Trees (with recording)

Strains of Tijuana Brass flood the yard
while father on bended knee tends
his garden, tiers of stone edged rows
encircling a trio of birch trees.

Father points out birches on Sunday
drives, as if the bark is sacred, leaves
whispering a secret I cannot hear –
stirs in me an indefinable longing.

My husband planted birch trees
there amongst the flower beds –
how the leaves shimmer in sunlight,
how my heart quickens, bittersweet.

Imagine Father seated there, mellow
as he was in old age, angst expended,
tyranny of parenting set aside – understand
love unexpressed dwells in birch trees.

(Watercolour image by yours truly)