A Lofty Poem

Standard

Lofty shoulders
Lofty pose
Happy children
I think it shows

img_0482Lofty perch
Up in a tree
Boys love to climb
It’s plain to see

dsc05464Lofty bridge
One mile high
img_1342Lofty view
Of lofty sky

img_0696Next generation
Aloft in tree
My favorite view —
My family

Stay or Go

Standard

I prayed a prayer I never thought I’d pray
Most Holy God of Life and Breath and Woe —
My mother is dying. Please, Lord, let her stay.

My sister has to come from far away.
It’s important that she be here, Lord, You know!
And I prayed that prayer I never thought I’d pray

Mom is suffering. I don’t know what to say!
Each breath a gasp, a gurgle, restricted flow —
My mother is dying. Please, Lord, let her stay

We still have things unsaid that we must say
Oh God, it feels so selfish to ask this, though —
This is a prayer I never thought I’d pray.

Morphine, atropine — her color oh-so-gray
Family ’round the bed, time moves so slow
My mother is dying. Please, Lord, let her stay

Just one more hour – a piece of one more day
So cold, so cold. Outside the wind does blow —
I’m praying prayers I never thought I’d pray —
My mother is dying. Please, Lord, let her go.

Photo taken November 1, 2015

Photo taken November 1, 2015

Millipede

Standard

I once found a millipede outside
Curled up, like he was trying to hide
He said, “Check it out! This June
I’m making a cocoon –”
I’ll transform into a lovely butterfly!”

img_8596

How often are we sorely disappointed because we aren’t the creature we want to be!

Last June I found this millipede and at first thought it was a caterpillar. Closer inspection showed millipede — pretty awesome millipede to be precise.

No, it will never transform into a butterfly — but it was totally cool in its own right.

Stewart

Standard

My brother Stewart was first —
First child, a bundle of joy
My parents’ hearts nearly burst.

pict0858-1My mother, a nurse, now nursed
Her firstborn, a sweet baby boy
My brother Stewart was first

But life is so unrehearsed
There followed girl, boy, girl, boy —
My parents’ hearts nearly burstpict0965-1

My mother was fully immersed
Home became her employ
My brother Stewart was first

To marry, and not quite divorce
His happiness – just a decoy?
My parents’ hearts nearly burst

And then, the end, the worst
A heart attack, life destroyed
My brother Stewart was first
My parents’ hearts nearly burst.


Photo Challenge: Nostalgia — got me thinking about my oldest brother who passed away too young – at the age of 59.

Here’s a villanelle to go with the Photo Challenge.

Learning – A Pantoum

Standard

IMG_0091My grandson’s language skills have just begun
Henry picks up words to play with them
My father knows that words can be quite fun,
But, his mind just won’t cooperate with him.

Henry picks up words to play with them
Delighted, Henry counts out: one, two, three
But his mind just won’t cooperate with him
“Seven, fourteen, fir-teen, twenty-free”

Delighted, Henry counts out: one, two, three
A little child numbering the birds
“Seven, fourteen, fir-teen, twenty-free”
Now he grows confused by all these words.

A little child numbering the birds.
My father knows that words can be quite fun.
Now he grows confused by all these words
My grandson’s language skills have just begun

 

*****

A pantoum is a poem of interwoven lines.  The second and fourth line of each quatrain are repeated in the next quatrain as lines one and three.

Ideally, it’s witty or punny. This one is not.

I was thinking about the way our lives intertwine, especially across generations.

In “The House on Beartown Road” author Elizabeth Cohen said, “Daddy walks around, dropping pieces of language behind him, the baby following, picking them up.”

That image has stuck with me and comes to mind often as I’ve watched my father struggle to find words, while Henry is learning new words every day.