Posts Tagged ‘Dayne’


Posted: April 17, 2011 in My Poetry
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Caught mid-punch,
as fist met face.

like an alabaster

Every muscle,

Months of work,
pay off.


The color
of grape Kool-Aid;
purple with swirling blue.

Umbilical cord tight
around his neck,
he strangled
with every contraction.

Heart rate dropped
so perilously low,
a pediatrician was called
to be on hand…

Pushing then swoosh
there he was,
my blue baby.

They removed
the cord from his neck,
and handed him to his father.
I stroked his face;
the same color as my nail polish.

Suction of fluid from lungs
then oxygen followed
until he grew pinker,
more human.
Still, a bloody little thing
always held by someone else.

I felt no sense of attachment.
Just crushing weight of responsibility;
knowing he was mine
at for least 18 years.

I didn’t want to get too close,
terrified by my year-old nephew’s
repeated clinical deaths.
I spent the night awake,
trying to devise ways
to make a break for it –
despite the pain.

Morning came
I was still there,
unable to figure out
how to flee into the darkness;
leave him to his father,
my mother…anyone
but me.

around the corner;
a clear acrylic bin.
I looked in –
my fatal error.
I never looked back again.

He was mine.
My child.
The one I’d waited for.
I loved his little turtle face,
strange mewling sounds,
his smell.

Through the years,
there were problems.
Bad lungs kept me afraid
that I’d lose
the only thing that mattered.

A sweet child,
beautiful, charming.
He always had that gift.

Then pre-teen,
cocky, sullen
but sometimes mine
again, at night.
I would read to him
or sing
and he would forget
that he was not a mama’s boy;
nestle into the crook of my arm.

Teenage years
spent learning how
to kill with his bare hands:
martial arts

Now he’s an adult.
I look back
on years
that went too fast.

All the changes
all the chances
I had to make a difference.
I messed up
most of them.

He has no need,
now, for a mother.
He wants me far away.
He’s just a cold stranger
but I love him, anyway.

If you were to ask me
what he wanted
where he lived,
or how he felt,
I could give you general answers,
gleaned from other sources.

My own son
is as alien to me
as any stranger on the street.

Looking at his baby books,
I pause at this page,
and that. Remember favorite pastimes.
They’re all past time, now.

All I have is memory
of the son I brought to earth.
Cherished as well as I was able
then let go, at his request.

People say
he loves me.
But I know it isn’t true.
He wants me to disappear
as much as I want to.

by me; my scars,
my insanity;
by that fact that I exist

I am embarrassed too,
for loving him as much as I do
when I’m simply a source
of shame for him,
my former Little Boy Blue.

There would be no son
who shines for me,
like the noonday sun.

There would be no dogs
to love me.
Two would probably be dead.
Victims of a failed system
and overpopulation.

There would be no love;
that love I cherish
because it took so long
to bear fruit.

No lifting of my hair
in passing
to kiss
the back of my neck.

No one to come home to.
Just a bitter, lonely man.
Betrayed by love,
heart split in two
by the one he trusted
before me.

Not the loving man
who takes the day off
to care for me –
brings me soup
because I’m sick.

Without me,
the world would be fine.
I would not.

I would look through
the dark glass
of what might have been,
wipe away tears
of lost years
of joy, of sorrow.

All that makes us


Ty and Dayne

14 months too little,
like a younger brother;
always hoping
to catch up
but, this year,
you will.

Grief floats out
on every exhale
as you try to un-speak
that yearly wish –

To eat
the evidence
like cold hard dirt
covering your cousin;
bring him back to life.

“I’m sorry”
isn’t a magic spell.
Your childhood wish
didn’t kill him.
He chose that fate,

You will be older,
he will be dead.
And nothing on earth
can change that.

I may not be that great,
but the cat likes my lap
and my dog follows
wherever I go.

I am the favorite aunt
to all my nieces and nephews,
and my son is a great kid
who loves me.

I may not be that great
but I am enough.
Opinions of small lives
matter most –
It’s through the helpless
that God’s light shines,
and it shines on me every day.

I may not be that great,
without a real job.
I may never be wealthy,
but I am rich in what matters.

I count to several someones
who all count to me.

Written in 2004

Fireworks . Pictures, Images and Photos

Brilliant flash;
a purple nebula,
quickly blurs to white,

traced on the sky
like a spider’s web.

Color races over wet ground,
receding just as quickly,
bright lights fade away.
Ebb and flow of a neon wave,
exploding at our feet.

There is peace, despite the booms,
despite the smell of smoke.
Perhaps derived from memories:
childish delight in bright colors,
new smells, cool grass.

Explosions rocket across the sky
spiraling up in plumes of smoke.
I sit barefoot on the cement stairs,
arm around my son.

He deserves this memory:
A sky colored with lights like a present
and a warm arm around his waist.



In the white bellow
I see him
wrapped tight around our son,
swaying to the dance
of dark raindrops.
Lightning gouges;
ice-pick sharp
and night
sucks into the wound.

After spilling gutters clear
and beaten trees drop leaves
he climbs in beside me, his cold
bristles against my legs;
the baby, a warm comma between us.
The only wind now
is the sound of our breathing
and I sink, like a stone, into sleep.

We ride into dawn
in a rented dinghy:
Faded orange life-vests
over layered flannel shirts.

As dawn warms into morning,
we shed our clothes like skins,
until we sit in swimsuits,
life-vests left tangled in cast off clothing.

Still as a wooden figurehead,
you curl over the prow,
wearing sunlight on your back;
fishing pole slack in your hands,
lure under the lake
like spinning sunken treasure.

At the rear of the boat
the boys watch the trout
towed behind us
like demented pull-toys.
The fish gasp and flip,
fighting the metal hooked into their gills.

One fish has deep scars
like stripes on a tiger;
evidence of some battle –
just to end up gutted,
spilling roe
like pearls,
as dark blood stains my shoes.

Little boys

Toy soldiers, plastic sheriff’s badge,
a little round compass. The tiny treasures
of two little boys who joined this life, together.
Not twins, but same-age cousins so close
they might as well have been.

A roll of caps for playing army
when cap-gun kids dodged bullets
or died dramatic deaths.
A cigarette, for tough times ahead;
Photographs, seashells from trips
to the beach, a toy skateboard.
Little things, summing up a lifetime
of memories shared with others and
all those yet to come
in the life that follows this one

Where one went, the other followed, saying
“Don’t worry, bro; I got your back like a dorsal fin!”
and they always did – until one made his way
to that darkest destination,
where the other couldn’t follow .

They always held hands as children, changed to
manly play as they grew; rough and tumble brawls
leaving broken furniture strewn in their wake.
Two young men; who laughed as hard
as they fought, and repeated it all again,
the next day and the next.

Suddenly, one is left behind
with nothing to hold but a wooden box:
symbols of a brotherhood that ended far too soon.

Sit on the bench marking ground
that your cousin lies under, silent
for the first time, in twenty-four short years.
Pore over gifts that others have left.
He was loved by so many;
every day brought new surprises.
Laugh, cry or wonder at the significance
of the things left in that box.

Today, someone stole those memories.
If they wanted the box, it was just
a simple, wooden treasure chest.
Trinkets could have been dumped out.
What good are they to someone else,
who’ll see our treasures as trash?

I would feel angry, but my heart’s too flat
already. I spent all my emotion on pain.
First, the never-dulling ache of losing Ty;
then the sharp sting, as I count
the friends who were really there for me,
when I wasn’t fun anymore, because
I couldn’t stop the reeling in my head.

Goodbye box. Goodbye fair-weather friends.
No one can take our memories.
Just the tangible things that triggered them.

I almost pity you…but you don’t deserve it.


Crazy ninjas

Slick brown chest of muscles
where none have been before.
You are not my son.
You have moved beyond.
You are someone sullen; cocky –
Restless to be you.
Demanding freedom to grow up.
Pulling away from me.

But, at night,
you are mine again;
folding into the crook of my arm
as I sit on your bed and sing.
Your blonde head,
a stunning replica
of my little boy’s.