The storm arrives without warning,
fury consumes hurt, suddenly casting
a dark shroud across our blue skies,
over the angry sea, gray like wet slate.
Even at a safe distance, we can no longer protect
our moors from being thrashed upon
by tempestuous surf, uninvited to our private beach.
We do not have the strength and courtesy
to hold on to threadbare ghosts of our years.
Once tender now lies tossed,
heaped in a corner of tattered pain.
Traveling down broken and divided roads,
our backs turned, hearts chilled;
we walk away from mornings that once were,
to mornings that will never be the same again.
This poem needs no explanation. It was written almost twenty years ago and has not seen the light of day as it has been kept in my files all this time. It is a relevant one I feel…just as it was when it was written back in 1998. It is a common story, more common than we want to admit. It is probably one of the saddest and realistic poems I have ever written. I do not wonder where this “broken crayon” is now. On any given day in our streets, in a store or at a movie theater, “broken crayons” are everywhere…
Perfect father, paint-brushed mother,
living in a palette of water-colored dreams
diluted by lost expectations, assumed possibilities,
ignore muffled sobs
within the imperfect child they left
to flourish beneath the guise of contentment.
The carefree boy leaves scribbles on a wall
next to the closed kitchen door.
The angry teen leaves muddy footprints
on polished hardwood floors;
resolves to shatter the whitewashed mask,
covering up a proper upbringing.
He shrugs between the spoken and the unsaid,
suppressing reasons why he’s flawed.
Crying in a tunnel of his own fabrication,
he sits cross-legged on shards
of broken crayons.
Late morning writing time…now just need to open up the journal a few more pages in. My writing inspiration this morning combines the summer sun, tea, a well worn journal and beyond these things lies gardens of flowers and a rugged mountainside. More gardening work awaits of course; it is ongoing throughout the summer. But moments need to be put aside to writing and that is not always easy to do. I do admit that. And as my tea tag above says, “be yourself” sits in the beginning of my journal, I aspire to that. For inside these written pages dating back to 2008, filled with thoughts, quotes, unedited poems, drawings…all allowing me to just…be myself.
Peonies from the garden on the Ridge. The deep pink ones? Oh what a history they have! They are over 55 years old and originated from my mother’s garden back in my childhood yard in Cold Spring, NY. They were dug up in 1976 when my parents sold the house and replanted at our home in Fayetteville, NC until June 1978 when a PCS to Germany had us selling our home there. No way was I going to leave my childhood peonies in NC. They were dug up and replanted in my mother- in-law’s garden in Hackettstown, NJ. In 2007, my mother-in-law dug up and carried one peony plant on the plane to plant on my garden here in Palmer Lake. A few years ago, it was necessary to sell her home. And again, no way was I going to leave my mother’s peonies in NJ! Yes, I dug up a bunch of them and transplanted them here next to the lone peony that just grew and grew. It was a good thing because a visit to the NJ house two years ago showed all my mother- in-law’s gardens gone- including my mother’s 35 year old huge peony hedge. The legacy of my mother’s peonies from NY to NC to NJ to CO have traveled and survived. Gratitude and blessings? Numerous! Yes, it is quite a story. And Mom lives on in each bloom of hers…I cherish this legacy.
A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sailaway from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” ~ Mark Twain
A land of ineptitude.
"A beginning of the new change"
by Lize Bard
Official Blog of the English Tea Store
Beginning March 20th, 2016 Poetry Breakfast will once again serve a little poetic nourishment every morning. Start your day with our new expanded menu. Poems, of course, are our specialty. But we will also be serving a fuller menu that includes poetry related creative non-fiction such as letters to and from poets, essays on poetry, and anything else that might feed a poet and poetry lover’s soul.