Monday Musings, Random

Monday Musings: Poetry Month

This isn’t so much a blog post as a request for assistance from my readers. I guess you could also possibly classify this as a discussion post; you are free to create discussion in the comments, but I’m mostly hoping you’ll be able to offer some input.

As I’m sure most of my readers already know, April is National Poetry Month. I know I’ve probably already mentioned this elsewhere, but I’ve never been much of a poetry reader. It’s not that I don’t like poetry, I think it’s more that I have trouble finding poetry that I can really relate to and get into the way I do novels. I’m a nerd and have enjoyed reading some of the epics (I’ve read The Odyssey, The Iliad, and Paradise Lost more than once, though Paradise Lost was for class not my own free will). I also enjoy the rhythm of Langston Hughes and one of my favorite poems is Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe simply because I love the way it sounds and rolls off the tongue when recited. However, I have yet to find a poet or poems that I really connect with.

And that’s where you come in, dear readers. This year, in honor of National Poetry Month, I would like to give poetry another chance and try to find a poet and/or poems that I can fall in love with. I just don’t know where to begin. Who should I read? Mary Oliver? Billy Collins? Someone more obscure? And which collection should I start with?

I appreciate any and all suggestions!

2 thoughts on “Monday Musings: Poetry Month”

    1. Hi! As you know, I am a poet, so I am sending you my favorite that I have written. As to famous poets, I love Emily Dickinson.

      Once upon a weedy lawn
      At Cedar Oaks Retirement Home
      There sat my mother, weak and old
      On an afghan knit to block the cold.

      It was summer, but in mom’s grey eyes
      Was winter, when all around us dies.
      I had tried to park her in the sun
      Though I doubt she could notice what I’d done.

      The disease had eaten up her brain
      So little of her now remained
      She didn’t even know my name
      I knew her not, much to my shame.

      I looked around our patch of earth
      Saw dandelions,and thought with mirth
      Of how when small these grew quite wild
      Mom would pick them as she smiled.

      “Blow upon this cloud of seed,
      “Then wish for what you really need.”
      I picked one now,and sadly blew
      I asked for “mom” I never knew.

      Suddenly a gust of wind
      Took those seeds and made them spin
      I felt my body start to rise
      And change to match the seeds in size.

      My mother gasped, & sucked us in
      The seeds and me like some great wind
      I saw her teeth, quite brown from smoking
      And feared that I might cause her choking.

      I swirled around, then down a slide
      “Is this my mother I’m inside?!”
      I landed in a battered lung
      Where signs of cigarettes had clung.

      And unsure of just where to go
      I found a bridge, and crossed it slow.
      Whence I entered a crucial part.
      I found myself in momma’s heart.

      Where in a corner, dark and dusty
      A young girl played, her laugh so lusty.
      Her eyes weren’t grey but tinged with blue
      The plaited hair I also knew.

      Her teeth so white, her face unlined
      It was my mother, quite a find!
      A joy, a freedom never shown
      A lightness in her manner, tone.

      And then a moment changed it all
      I saw my grandma softly call
      And whisper in my mother’s ear
      “Your dad has died. I’m sorry, dear.”

      Her wailing nearly deafened me
      As the joy drained out like tides at sea.
      Seeing all her pain and grief
      I felt unwelcome, like a thief.

      So I moved further in her heart
      And came upon a teenage tart.
      Awkwardly smoking, trying too hard
      And too easily letting down her guard.

      She fell for boys like rain from clouds
      Her clothes too tight, her make-up loud.
      Each night she staggered home alone
      Hoping one would actually phone.

      Then came the day that in that place
      Could only lead to her disgrace.
      I saw my mom in grandma’s parlor
      And my granny pacing as she hollered.

      She pointed at mom’s bulging middle
      Screamed, then cried, then swore a little.
      Pulled my mom up to her feet
      In one swift move, threw her on the street.

      My mother was 16, expecting a child
      Homeless as well, she ought to be wild.
      But instead I saw a great peace abide her
      As she gently caressed me still forming inside her.

      I saw in her eyes how love was the way
      She changed from a girl to a woman that day.
      Not love for a boy, a career, a degree
      The love that transformed her was her love for ME!

      Already feeling like my heart could break
      And not sure of how much more I could take,
      I still turned around to roam and explore
      Both anxious and wary for what was in store.

      This part of her heart was lit bright as the sun
      My mother was wedding her intended one.
      I remembered the dresses, beautifully white
      I remembered the dancing that went on all night.

      And then like a knife tearing straight through my chest
      I knew what I’d see when I looked at the rest.
      My mother so happy to be loved and give back
      And me, growing older, and jealous of “Zach.”

      My stepdad who treated me like I was his own
      Whose only crime was to enter our home.
      I wanted my mother’s attention on me
      I was blinded by self-centered jealousy.

      I knew that my mother would have to pick me
      Especially if he behaved violently.
      I found I was born with a flare for theatrics
      And ran to my mom, often faking hysterics

      Til finally my mother was left with no choice
      But to tell him to leave, with a crack in her voice.
      And suddenly I saw what I hadn’t before
      This part of mom’s heart looked all broken and sore.

      I couldn’t continue with ease like before
      The walls were too thick, advancing a chore
      As if my mother had run out of room
      For chances of love to grow or to bloom.

      Then finally I hit the last, great, thick wall
      Without any access beyond it at all
      And almost afraid to look at the view.
      I nonetheless watched, as I knew I must do.

      It was a scene I knew all too well.
      My teenage years, when I put mom through hell.
      When I dumped her for boys who cared nothing for me
      Choosing from her real love just to flee.

      I left her alone in her house in the woods
      I left her for losers who sold me their goods.
      And then, too proud to admit I was wrong
      I never went back, til her health was long gone.

      And it was too late to say how much I cared
      Too late to know it was something we shared.
      Ready to go, I took one last long glance
      And I saw something I never expected, by chance.

      I saw my mother, like time lapse pics
      Every night of her life, never missing a tick
      Down on her knees, by the side of her bed
      Praying for ME, who left her for dead.

      She prayed for my health, she prayed I’d find love,
      She prayed I’d be blessed by our Dad up above.
      And even when she couldn’t walk on her own.
      My mom still put my needs o’er her own.

      When the tears rolled free down my face,
      I heard a huge sigh, and felt pulled from my place.
      And in half a minute I was back on the lawn
      Front of mom and Cedar Oaks Retirement Home.

      My mother looked down on me, suddenly aware
      And I saw for the first time her pain and her care.
      And I noticed also an angel-like glow,
      As she reached out her hand, and said, “Now you know.”

      I hugged her, held her, thanked her til night.
      But the lucid look never came back in her sight.
      She passed shortly after, to my great dismay
      But I’ll never forget the gifts given that day.

      I learned never discount the love of your mother,
      Never trade in that bond for the sake of a lover.
      I learned there is power in a mom’s loving prayers
      And there is a God who hears and who cares.

      I learned about faith, and love unconditional.
      I learned about judging by standards traditional.
      And I learned that from a little seed
      Can come most everything we need!

      Liked by 1 person

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