My Daughter’s Wedding Day and Forgive

My Daughter’s Wedding Day

I guess I should have known,

Being teens in the late 60s and all.

Change. Rebellion.  Moving forward. 

Leaving the cozy nest.  

Yet there’s irony in this story.

This isn’t what I wanted for her,

Getting married this young.

She hasn’t finished college yet. 

Only 20 years old.  I was 26,

Practically an old maid during the war days.

My daughter was supposed to be something,

Far before I was.  She had that chance.

Now, I’m afraid she’ll just be John’s wife.

But she looks happy. 

Maybe I should focus on her smile,

Eyes squinting because her smile is so big.

John is wide-eyed, sometimes so quiet,

But with a writer’s soul.  Smile wide.

Her dress is too short.  She wanted to change

Out of her fancy dress.  That’s fine.

But her dress shows too much leg.

Confetti flies . They look like kids in a candy store,

Trying to decide what sweetness to enjoy first.

I wonder if they know that marriage is more like

An ocean than a lake, some days calm and serene,

Other days rough, when the tide and the wind roll in.

They’re so young.  They’ve lived so little.  I hope

The rough tide doesn’t knock them over,

Crashing salt and sand into their child-like wide eyes.

But maybe it’ll be different. Maybe they’ll

Have a rolling river and not a rough ocean

On a stormy day, like Jack and I did.

How funny, my daughter married a John,

Her father was also John.  I wish he was here,

But I believe he was watching. Maybe she married young

As a way of bringing her dad back, at least a younger,

Blonder version of her dad.  Same creativity, same

Writer’s soul, only quieter.  Maybe his silence

Will be a springboard for her words. She

Likes to say them and to write them. Maybe

That’s why they work.  They both love words.

One loves to speak and write them, the other,

To write and to ponder them.  

I hope they have calm days lying in the sunny sand,

Long before the crashing waves hit.  

 

Forgive

Forgiving is not forgetting.  It’s simply moving on. 

It’s knowing that while you drive on a mountain,

It’s not always safe to turn around and go back.

You have to keep driving, until you get to the top,

Or at least to a roundabout, especially late at night

While it’s raining.  It’s been a rainy night for a while,

Now the sun is shining, the sky is clearing.

I can see my journey better now. I had

A destination in mind, so I drove too fast.

You weren’t a very good navigator,

But you haven’t driven down this road

Many times either.  I forgive you.

Next time, I should bring a map

And written directions, so even if I can’t see

Clearly, I’ll have back up directions.

The road to true love is sometimes the most

Winding, most rocky road it is.

I wish it had been simple.  I look at Mom and

Dad’s wedding photo from the early 70s and wonder,

It happened sooner for them, why later for me?

Sometimes, it doesn’t seen fair, but Mom has told

Me since I was five that life isn’t always fair.

I’ve had many great road trips in my life.

The one to love has just been especially rough. 

But maybe, when I get to the destination,

I’ll realize what the journey meant, how it helped me

Grow, how I had to drive the winding road to learn

Who I really am.  

 

 

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Two Poems

The Dream Journal

I bought you wanting inspiration, yearning for a place

To write my ideas that I thought would be my future novel. 

Once a dreamer, now a realist, wondering if your “dream” quotes

Have been lying to me this whole time. 

“Leap Fearlessly”: When I did last year, I fell on my face.

“Love with abandon.”  What if he doesn’t love you back?  Then what?

“Surrender your fear.”  Fear can be inhibiting.  But fear can also keep you in check.  For now, I am content to hide in my turtle shell of shyness until I am once again ready to poke my head out and take more risks.  

“What is calling you?”  What if I don’t want to answer?  And what if it’s more than one thing?  What if it will leave me broke?  Some calls should be screened. 

“Hold onto your hope.”  Yes, I believe in hope.  But when do you let go, when something isn’t meant to be?  Hope can be a dangerous thing.  But sometimes, even false hope is better than no hope at all. 

“Teach Kindness.”  I believe in kindness.  But what if the response to kindness is a slap?  There’s only so many times you can turn the other cheek without it spewing blood, or wrecking my jaw that took braces and thousands of dollars to fix so I would look “normal.”  Eventually, I have to hit back, instead of once again turning. 

“Feel the possibilities.”  What if I’m afraid that mine are becoming more limited?

Begin today.  “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.”  Maybe hope and dreams should begin again too.  The woman on the face of the journal looks so kind.  There’s something in her eyes, something gentle, something I wish I still had.  I wonder if I will get it back. 

 

The Not Feeling Loved Story of Tiger the White Cat

You left me.

You said you were just on vacation,

But in my world, your three days feels like three months.

I was alone, with nothing but a dirty bowl of water

And too much food, which I ate too quickly, which is why

I threw up on our carpet.  You whine about cleaning it up,

But it’s your own damn fault for leaving me alone with too much food

And not enough love.  

You hurt my feelings, so I threw up. 

I am the great Tiger, your cat white as a fluffy cloud.

I should be your number one priority. 

I am sad you declawed me, but I guess it was for your own good.

If I still had my claws, you would have experienced them

When you got home from your so-called vacation.

You came home smelling like a dirty dog, so I think you cheated on me,

At least in your heart.  

You’re lucky I couldn’t figure out how to escape out of the window.

If I could have figured it out, then I would have cheated on you.

Even though I am neutered, I can still mark on another human

And make her mine.  So don’t get on your high horse, lady.

I love you, but it’s partly just because you feed me. 

You’d better give me treats and some extra rubs

This week.  Otherwise, I will run out that front door,

As soon as you are not looking.  Or I’ll jump off the back patio.

I do have nine lives, after all.  And your fluffy TJ will be gone,

Or maybe he’ll just come back a dirty white mess.

Either way, you will suffer.  I am the king of the house,

And I will once again reign.