The Curse of Old Loves

Composed 9/10/17
Description: Inspired by life and today’s Daily Prompt: Peculiar. A poem about moving on.

Peculiar
How we cling to the familiar
Even when we know it’s no good
He returns to old comfort
Though he knows it has failed
Venom seeping through the fingertips and lips
And clogging all paths to the heart
But he is welcomed
With a smile and soft eyes
With warmth
With kind words and old love songs
With good intentions, perhaps
But it’s a curse –
He’s poisoned but pleased
Pleasure brings him back and habits form
The longer it endures the more he is addicted and
The more harmed
The more he is unable to break free but
He can anticipate and follow routine
It’s easy
It’s hard to change, move on
Try something new
But if you keep returning to the past
You miss out on what’s in front of you
And the future never comes

Glory Days

Composed 2/19/15
Description: For Writing 201: Day 5, which tells us to write an elegy using fog and metaphor.

Thinking about the past and fog together reminded me of dementia, about which I have ever-increasing experience.

Did you know her in the glory days?
When she smiled that Hepburn smile?
When she danced to Frank Sinatra
And flirted with the navy boys?

Did you see her marry on a whim?
Rub the growing life inside?
Fretting over baby books
And shopping for baby carriages?

Did you see her raising four young boys?
Commanding their whos and whats and whens?
Sending each off with a bride?
Then Tuesday nights with girlfriends and bridge?

I never saw her this clearly
No, I only see her in the fog
Sometimes she reaches out
Sometimes I catch a glimpse
But the fog pulls her back in

Only you remember the glory days
So cherish every memory
Because once she stepped into the fog
They weren’t so certain
They’re mostly gone

I Laugh at the Past

Composed 4/4/14
Description: (Day 3 of NaPoWriMo)  This is a possible entry for my university’s (second!) literary arts magazine. Its theme is “numinous” — which roughly translates to “a radical shift in perspective.” This was the first thing that came to mind; though I’m hoping to produce a few more poems with this theme! Feedback would be greatly appreciated.

I laugh thinking about
How you used to frustrate me
How I’d follow you with my keen, puppy eyes
Praying
Please! God!
Just notice me!

But
Oh
Thank God
You had no interest in that
Sweet, yearning girl
You stuck your nose up and walked away
Toward long hair and slender frames
And 60 grand a year

And every time
Oh
I was heartbroken
But really when you ran away
My heart
Dodged a bullet

Because now I see that
Each man I saw stacked
With a thousand rare virtues
Really consisted
Of an overflowing laundry list
Of red lights and warning signs

You see
I mistook your brilliance for romance
Your arrogance for bravery
And you
I thought your cocked eyebrow and blank stare
Were charming
While really
You just weren’t that smart

But then of course there was
Your redeeming boundless passion
That
Naturally
Had no basis in my mind

And I laugh
Thinking about the future
About the life of bored house wifedom
I could have lived
Never seeing you
Or never loving you

Because now I’m not bound by the chains
That outline the books on failing marriages
I can sleep peacefully each night knowing
I never lost
I’ve never had it
How it’s supposed to be

I could never see how
Girls looked back on those drama laden breakups
With regret
Because they’re blessings now
To me

Memento

Composed 7/16/13
Description:  A personal piece.

I possess a part of your past self
The soft one I can coax into my palm
He wraps me in his arms each night
In the warmth of one
Who lay out in the sun

From the slope of my shoulders to my arching feet
He runs his brown hands over me
I twist and smile beneath him
And sigh
For he is a past self
And I will never hold the present

Tense

Composed: 7/1/13
Description: I’m going through a gray period in my writing; life is neither overly lovely nor overly horrible. It’s mostly work at the moment. It’s just rather… meh. And it’s in these periods of “meh” that it’s hard for me to write, because there is so little to express (other than boredom). However, because there is nothing overly exciting going on I’ve defaulted to reminiscing.

It occurred to me
while searching through your present
that if my past
was more like my future
it wouldn’t make a difference