You know something happened
When every teacher walks into the hall
And a shared, scared glance sweeps across everyone
When your friend walks into the room and tells you
And the teacher brings you into class of strangers
To tell you how much you mean to her.
You know something happened
When she starts crying and telling you
That she can't sugarcoat it even if she wanted to
And when you walk into your next class
And the room is silent
But the teacher didn't tell them to be.
And when there is a staff member at every corner
And when there is silence in the halls
And how you didn't even know him
But it makes you sad as well.
And how every stranger to walk in the building
Could feel the tension in the air
And how you turn the corner and see your youth pastor
And how you can't even tell your best friend how you feel
And how the silence shows you that through tragedy,
We are one.
And how the silence told me that we unite through feeling,
An unspoken feeling,
A silent tribute throughout the halls
Throughout the day.
And how you see the sadness, the tissues and hugs,
And how you wonder if that's how he felt
Before it happened
Before any of us felt this way
And you wonder if he felt this feeling
The beautiful high school quarterback
With everything seemingly perfect
And you wonder if he felt this way-
My mother always called me the devil child
Because I was loud, destructive and wild
I found out years later I was born with ADHD
No one wanted ever to spend any time with me
Parents didn’t know of ADHD or why I was different
They didn’t understand and they were very intolerant
Parents told older sister I was bad and she didn't have to play with or be around me
So much of the time alone was really no fun, however for some help I did make a plea
I heard my mother double dog dare my father to hit me
Mother would refer to me as a turd in front of the family
All my cousins were smart, while I was failing most my classes at school
Got in to many fights with bullies and teachers who were always cruel
All my family made fun and they called me names bully and teased
I was the loser that anyone could do or say whatever they pleased
They all knew my mother would not try to defend
Because she and my grandmother started the trend
Once I told my mother that I was happy about something
She said happiness was by me not deserved but a thumping
Mother was always mad at me since I never wanted any piano, ballet, or baton lessons
I had my own mind, and impressing other people in life was not one of my obsessions
Could never make my mother happy, she was always very angry
I use to hit myself, scratch my face because she drove me crazy
When I was ten got mother a gift at the five & dime for her one birthday
She tossed the gift in the garage, called it junk, said was best to throw away
On Christmas day, when I unwrapped a gift if I didn't act surprised in a certain way
She'd throw a fit, get drunk and make me feel guilty about things the rest of the day
I was always afraid of my mother, never knew
what she next to me that she would try to do
None of my cousins was I ever allowed with to play
Was always much of the time alone every and all day
I lived in a strange way my dad was very to the T religious
And my mother was always drunk and of course blameless
She’d drink when home from work, on the weekends or holidays
And could always hide it from all her friends and the relatives
No one believed me when I told them that she had been drinking
They acted like I was crazy by then I knew what they were thinking
Never knew of anyone I could be close to, for a hug or some kind words
Things were always bad I needed encouragement and for me to be heard
My mother took me out on Friday nights to eat and buy whatever I wanted, after work
Her last stop was always the liquor store for drink and smoke, I was left in car like a jerk
Bought games that took two or more to play, but she nor did dad never have any intension
Of spending time with me, I was in there way. I was a bad child that needed intervention
Wasn’t the perfect child I admit; I ran off when I was 16 did things I regret parents put me
Away, they came for counseling I complained about moms drinking, and she felt angry
She said her drinking wasn’t my problem, she’d be back to see me when I could face the truth
Never could mother admit her or dad doing wrong, everything was because I was a youth
Came home from school one day mom was passed out on the living room floor dead drunk
Called ambulance for her Dr blamed me and said no visit, and he called me a worthless punk
My dad would come home and find she was throwing up while passed out always in her bed
I’d watch him take bowls put them near her mouth to catch it, was something I would dread
He’d walk to the bathroom, empty the bowl and go back to get the next one to do the very same
And replace the unfilled one repeat the process. I was told by her doctor that I was the blame
Sometimes mom would run down the hall to the toilet bowl throw up then my heart would race
Because I always knew mom would do this and then she’d come to room to scare rant and pace
Since I was a bad spoiled child who had parents with money, nice house cars and good jobs
And I was not willing to help out or be responsible, was told I made the family look like slobs
My sister let her boyfriend talk her into letting him take me to dentist, instead he molested me
No one believed me because in the past I had lied about things, and the truth no one would see
I was different all the cousins, my aunts and uncle could blame me when things went missing
Or went wrong I was then and still am now the perfect scapegoat yes about it I’m still babbling
My father ran out the back door, when he heard me wake up and come out of my room
So he didn't have to bother with me, and I wanted to spend time with him he’d assume
Somehow I managed to graduate from high school and I then would move
To a different city I felt I might have better luck and my life would improve
Married two very bad guys both who daily beat, threatened me and verbally abused
Divorced them both had one child and how I’d raise this child alone I was confused
Tried to work and go to school never was competent enough to follow through
Each time I would start either I did not have the ability of completing anything new
Am not proud of this but I had 30 jobs that I lost in 10 years and even tried going to college
Unable to remember how and when to do things, my head from years of abuse was in a fog
Filed for SSI and Social Security, got on section 8, food stamps WIC and other government aid
I needed a home for myself and my daughter so I had to depend on things like this to get paid
My daughter grew up, became ill with a repeating debilitating disease
I dedicated myself to getting her well, and nothing about it was a breeze
Had to take her in pain for Doctor visits many times she’d cry and wished she were dead
This broke my heart with no family help, just her and I to face things in the years ahead
Unable to attend school for years, the Doctor signed permission to stay home
School system assigned a teacher who was mean nothing about her was tome
School Social workers interfered
And my name they smeared
She finally one day went into remission
And now the nephrotic kidney condition
Seems for now to have forever gone for good away
For years it’s been don’t want others to downplay
For a while I homeschooled her and the first semester back in the public school
She was on the honor roll things seemed to be looking up and I felt exception to the rule
Then one day she lost interest in classes, homework and attending
And the principal of the high school was calling and threatening
Pulled her out of school and placed her in to get her GED
Soon she graduated quite quickly within month of three
A year before she was supposed to graduate
I knew by then that I was doing things right
Enrolled me and her in community college we made the Dean’s list and no student loan debt
Last May she and I graduated have a new life now I don’t feel things in my life are a threat
But alone I’ve raised a good child, self-published a book and kept things together
I’ve published some poetry and stories in magazines that will be on web pages forever
Even though my parents have helped me out once in a while financially
I feel lack of respect since they helped family who treated me crummy
I’m still feeling and have most of the hopeless thoughts when I was young
But I still try to steer my daughter to be different from me and hold my tongue
Those cousins with the high degree
Don’t seem to have too much on me
Both lost their jobs within a year out of college from being snobs and dishonest
But the parents just think that it was because others were being so glibbest
Both stuck alone in life working in their old age
That just mostly pays a low minimum wage
Sister divorced husband for molesting her children still won't speak told her kids I was bad
She lives in my town and over 20 years she’s never visited so by her I've been for life had
Most of all I think it's because my parents never would face reality or admit
To any wrong doing of years of abuse and neglect, something I couldn't forget
Why am I talking about this after all these years still?
Because I think that it may just possibly help me to heal
All Rights Reserved
The Island Moorea,
In the heat, the sun,
The rhythm of my footfalls
crunching loose gravel road,
The swish of pack swaying
in consort to my measured pace.
Breeze pushing branches of Palm,
Ocean waves breeching shore line long.
Island vehicles passing, occupant's laughing,
a man laboring under large pack, alone walking,
Who could have been freely riding.
Something unthinkable to Island Folk,
in hot tropical places.
Passed along the way several humble homes,
Greetings exchanged with smiling people there.
Not long afterwards, new sound approaching,
crunching gravel, rolling up behind me.
A lovely young girl, perhaps still a teen,
long brown naked legs peddling a bike.
Hair jet black, long to her waist, wearing
a sarong, split up the side,
Shoulders bare and brown.
Dark eyes of wonder, sparkling of youth.
A radiant smile adorning her splendid face.
We went for a time at my even pace,
looking and smiling each in our place.
"Hello there" I said, she giggled, beamed
even bigger. Perfect teeth displayed.
"Why you walk?" She asked in puzzlement.
"To get to where I'm going". I replied
This response producing a pleasant laugh
from the girl. In which I too joined in.
"You go One Chicken?" She asked
I stopped then and turned to her.
"Where is One Chicken?" I questioned
with a grin.
She raised her graceful arm,
one finger pointing up the road.
"One Chicken there." she informed.
It was a store/bar, sort of place,
In the very midst of nowhere.
Indeed more than merely one chicken roamed,
Many chickens were and a pig or two, as well.
All mingling free and doing their thing.
We entered from out of the bright daylight,
into the deepest of darks,
Like in a movie theater you arriving late.
Eyes adjusting slowly to what lay ahead.
A few Island Beers later,
I had acquired several new friends,
The girl my invitation to the party of
already happy people a little drunk on beer.
The Music was mostly of French persuasion,
With a bit of Bob Dylan thrown in.
The Beatles also had a tune or two.
The Liverpool beat resounding down Tahiti way.
Before the light did fail, I shouldered my pack
and walked some distance from Chickens and Pigs.
Found the beach, hung my Hammock for the night.
Built a small fire and opened a can of Spam.
She appeared again about ten,
looking beautiful in the new moon light.
She had washed her hair,
still damp and smelled fresh of Lilacs,
Or some such aromatic scent.
We did not speak, no words were needed,
Made love on the sand, 'till the retreat of the
tide and sand crabs did come out, in their
eerie numbers, to eat what was at hand.
I suppose even us if we let them.
We retired then both to my hammock,
A pretty neat trick if you can swing it.
And we did.
She was so child like and yet,
very much a woman grown.
There was no pretense shown,
no false inhibitions rendered.
These were not limitations of her culture.
A people that live by their emotional impulses.
An open and free spirited people living
passionately within each minute.
It all felt more akin to a dream than real,
All around me there was beauty,
Loving and being loved without hurry,
Free of guilt or even a single expectation.
Living in that wondrous moment,
of uncomplicated human splendor.
Like some Garden of Eden surrender.
In the morning we swam in the sea,
frolicked like kids having a day at the beach.
Made love in the sand, I dozed in the sun.
Upon my awaking she was gone.
I waited an hour or two, packed up my camp,
shouldered my load and returned to the road.
A few minutes later, again I heard the now
familiar crunch of rubber tires,
rolling road surface and there she was,
a straw basket in her Bike's basket,
A huge smile on her unforgettable beautiful face.
We sat in a grove of trees,
among birds singing, insight of the sea,
Upon a Palm log and ate fresh bread and
fruit, drank strong black coffee (French Roast
I presume,) nibbling some marvelous cheese.
We tried to talk, but she understood little of
what I tried to say, my French was nearly
nonexistent, only adding to confusions sake .
She leaned her head on my shoulder,
the way lover's do and tenderly held
my hand within her two,
As if not wanting to let go,
Those gestures said all there was to say,
And we savored each silent moment.
We parted there, she on blue, rusty bike
and me on "shanks mare",
Off in two different directions,
Each out into the depths of our own lives,
Gone just like that. . . And yet,
Indelible, never to be forgotten or replaced.
Moorea do yet visit me, in dreams as real as can be. She never
grows old, nor does the beauty we shared for that one brief moment
in time immortal.
Someplace among the Islands of Tahiti there is a woman in her late fifties,
most likely a Mother, even by now a Grandmother. I hope she recalls as
fondly the American blond man with the big Orange Backpack, that in 1972
she meet upon the road, near "One Chicken" and loved freely and completely
for two days and a night, as that man does so fondly remember her.
I'm no poet, you all are poets. I'm just an old guy with memories and
little stories to tell. Thanks for letting me share.
In days of youth we skip rocks
On the shiny surface of our dreams Watching as they bounce outwards Towards ever infinite possibilities
In middle age our hand hesitates
Past mistakes cause us to wonder
Has my aim been far too careless
Each shot falls shorter of its mark
In the silver days of our last years
The water obscured by a gray mist Twisted fingers tuck hopes away Remnants for that nocturnal finality
© 2013 A. M. S. (Red)
Alexander K Opicho
(Eldoret, Kenya; firstname.lastname@example.org)
My name is Joseph
Am a Jewish bachelor
Or call me a male spinster
Am a poor penniless carpenter
Am pushing forth and back my plane
And waving my old claw hammer
Hitting the nail on the head
And chopping of its ears by my adze
In the entirety of Israel and Hebrew world
My beautiful Hebrew fiancée is Mary
No she is already my wife , Mary wife of my youth
She is pregnant minus my nuptiality
Minus my conjugal enfranchisement
And the man who fertilized her
Was witnessed and flunkeyed by Gabriel
The airy voice in the amorphous whirlwind
Without form and shape but erotically crazy
How sad; I am a victim of the spiritual powers that be
My jealousy of humanity will be condemned blasphemous
Kindly come and feel with me, please feel for me
How do you see? For someone else
To have sex and sex with your newlywed wife
Or your beautiful wench
Or your lovable concubineous fiancée
Until he makes her pregnant with male foetus
Then he commands you to marry her
Because you are only a humble wood work
He commands you to accept fornication
As immaculate sex that yield holy pregnancy
Holy conception but nothing bad or foul,
What if that male foetus comes out a son
Who resembles foreigners from beyond the mountain?
But not me, his head having shape of a hook
I am annoyed with this heaven chauvinist religion
This horrible anti-human relationship
From which I will be degraded and come out ignobled
And the one who impregnated my wife
Will be exulted and ennobled to the throne of glory
His son and himself they will be made an exalted religion
But I will die desperate as a carpentering lout
A worthless Jewish oat, reeking a foul stench
O Death! Come take me away from this humiliated life
I don’t want to see this Jewish Mary with her bulging belly
Her beauty and sexuality has made me a village pumpkin
She is in no way a virgin
The passage is dark and deep
The passage is dark and deep
Forever going in the darkest dreams
The rooms all different
All bathed in the half light
As I'm dragged along
Twisting and contorting
To see it all before I'm gone
A room with knives
And on solitary chair
Where I would sit and loving stare
It leads to a room of headless snakes
A twirling kaleidoscope
Of red and green
Tinged in death
The room in which
I was locked
The door is stuck
I am weak
There is no
way to escape
of haunting halls
Leading down the hall again
Leads us to a room in which
Indian movies music played
The screen danced and flicked
while your body flicked along,
foam crawling out your mouth
eyes rolling back
In this boys dream
a mother screams
And I can do nothing,
Of youth and age and memories
Another door yet to open
of sickness repression
Of warmth and senses
Smell taste touch
The heat burns of this childish lust
The wolf froths and growls
Its teeth glisten
And I scream
A dream within a dream
We climb up the stairs
as they curve and crack
splinters of this dream
ever more it will seem
never real to me
of a room within a room
the tiniest doors for tiny hands and tiny dreams
I but ever small
The room has shrunken
and I will ever crawl
A snowy morning brings forth crisp chills.
Kisses goodbye still hang in the air.
Little feet scamper in to seek warmth.
The bell sounds off, the teachers report.
Children are laughing, they are having fun.
Roll call is taken, and then math has begun.
A dark shadow quickly casts upon the walls.
A morning to forget unfolds...
Innocence is youth, they always say.
Yet how can you encompass innocence
When your friends don't go home?
When you see your mom break down?
Children should laugh, children should play
Parents shouldn't have to see them...
How can one raise small minds in a cruel world?
When lollipops and sugarplums no longer dance.
Children are children, less never forget.
Give them their youth, give them a chance.
Sick of the lies and hopeless dreams of youth
I'd give it all to realize the one and only Truth
Sick of compromising with allowances of regret
I knew you before we ever met
Because, inside, I'm you, you're me
It's been so since before eternity
A bit of the one inside the other
One and the same, we are the lovers
Duality, polarity, dawn the crystal clarity
Find the balance between mildness and severity
Opposites attract, but dissonance detracts
Seek to realign and catch it in the act
Before the balance shifts and tilts the scale
The Sun shines bright, the Moon glows pale
Yet each has its place, outside as well as in...
There is no Darkness without Light, no Virtue without Sin.
The Sun's not shining today
Winter casted clouds aren't allowing any light
To warm up a standing dead
Not quite as graceful as I remember it,
Back in the days when I used to hunt rabbits
With my father just to spend time with him;
We'd forgotten our guns at home on every occasion
But it falls,
Under an overcast sky
Tantalizing to the touch
Tactile, white and intricate
Full of holiday, youth and spirit
A reminder now;
Cold, fragile, weak and
Not quite as graceful as before
A perfect metaphor
For what my life has become
I have a friend in Rapid who I haven't seen
In months less than it feels
We used to build tree forts
Bridges across rivers
We used to pretend we had tremendous powers
To control the weather, earth and fire
What I'd do to have them back
Toy story was our favorite
We'd watch it every night
Later on even re-enacting it
I haven't seen him in such a long time
Maybe a foot of snow by now
It's largely all my fault
It's because I'm not sure how
I can explain to him that over the course of a few years,
He's since aged to a happy 15 and I've,
I've somehow hit my mid-life crisis
In the same time period
How does someone to from a vibrant young youth
From 15 to 54?
I'm not sure
And I don't bother with explaining
So I never said goodbye,
I couldn't face him now
"Where have you been?"
I've been attending an on-going funeral
My innocence was found hanging from a tree
I won't tell him that it was found hanging in one of our old forts
He'd go out and look for it
Make an adventure back to when we had tremendous power
I can't have that
I'd break down and cry
I'd become angry knowing I died so early
With so much in my hands
I'd hang myself coming face to face with what I lost;
Be a Doll could you,
Be sure to classify it as a murder will you?
We put this front of an image before friends and others.
Trying to uphold an image about us.
A pretense of sought.
Knowing when pushed, we become very out spoken.
This is the real us.
Except for those that bites their tongues.
Afraid to hurt anyone.
A pretense like many church peoples.
That the first minute they get they out talking about everyone.
We see this in marriage or any relationship.
While knowing many times our out spoken side will create an argument.
Yes, this is us.
We know the personal creed taught to us in our youth.
If you can't say anything nice.
Then say nothing at all.
Yes, this is us.
The original pretenders.
Constantly being reprimanded by others.
While operating by a false impression.
Yes, this is us.