Wednesday, October 31, 2012

On Burnside Writers: Hope, the Foolish Child

I was published for a second time on Burnside Writer's Collective, which is an honor, to be sure. This prose piece still moves me as much to read it as it did to write it, with shivers and chills and ringing truth of it all. It feels some days that Hope is nearly about to kill me. But somehow it proves true. So I commit today, as I try to do each day, to choose Hope, no matter how painful it is. Because I know it's worth it. 

[Photo found at]

Hope, the Foolish Child
The child, Hope, is unrelenting in optimism;
Wakes up and says, “Today’s the day,” every day,
Even though It hasn’t happened yet.
With odds against the whole Thing,
Hope seems blind to reality.
A starving Pollyanna,
Hope is a survivalist.
In a concentration camp of pain,
Hope is a finger of grass, poking through the asphalt.
Sometimes you want to strangle her neck,
Silence this thing that seems only to bring disappointment.
But She walks blindly, dodging death and famine,
Evading what seems to be true,
Believing in something that is nowhere in sight.

Monday, October 29, 2012

When You Were a Teeny Baby: For John

I wrote this little poem a couple lines at a time for a few weeks after John was born. I imagined it with pictures, if I was ever that creative, and I could see myself reading this book to him, showing him how much we loved him and enjoyed him before he ever said a word or did a thing. I've had babies on the brain again so I went back to re-read my and my doula's versions of my labor and remembered this little treasure. I thought I would share it with you too. Enjoy.

When you were a teeny baby.

When you were a teeny baby
I liked to give you big hugs, even though my arms could wrap around you a whole bunch of times.

When you were a teeny baby
You weighed less than a watermelon and you were way cuter!

When you were a teeny baby
I used to give you lots of kisses, even when you were mad or crying, just because I could.

When you were a teeny baby
Your dad and I would just look at each other and say, “Isn’t he the cutest kid?”  We thought all the noises and sounds you made were so adorable.

When you were a teeny baby
You would lay on your dad’s tummy and look around the room with your big, blue eyes wide.  You especially liked the ceiling fan and lights.

When you were still in my belly, I used to pat you on your little bottom.  So when you were a teeny baby, I patted your little bottom and you seemed to like it.

When you were a teeny baby
You smiled when you were eating and going to sleep.  We loved your smile so we always smiled back.

When you were a teeny baby
We liked to watch you sleep.

When you were a teeny baby
I loved just looking at you, even though you couldn’t talk or hug me or do anything.

When you were a teeny baby
I let you fall asleep on my lap instead of putting you in bed because I wanted to be with you as long as I could.

When you were a teeny baby
Everyone said you looked just like your dad.  But you looked just like my baby pictures.  We don’t know who you look like yet, but everyone says you are very cute.  And they’re right.

When you were a teeny baby
You had a head full of dark, brown hair.  I loved your hair so much I never wanted to put a hat on you, even though it was cold, because I wanted everyone to see your adorable head.

When you were a teeny baby
Bear gave you lots of sniffs and licks.  He called them kisses, but we asked him to stop, please.

When you were a teeny baby
Your clothes were so small, I couldn’t believe a human could fit in them.  But you did.

When you were a teeny baby
I loved you so much.  And I still do.