Nobody Hears Me Crying

I responded to my old friend and she wrote back, using none of the responses I imagined in the mental conversation I had with her while writing. In fact, it was a good response, one that made me glad I’d not shied away. Moving along now….

SOMETIMES THE LINE IN MY HEAD is not one I want to work with,
but there it is,
my lump of clay
and I’m not being given another until I make something of it.

Sometimes I feel
like nobody hears me crying.
There it is,
that’s the line,
and I’ve got plenty to work with
to develop that, but
like I said,
sometimes the line given
doesn’t appeal.

Does it count
if I just used it here,
or is that cheating?
Can I get a ruling on that?


An Old Friend Asks for An Update


I’ve lost touch with
finds an old Christmas card
and writes to ask for an update on the family.

Based on her questions,
I calculate the card to be from 7 years ago.

I’ll hasten to let her know
Wally’s still here following the Mets,
content with a kind word,
a garden to tend
and anything served on wide egg noodles.
I’ll update about everyone’s location
and that Ma left us in 2011.

The rest, I’ll figure out.

I can be straightforward with,
the kind who,
despite distance and time,
we always pick up right where we left off,

and I consider her asking
a gift,
an invitation
to try again the telling,

same way,
after praising a refugee’s ABCs,
I erase the marker board
and say “Again” over and over
until they have it,
until there are no stray marks
or b’s that look like d’s,

until, at last,
they have something really useful to them.



While Praying, I am Reminded


WHILE PRAYING for the world,
I am reminded
of someone
I need to make peace with.

And what does it say,
if while offering your gift,
you remember?
To first go and be reconciled.

I prefer to stay and pray,
but from the moment I get the reminder
all my words ring hollow.

* * *

Prayers of the People event
Matthew 5:24
mural by Louisville artist Liz Richter, used with permission

mural signature