jillypoet: mom trying to write

Each day I wish I had invented waterproof sticky notes (for shower inspiration) or pen-friendly diapers to get down all my quirky thoughts that I am sure are relevant and publishable. And so God (actually another writer-mommy) sent me The Blog.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Not unfinished, exactly

Here is a little something in response to POetry Thursday's Monday prompt: unfinished conversation. It is less about an unfinished conversation, than about what I might say, had I the inclination or the nerve to say it to who it needs saying to.

Ah well. Hope it makes more sense than that last bit of nitwit nonsense. Has Alice in Wonderland taken over my mind? Hah!, laughs my family. You've been this way all the time!

Looking for Berries

Once, when I was looking for berries
red, hot, fat, pulling-the-stem-over berries,
I imagined a time
when I would no longer be looking
for berries, but looking back
on looking for berries.

Even at twelve
that long hot summer before I grew up
that long hot summer of books and laps around the island
even at twelve
or maybe because of twelve
I had a feeling
about life.

About life
and its big moments
and life
and life’s small moments.

A small girl on the cusp of big
I sensed
that hidden in small,
snuggled right up against small’s curved little backside,
somehow,
impossibly,
lay big.

In all the small moments
the strawberry whispered.
I got juice all up and down my ear
trying to hear.

Once, wisdom came while I was looking for berries.
Reached straight up out of dry crumbling dust
and sucked the sweet, pink breath right from me.

What is real
- this berry.
What is now
- this day
- this mother beside me
- that boy
- that shirt untucked
- this town
- this sky
- this sugar scented July
will not be forever.

The berry will be picked
after a fiery fall
a frozen, white time
and a struggling toward green
another will grow.

Another will grow
another will droop
another will scent the air
will defy the dust
will be eaten.

This is what I would say
if boys would listen
and strawberries could speak.

8 Comments:

Blogger Tina With Wings said...

What an incredibly perfect poem. The last stanza especially touches me: 'This is what I would say/if boys would listen/and strawberries could speak.'

And the descriptions, 'red, hot, fat, pulling-the-stem-over berries'. That's perfectly delicious.

How completely gorgeous. I love it.

12:56 PM  
Blogger Carolee said...

Wow! so much in here. i LOVE all of the imagery about being 12 and being so close to something big. i relish the conclusion, just like "tina with wings..." This is what I would say if boys would listen and strawberries could speak." Very powerful!

3:08 PM  
Anonymous my backyard said...

I'm intrigued by the girl so perceptive at age 12. I sure wasn't...

4:46 PM  
Blogger Superhero Activist said...

I liked the nostalgia encapsulated in the words and all that comes with being on the cusp of little and big.

There are so many things contained within this poem, hidden in the whispering of berries! I really enjoyed the imagery and the way the poem sort of unfolded line after line, revealing something new each time.

11:44 PM  
Blogger Verity said...

How wonderful! I love that last stanza. You've made the strawberries speak! You've mad the strawberries sing.

4:38 PM  
Blogger KL said...

I could taste and feel this poem.
Well done!
(((smile)))
K

5:31 PM  
Blogger LJCohen said...

Ahhh, this is very fine. Love the repetition of 'another will grow' and the ending captures this perfectly.

Enjoyed.

5:49 PM  
Blogger Shirl said...

Your talent for putting the shared experiences of life into lyrics is put on display here. I adore the last verse.

5:10 PM  

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