Sweet Little Nothings

Make the first move.jpg

She’d moved away from it all
before he could take her away from it.
Her reinvented life was such
that when he made the offer a second time,
there was nothing to take her away from.
When the right man came along,
it was not to take her away from anything,
but to add to what she already had.


Writer’s Digest Wednesday Poetry Prompt #461: Picking Up


Picking Up Toys

Raggedy Anne is looking rather ragged.
You’ve made a hat out of stickers for her;
you’ve pulled her yarn hair apart
so it looks like she has a bad perm.
She is not yet missing an eye
(only because it’s made of thread),
but if you needled her to death
like Mama used to do to her “friends,”
she’d be real sorry.
You’ve turned Baby Aimee into a double amputee.
I thought only woodland creatures
chewed off their own foot
when it was caught in a trap.
Mickey’s hands look like they were caught
in a stump grinder;
poor Frederick the Poet Mouse
looks like he’s been on a starvation diet.
And Quackers?
Well, he’s hanging on (or together)
by a thread,
for mastication is your instantaneous gratification.


Poem-a-Day November 2018 Writer’s Digest Challenge #30. Theme: One More (Blank)

Betty Slide 13

One More Memory

If I had just one more memory–
one more moment stretched into years
(with light years between the seconds)–
I would have so much to show-and-tell you.
Does that not sound like a little child?

Your presence
in the absence
of space and time
as you observe Hannah’s progression,
listen to my stories,
and see this, your daughter,
in the collegiate green cap and gown,
having remade herself into the ungraven image
she’s always wanted to be.

We share memories of you at the table;
I like to imagine you hear us
every time we speak your name.
We have no complaints.

Dad still carries your driver’s license in his wallet;
there are never enough pictures.
We say, “That’s a Mom joke!”
(when the joke is truly terrible)
or “Remember when Mom ..?”

Dad still calls you Mom;
I call you Grandma.
“Say ‘Good-night, Grandma,’”
I tell my daughter,
“blow her a kiss to heaven.”
It’s a kiss strong enough
to shatter
to defy
I catch the one you send back
and plant it on her cheek.

We call you what our children call you.
You wanted Dad to call you Betty more.
Your mother always called you Betty Ann.
You liked the names Carolyn and Elise.
You dug up the roots of the family tree
to give me mine.

She is…she was…
it is just “Grandpa’s house” now,
but the contact still reads “Mom and Dad’s”
in my phone.
I will never change it.

We remember your goulash–
the only thing you knew how to make–
even though we weren’t even Hungarian.
Still aren’t.

We just are.


Poem-a-Day November 2018 Writer’s Digest Challenge #29. Theme: Remix


From Within

God was there between them,
holding both their shaky hands.
Crumbling was that faith
that marriage was forever,
but when they looked at one another,
seeing one another the way they did,
they saw from their reflections
in the windows of their souls
that God was the fulcrum,
and she, the power suit in her marriage
and he,
in his birthday suit,
was a kept man.
But for this practice of self-reflection,
of seeing themselves obstructed in the beam
they saw in one another’s eyes,
they also saw that he needed her
as much as she wanted him.

*For this poem, I used every word from this one: https://sarahleastories.com/2018/11/28/poem-a-day-november-2018-writers-digest-challenge-27-theme-sturdy-shaky/



Poem-a-Day November 2018 Writer’s Digest Challenge #27. Theme: Sturdy/Shaky


The Bride of Christ, the Groom of God

Shaky was her marriage,
but sturdy was the faith
that kept her marriage from crumbling,
for when they looked at one another,
holding both hands,
God was there between them,
and they saw one another the way He did.


Poem-a-Day November 2018 Writer’s Digest Challenge #18. Theme: Toy


Peas & Caterpillars:  Recipe for 1 Smiley-Faced Stick Figure

5 caterpillars (for the skeleton):
1 circle (for the head),
1 vertical (for the torso),
1 horizontal (for the arms),
& 2 diagonals (for the legs).
Add to the circle 3 peas:
2 for the eyes
1 for the nose,
& a pea rolled into a caterpillar
for the mouth.
Remnants are used hair & clothes
because those things are dead anyway.
After all, aren’t all corpses either bald or naked,
depending on their level of