I’ve never considered myself much of a poet, though I always liked writing poetry.
I’ve been very afraid to produce something that sounds over-the-top and disjointed: purple prose, if you will.
But lately, I’ve felt a surge of creativity, like I’m pulling up new threads into this tapestry. There are any number of reasons for this happening – new friends, new experiences, new energy, new attitude. I’m enjoying it. And I’m becoming more brave about sharing poetry with others or posting it here. Poetry, like all writing, requires the writer to take a risk, but for some reason, it feels so much more personal.
I’m endeavoring to push myself, to force myself past self-imposed limits. We’ll see how it goes. Interestingly, I’m far less afraid now than I used to be. I’ve certainly been rejected enough times to have developed a thick skin. I’ve had my work evaluated by some incredibly fine writers, editors, and agents, and I’ve lived through that and come out stronger for it.
So bear with me through this poetry phase – though I don’t think it’s a phase anymore.
BELATED MOTHER’S DAY
The storm blew the baby bird
from the safety of its nest
to the lawn where my children found it
while exploring after the rain.
My youngest daughter
from the tenderness of her child’s heart
scooped it from the wet grass
then called me, saying “Don’t let it die.”
So small, it had no feathers
just tufts of spiky down
that shot out in a dozen illogical directions
from the sides of its bald head.
It looked like Einstein
they named it Albert
and wrapped it in the softest dish towel
and set it in a bowl in my daughter’s room
I knew the possibility of survival
was remote, at best.
I went into the garden
collecting earthworms and strawberries
I crushed them in my kitchen
with a mortar and a pestle
which are typically reserved for grinding
basil and mint leaves
I mixed it up with water
and fed it to the orphaned bird
with a glass eye dropper I had purchased
from the pharmacy down the street.
For three days, I played surrogate to Albert
before the bird lady from the rescue center
called to take the orphan
off my hands and into hers.
We drove to her home
Albert in the bowl, on my lap
surprised, the bird lady said he looked healthy
and she told me, “You’re a good mom.”