Verse Exercises

A portfolio for her verses

Archive for the ‘What is it about tenderness’ Category

What my nephew showed me

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shoesSeeing my father tend to and play with my sister’s young son now presents me with a telescope to the past. The fog of early childhood memory reconstructed by my nephew and my father at play. I begin to see how my father was like when I myself was little. Past the hurts that lodged a rift between us in my adolescence I saw that he was a very involved and very loving father. But growing up changes everything. Then we carry our baggage through the years, though at some juncture we are asked to return, to review, to make amends, or leave unwieldy chapters sealed off behind closed doors as we continue to curate what is seen in our personal exposition. . looking through notes, choosing which to keep


Written by thedoe

December 13, 2013 at 2:39 pm

I would stand

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Treading the snaking alleys of the road home,
I am myself, never needy
But missing you, who are asleep,
coasting through Morpheus’ valley of dreams

Were we the Endless I would stand,
hold your sigil,
and call you to me

Written by thedoe

May 21, 2013 at 10:19 pm

the first sore

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you take it back
that seed of anger before
it takes root
you haul it home,
back inside Pandora’s box
and seal the lid with
the lightest kiss
This has appeared in an older blog.

Written by thedoe

July 29, 2011 at 11:14 pm

Constant Traveler

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In which the persona holds a photo.

How many miles have you gone, dear? Asleep you look travel weary, laden with the dust of miles. Constant
traveler of distances you know displacements more than I. The world must be intricate in your mind’s
map, as circuitous as the dendrites that carry your memories of place, which to me are but unmarked
spaces that I struggle to name.

No one knows the dangers of the road more than you, but why do you now lay there defenseless in
fatigued slumber, as though you could not be roused, for anything?

There is something in me, wanting to ruffle your hair. But I am never where the road takes you.

Written by thedoe

December 11, 2010 at 2:13 am

Grief in Seven Cutscenes

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Enter woman.

Scene 1.
Mother phoned me to say how sorry things were.
She wanted me to fly over.
Come home.
I scanned the rows of plastic and cellophane, hating the smell of synthetic that has always provoked my asthma.
I talked about the asthma I could feel coming.
She knew I would not come home.

Scene 2.
I carry you in my coat pocket, in a zip lock bag I bought at the corner store two weeks past.
I pried the plastic open.
I clenched my fist but you slipped through.

Scene 3.
You said, I want to become the air you breathe.
Too long ago, how can I even remember?

But I thought against doing as you asked.
I cannot hold the wind.
I cannot run after your dust.
I can only breathe.

Scene 4.
Tomorrow, I will drive to the sea and carry you waist deep before the lapping quiet ocean.
Where am I casting you to
In this world bereft of corners?

Scene 5.
Sometimes I am not myself.
This morning I sat there gazing out the window like you used to.
You always smiled when you looked out like that.
I saw myself staring puzzled at the glass, sitting before a bowl of cereal and an open novel.
Looking for you.
I was not myself.
I wanted to smile as you smiled sitting there like that.
But I could not find your shadow in the glass.

Scene 6.
When I strain, I can hear the walls echo your laughter.
I am glad we lived so quietly.
If I sit still, I can breathe you.
But there are other things that cannot help be missed.
Holding your hand, I miss holding your hand.

Scene 7.
This very morning I fished beneath the covers seeking your hand.


This verse has been previously called I carry you and On the death of a lover

October 14, 2008
November 14, 2010
December 2, 2010
January 6, 2010
January 8, 2010
July 21, 2012

Written by thedoe

December 2, 2010 at 2:47 am