Tag Archives: free verse

I Wait to Talk to a Teacher

We are both waiting, quietly observing
She calm, her coat zipped right to the top
Her pink suede boots with satin ribbon laces, dangle
Where is the aunt, her mom, maybe dad, today
The secretaries try the numbers, no answers
One mentions the books she can look at
Does she want to unzip her coat, another asks
You look uncomfortable with it up so high
No, it isn’t hurting me, see? Her chin held high
While she waits sweetly, her blonde curly hair
A wild frame for her little angelic face that stares
Straight ahead, what thoughts behind still eyes
Picking up a book she only holds its sleeve out
Where are the pictures she wonders aloud, not
To me specifically, just for anyone, she is now
Concerned about where they might be,
The people who love her, I touch the book
Explaining it is kept nice by that outside cover
She leafs uncomfortably through its pages
The phone rings, She’s right here, is the response
The secretary indicates, dad is out in the parking lot
Come on, says the secretary, I will walk you out to him
She doesn’t move. She stares ahead at the window
I see him now, too, a young dad smiling, amiable
They say, is that your daddy,
When he comes through the office door She turns her head, hesitates
Taking a big long look, she nods jumping off the chair
She is the sweetest little thing, I tell him
The secretary says, yes, I could take her home with me
Our reminders to her of her specialness, and to dad
Please don’t forget her someday when there is no
Warm office, lovely secretaries, and a mom who waits

A Catholic Woman Died

Her eulogy stated
her faith was a gift
A gift from whom
I ask myself silently
While the adult baby Jesus
Held in Joseph’s arms
Looks at me with gentle inquiry
His delicate white hand held
In a closed peace sign

Faith constructed from
Years of repetitive memorization
Words with no meaning, amen
Knees begging forgiveness
Doubt’s persistent nagging
Duty to sin’s guilt
Invisibly eating away
Faith hope and love
The greatest is love

Faith in the unbelievable
How does that do any good
Mary looks tired, the hovering
Metal halo over her head
Reminding us virginity is rewarded
Her lonely road begun with a
Visit from an angel then
A journey on a mule
Did her faith make her weary

Stumbling in my rote litany
They’ve changed the words
Since my last genuflection
In unmotivated obedience
To all that is seen and unseen
Always doing right for others
Strength in loss and love
It couldn’t have been easy
Her grace was the gift