Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Sword and the Shield


At three I made my own breakfast
from milk and orange juice
a bowl and box of cereal
an unseen hand placed on the lowest shelves.
I was straight and sturdy
proud of my little self.
I never knew.

At twenty, I shunned marriage
turned away from my fine job
headed West--
the summer of love
North Beach poetry
music in the parks.
I was a rebel. I would be different.
I never knew.

"My art comes first," my new husband cautioned
as we left the justice of the peace.
He was crazy
chased women
drank.
Onward I marched
Athena, sword drawn.
I never knew.

Ah well. You've heard the story.
Single parenthood
my own crazy
choices that seemed bold and new
creative and affirming.

Until they died, Mom and Dad,
I never knew I marched behind
an invisible shield they held before me.
At last I see, at last I know.

photo courtesty of Willow. Read more writing from this prompt on Magpie Tales.

11 comments:

  1. This is very good! Very clever and orignal take!

    Anna :o]

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  2. This is so very touching, Suki. A lovely, personal write.

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  3. beautifully written..a different view of power, i think.

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  4. I love the insight, the honesty of your poem. Lovely.

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  5. I feel so much strength here Suki...sometimes we really don't know until we look back.

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  6. A deeply insightful poem - strange that we learn so much and still know little. I love this piece!

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  7. This is such a great site! I like the way you set this up! Great content and images as well! Thanks for sharing this! Great works!...Daniel

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  8. Yes, we often are blind to the shields of protection and grace surrounding us as we walk through the world. I love your imagery throughout this poem, but especially the first part - the little girl so self-sufficient with her breakfast making.

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  9. Weren't you fortunate, or perhaps fortuned, with parents willing to shield one whose path varied from the norm. Seems like a wonderful, loving combination or souls.

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  10. Ah, isn't that always so...
    'Until they died, Mom and Dad,
    I never knew I marched behind
    an invisible shield they held before me.
    At last I see, at last I know.'

    An evocative piece, painting many personal memories I can relate to. Thanks!

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  11. Wow Suki...I never knew!I'm so enjoying reading your poetry.

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