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#176033 - 08/26/07 07:03 PM My first poem... Not Today
dannym Offline

Registered: 03/25/07
Posts: 543
Loc: Boulder, Colorado
Not Today

I feel the rough weave
Of a yard sale couch
Rubbing my cheek,
Hairless and smooth and innocent.
The spot for a motherís kiss
Or a smear of grape jelly
Leftover from a sandwich
Gobbled too quickly in a rush to play.
But no play today. Not today

At least not in a way
A young boy should play.
Out in the sun,
Out in the light.
The Sun beating down
Warmly on his shoulders
The cool grass bending beneath his bare feet

Play today is in the basement,
In the dark
On the couch
Face down.
Tender cheek rubbing slightly
With the steady rhythm
Against the worn fabric.

I smell old cigarettes.
Camels? Kents?
Their swirling smoke settled deeply
Into the couch.
The couch for T.V. watching,
Old, black and white,
With ears at funny angles
Like a cartoon rabbit
After a comical fight.

But there are no cartoons today.
No funny clowns today,
No rabbits or ducks or birds safe in their cages,
Safe from the predator, scheming and plotting,
Planning and grooming his prey
Not today. No, not today

Today it is pain on a young manís face.
James Dean is on the T.V.
His face, pleading,
Begging those he trusts
To understand who he is.
To see he is filled with self doubt,
Self hatred and fear of himself.

I see his knitted brow
His young face old with anguish
I feel it.
I feel that pain.
I know how his head aches
With the building frustration
Of not being heard,
Of not being saved.

I smell the cool mustiness
Of a basement in summer,
Neither sweet or repulsive,
But familiar and comforting,
But not today. Not today.

Today there are new smells,
Acrid and close,
An adolescent odor.
Of a changing body,
Changing desires and needs.
Taking innocence away without consent.
Without regard.
Without care.

I feel the heat of breath.
Breath that can tell funny stories
Or explain things that are mysteries,
New and unknown.
Breath that blows up balloons
Or whistles a tune with such ease.
But no balloons today. Not today.

Today the breath is hot and rancid
Slow and deep,
Picking up speed,
Building with intensity,
Catching with excitement,
Burning my neck like a hot iron

Summer days, when you are eight,
Are meant for discovery.
Discovering bugs under rocks,
Four-leaf clovers hiding in fields,
Forts formed by over grown bushes.
But there are no such discoveries today. Not today.

Today is for discovering guilt and shame,
For keeping secrets and lies and hate
Held close like a new skin.

"You should listen to your heart, and not the voices in your head."

Marge Simpson

#176037 - 08/26/07 07:13 PM Re: My first poem ever... Not Today [Re: dannym]
MarkK Offline

Registered: 04/02/07
Posts: 2652
Loc: Denver, CO

You have painted a living picture. You have reached clear to the inner child in me - and I thank you.
Originally Posted By: dannym
Today is for discovering guilt and same,
For keeping secrets and lies and hate
Held close like a new skin.

Hopefully this day is for discovering a renewal of your strength. I pray a rich blessing on your today, Dan. You deserve it.

I am honored to call you "friend"


PS - MAN can you write!

#176408 - 08/28/07 02:22 AM Re: My first poem ever... Not Today [Re: MarkK]
n52nimbus Offline
New Here

Registered: 08/25/07
Posts: 29

Beautifully written, Dan. Like Larry said, you have real talent.

#179052 - 09/08/07 12:05 AM Re: My first poem ever... Not Today [Re: n52nimbus]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA

This is one of the most powerful survivor poems I have ever read. There is so much there, waiting to be reread and rediscovered - thought about anew. Just amazing. And even more to be thankful for is the courage that allowed you to write this. I hope the experience in doing so has been as helpful to you as it will be to your brothers here on the site.

Much love,

Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

#179059 - 09/08/07 12:19 AM Re: My first poem ever... Not Today [Re: roadrunner]
MarkK Offline

Registered: 04/02/07
Posts: 2652
Loc: Denver, CO
Originally Posted By: roadrunner
This is one of the most powerful survivor poems I have ever read.

See? Told ya, Dan. You got your soul down on "paper" - outstanding job!


#179103 - 09/08/07 06:33 AM Re: My first poem ever... Not Today [Re: MarkK]
Bobby Offline

Registered: 12/01/04
Posts: 1287
Loc: Arizona
Dan, This is is absolutely amazing. I always hesitate to say the writing is beautiful when talking about something this painful, but your writing is beautiful, and compelling. Most of all, you understand something when you finish reading that you didn't understand when you're not sure what exactly, and you wish you didn't. You understand without knowing it, the terrible loss of innocence, which is abuse. We know. Others don't. Your poem will help them understand. It is as Larry has said, one of the most powerful I have read. Bobby

I'm healing now, and I wasn't sure I would.

#179119 - 09/08/07 01:52 PM Re: My first poem... Not Today [Re: dannym]
nicky Offline

Registered: 08/24/07
Posts: 261

Edited by nicky (04/27/08 05:56 AM)
i like the rain cause no one knows im crying

a strong man is one who is able to control himself when he is angry
what is your definiton of control?

i lay awake another hour
just like the one before
the shadows play a game with my head
i can't take this anymore

#179139 - 09/08/07 03:34 PM Re: My first poem... Not Today [Re: nicky]
kellygtx Offline

Registered: 07/11/07
Posts: 412
Loc: Texas, USA
Dan -

Amazing...and so hard to read. What a loss of innocence.

<<<<<Dan>>>> my friend in Colorado.

I bid you Peace.


The time is always NOW. Breath In. Breath Out. Move On.


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