Sunday, April 11, 2010

If You Go Swimming Try Not To Drown























Mothers become friends with their children around six,
pointing out clouds like art, sharing affections, and

the same awe for aquariums, mimicking fish, underwater
worlds through thick plexi-glass, playing hide and seek

with animals at zoo’s, even though they sleep, or
keep to themselves like fathers who read, hoard

books; endless stacks of recycled papers that
attract rats, and unsightly garage parasites- lowlife

memories resonate, others we swallow
like the pond water near the house where

birthday parties were held, old friends and childhood
playmates laugh, running down endless paths that lead

to muddled water, where danger keeps everyone on edge;
until fires cook burgers and hot dogs, smoking out

grandparents hungry for more, wiping mustard while
photos capture ineffable moments, often published

in local papers representing families, real life
appearing happy, fulfilled, but at a price

nothing, more than what you see- helping shape
children into the parents they are meant to be-

like their own, who fell in love- a beginning,
eventually waged a war that neither could win;

bedded regrets which only scream ‘let’s slip away'
to the memories of much happier times...

© E Stelling 2010

9 comments:

Katherine said...

I really liked this Elizabeth! You are so clever with words.. so many childhood memories come racing in..when I read this!

Chef E said...

I have been told I paint pictures with words, as I intend, as I myself remember...

ARUNA said...

Wonderful Elizabeth and i liked that pic of urs, its so cute!!!
U r a versatile woman!

Toon said...

You kind of went to a dark place here. Nice, but definitely dark in mood.

blueviolet said...

I saw some memories in a bit of this!

Jessie Carty said...

really love the pic and the way this one opens. seems like your work is getting stronger all the time!

Just telling it like it is said...

Your so cute!!!Miss you hun

Bryan Borland said...

I read two distinct poems here, and that's a cool thing... the first half (childhood) vs. the second half (adulthood, something darker). This is probably my favorite opening to any poem you've written. A powerhouse, Chef!

Bryan Borland said...

I read two distinct poems here, and that's a cool thing... the first half (childhood) vs. the second half (adulthood, something darker). This is probably my favorite opening to any poem you've written. A powerhouse, Chef!