The Small Things

white settee

You are never
truly prepared
for the damage wrought by losing a loved one.
Sometimes, it’s not the grief that nearly destroys you.
I find that I am often overwhelmed by the details.
By the silence,
starkly reminding
me of their absence.
I am burdened
with disbelief that
all the little funny moments
of my day
have to be shared with other people.
That our old inside jokes
don’t evoke the same laughter with others.
Loss stops you in your tracks
with even the smallest realizations.
Reminding you
how really lucky
you used to be.


Getting It Together


Sometimes, I speak to myself in the voice of one of my best friends. I no longer physically have her so I have to evoke her in my mind. She’s my straight shooter, my face slapper in moments of hysteria, drama or down right ridiculousness. When I lost my mother, I made the brilliant mistake of telling her that my mom told me “do your work” while we were in her hospital room. My mother meant for me to complete the assignments for a class that I’d been so excited about when I was accepted into my program. That class was Medieval Literature. So later when I wanted to drop the class and sink into the abyss of grief, my friend wouldn’t let me. She kept reminding of my mother’s words and whenever I faltered she was fond of telling me, “Do your work.”

I am now teaching a full course between classes at a community college and a university. I am overwhelmed and crazed; no poetry has been written and I just (finally) finished my Master’s thesis last night. Last week, I had pink eye in both eyes and had to cancel classes on the second day of the semester. Earlier, today I realized that I was becoming a little anxious about all of the changes in my world and I had to tell myself, “Get it together, sucka!” and I realized that was all I needed. My class planning is now going a little smoother and I am optimistic about the rest of the week. All I needed was a little tough love!

Hope you’re all having a wonderful week!




FerguSON blog post

This fear
I see played out
on the TV
These tears shed,
blood bled
is almost worse
than the scenes from
Birmingham and other
Southern cities
decades ago.
I understand
the need to rage, rave
rant, rebel and riot.
I pray for peace
in all our hearts.
Peace in our streets
even as the president
focuses on peace in the
streets of other countries.
An if you can’t
I pray that you
never have to.


So Marvelous

superhero image

This piece was inspired by my constant need to read and drink tea at the coffee shop. It stemmed, in part, from a poem I read about low self-esteem and also from a piece that I read about how mothers can empower their children and from a line about some people who wear capes in their daily lives. All of these are the ingredients that combined to make this poem. At any rate, my mom definitely empowered me and is part of the reason that I’ve always been confident. She read The Little Engine That Could to me for weeks, possibly months even though I could read and had a bookshelf full of books. She’s the reason that I am comfortable being myself and why I’ve never tried being anyone else. Ironically, I also said yesterday after writing this poem while I was shopping that if I was a super hero the grocery store would be my arch enemy, my evil villain.

I wear my self esteem
like a cape
shielding me from
the harsh rays of other’s opinions.
I use my sharp wit and sarcasm
as my lasso of truth
it allows me to tame savages
and other aggressors.
I’m no superhero;
just an ordinary woman.
With a penchant for believing
that I can…


Because I could not stop for Death by Emily Dickinson


This might have been the first poem that I ever fell in love with. I selected this poem for an English project when I was in sixth grade. This poem and its poet, played such an important role in my development as a poet and a reader of poetry. For me, Dickinson is such a regal poet and this poem is a prime example of how she was able to paint a picture and tell a story with her words. I hope you all enjoy.

Because I could not stop for Death –
He kindly stopped for me –
The Carriage held but just Ourselves –
And Immortality.

We slowly drove – He knew no haste
And I had put away
My labor and my leisure too,
For His Civility –

We passed the School, where Children strove
At Recess – in the Ring –
We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain –
We passed the Setting Sun –

Or rather – He passed us –
The Dews drew quivering and chill –
For only Gossamer, my Gown –
My Tippet – only Tulle –

We paused before a House that seemed
A Swelling of the Ground –
The Roof was scarcely visible –
The Cornice – in the Ground –

Since then – ’tis Centuries – and yet
Feels shorter than the Day
I first surmised the Horses’ Heads
Were toward Eternity –




Sadly, for the past 18 months or so
I have been cocooned
in loss and anguish.
My soul caught in
an unending cycle of tears, regret
and mourning.
I am almost past the point
where I forget
that I am allowed
to be happy.
That I should be smiling, laughing,
basking in the joy of memories.
Grief is tricky like that;
it has the power to rob you.
It makes you wallow in sorrow and sadness without ever considering the
good moments.