Or maybe I should say, a poem (or three) from the past.
I was going through some boxes long packed away in the attic, trying to figure out what could go and what I wanted to stay, when I found some old journals from when I was a just-graduated high-school teen. I wrote (or tried to write) poetry back in those days, and even got a bit of recognition for them.
It was…emotional…reading some of these. They made me remember the awkward, angsty teen that I was. She was nice enough, but sometimes very depressed.
I even found a journal from when I was in my early twenties, newly married, then I lost my grandmother and had a baby. [Whew!] I’ll share some of these poems on a different day–the feel of these is very different.
Here you go!
Teardrops (December, 1987)
Drops on the windowpane
teardrops from heaven
falling silent and gentle
or violent with great wracking sobs.
~I added to this poem in February of the following year. I must have been feeling better by then about whatever inspired that first stanza.
Flowers growing in the meadow
–children of the Earth–
sprouting defiant and sure
or hesitant and wary like a child.
~I’d like to say this was an anomaly, these angsty bits of thoughts that might mean something, but this is a lot of what I wrote back then. I know it sounds like a cliche, but I think I wrote a lot of these poems to express the roiling emotions I didn’t know how to deal with. Not sure it worked…but I’m still around, so it must have done something for me.
Untitled (September, 1988)
a solitary figure;
dwarfed by life’s problems;
a solitary figure;
bows under the pressure
enveloped by the passing tide
no one sees,
a solitary figure
disappear from the path
that solitary figure;
of a kind–not happy
~Heavy stuff. Reflecting back, I don’t remember anything weighing on me that bad, but life is different as a teen. Everything is big and bold and in your face, especially the bad stuff. It can feel like things will never get better.
And then, there is this cute ditty that follows. I know the inspiration for this: an argument with my English teacher about what a poem meant. I stated that a poem means different things to different people, because the symbolism held in an image is not exactly the same for everyone. I damn-near failed his class, I think. And honestly, think about this: an image of a circle will not mean “eternal love” to the child of a single parent whose best friend’s mother is going through a nasty divorce. The image of a circle does not necessarily bring to mind a wedding ring! And if so, it might be tarnished!
Ode to my Poem (September, 1988)
I wrote myself a poem, just the other day.
Funny thing about it, I didn’t know what to say.
So I searched my heart to its very core,
wrote down these words and nothing more.
It is such a sweet little thing; only I understand,
its deep and soulful meaning, written by my hand.
[My journal has this little note to myself in it after: I wrote this and it made me feel so good because it is good!]