Monday, June 12, 2006


He is thirteen, maybe
fourteen that day.
They are on
the street.
His mother stops
to talk to a man
then turns
to him.
“Do you know
who this is?
This is
your father.”
And the father
gruff and embarrassed
“I hear you’re not behaving”
He replies
“Who are you?”
With all the withering scorn
of the unloved

A decade later
he asks her
“What was he like?”
And she tells him
how she was young and pretty
with prospects,
and how
he turned her head.
Meeting him
ruined everything.
She says,
“I wish I never
laid eyes on him.”

And doesn’t know
she is saying
she wishes
he was never born.


Melinda said...

Oh wow. And ouch. This is a really good one, LJ.

Mella said...

Simply, wow.

Amishlaw said...

Very powerful poem. You should submit it to a mazazine

Katie said...

LJ, this one saddened me. I was once in the presence of a friend's Mother who said something along the same lines to her daughter-my friend. I cannot imagine how it felt, I only saw the pain written on her face and in her eyes. Sometimes life deals a hard hand. What we do with the hand we are holding is really all that matters. That we turn what may seemingly be bad into good. Realizing that sometimes in the rough things are hidden the best parts of our lives. True blessings. I guess it takes some longer to learn this and still others never learn. A really feeling and thought-provoking post. You have such a way with words. Hope you are doing well :)


Mary said...


LJ said...

Writers carry stories. Ours, theirs, yours. Sometimes, we take something out of the basket and put it down.
Thank you very much for your comments, all of you.

chuck said...

And every day, to my own amazement,
I say things that catch me offguard...and make me reassess what I am really all about.

Real painful process sometimes.

Teri said...

Awesome. And I love what you just said, above, about how writers carry stories: ours, theirs, yours.

phlegmfatale said...

Reminds me of what my mother-in-law said to her two sons:
Don't have children - they'll ruin your life.

It's exactly that kind of bullshit baggage that is killing my marriage.

Great poem. Cuts to the bone.

Katie said...

LJ, just checking in on you. Hope you are well. I know that you usually don't go this long without a post. Hope that all is okay :)


LJ said...

Hi Jamie.
I'm ok. It's a computer holiday, more or less. I'm feeling quiet - and I'm beading. Thanks for asking. Be back soon.

zhoen said...

My mother told me I should never have children. I never quite realized that the heart of the message was, "I wish I hadn't." Despite telling me I was wanted. No wonder I so often wished I had not been born.

LJ said...

I know something like this.