POETIC BLOOMINGS is a Phoenix Rising Poetry Guild site established in May 2011 to nurture and inspire the creative spirit.


Our mothers and fathers have had their say. And now we check in with the rest of the Peanut Gallery. Families come in all configurations and sizes, and their influence is no less important to our development.


Part 18: Sibling Revelry – Write about one (or all) of your siblings. If you were an only child, was there a cousin who filled that gap? If not, write about your feelings about being the “one and only.”


With my big sister, Peg


Perhaps an only child would once have preferred to remain so.
Perhaps she grapples still in deep or shallow recesses,
Never quite comfortable journeying in sister shoes.

Yet as she treks time’s encounters, does she open her eyes to see
Herself reflected in those of her sister’s affection,
And perchance recognize how deeply loved and valued she is.

© Copyright – Marie Elena Good – 2012

*The photo messes with the form, but it’s staying.  I love it. 😉

P.S.  My sister has embarked on a journey late in life that has ordained her as a minister.  She just received a new pastoral position at a UCC church in Owosso, Michigan.  Personally, I can’t envision myself being as unselfishly giving of my time as is required of the pastor of a church.  I’m so very proud of her for this.



More than five times have I been blessed,
from my vantage point, the middle man.

Two sisters and four brothers
all offspring of the same mother,

all with their quirks and styles,
(everyone with Dad’s smile) and

a completely separate branch on the family tree,
foliage gone, but the rings around the trunk

assure a longevity; a brevity in the span
of this vast universe so created, and elated

that we have come to reconnect at a time
when the incredible shrinking surname

wanes towards obscurity. A factual surety
that frames this portrait with love and understanding

no longer demanding and pompous, an enormous relief
in the belief that in assuming the mantle left behind

we will find our footing and map out new ground,
profound in the knowledge of our origin and happy

we were afforded the opportunity to flex our wile,
while never straying far from our connection.

Joseph, your history is our mystery. Not around long enough
to make a blemish, although leaving your mark on our fabric.

Cynthia, queen mother so assumed, groomed for the position
of matriarch with enough of a spark to be yourself.

Paul, sure and independent, most reticent to belong,’
too strong for your own good, a marvel with wood.

Tim, wild and free, determined to take life by the throat
and squeeze every ounce out of its living.

Ken, backbone in question, but heart always in place,
a face only a mother could love, (and she could have been jiving!)

Laurie, a singular soul, her only attachments are her siblings
and her felines, straddling the fine line of “Crazy Cat Lady”.

Where does that leave me? The word guy, know-it-all,
writing the script that skirts dysfunction for the joy our bond provides.

You have that right, Brother!

© Copyright – Walter J. Wojtanik 2010

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125 thoughts on “SIBLING REVELRY – PROMPT #83

  1. Great poems guys! Marie, from what I’ve read you and your sister have a great relationship. I can’t even begin to imagine having only one sibling(although sometimes I wish I could :)), but I’m glad you have her.

    • claudsy on said:

      Have to go with the majority here, Marie and Walt. You have shown yourselves again. We’re going to have to hand you both giant fans soon so that you don’t expose yourselves indiscriminately. LOL

  2. Jam Packed

    My life is crowded with them;
    They’re here and there and everywhere.
    Sisters, brothers, younger, older;
    Yes I know they’re all a blessing,
    But sometimes I really have to wonder.

    Ellen came first, a typical older sister,
    Exactly opposite of me in every way;
    I mean seriously, we don’t even look like sisters!
    Then came Cameron, a little too much like me;
    We caused a lot of trouble, we two,
    But he was always there for me and I for him.
    I don’t even know how I kept going when he died.
    Then there was me, and that’s where I wonder
    How my parents had the strength to keep going,
    How they actually wanted more kids
    After they saw the way that I behaved.
    Warren came after me, a funny boy,
    Very protective, now that he’s grown a little;
    We share a special bond(and also a secret handshake).
    Carolyn next, a motherly girl, gentle,
    Always willing to do extra jobs and take care
    Of the little kids when I think it’s a bother.
    Along came Shannon, slim and agile,
    (Why don’t I have that coordination?).
    She sings like a lark, and I can’t get her to stop.
    Then there’s Calvin; oh boy! How can
    So much energy be packed into that little frame?
    Talkative, noisy, and totally fun.
    Allison next, an awful lot like Ellen,
    In looks as well as mannerisms.
    Last came Joan, an exact replica of me.
    Oh dear, now I know how my parents felt
    When I was three.

    So there you have it, my family in detail,
    And in case you got the wrong impression,
    I love them all with a deep and jealous love;
    So now you know.

  3. Marjory M Thompson (MMT) on said:

    Marie, wonderful to get to know a bit more about you and you family, very nicely told.

    Walt, nice to meet the siblings that made you rich by the payments for washing dishes. Is the ‘middle guy’ the one who is suppose to be the peace maker in the family?

  4. Henrietta Choplin on said:

    Meg and Walt, it’s so nice to meet your siblings!!

  5. Sisterly Love Lasts Forever

    Sisterly love lasts forever
    Kathy, the oldest of us five
    My roommate and girl scout leader
    No nonsense, fun, secretary

    Judy, my friend and nemesis
    Sisterly love lasts forever
    Fun Wyoming summer with her
    Clever, funny, generous, nurse

    Linda, my “twin”, play mate, best friend
    We lived in Nebraska a year
    Sisterly love lasts forever
    Kind, spunky, homeschool mom, artist

    Karen, baby sister “puppy”
    Celebrate birthdays together
    Relatable, computer prof.
    Sisterly love lasts forever

  6. How could the same kid
    I set like a cat in my bicycle basket,
    and flew down hills all over Crieve Hall;
    the kid I taught
    to pick up pennies with his toes,
    and bounced with in superman circles
    from sofa to marble-top table to chair
    –such a smart, funny little dork–
    how could such a great little kid
    become Republican?

    (I’m still trying to figure out what I did wrong)
    The kid is still in MSICU while they manage his white cells, but the new kidney looks like a good match. The first transplant lasted 28 years, which is pretty amazing, but then, so’s my Bro (just don’t tell him I said so)


    Five siblings,
    all different but all the same.
    Different faces, same smile.
    Different personalities, same values.
    Different dispositions, same temper.
    Different lives, same dedication.
    Different jobs, same work ethic.
    Nature or nurture?
    Some of both, but all raised in love,
    and all devoted in love
    to each other and their families.
    How empty my life would be
    without any one of my
    five siblings!

  8. Nothing in Common

    We didn’t look alike –
    I had dark brown hair,
    her hair was reddish brown;
    my eyes so dark, almost black
    hers a warm brown;
    but Mom liked to buy us
    matching outfits.

    We are four and half years apart –
    When I was a baby,
    she was going to kindergarten;
    I was learning to walk,
    she was reading books;
    I wanted to play barbies,
    she wanted to play monopoly;
    Mother made her play barbies.

    Everyone always thought I was the older sister,
    going to bars was never a problem for me,
    of course my sister never went to bars;
    She got married right out of high school
    and started producing babies (four of them);
    I went on to college, got married
    and didn’t have my first baby until almost thirty;

    I think I was born with a pen, paint brush and camera in my hand
    But it took my sister forty years to find her artistic gene;
    She immerses herself in her religion
    and shares it daily, with everyone (on facebook of course);
    I prefer to keep my religious view private,
    comfortable in my own spirituality;
    Politics? We don’t discuss politics.

    We don’t live nearby, we are states apart,
    and if I met her for the first time
    at a social gathering, I doubt we would be friends;
    And yet, if I needed her, she would come.
    For although we have nothing in common
    on the outside, within we are the same,
    and nothing, absolutely nothing surpasses
    our love, our bond, of family first.

  9. claudsy on said:

    Everyone seems to be doing well after the holiday. Excellent. I’ll be back later to do comments. I’m saving an hour just for that.

    Here’s mine for today.

    Brother Mine

    Totally unaware
    He tried to kill me
    After he turned three,
    A TV villain
    Showed him how;

    A metal pistol grip
    To the top of head
    Produced concussion
    In a moment’s heat,
    Watching Lone Ranger fight.

    Saving my life and limb
    When he was five
    Helped forgive innocent
    Maiming act at three,
    Sow was disappointed.

    I turned the tables when
    He turned ten and drowning
    Seemed his future scheme,
    Though words of appreciation
    Never passed between us.

    I took him to the movies
    At his age twelve or thirteen,
    When Valley of the Dolls
    Came to town and middle
    School doldrums ensued.

    I stood proud to watch
    Him grow into a man,
    Take up family duties
    Suffer health issues that
    Could have killed another.

    Drowning chances came again
    And again I stepped in,
    Young fathers shouldn’t swim
    If their histories prove unsure
    Of water’s reception of self.

    Babies grow and mature,
    Become adults with lives
    Unique and valued,
    Once irresponsible now
    Taking responsibility for all.

    He stayed behind in hometown
    With cares for kids, grands, and
    Dad, while I took another path
    Farther away, more lone,
    Still together in spirit,

    Both Young.

    • 🙂 Always young in our minds.

    • Henrietta Choplin on said:

      “… Still together in spirit,…” Yes!

    • Claudsy…you reveal so much about relationship and the fine balance of life and death…I often have horrible visions of what could happen between my two young ones by accident if I were not present. Wonderful write Claudsy!!

      • claudsy on said:

        Aw, thanks, Hannah. He and I are always there together even when we don’t talk often. I took care of Mother during her struggles with cancer and finally with dying. He takes care of Dad during his trials of declining health and aging. It wasn’t planned but seemed understood instead.

        We could always count on each other, no matter what, though we never discussed it. You’re kids will probably do fine without much thought being put into it. They have an excellent example in you.

        • Claudsy!! You cause me to tear-up…such a sweet thing for you to say about us!! Thank you so much.

          It’s really wonderful that the “burden,” was able to be shared by the two of you…it sounds like such a good balance that has revealed itself. ♥’s to you my friend!

          • claudsy on said:

            I tend to write what I perceive. You’ve welcome.

            Brother’s sacrifices of time and effort allow me to remain here in the west without the worry I could have otherwise. It’s hard on him and I’m grateful for the reprieve.

  10. Michael David

    Squirreled away in the documents file
    are the statistics of your life. You were
    born and died on the same day.

    Even though my bold footprints were small
    —2 7/8’ by 1½’, yours were barely visible
    and smaller still—2’ by ¾.

    Once I stepped over where they buried you,
    but there is no headstone. The cemetery
    told us where they laid your remains.

    Mother never saw you; they said it would
    be better that way. Those who did told her
    the two of us looked alike at birth.

    It took my own son to create a hole in both
    our hearts. As I see my children’s connection
    I now know what I have missed.

  11. janeshlensky on said:

    I was feeling rhymey, but my meter is not so hot. Sorry.


    I was born the last of five
    Four of whom are still alive;
    The stair that binds me to the whole
    Died of leukemia before she grew old.

    My father wanted a son, a boy,
    But Mama wanted verve and joy
    Whatever gender that might be,
    He got his boy and she got three,

    All girl,s and they were done,
    But oops, I came to join the fun.
    We all complained when labor lurked
    That we were born to over-work—

    To milk the cows and tend the crops,
    To plow and hoe and weed and chop
    Tobacco, fruit trees, vineyards, more
    Than we could find a reason for

    But we were in it altogether
    Singing songs and learning whether
    We could handle war and peace,
    Rest and action, joy, release.

    We matched wits up and down the fields,
    We fought and argued, served as shields
    For one another, if some other
    Abused a child of our dear mother.

    We would not let someone else abuse
    A sibling—that’s our job to choose.
    And if I speak ill of my family,
    They are mine to abuse, not yours, you see?

    Although our daddy began soon to drink
    And was funny and scary—could change in a blink—
    We loved when he played his old guitar and sang
    And we all harmonized, a celestial gang.

    Our mother alas went early gray
    Always worried, amazed by our concepts of play:
    We sledded snow on frozen hills
    Toward a flowing creek, a thrill;

    We hitched our wagon to a truck,
    We wanted speed, she prayed for luck;
    We drove vehicles without brakes
    Enough to keep our mom awake;

    We rode the horses and the cows,
    Big dogs, bad goats, and nursing sows,
    We worked hard but we played hard too
    And put into service what we knew.

    We read and sang and played piano,
    Painted and sewed and fished for minnows,
    We showed our love in simple ways,
    Lessons we learned in younger days.

    Sometimes I close my eyes and hear
    My brother shout, the air to clear,
    “Let’s eat first; we can fight later”—
    He always was an alligator.

    I lie if I say we did not dream and smile
    Of what life would be like as an only child,
    But those moments were rare and fleeting
    Life without them would be life cheated.

    All our spats amounted to jousts
    Designed to prepare us for life’s rousts
    And all the dreams we dared dream of
    Were bolstered by a home, by folks, by love.

    (For Lynn, Gail, Jimmy, and Alice (dead at 62)

  12. Laurie Kolp on said:

    The Seven-Year Gap

    Claws like fangs,
    the fingernails
    she bore in my back,
    scratched railroad paths
    from top to bottom
    whenever we shared a bed,
    be it vacation or visits
    with grandparents;
    my big sister the
    reveled child, while I
    rebelled with bite
    marks, received all
    the blame, harangue
    that hung me out to dry.

  13. Pingback: Big-Sister-Tree… Little-Brother-Mountain… | Metaphors and Smiles

    • http://wordrustling.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/muddied-leaf-2.jpg?w=365&h=477


      Pushing through the soil

      you were a sapling, strengthening

      and when the world had spun,

      a year and half of seasons gone by,

      I, a small one, began to reach upward.

      Time’s slipped so swiftly

      and here we are…

      We’ve grown an ample distance from one another

      so that we do not fail in each other’s shadows

      yet we’re close enough

      when the storm’s winds threaten

      we’re more bold in holding-up against its force.

      Here we are dancing as well,

      with the wind we bend

      arching our limbs in a parallel way

      and our songs voiced by the breeze,

      they carry a very similar tone;

      sometimes I’m surprised

      by the mirror of our images.

      At times I’ve looked suddenly to see

      we could be twins nearly

      in our thoughts, gestures and patterns

      and yet, how positioned we are

      in separate ways altogether.

      After all we’re two diverse trees of the same family

      but when your skin feels brittle under the heat

      I feel it too

      and when the cold

      seems like more than you can bear

      I’m there for you

      and I know, it goes without saying

      that this is the way you feel, too

      because just when I think

      I can stand no longer against the gust

      there you are gathering me in,

      shining with your golden-comforting-colors.

      You remind me always of my potential,

      you make my hue brighter just by being alive

      and our rooted toes thrive midst the mud;

      standing planted, we make each other stronger

      more secure in ourselves and our environment

      so that when the thick blanket of ice

      tries to consume our sense of well-being

      we know that beneath this layer of hardship

      that we’re edified in one another.

      We celebrate life together and separate

      with tawny arms outstretched

      raised in praise, in awe of the One.


      Copyright © Hannah Gosselin and Metaphors and Smiles, 2012





      You stand

      unaffected it seems,

      against the wind

      the cold and heat.

      Cliff will shift

      and crag will crack


      with the memories,

      with the everyday trials

      but you’ll still be solid

      and quiet,

      just the sound of acceptance resonates,

      a deep settling of stone.

      You draw strength from this place,

      your true home;

      the rich-silent-range

      it reverberates with peace for you

      and I’m constantly aware of you

      even if you’re distant.

      This place will always be you to me

      and I know that you know

      if you call across this wide sky

      I will echo back to you;

      I’m as close as your next breath.


      just breathe,

      just breathe.


      Copyright © Hannah Gosselin and Metaphors and Smiles, 2012


      • Wow! That worked…I was able to share the images that I worked on so hard for these pieces!!

        Thank you two for your poems this morning, Marie and Walt, they are both so revealing of your hearts and kindness and your awesome personalities! For real, that is how your words come across-ed always…authentic. Thank you.

        I wrote the roughs of these first thing this morning but had to leave and they were still too, rough so I spent another couple of hours straightening the poems out and creating images. SO fun!

        I decided to write one for each of them…who knows, this may be a part of their Christmas presents this year!!

        Apologies but I will def. return on fresh eyes to enjoy you all tomorrow.

        Warm smiles and wishes for a happy week! 🙂

        • claudsy on said:

          Hannah, your poems were absolutely lovely. The conveyed both your desired images and your emotional presence. Gifts of them at Christmas is such a lovely idea.

          • Thank you, Claudsy!! I was drawn to delve into metaphor for this edition of the project…I’m glad that you enjoyed them! 🙂

            • claudsy on said:

              I did enjoy them, Hannah. You tend to sooth with your words by conveying what you want and need to without jarring the reader, as I sometime do.

              I’m always happy to read your work. I tend to come away slightly envious and don’t mind a bit.

              • Wow…Claudsy, you have no idea how much I look up to you as a writer, you’re so inspiring, thank you so much for this super-kind comment…it makes my day!! ♥

                • claudsy on said:

                  Oh, my. Thank you, Hannah. Our styles are very different and I know I’d only on rare occasion be able to emulate yours I’m happy that you enjoy what I write.

                  You’re very deserving of the comment, my friend. You do beautiful work.

      • Henrietta Choplin on said:

        Oh, such Beauty in both, Hannah!!!

      • Hannah, you really captured both the sister and the brother relationship so beautifully. Great work and a pleasure to read.

  14. Sibling Revelry

    I would say,
    drawing a line–
    down middle of our room.
    Six years difference mattered then.
    But we’d laugh nonstop while eating
    meals. Ill, in our pajamas,
    we ate soup and crackers from TV trays.
    I was Felix to her Oscar, yelling
    at her for messes she made, but now
    she is neater than I, a mom
    to my niece and nephew, grown
    living home, while I live
    across the country,
    missing her so.
    Age difference
    is now

  15. claudsy on said:

    It’s amazing how fast that age difference disappears, isn’t it? My brother and I are that way, too. In many ways he’s older than I am, even if three years younger. Such a good showing of your love for each other.

  16. Mary and Me

    I was prepared to love her
    Better than anyone
    Ever, ever, ever
    Loved a sister
    Fight like other sisters
    Were going to be
    Perfectly happy
    Except it took
    A while
    (Okay, an eternity)
    To me
    At eight years to her three
    We Hoppity-hopped
    And read
    Shared nightmares and
    A bed
    Barbies, Candy Land, coloring books,
    Backseat buddies, side by side
    For every trip we took
    Till I moved three thousand
    Miles away
    Now we have phone calls
    Instead of Barbie play
    Dealing with grown up fears
    Laughing, not hiding tears
    And that little girl prepared to
    Love and to be sweet
    Is so happy to find that sister love
    Travels a two way street

    This is about my sister Mary, who is one of the best people I know and who can make me laugh, no matter what.

  17. “When she came home”

    She wore high heels when she walked
    into the hospital chewing the ends
    of her hair and mom said I must watch
    out for her . . .

    when she came home (1)
    when she came home (2)
    when she came home (3)

    four, five, six, seven and more

    operations, a bundle of bandages
    wrapped around her half-shaved head—
    gauzy and bloody and smelly
    when she came home,

    When she came home,
    she cuddled in mom’s arms and ate
    Lucky Charms in her new flannel nightgown
    and high heels, and fluffy stuffed animals
    appeared in bows and burrowed
    under her sheets at night to comfort
    her and tell her she’s beautiful despite
    the scars and everyone worried that
    she missed school and she lost time.

    But she found hugs
    while she lost hope
    but she won hearts
    while she lost play
    but she found compassion
    in charming Crayon’d cards from classmates

    until the next time
    when we waited and watched and waited
    to learn she must return

    but we won time and we won hope and
    we won heart when she came home
    from the last one the last time.

    Then she left. On her own. To live. On her own.
    To prove she could.

    And still they wait.
    For her. To come home.
    One last time. For one more hug.

  18. I started about five different poems for this prompt, nothing flowed.
    I decided to pick a form and go from there. Sijo reminded me of the word Solo (my muse for the moment) and out came this poem. I didn’t even notice that Marie had written a Sijo until I came back to post this. I would not have used the form had I noticed it before. But, it seems to work for both of us, so I’m going with it.

    Going Solo

    Having lived my life without a brother or a sister,
    I feel that I will never understand the bond between siblings.
    So I will watch my four children and see what I can learn.

    © KED – November 2012

  19. claudsy on said:

    When I was doing the PAD challenge poems this morning, this is what popped out. I don’t know why, except that perhaps I had residual need to finish more for Sunday’s prompt here. So I decided to bring it here where it belongs. I hope you like it.

    A Ton of Hats

    I was the black hat
    To his Lone Ranger,
    The puller of wagons
    To his rider in style,
    The runner to rescue
    To his needing of rescue,
    The one in need of a loan
    To his full piggy bank,
    The barefoot place kicker
    To his running quarterback,
    The hats shifted from
    Time to time without
    Thought of who wore what.
    Our closets abound with brims,
    Never far from our hands,
    Having been broken in
    At various stages of life,
    Though never worn out,
    Saving back for the next time.

  20. Henrietta Choplin on said:

    What They Do And Who They Are

    My older brother
    ~ a math whiz,
    a job in numbers and tax dollars

    My younger sisters:
    ~ one, a very “neat freak”,
    a job cleaning in Heaven
    ~ one, a compassionate soul,
    a special-needs school bus driver/assistant
    ~ one, a social spirit,
    a lovely grocery checker

    My younger brother
    ~ a patriotic one
    an Air Force military/civilian

    These jobs are what they Do
    But, it is not who they Are
    Who they Are
    Are good, kind, decent
    human beings, each
    Special in his/her own
    Way. ❤

  21. Iris D on said:


    We were born siblings, but chose to become friends
    I was the baby, with a big sis and even older bro
    I never knew Mother’s first born girl
    An accident claimed her before my arrival
    Twice a week off to market we would go
    Sold eggs, milk and cream from our overflow
    We seldom had friends to share our play
    My sister was my playmate day to day
    Carefree days full of laughter and errands
    We were born siblings, but chose to become friends.

  22. Sisters

    Amy appears in my earliest memory—
    at least the idea of her—as I sit,
    in the car, just days past turning two,
    waiting as my mother is rolled
    down the ramp, Daddy walking
    beside her, Amy swaddled in her lap.

    Becky arrives in 1963, the same fall
    the President is shot—both events
    tied in my memory to the schoolyard
    where I heard one bit of news
    and shared the other.

    By the time Jeannie arrives—
    another girl—we know to be amused,
    like Rosencrantz or Guildenstern
    playing heads or tails and landing
    on heads time after time.

    Emily’s arrival prompts barbs
    from well-meaning jokers,
    certain they were “trying
    for a boy,” a notion Daddy
    denies–in writing saved until
    she is old enough to ask.

    Spread farther apart by miles
    than years now, we celebrate
    whenever we assemble, a full set,
    posing for our sister picture,
    lined up in order, always singing
    “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire,”
    our silly tradition, even on the Fourth
    of July, making our husbands groan.

    (I wish I had a way to attach the picture!)

  23. Reveling in Siblings

    Remembering the one I grew with to adulthood
    The one I loved who no longer breathes
    I realized this is the brother I need to write about
    It doesn’t matter that I have found my blood
    Siblings; it never will, they are nice people and I am
    Not sorry I did the search especially that I found
    My birth mother; she was a piece to my puzzle
    That I really needed to find and I will stay connected
    With her the rest of our lives – this I know
    But my siblings – we share little but DNA and while
    There is some inherent value in that – literally –
    There are no memories …
    The year my brother died … I wrote a month of small stones
    For him in a Winter’s River of Small Stones … here are some of them …

    In Memory of WJH

    Wishing things were different
    Gets wearying and I know
    Makes no difference whatsoever
    Still, when the wind whips the lake
    To a froth, and sighs through the trees
    I cannot help remembering you
    And then I yearn again

    Trips, Not Necessarily Road-trips

    Remember the night you had me try acid?
    First you asked me, then tried to convince me
    Then snuck some in my coffee – joke was on you
    A whole night of having to just about sit on me
    So I didn’t try and fly off my balcony
    Scared you straight at least, it was your last trip too

    Running on Empty

    Rutted roads everywhere
    Cars crashing all over
    Remember that time at the lake?
    We thought we were going to die
    Black ice and Black Tower
    Don’t mix …

    Last Night I Dreamt You

    Last night I dreamt you
    Alive; we were sitting here
    Talking as if we had never
    Not talked, and things were
    Right between us …
    When I awoke, my pillow was damp

    Deep Woods Dweller

    At the end of the trail,
    they told me
    far from civilized life
    There they’d find you,
    bon-fire blazing; coffee perking
    as if you knew—
    Company was coming

    On My Day of Days

    I see you, awkward in your suit
    But pleased to be included
    You told me later how surreal
    You found the whole thing
    Me too, I gasped, laughing
    Did you think it would last?

    More Lake Dreams

    Midnight ushers in echoes
    Of you, and childhood
    The lake and summers
    Endless summers
    “…a lonesome whippoorwill”

    Your Song

    Coming around the point
    Mom and I could hear you singing
    Even above the brrr of the outboard
    “Johnny get angry, Johnny get mad …”
    Every day around suppertime
    Just as the sun was starting to slide
    Into the lake – you came back to us.


    Your license, class one
    I hear you were pretty proud
    Of keeping it up; I can imagine
    We had that in common
    The love of driving large vehicles.

    Your Twenty-Two

    Did you know I gave your gun away?
    Did you know I wanted it myself?
    Would that have surprised you?
    I bet not; you know how much
    I like to shoot, not kill, just shoot
    It didn’t surprise me to learn you didn’t
    Like to hunt after all … just had a gun
    It seems …

    Relevance of Relatedness

    You weren’t really related though, right?
    That’s what this guy said to me when he learned
    Of your death, as if the fact of our unconnected
    Bloodlines would somehow make my grief
    More bearable, your loss, less important
    His words hurt me like carelessly thrown
    Shards of glass, like grenades, like hate-speech


    Winter’s wind’s particularly harsh
    I awake wondering how you
    Bore living so far outside
    Town, beside the tracks
    A train whistle blows lonely

    ashes dust the creek
    carry your soul to sea

    Stones and Water for You

    Every day for a month
    I have set down words for you
    Taken time to think about you
    Beyond my usual template for grief
    And found such sweet sorrow
    And welcome release
    In this simple act of remembrance


  24. But Not Always

    She and I, we had lots of fun
    Playing, teasing, daring,
    But not always, and
    She and I, played long and late
    On sultry summer nights,
    But not always, and
    She towed me round and round again
    On her bike, me on my skates,
    But not always, and
    She and I, we pushed and scowled,
    Poked and punched,
    But not always, and
    She and I, we sometimes fought,
    Sometimes cried, sometimes lied,
    But not always, and
    Through it all I loved her
    More than I love myself

  25. Pingback: But Not Always « Misky

  26. Pingback: Mind The Gap | echoes from the silence

  27. Pingback: PART 18 – Sibling Rivalry | Two Voices, One Song

  28. ejparsons on said:

    The Second of Eight

    One older; six younger
    Five boys and three girls
    Dirt poor growing up
    But we didn’t know it
    Me and older brother
    With grandparents moved
    Fun in the country
    Together we grew

    He turned to music
    Piano his forte
    I though it sissy
    A trumpet for me
    He sang and he played
    I made lots of noise
    His friends dressed nice
    Mine dirty from sports

    He went off to college
    The Air Force called me
    He taught for a living
    My country I served
    The years passed on by
    We rarely crossed paths
    Occasional meetings
    Back home with our Mom

    Now nearing our sixties
    We talk quite a bit
    He visits for weddings
    I show him around
    Emails and phone calls
    We’re finally close
    The years that we lost
    Forgotten in the past

    The older we get now
    The closer we are
    My older brother is cool
    Piano and all

    (C) 2013 Earl Parsons

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