The Lonely One

A lonely child
Hiding in the dark
Praying to be discovered
But fearing to be uncovered

Why can’t she be more like the rest of us?
They asked

A lonely teen
Struggling to fit in
Praying to be accepted
But fearing to be rejected

Why can’t she conform to society’s norms?
They asked

A lonely adult
Standing proudly on her own
Praying to be comprehended
But fearing to be misunderstood

Why can’t they accept me for who I am?
I cried

Slowly I Fade

Slowly I fade

Childhood memories
Tossed about on the pages of my mind
Growing dimmer
With the passing of time

Slowly I fade

Friendships fading
Brittle as autumn leaves
Scattered across the forest floor
A victim of Father Time and Mother Earth

Slowly I fade

Family once gathered
Now torn apart
No ties binding
Only tears and regret for what was

Slowly I fade

Sleeping Ghosts

I softly whispered, “Where did you go?”
To the sleeping ghost of a man beside me.
He was all but gone from me now.
The only thing left was the actual goodbye.
He had been leaving for a while now,
It was a long time coming.
Still, I was wholly unprepared
For the ache in my heart
And the hole in my life
That had yet to appear
But had already consumed me.
For now, I would lie next to him
And welcome his warmth.
And take this one last chance
To remember all that might have been.

Red Balloon

He tugged on my sleeve, a tiny urchin who couldn’t have been more than four, and deep, soulful brown eyes locked with mine as he motioned behind me to a balloon bobbing against the ceiling. Smiling, I stretched my hand to the bright ribbon trailing down through the air and tugged it down to his chubby fingers. With a giggle he was off, running happily down the hall with the red balloon sailing behind him.

A Strange Request at a Piano Bar

Savannah turned the corner from her bedroom and entered the kitchen, fastening the gold hoop earring on her lobe and fluffing out her long auburn hair. A steaming bowl of rich gumbo, thickened with a distinctive sassafras filé, sat on the counter, no doubt left by her Maw Maw who always left something for supper before she went to Mass on Saturday. Luckily, Savannah was alone to eat, able to avoid the awkward conversation that frequently arose at mealtime about the fact she was still single at the age of thirty. An unprecedented occurrence in her family which caused a controversy that was brought up at every opportunity, including family dinners on Saturday with all her aunts, uncles and cousins chiming in with their respective opinions. Sometimes a large family was a disadvantage.

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Thursday Night Sitcom Life

Her life was messy in a complicated Thursday night sitcom sort of way. Although her apartment wasn’t quite as nice, and she didn’t have nearly as much free time. Still, sometimes she could laugh, and other times she only wanted to cry. There were nights, lying alone in bed when she desperately waited for the director to yell “Cut.” But it never came. So, she woke, and dressed, and went about her day, half fantasy and half reality. Living in her messy, complicated, Thursday night sitcom life.

Keep The Fire Burning

She sat in her favorite cozy overstuffed chair, flames of orange danced in the fireplace and cast a warm glow in the darkening room. A half-drunk cup of Earl Grey tea kept her hands company in her lap as her mind played over memories of the last ten years with him. The smile on her face changed from timid to beaming to amused to sad as she relived every moment, every adventure, every heartbreak to the last good-bye. When she was finished, she tucked them all away for the night, like a mother bundling her precious babies. She was certain would take them out again. On another cold and lonely night, in front of a comforting and warm fire, until she was over him.

A Christmas Gift

Driving through the country roads towards the small town where I lived, in the last evening light, my mind was ticking off the items on my to-do list when an old but familiar voice softly crooned on the radio. Jolted from my thoughts, I reached for the dial and turned the sound up, fingertips lingering on the knob while a wistful smile crossed my face. “Do you hear what I hear? Ringing through the sky shepherd boy.” My cowboy was singing, not just for me but for everyone.

The setting sun was glistening off the lightly falling snow and the meadow in front of me looked perfectly arranged for a winter wedding; late blooms of color peeking out of the new snow, circles of evergreen giving promise of new life, and the fresh, white snow signaling a brand-new start. A sob formed in my chest and unexpected tears slipped down my cheeks, I quickly brushed them away as if it could ease the sudden ache that had formed in the center of my heart, the place where he began and ended.

I was sadly proud of him. In the years that we had spent apart, he had made a name for himself and shared his beautiful gift of song with the world. It was what he dreamed about and that made it my dream too. I hadn’t known then what I would be giving up now. But isn’t that the way the world goes? It was subtle, a week away, then two, a month here and there. Not unlike his life before only different. Too late we realized how much had changed and then, you really can never go back.

My thoughts returned to the deep whiskey melody filling my car. Maybe it was fate, hearing him on the radio, singing my favorite Christmas song after all these years. Maybe he hadn’t even remembered it was my favorite song. Either way, our life together had not worked out. But I found happiness anyway. I hoped with all my heart that he had too. And, I would always cherish my memories of him, my sweet cowboy.

A Meager Offering

It’s easy to write every day. You simply write something. Every day. But to write something good, that’s a bit more challenging. And often what keeps writers from writing. Every day. It’s not enough to speak for the sake of speaking. Words should provoke thought, emotion, feeling. Words without meaning are merely noise. A meager offering to a starving crowd.

To write every day requires words yes, but also something to say. Please forgive my silence.

Thief of Hearts

She woke in a dark room
The silhouette of a familiar stranger tangled in the sheets beside her
She slipped quietly out of the bed and dressed quickly
Eager to leave before he stirred

Like a thief stealing away without a trace
Into the early morning dawn
The promises of a new day on the horizon

She was the thief of her own heart
Never allowing herself close enough to anyone
To risk the loss