Diapers and Dragons

Monday, October 26, 2009


sometimes the distance between
stretches in endless rolling waves
miles of nothingness
crossed only by thin bridges
spun of gossamer and silicon
particles of light and sound
flung into the ether
bounced off titanium, aluminum, polycyanate
miracles of science
connecting us across the chasm

and yet

the years roll by without sight of face
touch of hand
warm embrace
i feel the absence in my soul
the gape of missing pieces
spread across the surface
of this far-flung world

my roots are deep in this soil
twined through Michigan's loam
i have made my choice
planted my seeds
and cling fast to this land of seasons
and lakes
and feeling of home

yet tendrils grope in endless search
for that which is missing
withheld in time and space
particles of heart tucked away
in pockets and purses
whisked away on man-made wings
soaring over continents and oceans
to land on other ground
where i once was or dream of being

and when you dig deep your roots
my heart is planted with them
and calls out
with endless siren songs
of other earth and skies

3 bits of love:

Arby said...


Now there's a word I never expected to stumble across in a poem!

Dad said...

Thank you my daughter who is far away:

Two little girls of maybe 5 and 7
large smiles covering their pretty faces
hair in neat cornrow braids with beads
running up to me a prefect stranger
perhaps strange in my white skin
but not strange with a smile of greeting
and willing hands to hold
while walking down a street to get a taxi

Oral communication in French for me
and Bambara for them
not able to really understand what was said
Non verbal communication in smiles, laughter and touching hands
A brief encounter on a busy street
probably never to meet again as the taxi took me away
They brought joy into my life and I hope did in theirs
even for that brief encounter.

The joy turned to reflection and a deep longing
for days gone buy when I had little girls and a little boy
to hold, cuddle, comfort, and play childhood games
and to be held, cuddled, and comforted
days that I thought would never end
where I thought that there was always tomorrow
to play
to read
to listen
to be with

Those days passed all too quickly
sometimes putting imagined and real priorities
over my children
Days I would love to take back
and think that I would do differently
But I would have been the same person
and probably would have been pretty much the same

Older now, but not always wiser,
I realize that in all the things that we are called to do
we are not so much called to do a “thing”
but rather to be.
a friend
a companion
a teacher
an example
a person who cares and loves others

What I want to be, my dearest firstborn,
is a father who never stops loving you
a grandfather whose grandchildren want to see and visit
not because of toys or things I give
but because of who I give – myself
the polar bear, the lap, the cuddle,
and as they get older the listening ear
and love.

I miss you greatly and the distance hurts
and I thank the Lord he gave us you!

mom said...

You do know how to tug at my heartstrings -- can you tug hard enough that we could have a heart-to-heart across the distance? Words do that, your words. I can't write anything new tonight, brain-weary as I am from doing the Hebrew-French-Nyarafolo thing. But your words brought a memory I've shared before. You are planted in the land of seasons that we all love. Dad and I are rovers, nomads:

I am only, always
just a resident alien
on a yoyo between worlds,
with a foreign address,
borrowed rooms,
and a “home”
where I never live.
At least not yet.

Meanwhile everything
is temporary.
A modern nomad,
I have no herds,
just other moveable goods:
my books, my music,
practical clothes,
and indications
of my nesting instinct
like candles, chocolate,
the essential coffeepot,
and photos.

Not even family
stays intact:
I trail children
in my wake,
some here, some there;
siblings halfway
around the world,
parents all back
where we come from.
Friends are lost to distance
or to silence.

Memories of
discarded nests
of back and forth
and torturous goodbyes
move in succession
through my thoughts.
Airports have sanded
off my heart
until it’s raw.
Togetherness and roots
are the elusive stuff
of dreams.

Just call me Sarah,
partnered with my Abe,
packing up
and moving on,
risking everything
on promises
and for the sake
of the Voice.

We do have resting places;
we’ve left our
markers there,
something permanent
in all the transience.
They stand as
firm reminders
of epiphanies.
Whenever we can circle back
in thought or fact,
we do.

And there,
we find that gratitude
and confidence renewed
give hope a boost,
and keep us headed
in our true direction:
a country where
we’ll turn in suitcases
for all the comforts
of Home.


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