Thursday, March 22, 2012

Trying To Put All The Best Words In The Best Order # 23

 The March Slice of Life Challenge at the Two Writing Teachers blog - Thanks Stacey and Ruth.  Poetry Friday Is at A Year of Reading - Thanks Mary Lee for hosting.

          As I said when I first talked about this project here, I'm working on a series of poems at different stages in a life, saying goodbye each time.  I hope to put them together in a book with pictures of my grandchildren (10 ½, almost 3, 7 months) at the particular stage I am describing in the poem.  Much of this involves my observations through the ten years of my grandson's life, and now of the younger grandgirls--all growing and changing so fast.  I love telling stories through poetry, and I have long collected poems of goodbye, so this is my way to combine both passions.  Someday I hope to put it all together in a book for my grandchildren.  As we often say, it’s nice to have a goal and an audience to write for.

Real feedback is welcome.  I appreciate it.  Here is number two:


I hear the rolling over,
the bump against the cradle side.
You’re ready to move on;
I’m not ready to allow it.
I will keep this time
at least a minute more. The days rush
my life with babies
cribs and sitting, standing,
talking-yes, talking.

I imagine too soon you will be asking
to have friends over
and can you make pancakes?
And then, “is it okay to
take the car to go over to Alicia’s to
do homework?”

No, I don’t want to hear the rolling over,
bumping against the  side.
I will keep this moment--
leaning over,
bringing you into bed
with soft blankets,
at my breast.
This morning
all that you need-
me and this minute.


  1. How beautiful Linda. Your poem has reminded me how elusive the 'present' moment is and prolonging it a near-futile exercise. The instant that we have captured the present, it is past. Like a continual river that flows. And the beauty of it is that we can allow it to take us where it leads in these moments of "bumping against the side" of the crib with soft blankets and early morning sun. :)

  2. So perfect Linda! Your words reach out to me because this is my life now. Times two! My favorite: "This morning all that you need - me and this minute." (TEARS!!!)

    I love the twist of your project with poetry and saying goodbye. I'll be the first in line to buy a copy! :) It's absolutely perfect.

  3. I love this project you are doing Linda. I especially like the shape of this poem - The quiet little movement that brings on the rush of the future and then one more quiet, ephemeral moment.

  4. I am with Michelle on this one. Plus, isn't the idea of them asking for car keys like warp speed from here? I am sure it will fly by for me too, but that is the image that jars me.

  5. "This morning
    all that you need-
    me and this minute."
    You know, with all three of my kids young adults now with lives of their own, it's hard to remember back to moments like the one you described so perfectly in those lines. But, thanks to you, I'm reading those lines and remembering it all exactly - which makes me smile, and tear up a bit. A wonderful time it was...thank you, Linda, for taking me back there.

  6. Love this. There were so many times my boys were ready to move on, out of the outgrown crib, to stop nursing, and more. Your poem brought all of that back.

  7. Linda - this is gorgeous! You so clearly capture the moment in life you want to stop and hold on to. What a gift these books will be for your grandchildren.

  8. What a wonderful project, Linda. Your grandchildren are so lucky!! You describe this moment perfectly in your poem -- the quiet, the reflection, the love and wistfulness at time that passes all too quickly. You take the reader right there with you, into your heart. Beautiful!

  9. Linda- what a lovely way to hold on to those final moments. Each new stage of growth in my own granddaughter brings twinges of sadness and newfound joy in my heart. Your gentle words brought tears to my eyes. You sure know how to touch a heart!

  10. I wish I could write like this.

  11. The others ahead of me have said it already. This is so touching because it is my experience with my son. Time passed so quickly, I couldn't hold on and he grew up. Beautiful!

  12. Nice poem. So true. I wish I could freeze my kids in time--when they were infants.

  13. Such a beautiful poem! I loved the first one and this one is just as wonderful! The 2nd stanza is my favorite; I love the way it shows how quickly kids grown up through those little pieces of dialogue.

  14. This poem is so graceful. I imagine how special it will make your grandchildren feel one day to read all of your words. What an incredible gift you are giving them. The angle at which that picture was taken makes it the perfect accompaniment.

  15. Your poem is a beautiful tribute. It brought tears to my eyes because I am at the beginning of saying good-bye to my children as they leave the nest one by one. Your words are so true...we don't realize when our own children are reaching milestones how fleeting the time is. I can imagine as you watch your grandchildren grow you know in your heart how quickly the time flows. I especially like the line...I will keep this time at least a minute more.

  16. Beautiful words for a baby's "first step" into life--rolling over. I agree--having a specific audience helps tremendously. And we just thought that craft was just for the classroom.

  17. This is going to be so special when it is done. I'm so glad you are sharing your beautiful words with us.

  18. Linda, I really liked the repetition of the phrase/idea "hear the rolling over,
    bumping against the side" but how it had two very different feelings. That brought everything together for me in the poem.

  19. Your poem made me "hear" that tiny tump of feet hitting the sides of the cradle and took my breathy away

  20. I like the transitioning of stages that evoke the ever-present future yet wrapped in the current baby moment.

  21. What an inspired and inspiring project. Your grandchildren will treasure this gift. I may have to try something similar for mine. Aren't grandchildren the greatest thing?

  22. This is beautiful Linda. I'm so much more aware of how the time passes so quickly with my youngest child. She was just born yesterday but all of the sudden she is eating solid food, sitting up and trying with all her might to crawl! Where does the time go?

  23. You have stopped the moment- slowed down time and enjoyed it. Reminded us how important it is to take the current time and not rush into the next! Wonderful and beautifully written! Thanks for sharing! Happy Slicing! :)


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