Friday, April 10, 2020

April Poetry Month - Day Ten - Before and After

It's April. It's Poetry Month! And today is Poetry Friday, hosted by wonderful Amy Ludwig Vanderwater at The Poem Farm. She's been creating videos all month about writing poetry for children, and they're great for all of us, too! Thanks for hosting, Amy!

         Remember to check out the list of what everyone is doing at Jama Rattigan's blog: Jama's Alphabet Soup.

          And check on the Water Poem Project where every day, a poet is sharing a prompt connected to water, hosted and created by Laura Shovan!

Plus! Check each day for the added line to the Progressive Poem, created by Irene Latham, now hosted by Margaret Simon! The link is above and the graphic to the right!

           A leap with the theme of CIRCLES for poetry month, poems & small sketches. I am looking forward to reading everyone's posts. I'm sure I will love each one, knowing they're done during a time we've not lived before. I am worried about so many, those close and those far, my community, too. 

April 1 - haiku
April 2 - cinquain
April 3 - a couplet
April 4 - limerick
April 5 - a kyrielle
April 6 - a skinny
April 7 - quatrain

April 8 - tanka
April 9 - a prose poem

Best wishes for continuing good health to you all!

If you cannot read the text, here it is again:

Before and After

Past hard times
and after
were once new
to those living then.
They kept going.

I repeat those words of faith,
yet I’m a wonderer.
What lies behind the door,
Will it be the same
on the other side
for everyone?
Who will enter
holding hands 
with dear ones?
The answer remains too open.
Will we play the same music,
sit round the kitchen table,
gaze out the window
at the trees
Will we ever show faces again?

Then, I read
of others who strive 
to answer my same questions
of what’s on the other side
when we walk through 
the door called “after”.
I’m happy to be part of a crowd.
I am preparing, too.

           Linda Baie (c)


  1. I am happy to be part of the crowd too. It's not as fun as I might have imagined it to be. But, also, I'm not suffering. I keep thinking of the nurses and resperitory therapists and doctors and cleaning staff trying to keep the hospitals places of healing in this crazy pandemic. I love your collage. I have been collaging a lot during these days of distancing. I love keeping my hands busy with glue and paint and modge podge. A wonderful post today.

    1. No, it's not fun, but I am not out in the world taking care of others like so many. I am worried about them, hoping that something eases at least a bit. I'm glad you're part of my crowd, Linda, even from afar! Thanks for sharing about your collaging, too. Making something, anything, is a wonderful thing for the many hours.

  2. Count me in as I try to imagine the future that comes after. I hope we are able to learn and grow and create an even better future from what we've learned. It does bring comfort to think about others who have lived through hard times and found the after, too.

    1. I'm glad to be in a crowd, and that you're there, too, Kay, even across the air! And I do rely on the past comfort that we know others kept on living as best they could, too. Thanks!

  3. Love your collage and poem. I feel reassured about the "after." I think each generation is tested. This is our moment; we have the capacity to do better and must never lose hope.

    1. Thanks, Jama, I am hopeful, too, yet am sad for those who have lost close family or friends, who have lost jobs or who are working so hard for the rest of us.

  4. We have a choice, so let's go ahead and be hopeful about the "after!"

    1. Yes, we do! I hope everyone makes good ones. Thanks, Mary Lee!

  5. This poem spoke to me as a fellow "wonderer," Linda. Who knows what the future has in store? All we know is that we can't/won't go back to the way things were.

    1. And we are going to fight it together for sure, Michelle. Thanks!

  6. Just beautiful, Linda. Word and art. I keep thinking about generations past, how they dealt their hands with grace and strength and not-knowing. I feel lucky to journey alongside you in this poem way. Much love. xx

    1. Thanks, Amy, I've been collecting strength through thinking of those who overcame challenges before us, too. Best of wishes to you & your family during this time. And enjoy every day of your poetry!

  7. Linda, I read this post earlier and must have gotten distracted. Here I am back-tracking and rereading the poem, noticing the small moments in the college, and wondering. I want to be part of the crowd that comes on the other side knowing that we crossed the hard times. I want to be with people who understand that change is important. Perhaps, the hard times now will change our way of living. Understanding that it is not about the material world comes into focus this Easter weekend. Peace to you.

  8. Of course we wonder. And yes let's be part of the crowd ready to take that step together when the time comes.

  9. The collective 'after' is yet to be defined, but I believe humility and kindness will prevail. Especially with kind people like you bringing the goodness of your poetry to the world. :)

  10. Thank you, Carol, Sally, & Bridget. I continue to hope we will have an after that supports everyone who is in need and to be together in our striving for better.

  11. I keep going back to your wise opening lines:
    "Past hard times
    and after
    were once new
    to those living then."
    I think of my grandparents generation and all they survived: coming of age during World War I, the Spanish Flu, Depression, World War II, and yet there they were when I arrived all those years later. Their memory, and your poem, give me hope. Thank you, dear Linda, and be well.

    1. It's what I've been thinking, too, Catherine. Their experiences show us we can do it, too! Wishing you good health & a special day this day. Thank you!

  12. Thanks for your probing and sensitive poem Linda. Your collage explodes with life, and I hope that we can all eventually become part of a crowd again.
    And to those before us who lived through "Past hard times" I hope we will do as they did and keep going.

  13. I'm trying to find courage in past times. I like your wondering poem.

  14. Thanks, Michelle and Ruth. The collage seemed to keep growing, FYI, & I enjoyed finding pieces that fit my goal of things missed. Yes, the courage we know or what we've heard about helps us, I agree, Ruth.


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