House of the Tomato

If a woman wants to be a poet, she must dwell in the house of the tomato. -- Erica Jong

Regional website for the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets, in partnership with the Reader's Loft.

GREEN BAY / NORTHEAST

Celebrating, sharing and inspiring poetry throughout Wisconsin.

On This I Weep

On This I Weep

 

New parents marvel at their joy,
bonding, counting fingers and toes.
He is named, nursed, diapered,
swaddled and cuddled; bathed and kissed.
Oh, the happily-ever-after of it all!

He is bright, creative, and clever,
growing into all of nature’s unique gifts.
He’s told stories of what he can achieve;
he can be anything he wants to be.
One day he tells his parents he’s a girl.

He tells them again, and again.
In shock the mother asks, How do you know you’re a girl?
The child says, How do YOU know?

I just know, she blurts. The child shouts,
Yes, me too. I just know!

 This child, named, birthed, loved, and cuddled
is written off, pushed away.
Living in the streets across Wisconsin
this tale repeats. Too many wander hungry,
with no bed, cast out in their teens and 20s
just for being who they are.

A few kind souls might help re-write a story,
taking in one or two when they can; but
many are left to the streets, often in danger.
These fledglings trying to fly on their own
sadly hunger for meals, for a real bed,
for the return of unconditional love.

(note: I kept playing with line length and form. A boxed, prose poem, couplets, and now I am back to stanzas, but the lines are all different in number....ragged..perhaps that illustrates the situation.)

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