What Happened To Her

What is she doing up there on the stage,
graduating with a masters in IT
when she should have graduated with Anthropology,
with Archaeology,
with Egyptology as her focus?

And why is she pregnant,
and with a child,
when she didn’t want kids to begin with,
when she wanted to be an explorer,
when she was going to sit among the pyramids.

Where did those dreams go?
She has tears in her eyes,
she may be sorrowful,
and wondering the same thing.

She may be full of regrets,
but I hope she is happy
with where she is
and who she is with.


This is part two of the writing prompt from the poetry workshop with Carlos Andres Gomez. The prompt is to look at the celebratory moment as if you are watching as a bystander in a different era. For reference, check the first poem in the writing prompt here: https://coffee-shop-sessions.com/2020/07/02/this-is-our-moment/

This Is Our Moment

in a black graduation gown,
and black heels,
feeling the weight of my 8th month pregnant belly
down to my swollen ankles,
I walk from the parking garage
into the thick, sweltering heat towards the hall.

where am I headed,
the destination is unknown,
but I am headed down to where my family,
my estranged parents,
my supportive in-laws,
and my 4 and half year old daughter
will witness an achievement
that no one else in my family has ever seen before.

I will be the first,
and I pray to God that my daughter,
both in the audience
and the unborn one inside of me,
will follow in these footsteps-
take each painful step and still rise
to the challenge
to show everyone that they can.

I reach the stage,
the announcer calls my name,
and tears and a smile reach my face,
as my heart pounds,
my feet ache,
and the baby inside me is overjoyed.

yes, this is my moment, and it is yours, too.


Written in a poetry workshop with Carlos Andres Gomez, July 1, 2020. Check out this incredible poet here: www.carloslive.com. The prompt was to write about a celebratory moment where you are physically in the moment, I chose the day of my Master’s degree graduation.

The Last Goodbye

Resting his knee,
he holds his face
to bury his sobs
as she is laid to rest

We hold hands
as I gently squeeze
knowing too well
this may be our last embrace

Feeling his warmth,
his mighty strong hands,
he held us together
when she left this land

It’s only one slip away
before you’re gone too soon

On the drive home,
our last goodbye became true

The Raging Heart

The very machine that gives life
could easily take mine away

The piercing from exhaustion
punctures my living, my breathing

Every bodily function is affected
as I reach my hand towards the pulsing and thumping
racing through my chest

I don’t want this to be how I end
I can’t let my kids see their mother this way
I hold on tight to life as my chest tightens

I sit,
I breathe,
and I let it pass

For this too shall pass

We Are Gathered Here Together

In loving memory of my family…

My grandfather,
he ordered black coffee,
a soup and salad before his meal,
steak and potatoes,
and always leaving room for dessert
at buffets on the other side of town

A routine meal
to this day
is remembered
as my favorite meals with him

My Dad loved on his Alaskan crab legs
with a side of melted butter
While Mom ordered chicken
at a seafood restaurant
She never offered to pay
while Auntie told us,
‘Don’t take it for granted,
she should say ‘Thanks’’

A routine meal
that to this day
is remembered
as our family meals together

The holidays would arrive suddenly,
every holiday,
as our family rushed off to Sunday service.

Was this excursion a last minute decision?
Is the calendar right? Always arriving late,
we discreetly sneaked into the pews.
With a family of five, surely no one would notice.
But they did, they always notice.

A routine holiday
that would years later
be remembered
as our holidays together

Every year,
every holiday,
every birthday,
the same restaurants,
the same routine,
the same church service.

But at least we gathered
in the familiar ways we knew
what was to come.
We could count on those moments,
those familiar moments.

Now we look back
without the chance to relive
all those memories,
without the words of togetherness
without bickering
without reconciling
No more chasing each other around the yard
No more climbing up the tree, my favorite tree
All that is left are these memories
While isolating from our high-strung family

Now we pass the memories on
while making new ones;
new choices of restaurants,
holidays, vacations
and promises of not being late
(but who are we kidding, we’re always late)

And yet, some things will remain
I’ll keep the same dessert
in honor of my grandparents
whose struggles and sacrifices for our family
deserve to be rewarded
with a slice of warm apple pie

The Elephant Moms

In a distant land there lies a village of elephant moms.

They’ve bonded over time through struggles and times of joy.

They lift each other up and surround themselves and their families in love.

They carry the torch from one to the other in times of need to keep the light shining.

They heal, protect, feed, and nurture each other.

These elephant moms unconsciously subscribe to the way of the pack and before too long they’ve become stronger together.

I pledge to be in your pack.

I pledge to protect you from harm’s way.

I pledge to heal you when you are weak.

I pledge to feed you when you are hungry.

I pledge to nurture you to become a stronger woman, mother, friend, sister, daughter, and wife.

I pledge to be there in times of need.

I pledge to lead when you need to follow.

I pledge to support you and lift you up.

As I know that you will do the same for me.

Dedicated to Amy Miller, 1979-2017

Nightly Routine

Late at night
Lying in bed
Headphones on
Listening to music
Or a few recorded poems
Reading the latest
I attempt to craft a new one
Or brush up a draft not quite finished

It’s becoming routine
I’ve always been
An undercover poet
Now I’m sharing my words
With my family’s support as an added bonus

Shared are the happenings,
The disappointments,
The contests never won,
Submissions rejected
And poetry readings I’ve done
But only a select few are read
Only those that are safe
Too many things need to be left unsaid

Safe are the clouds
Blowing with the whispering wind
Safe are the waves
Leaping over me as I rescind
All my powers to Mother Nature
She’s the one we must bow to
Who we give our ultimate thanks to

Those poems of desire and longing
Full of sorrow
Never to be filled
By our wants in all of our tomorrows
No, those things aren’t safe
There’s too many things that need to be left unsaid