Friday, February 8, 2013

Poetics: the letting & going, grey hair in my beard

photo by Lomo-Cam

she's all curls, mahoghany ring-
lets & round cheeks, her sunday dress
floral, trailing the floor,
stomach down

on a skateboard, deep eyes
looking so far
                     up

from where she bumped
my ankle
         coming out
                     an aisle
pink lips twisted in

a surprised smile,
     'now look at you,'

i say, letting her
         off the hook & listen
as the grind of her wheels
     grows ever softer
     around the
                next corner

no mother,
     no father
          in sight---

when did letting go
     become so easy?

trusting all will be right,
     there are wolves about
     are there wolves about?

or are we too easy?
      confused with what's really important?

bread and milk, caught in the well
of gravity, pull the basket deep
into my fingers as i pass
women's clothing lined in racks
their button eyes staring  back
enroute to the check out.

Over at dVerse Poets today, Claudia has us learning the art of letting go. Perhaps i went a bit obtuse but tried to capture a bit of the tension in what we let go, and somethings without much thought. She will open the doors at 3 PM.
     

106 comments:

farawayinthesunshine said...

I tend to keep a close watch... always as I am never sure how far the wolves are...
Enjoy your week-end...all bundled up I suppose :-)

Giant snowman in the works?

JANU said...

The wolves are everywhere, but, will have to let go. My daughter is in college, I have to give her confidence and she has to learn to be courageous. She has to learn.

my heart's love songs said...

i believe there are wolves in packs and alone, constantly circling, looking for an opening. it's a scary world... i know, every generation probably says that, but i know it's far worse than when i was a child and worse than when my daughter was a child.

another one of your brilliantly written observations that turns what others might not even notice into poetry!

Claudia said...

i had a group of south africans customers here once and we went for a city tour downtown basel and they were terrified when they saw all the kids (also quite little ones already) biking and playing in the quieter parts of the street cause in Joburg it would be impossible, far too dangerous.. i love how you capture the magic of the moment in this poem but also makes me sad that it's no longer possible for a little girl to just be a bit on her own in a warehouse in a civilized country cause it could be that there are wolves..

or are we too easy?
confused with what's really important?

good question...

Fred Rutherford said...

love the questions in here. Outstanding finale as well. Great write Brian. Letting go is a great theme, will have to sleep on it and see what comes to mind. This is great though, from aesthetic style to ideas, really nicely done. Thanks

SueAnn Lommler said...

Letting them go at this day and age...hmmmm...I don't know if that is a good idea or not!
There are wolves about...always looking for an opportunity to pick the weak and unsuspecting off!!
Sigh
Such is our new world order
Hugs
SueAnn

Green Speck said...

You write aptly about the dangers lurking today ... we all need to be courageous and face it !!!

Valerie said...

Beautifully written. Sad that the topic is such a worry. I am grateful that I have no youngsters to be concerned over. In their day the world was far less worrying.

Dave King said...

Yes, this is wonderful: there are wolves everywhere and letting go is hard to do at times - and no doubt, wrong at others. But when, and how to know? This is the stuff of true poetry.

Mark said...

Sometimes I really wish I could just let go like that and be fancy free. I don't have a gray beard but I might as well.

Lorraine said...

I still believe with all my heart in the Universal Love:Walk your life in Light and trust for nothing will happen to a soul that is not meant to...I read this in the most spiritual book I've ever read and I believe it to be true.

the walking man said...

You ask a good question, when did it become so easy to let go our children, the truly one thing entrusted to us by our communion and compact of love between a man and woman?

manicddaily said...

Hey Brian. Wonderful visual disconnects at beginning - as we move up and down the screen as it were. Agh. In NYC one had to be careful, but my youngest by herself in India right now - the one you met. Doing good work though. Still, all stuff one needs to think through as parent. k.

DJan said...

I love this one. I stood there with you during the encounter, and felt your feelings. Letting go, indeed.

Mary said...

In this day and age with young children, I would only 'let them go' in certain situations as far as I could see them.....until they are of a certain age! Thoughtful writing, Brian.

Jyoti Mishra said...

toughest of all jobs...
specially when it comes to parent child relationship..
trust is something we all have to

Karen said...

I felt that tension in the poem...reminded me of the big bad wolf (as you would say, "smiles")!

Tabor said...

It is a fine balance when it comes to those things we cherish but must let go.

Jennyhttp://hintsforyou.blogspot.com/ said...

Another well written post...so true....letting go has to happen.....but, scary "wolves" are always on the hunt!!!

Keeping warm and safe with family, out of winds way I hope....

Optimistic Existentialist said...

Letting go...love the theme. Not always easy but always necessary.

Pat Hatt said...

Yeah letting go can be rough
Sad times are so tough
Or more whacko then before
That one can't just play by the shore
For the wolves are about
Lurking like a slippery trout

Nessa said...

I've never grasped the art of letting go. My hands ache from the clenching. Stretching out my fingers actually hurts.

The tension in your poem makes me feel it all the more.

Flash 55 - Dreams

Laurie Kolp said...

I agree... I think in this day and age we need to hold on a bit longer.

Pat said...

Great description....in that case I'd say she should have been watched better. Hearing about a child getting snatched from a store is not uncommon!

Eusebia Philotes said...

For one who grew up with such freedom to move about, I have certainly not extended that 'letting go' to my own children. Brief separations when they've wandered off have produced many unwanted, anxious thoughts.

A fine capture of the moment of questioning in your poem.

Eva Gallant said...

Letting go is scary today; not like the days of our childhood.

Eva Gallant said...

Letting go is scary today; not like the days of our childhood.

Sadia Khan said...

Just tooo deep...loved the concept and felt the pain and confusion around 'letting go'....hats off to you....wish to write like you some day...i just wish :)

tony said...

The Ballad Of Easy Rider !

Heaven said...

I like how you captured the scene Brian and reflected on the idea of letting go ~ To me, children need to be protected all the time, not an easy job with all the wolves around ~

I also like your ending, those button eyes can pierce like our conscience if we don't do a good job with our children ~

Happy Saturday ~

RMP said...

you paint such a picture of the little girl—a delicate flower, skateboard and all—and then come the questions of wolves. quite striking.

Victoria said...

Wonderful details in this but, sadly, a bit scary. I remember being all over the place on my own but now...? What if you had been someone dishonorable? It must be so hard to parent now. My favorite line: "When did letting go become so easy?"

rosaria williams said...

Hard to find the right balance, isn't it?

Helen said...

There must be a magic balance between watchfulness and letting go .. I never learned the art. Your poem is great.

Steve E said...

"Let go and Let God" is a slogan-- somewhere?
But God is with me to do what I cannot do, not necessarily what I could easily do for myself...

...Like--watch my children, know where they are, what they are doing.
Ho-Hummmmmmmm.

At least until they are out of kindergarten????--NOT grinning!

turtlememoir said...

i see parents sometimes who have their young children on a leash (literally) & i hate seeing that just as much... it's a tough call sometimes, isn't it, what constitutes too much vs too little parental control

a great post & in typical brian-fashion you make us consider the tough questiosn...

ND Mitchell said...

It's a fine line between being over protective or not but surely that's better than what you describe. Loved your structure...this was an excellent read :-)

Susan Daniels said...

Lovely description of the first of many releases.

tinkwelborn said...

Letting go, we must
learn to give in to trust.
To live we must,
learn when to trust,
living to learn to let go.
Live & let live,
but when should we give
the words that let us let go?
.
Nice, thoughtful piece.

Natasha Head said...

yeah...it was the wolf lines that spoke to me and won't let go...but I have issues ;)

Mama Zen said...

I totally get this and often wonder why so many parents seem much less worried about wolves than I am.

hedgewitch said...

This is one of your best, bri--clear and clean, yet full of sweet-sour imagery..letting go can be good, but some things need to be cherished. The button eyes--a great line.

Chhavi Vatwani said...

No, I don't think it would've been easy for her or her parents to let go off each other. But sometimes you just have to. I truly agree with your last para - we become mannequins to hide our emotions of letting go.

Nicole Sullivan said...

i love this. the letting go on the skateboard, the letting go in the parents... the feeling of more letting go that the worfds are eluding to. really love the flow too.

Kim said...

Good Brian, I like the 'when did letting go become so easy.' This one floats along like children do.

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

I had to read it twice to get the picture fully, but then it wasn't obtuse any more - and it was good to read it the second time and let it sink in deeper.

Yes, disturbing questions to ponder!

Chris Lawrence said...

Brilliant Brian written with perception of how our society has become

Anna Montgomery said...

This is a wonderful theme and you raise important questions. It has given me much to think about. I also enjoyed your offering for Meeting the Bar. I'm looking forward to feeling better so I can spend more time at the Pub.

mbalmedpoet said...

I love this piece. Amazing how difficult it is to let go, and also to face our fears.

Gloria said...

oh dear Look at me my twins have 18 Im more old than you and I live worry by my kids Esperanza is working this summer in Hard Rock café but one of their workr time is until 2 AM and of course I cant sleep until she arrive at my moms Home, we live so far.
Only I can make is pray I pray everyday!
Love this writing like always!
blessings!

Uneven Stephen said...

Wow, great poem Brian. I really love this part:

"trusting all will be right,
there are wolves about
are there wolves about?"

Well penned.

jane hewey said...

Must we let go of childhood, too? There is much internal power gained from trusting and letting go. To be a bit like a child while in an adult body has great physical and spiritual benefits, i think. I enjoy the fairy tale aspects here, the close up on the child's hair, the wolf, no parents in sight, the basket. nice cohesive poem.

afterhisimage said...

I imagine the wolves are in women's clothing..he he..yet the passing of time may bring her innocence to Wolfdom (though let's hope not).

very nice Brian!

Heather Sawaya said...

I used to work on the horticulture crew at my city zoo, and I cannot even tell you how many times I saw this. There were even some calls on the mobile radios from security about parents who couldn't find their children. It just seemed unfathomable to me. You captured the scene, as well as the message perfectly. Since I have become a parent recently, I understand and agree with it even more. Great piece, Brian. :)

Glenn Buttkus said...

Def rife with salient points, for I have 3 daughters, and while they lived at home I worried 24/7 about sexual predators, teenage hormones, gangbangers, drugs, and boys of all sizes & types....but yes, the day did come three times when the grasp loosened and the chicks fled the nest. But they hatched kids of their own, and now as a grandparent I can worry about them; no end in sight, sir.

farmlady said...

I'm glad I didn't have a daughter. She wouldn't have left my sight until she was 30. There are real "Wolves" out there and all manner of predators. One mistake and your child becomes prey to them. Our sons were a worry but a daughter would have been so much more.
Good one, Brian, this is what our society is. This is the reality.

Gretchen Leary said...

It's true. The world is more dangerous than ever and yet people seems to trust one another more and more with the most precious things. This reminds me of a time when I was working in a store and I found a baby in a stroller asleep and alone. I stood there silently wondering what to do. I ended up standing there and keeping watch for a few minutes until a frazzled man came running as fast as he could and we just stared at each other for a minute and he ran his fingers through his hair and said "My wife would kill me if she knew..." I couldn't believe that THAT was his biggest concern as he walked away.

Betsy Brock said...

hmmm...hadn't they missed her yet?

yes, there are wolves...everywhere! ha. Glad she bumped into you, though, instead. :)

Tara Miller said...

there are wolves, big bad ones. Especially where children are concerned. I'm glad she ran into you that day instead of one of them. Things are much different than they were when we were that age....

Heidi said...

Provacative comment on parenting and letting go. Also very interestig to me that the child in poem was a little girl. I am going to be pondering what it means to be a parent and adult responsiblities towards children for the rest of the night. Very cool.

Joanna Jenkins said...

I'm not so good at letting go...
You painted a perfect picture with this one... Thanks.
jj

Kelvin S.M. said...

...a thought provoking piece Brian... letting go is indeed quite not easy....but what will you do if a bird would like to fly high? no one owns its life better than the bird itself.... the job of a parent is never / will never be easy especially when issues are about their children's life... how they should be...where they should be... what they shoul be... forgetting the difference bet 'to guide' & 'to control'... or maybe there are aspects in life children don't clearly understand about the parents disposition & vice versa... and i guess only time can right the best lessons to learn in life... smiles...

mrs mediocrity said...

Tough questions.... And sometimes you have to wonder...

Love the images in this, very vivid detail, I could see it.

Robyn Greenhouse said...

I'll see kids out and often wonder where are the parents?! Funny what can be an easy situation for some to let go but not easy for others!

Lolamouse said...

Another wonderful slice of life you give us here, Brian. It's a dance we do, the letting go and the holding on. Never sure if I'm doing it right...

Elsie The Writer said...

I let go on some things and hold tight on others. My little girl is one thing I embrace like no other.

kkkkaty said...

.excellent and exacting, Brian; each time you pull us into the scene so skillfully! you didn't mention little red riding hood but i'm sure intimated it...so many dangers today and I think it takes a lot of energy to stay vigilant without going overboard..how observant you are..the girl's curls and sweet worrying for her in her parents' absence ;)

ninotaziz said...

That question is double edged Brian. We have given in to 'something' and paid with our freedom and peace of mind.

I am with Janu, and am struggling with letting go my bigger ones.

The younger girls can ride a bicycle only if their daddy, or 18 or 20 year old sister is with them. Even i this relatively safe neighborhood. That is how it is....

zongrik said...

caught in a well of gravity really caught (ink) my eye (wink again)

but seriously, there are so many layers of meanings to this in physics as well as in relationships

Lady In Read said...

i know, it is going to tough to let it go, and i know i am going to try to pretend to do a good job of letting go while watching for the wolves..

ladyfi said...

Oh, letting go is so hard, especially when it comes to my kids!

Lovely piece of writing.

Brudberg said...

Letting go is about the trust, and who says what's a wolf.


But I do understand the fear and the need to find a balance.

Lea and Paul said...

It's never easy to let go, but sometimes we have to - to let them find their feet and make their mark in the world.

We can look at the same with us, sometimes we just have to give living a go without being too scared of the wolves out there.

lucychili said...

i think when i was little we used to range as far as we could walk and ride. things seem simpler then.

Polly said...

'there are wolves about / are there wolves about?'

How we've all wondered ...

... and keep on watching

vivinfrance said...

We were given our freedom much sooner in my young days - no wolves in suburban London then, no traffic, only bombs.

I love the vision of a skateboarding babe in a supermarket, though I'd probably have said "mind my ankles!"

Dave King said...

Letting go seems to be easier than once it was! Lovely moment captured.

Marbles in My Pocket said...

That's definitely a hard one. We try to hang on to them as long as we can--or they will let us.

kj said...

brian, i could only let go when a good man made sure my daughter got home in a snowstorm. she's married him and now she holds on to her own children.

but we never really let go!

your writing here is so visual. for some reason i imagine you in target! there is no judgement in what you convey; only love.

love
kj

S and J said...

hard to let go, but harder still to watch them struggle later without the tools of survival that we give them when we are strong enough to let go...well written, caught a mood - enjoyed this one.

happygirl said...

I liked this one. I often wonder if we keep too close an eye on our kiddos. I know when I was young I was given much more room to run than I allowed my son. I think I was the one that erred in too closely watching.

whenspaceissilence said...

The rhetorical questions are what makes this poem for me. They make me think not only within the context of the poem, but around it.

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

I guess every parent has a different grip on those strings than the next. Sometimes it's the right one; sometimes not.

annell said...

A very nice one indeed!

Nilanjana Bose said...

are there wolves? if only we knew for sure..we have to let go, like it or not, so scary, and so beautiful too..

ayala said...

Great images...I often wonder why some parents are not worried about the wolves the way I am. I am told I am overprotective...I feel like you can't be too careful when it comes to your children. Love the poem, Brian. Happy Sunday :)

christopher said...

I think you did smartly capture the tension...as letting go is easier said than done.

Daniel said...

Missed this one on Friday, so I got to read two of your posts today. I have struggled with letting go for years. I get it.

Myrna R. said...

I know letting go of our children must be done, but hopefully not too soon. I always had the opposite problem - not wanting to let go ever. Extremes are just not good huh?

Sabio Lantz said...

when did letting go
become so easy?

Indeed!

Renee said...

So true Brian. But even as much as we think we have them in site or that someone else holds onto them, it only takes a minute. My second oldest out of the five always was wondering off. We had to go back once in the mall looking only to find him holding hands with a little girl and the mother waiting. As we approached, it was, "I knew someone would come back for him." Whew!

Ténèbres à la lumière... said...

"when did letting go become so easy?
trusting all will be right,there are wolves about are there wolves about?
or are we too easy? confused with what's really important?"



Hi! Brian...
Thanks, for sharing the techno image photo by Lomo-Cam...
Thanks, for sharing a moment [a poem] again...that all parents, and people with children can probably, relate to and understand so very well...too!
deedee :)

Raivenne said...

"when did letting go become so easy?
trusting all will be right,
there are wolves about
are there wolves about?

or are we too easy? confused with what's really important?"

It's never easy; like everything else with raising children, we pick and choose our battles moment by moment. Some moments are full of anxious, others you have to have faith and literally 'Let go and let God.". Excellent Brian.

mywordwall said...

It is hard to find that line between being too protective on the one hand, and letting a child 'loose' on the other. It takes a lot of wisdom and conflict between parent and child. I never appreciated the difficulty of being a parent until I became one.

Siggi in Downeast Maine said...

WoW. A real heart tugger.

You nailed it with your poem...
letting go is sooo sooo hard.

I was so upset when my son was in boot camp (Air Force) in Texas in the summer...
and he told me he loved it... just occasionally missed home and that is when he called.

Thank you...
Peace,
Siggi

rumoursofrhyme said...

There's a fine line to be trodden between giving too much freedom too soon and being over-protective. We all see the right balance in different places, and we all do our best.

As to the wolves - yes, there are wolves although I think if we gave as much attention to the good people in the world as we did to the wolves, we might have a slightly better perspective on things.

Sue said...

Interesting and so well done.

I always kept the watch. Closely.

(still do)

=)

cloudfactor5 said...

You set the stage wonderfully, and letting her off the hook for her faux pas is nice touch where the poem starts to wrap itself around the character. Great write!!
The ending wraps it up nicely!!
"I saw the Dire Wolf, 600 lbs of sin
grinning at my window,
all I said was come on in"

Alice Audrey said...

I've seen it over and over. No way would I do that. I always kept my kids right next to me all the time until they were out of grade school.

Jerry E Beuterbaugh said...

Hmmmm.

Sheila said...

the little one sounds adorable. it is hard to let them go.

adeeyoyo said...

Letting go is very hard for a loving parent to do. Some can't. Some are forced by circumstances to let go. In the end, for everyone's sanity, one should. But one needs faith and one needs to do it according to the age and level of responsibility of the child.

Lydia said...

there are wolves about
are there wolves about?


Wow, Brian. This one made my stomach wrench as if I was really there. Just riveting.

poeticlicensee said...

Not just wolves our kids can meet
Meaner Draculas stalk the streets

scotthastiepoet said...

Ambitious piece Brian, but you pulled it off - really enjoyed the reach of your writing here...
Regards

Scott

Syd said...

I hope no wolf gets her. But even baby birds have to leave the nest sometime.