Real Life

She was a military woman, a depraved childhood,
Hidden in the closets of her parent's small apartment,
Most of the day feeling ashamed,
Escaping into fantasy, was all she understood,
Grandma brought her fresh flowers from work when she could.


In the fall one year her father lost his job,
And mom became depressed and did little but sob,
At the age of 18, with nowhere to turn,
She joined the military thinking a trade she might learn.


The things she witnessed were nothing she expected,
Leaving her torn, dented, and disenchanted,
The raping of her soul by the men of honor were often,
Once again tormented, only a role to play, 'the soldier in action'.


Then her prince came to her rescue, and marry she did,
Before the bullet to his brain left her lonely, him dead,
Four small children lost their father that day,
How would she support them, or even make her own way?

Losing her wits she donned grandma's example,
She buried the casket alone, as the whiskey was ample,
She would face this head on, and carry the weight,
Of the childhood shame, isolation, and rapes.


Everyday in her struggle, she now fought a new war,
Her friends with benefits from her nights at the bar,
Her need for self honesty grew bigger each day,
And slowly but surely, her patience gave way.


It had now been only 2 months she buried her man,
The pain took control and our new life began,
She came home one day and the liquor took hold,
All the pain from a life's burdens began to unfold.


Her baby said, "Mama, can you read me this book?"
She lost all awareness, and gave her a look,
Her inadequate nature is all that it took,
She lost all control and her body shook,
The fairytale story flew into the wall,
The baby was shaken against the whitewall,
Again and again and again and again,
Blood spurting all over the rug, wall, and den,
Now this tragedy's taken control of us all.


It's been 20 long years since I've spoken to mother,
My days fill with diapering a 30 year old child,
The brain damage baby sustained in the event,
Will never change how my mom's fairytale went,
My other two siblings do well for this life,
We've been dished out reality...slice by slice,
One thing we all learned about handling stress,
Is that whiskey sure makes it much worse of a mess,
Now, on my way home from work I pick flowers,
I sing songs to baby and take up our hours,
With all that's befallen our lives from that day,
I've placed fairytales in their place, and that's where they will stay.



3:48 PM 5/9/2013

Author's Notes/Comments: 

One of many stories about how tragedy happens in many families born into poverty.

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Jam0330's picture

I got the chills reading

I got the chills reading this!  Amazing how with the choices you made in writting this, it seems like a lot of time is passing and then bam you slap the audience with reality and show us that its not that long at all.  Very close to what's real, excellent detail!  Excellent job unfolding the chain of events!

nightlight1220's picture

Your words really hit home

Your words really hit home because I don't think I've ever written another poem like this, and it takes a lot of thinking---different from when the words and feelings are flowing really free. I have seen people who write this way all the time. It is really more like writing a 'short story'. Thanks so much for stoppig by and reading. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

...and he asked her, "do you write poetry? Because I feel as if I am the ink that flows from your quill."

"No", she replied, "but I have experienced it. "