Archive

October 2013

Circles

The boy, determined confidence,
a bundle of energy, buzz-cut cowlicks highlight
quirkiness only a child can embody.

The teenager, empowered,
in creative communities, artistic and musical, shy
and reserved one-on-one, afraid
of appearing foolish.

The father, loving and sentimental,
touched to tears often, children grown
desires to protect appear controlling, hard
to let go, but learning.

The man at mid-life, determined confidence
and energy still, lost and found
at once, boundless creativity, sleeping less,
alone, but love and quirkiness still shine,
breaking through an aging façade, revealing
a self-portrait of the boy, now refined.

© 2013, David L. Harkins

Life’s Rebirth

I watched you grow for nearly a year,
three hundred fifty-seven days to be exact
from conception, stretching, then growing,
then stretching again, showing yourself more
and more with each iteration.

Your birth brought warm hugs and toothy grins
from your new family and I, from a distance, watched
for signs of your distress, quietly
moving amid the happy laughter, hoping
to go unnoticed as I cradled you,
and calmed your cries.

One hundred-forty people, more, or less, saw
your first steps forward, offering oohs
and aahs while I weaved quickly out in front,
and then behind, removing obstacles, ready
for your first tear-inducing tumble.

In three days time, the family left, raining joyful tears
in appreciation of you, their souls filled with love and pain,
a deep, achy sadness from leaving you to blossom,
in their absence, another year, maybe two,
before returning to see how you have grown,
and stretched, and grown again.

We waved good-bye, you and me, before
I tucked you into rest, for a while,
to dream of courage and creativity, brimming-over
in future lives, and all because your first breath,
your tiny, tiny, breath did everything, or maybe just enough,
to bring the family together.

As I left you to rest, I stopped to look at you again,
and in the dark silence I knew, my heart
had seen your heart, too, in stolen glances
through those unknown fractures your birth
created in my soul, as the beauty
of your existence caused my distraction.

I turned out the light and walked away, leaving
you to dream, to become what you need to become,
while I watch quietly, for a year, not two, for you
to stretch, and grow, and stretch again, just enough,
to turn on the light, open the door,
and tell me it’s  time to begin, again.

© 2013, David L. Harkins

Possibilities Lost

I sat with you,
exposed and aware
of the darkness and light
passing between us,
like two notes an octave apart
playing harmony I alone heard at once
misaligned and in unison.

Carried by the quiet ebb and flow of your voice
I traveled with you through time, told
by stories and poems of your life
and then of mine,
to places kept walled away
save for the words
we both use as keys, to open
a still beating heart, hidden
from all but those we believe are worthy
of the search, and those who possess
the courage for the journey.

Small cups stacked nearby,
remnants of the dare
that brought us to this frozen place
in time, serve as the only witness
to a communion of minds
contemplating new possibilities in the night
that now the daylight colors as forbidden,
and so I wrap those gentle moments in a cloak
of the past hidden from all, but our memory.
© 2013, David L. Harkins

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