20 Lines A Day

A Community of Writers and Photographers

Love Lost and Stolen


Though I am not aware of any great love

 beaming down upon me, I hope they are there

My lost son, my mother , her parents,

They speak to me, hear me when no one else does.

I have searched, believed, dreamed, loved

and seen all of that stolen from me.

In misery, drowning in tears, I have lain,

thinking of you, longing for your touch.

Oh, Holy Spirit, one whom I should trust

I often wonder where you are, near, or far

Do you watch over me while I suffer?

Do you not interject yourself in earths troubles?

There was a time when the majesty of your works,

the beauty of the forest and flowers of spring,

carried me to a place of pure delight.

Now, all I do is wonder what I did to make you leave.

Nothing can bring back what was stolen from me.

I try to find comfort in the winds, the sea,

To find you again, but I cannot see beyond the clouds.

I reach up, longingly to find only emptiness.

All you must do is reach down as I reach up,

as you did once and suddenly withdrew.

I hear the winds power, the majestic clouds.

But i want you, and can never ever have you here again.


Unnatural Fireworks


The noisy booms from the sky, streaks of color lighting the clouds,

Yes, it’s the fourth of July, but Mother natures rules this year.

The tiny creek is a raging river, littered with trees, bird feeders, toys.

Our grave driveway is underneath the water that blocks the road.

My dad worked at the Tennessee Valley Authority when I was a kid.

Their job was to try to manage flood control. Where there were floods,

We went to photograph, special phone numbers told river levels.

We filled out charts in the days when a main frame took up a room-did one thing.

It’s in my blood. Two of my sons son and two friends sloshed up the road.

The water running down what used to be roads, way to deep to be safe.

Taking videos, pictures, laughing, giving up on umbrellas, soaked to the skin.

Though we laughed, it was muted, somber. We knew why the yards of mud came.

Our mountain city is obsessed with getting rich people from other places to come here.

Strip the vegetation so they can “see” from houses we couldn’t dream of.

We shout to no one, “GO HOME!” CLEAN UP THIS MESS!” But they keep coming.

The collapsed retaining wall and 8 feet of lost land are somehow “our” problem.

I know how the native Americans felt. For “white folks” we’ve been here a long time.

The 1780 US Census lists us in this county, by 1840, we were on this road.

We have lived in this house 5 generations and now my kids can’t afford to live her.

Something is really wrong with this. It used to be a quiet farming community.

I can’t help it, I am mad. I know good people have come here too.

For all the greedy developers, mostly bankrupt before to long, I have one message,”Go the heck home, glare down on your “lessers”, ruin their land, build mansions, ruin the land,

and don’t forget to take pictures of w=what life was like before you ruined it for them.

Missing Her

She didn’t wear perfume, it bothered her.
But o, her fragrance as she entered any room.
My mother lifted any place to heights anew
by being present. How I miss her belly laughs,
her care for others, and her strength of self.
Yes, I have had to set upon the shelf
the music of her coming to my house,
the look that told me, Honey, I love you.
I harbored anger toward my father after they divorced.
She always told me, Please forgive him. It will set you free.
How wise my mother was. I didn’t understand
this until after she had died. Please, Mom, I want you now to know
I have forgiven him. How right you were, and we undid
the tangles of the years. It was because of you.
Is Thank you good enough?
Of course not. Your soft ways of teaching brought the lessons
gently into terra firma consciousness.
Funny, I the teacher, was the taught.

So long ago… So far away…

So long ago so far away,

there came a new day

of beauty and joy,

of lust and coy-

when everything was fine

and the stars did shine

with their incandescent glow

their beauty, they did show.

Something came along then,

it was the time when

the things started to change,

everything became strange-

that time was when came

a very weird name-

the science beast, so queer

it came from the seer

who visited the lands

and analyzed the sands,

brought upon this anthology

for studying subjects like biology

the people were angry at first

and the cloud of anger did burst

but soon they adapted to this gift

which was responsible for every shift

in the nature of our history-

here comes the bizarre end of my story, so blustery.


The forgetting

When he’s well he walks, but more often not

these days. On bike, his scooter, or, if bad,

he’s confined to barracks, his life is stopped.

And yet, was mostly cheerful, never sad

till lately. Says he feels useless, past it.

His memory’s going, the shaking’s much worse

and pushes him to his very limit,

and for the first time I hear the outburst

Of anger at the disease that haunts him

and from which he knows there is no escape.

He can’t remember things, thinks he is dim.

If we thought so, I think his heart would break.

What twist of fate to seize his brain and yet

Leave just enough to wish he could forget.



Anger is ugly as ugly can be

It quickly took over us both…you and me

Decisions were made in the heat of our will

If only we’d told it, “Be quiet!  Be still!”


Alas, but we didn’t, and so we lament

We feel shame and sorrow, and blame and regret

But there was more to it, things we’d held inside

When we didn’t speak up, but just let it ride


And then came the moment that all of it blew

And came crashing down on our heads…me and you.

You never can take back those moments in time

And that’s what’s so sad about this little rhyme.


I truly am sorry for words that I spoke

Unkind and careless…should have made me choke

When they were being uttered, in anger and pride

Because of the things that were lurking inside


We both acted wrongly on that cruel night

But it shouldn’t have made us both run and take flight

If love is included somewhere in the mix

There’s nothing that comes that two people can’t fix


But pride, it’s as ugly as anger can be

We dig in our heels and will let no one see

The pain that’s inside, we must smile and be strong

And never admit that what we did was wrong


You’re stubborn, bull headed, and I’m just as bad

And when you get down to it, it’s pretty sad

We’re living our separate lives day by day

Both good days and bad ones, and not much to say


Time heals all wounds is a phrase I have heard

Some days I believe it, some it sounds absurd

A sadness will always exist in my heart

At least for a moment, each day we’re apart


Though I do not dwell on what I cannot change

I sometimes remember, and thoughts rearrange

But there are now smiles with each day that goes by

I no longer weep, and no longer ask why


I pray for you daily, hope you do for me

And hope when you look back, that what you will see

In spite of the ugliness that did ensue

That under it all lies a heart that’s still true.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,787 other followers

%d bloggers like this: