As I mentioned last week, ruleoflaw and I have swapped weeks this month, so here I am, where he would usually be, with another poem about an aspect of my childhood. I'd started in, when I last grappled with this theme, with years in school and impressions of my teachers. I'm up to the second grade, which was NOT a good year for me, so I've called this poem an elegy. I think you'll understand what I mean, when you read it, down below the orange squiggly dingbat.
Means "beautiful voice" from Greek καλλος (kallos) "beauty" and οψ (ops) "voice". In Greek mythology she was a goddess of epic poetry and eloquence, one of the nine Muses.
Join us every Tuesday afternoon at the Daily Kos community political poetry club.
Your own poetry is always welcome in the comments.
Bongos, berets & turtle neck sweaters optional.
The keyboard is mightier than the sword.
Second Grade Elegy
A lost year, second grade.
I was almost lost at the end of that year.
The waters of my Bluebird
Leader’s swimming pool
Nearly claimed me.
A postscript, perhaps, on a year
With a mentally ill schoolteacher
Leaving a legacy of fear, grievous
Dread, seldom encountered since;
One has to wonder if
Her disturbed consciousness
Helped trigger something ominous in
The classmate who grew to become
Later, a serial killer.
We siblings, all four
Succumbed to chicken pox
In those days before vaccines for
The common childhood illnesses, except
Polio, DPT, and smallpox.
Myself, alone was struck
By scarlet fever, darker side
Of streptococcus, yet not so dark
As rheumatic fever, destroyer of hearts.
Left mine alone, at least.
Quarantined: no get-well card from classmates;
Only from the parents of the future serial killer.
Cold sores, herpes simplex type I
Bad enough for refrigerated medicine.
(Or, was that for the strep?)
At the outset, an ear tumor, doctor pilgrimages,
Odd aural sensations, not fun in the least.
Ever after, my mother demanded for me
Hats, hoods, earmuffs in winter; even
With Alzheimer’s, she remembers.
Feelings of alienation from family,
Times I ran away, (even if I was
The only one who knew it.)
Was the depression I’ve fought
Lo these many years on
Born in that year of the curse of seven?
Or was it knit in my bones, waiting
To lacerate my adolescence,
Fracture my adulthood, a Scylla
I fight even now.
I can’t know.
The wisps of what I remember
Are so faint, so clouded by years, and worse,
Bright spots so lost, in the weight
Of a dark time.
Readers & Book Lovers Series Schedule:
|DAY||TIME (EST/EDT)||Series Name||Editor(s)|
|SUN||6:00 PM||Young Reader's Pavilion||The Book Bear|
|2:00 PM||What's on Your E-Reader?||Caedy|
|2:00 PM||Bibliophile's Wish List||Caedy|
|Sun (occasional)||9:30 PM||SciFi/Fantasy Book Club||quarkstomper|
|Bi-Monthly Sun||Midnight||Reading Ramblings||don mikulecky|
|MON||8:00 PM||Monday Murder Mystery||michelewln, Susan from 29|
|Mon||11:00 PM||My Favorite Books/Authors||edrie, MichiganChet|
|TUES||5:00 PM||Indigo Kalliope: Poems from the Left||Kit RMP, bigjacbigjacbigjac|
|alternate Tuesdays||8:00 AM||LGBT Literature||Texdude50, Dave in Northridge|
|alternate Tuesdays||8:00 AM||All Things Bookstore||Dave in Northridge|
|Tue||8:00 PM||Contemporary Fiction Views||bookgirl|
|Wed||2:00 PM||e-books||Susan from 29|
|Wed||8:00 PM||Bookflurries Bookchat||cfk|
|THU||8:00 PM||Write On!||SensibleShoes|
|Thu (first each month)||11:00 AM||Monthly Bookpost||AdmiralNaismith|
|alternate Thursdays (on hiatus)||11:00 PM||Audiobooks Club||SoCaliana|
|FRI||8:00 AM||Books That Changed My Life||Diana in NoVa|
|alternate Fridays||8:00 PM||Books Go Boom!||Brecht|
|Fri||10:00 PM||Slightly Foxed -- But Still Desirable||shortfinals|
|SAT (fourth each month)||11:00 AM||Windy City Bookworm||Chitown Kev|
|Sat||12:00 PM||You Can't Read That! Paul's Book Reviews||pwoodford|
|Sat||9:00 PM||Books So Bad They're Good||Ellid|