Devolution – re-edit”>2015/01/img_0923.jpg
It was palatable as I got out of the car,
the worn grass, tiny anthills on exposed earth,
where a second car spent the summer.

Inside there were the empty places ,
where so many shoes had vied for space,
until they vanished, exposing bare floor,
in the wake of your departure.

Unfinished, ghostly, the echoes of a tea party
still faintly visible at the kitchen table,
though now I have to close my eyes to see it,
the words are indistinct yet faces smile.

I could say I am lonely, but I’m not, really
or that I am just missing you, almost enough,
though in truth it’s the constriction,
this change in the size of my life,
this narrowing toward the point;
at which I might vanish, my story lost.

I choose a spot in the ample space,
placing my shoes, I move toward my bedroom,
think briefly, then turn on my laptop to begin
reading the words my fingers create, tapping,
revealing, who it is that I am becoming.


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5 thoughts on “Devolution – re-edit

    1. I feel all things deeply and especially those related to my daughter. When she was about five hi told her “I love you more than anything” with the startled and slightly frightened look she said to me “you do love yourself just as much don’t you?” After I got up off the floor metaphorically speaking I realized how deep and how wide is the comment was I’m have followed the advice ever since. Perhaps that will make a useful part of some future story. Thank you for the reassurance. Having Single parented a daughter, I am appreciative of the support of other women.


  1. Beautiful. Although it’s indiscreet to ask, this sounds like it’s about a child, now grown, and a parent coping with absence. I think about when that will happen to me, especially when I become exasperated with my kids, and all I can tell myself is: I will wish for this craziness some day when they’re gone, and I will wish I was more tolerant, better humored.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s not at all a indiscrete Elizabeth. I single parenthood my daughter who is now in her third year of college. I wrote the original version of this problem several years ago after she went off to school. I updated it this past year one for the first time she didn’t move back to the house we have shared because she got a job near the university where she is working for the summer. We have had wonderful interactions and she is been incredibly supportive of my being able to grieve without blaming and her being able to support me without enabling. One of the wonderful thing is about raising a child is that what you teach them they used to come back and teach you more later. The last section of the poem features me having to do work online and look at my own pleases me that the message came across to you. It is a difficult change, like losing your best friend only harder and yet there is a powerful victory in watching my childgrow and succeed. As always with such things, it came sooner than I expected.


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