EPIC Poetry Group: Poet’s Corner — Many Places to Cry, Not Knowing, Isolation, The County Line

 

My Edmonds News is pleased to present the latest installment of Poet’s Corner, presented by the Edmonds-based EPIC Poetry Group.

Many Places to Cry

I have many places to cry

in the vast memory of generations passed

there is a genetic impression

an inescapable prodding

an unavoidable moment of tears

a remembrance

 

the shadowed darkness

of the Ile De Goree Senegal

the regurgitant swaying

ships sailing through the middle passage

 

bodies tossed

the land of birth fading into the distance

survivors strong in their resilience

weak in their resistance

 

a place to cry

 

 

alliances and treaties

a forced march upon snow crusted land

bloody feet

numbing bone chilling cold

 

suffering

starvation

 

no longer the reassuring sounds of rolling rivers

the ever present aroma of fragrant pine forest

a desolate flatness

naked hills

no places for elders

no place for children

 

a place to cry

 

you promised cities of gold

set upon hills of impervious stone

pure waters flowing sweet

a land of milk and honey

 

empty words!

you forced me to forget who I am,

 

I am left to live in isolation and shadows

 

in the absence of joy

memories linger

 

leaving no place to cry.

 

Gerald Bigelow

~ ~ ~ ~

Not Knowing

 

Not knowing my father,

is contained,

in the phantom,

of cloistered whispers,

a permanent irritant,

the constant grinding,

heart against mind,

a barren oyster,

creating pain,

not producing a pearl.

Gerald Bigelow

~ ~ ~ ~

Isolation

In the midst of isolation

I seek quiet spots

distant and near

 

a place

to think

to walk

 

each step

a rhythmic alliance

manifests a thought

 

I stand forced

without distraction

to be introspective

 

me dealing with me

mano a mano

 

confinement seeks

a broadening of the vision

 

a choice

to be a prisoner

of circumstance

or the mind

 

dimensions of time and space

create the perception of isolation

 

Coronavirus!

Racism!

 

the real protest march is in my head.

— Gerald Bigelow

~ ~ ~

The County Line

 

I watched a young black girl walk

along the side of a suburban road,

two years ago rural,

 

musing on the change of color in our town,

I recall that color had come only in the fall,

 

I drove, watching those well-dressed, dignified steps

fade into the distance,

 

ringed mist glowed around the morning sun,

crackling the memory of a cross burning in our town.

— Gerald Bigelow

~ ~ ~

Previously published in the Arizona Centennial Anthology and in Between the Lines, Gerald Bigelow is a board member for EPIC Group Writers and chairs a monthly poetry group. He edited and contributed to Soundings from the Salish Sea (A Pacific Northwest Poetry Anthology).

In 2019, he was selected to read his poetry with the Washington State Poet Laureate.He helped establish a bi-monthly Poet’s Corner featurette in My Edmonds News to showcase the work of local poets.He has a new book of poetry on Amazon entitled “Memories Looking Through a Screen Door.”

 

4 Replies to “EPIC Poetry Group: Poet’s Corner — Many Places to Cry, Not Knowing, Isolation, The County Line”

  1. Your words bring out so many daily sorrows and how far we have to go to understand. Your poem, Many Places to Cry, gave me a picture that describes the great, wound of this country’s history. Thank you.

    Ignored

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *