Archive for the 'family' Category

11
Aug
12

Cultivate

Cultivate

Everyone has a love –
something they love
or something they love to do.
I have a niece who
loves animals beyond measure
and the art of animation too.

I have another niece who loves history.
And I have sons who are athletes
with a love for everything baseball.
If I ask them for a reason, I might
just get a shoulder shrug or an
“I don’t know. I just do.”

And that’s enough.
Your love never needs a reason
or a defense –
it’s yours.
All we can do
is support each other
finding who or what it is
we love.

[copyright 2012 Darren King]

11
Sep
09

Carrying On

Carrying On

By Darren King
[copyright 2009]

During difficult times
we are sometimes told to move on –
to move on and get on with our lives.
But moving on is synonymous with denial.
Moving on is an attempt to escape
the full effect of events
that unfold in our lives.
I don’t know how to move on –
I only know how to carry on.
Please don’t push –
I will not be hurried, thank you.
I will not be rushed.
I will not move on
and ignore my grief.
I will not move on
and deny my grief.
I will not move on
and deny the lessons
to be learned from it all.
I am a soul.
I need time.
Time to absorb what has happened.
Time to think, time to reflect.
Time to pray, time to listen.
Time to realize I have been changed.
Then, and only then, I will carry on.
Centered.
Taking with me the memory
of what has happened,
never to forget where I was,
what I was doing,
listening to how my children’s
world had changed.
And when my oldest
asks me,
What happens now?
I say kindly,
We carry on.
We pray, we give, we remember –
we carry on.

26
Apr
09

R

R

By Darren King
[copyright 2009]

We gathered for Christmas,
all of us there,
all of us –
sharing couches and floor
with the grandchildren playing board games,
except me
who remained in the kitchen
putting, as I must, an order to things.
Perhaps,
you are stronger than I.
You seemingly shake
off easily what I can not.
Me
I must stop. Contemplate.
As I do this very night counting –
ten water glasses, ten dinner plates,
the sounds from ten hearts beating
in our home.

23
Apr
09

Room 2423

ICU #2423

By Darren King
[copyright 2009]

Here in this room
are pictures of you
and the people who love you –
you with your wife
embraced in perfect sunsets
you with your children
among the countless parks and zoos
birthdays and barbecues
shared with grandchildren who
revere you more than
Packers or Patriots.
Above these, a Cross –
Jesus in white robe,
His arms extended, His palms exposed.
Pray Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
To that misguided homily,
blessed is the womb that bore you
Jesus corrects –
blessed are they who call me family.

01
Dec
08

In Memoriam

In Memoriam
By Darren King [copyright 2008]

I’m so sorry things
did not work out
for you in the end
as you planned
as we all plan
when we are young –
44 is young.
Like so many others
I knew you only
through your accomplishments
which were many,
more than most.
I knew you through
your essays
introspective pieces
of your life revealed
each one a little picture
of the place we lived
when we were young
we could see it
touch it
feel it
we had been there
we had felt
that kind of cold
that sticks the snow
on our knitted mittens
to our skin
until we could get back inside
where it is warm and
the thaw how it hurts
red fingertips and ears
and where I learned
we had a son the same age
we were both from Michigan,
writers.
In the photograph
you are smiling
eyes bright
clearly outside as evident
by the cold on your face
fair and framed by
a few frozen locks
of light brown hair,
pen and paper in-hand,
looking always the writer.
I said I did not know you
I don’t
only through your work
as I read this night
flipping
through old magazines
looking for your essays
and others too on-line
readers, writers
who knew you
only virtually.
But your passing is so sad
and it stayed with me
this snowy evening
and I said a prayer
in the car
and then at dinner
it was the proximity
of our lives
the weight of it all
I thought of your son
as I watched my son
struggle to twirl his spaghetti
onto his fork
which eventually he did
just as I was about
to ask him if he needed help
and then he slurped
what did not make it
onto his utensil
but dangled between
his mouth and his bowl
as young boys do for economy.
Your son will do that too –
your son who’ve you left
a grandmother who is there
and friends
who only loved you
and you’ve left him
with two strong names
which he will need
as he grows
and remembers all
you’ve taught him
and will continue to teach him
now that you’re gone.
And you’ve left him
your life’s work
proximity to you
a map to your spirit
a map forever to find
his way to his life with you.

15
Nov
08

James

James
By Darren King [copyright 2008]

Here in this room are pictures of you
and the people who love you –
you with your family and friends,
you and your rock band,
your team mates,
you and a beautiful girl.
I stand across from your father,
his tired eyes red and swollen,
everything I think to say
sounding so lame as when I said it
to myself in the car for practice.
When your mother sees me
she yells my name
and jumps from her chair
as if she’s been waiting,
all this after I’d been away so long
and I remembered then how openly
we discussed spiritual matters.
And here I am with her again
because of you.
She hugs me, she pulls me close,
her voice sounding the way it always had
when she smiled while talking.
I know he’s okay now,
she says hurriedly into my ear,
I know he’s okay.
She pulls me closer
as if to tell a secret,
all the while repeating herself,
I felt him three times today,
three times I felt him,
three times.

09
Nov
08

Carol

Carol
By Darren King [copyright 2008]

I didn’t want you
to have to be that person –
who walks to the edge
of the abyss
and looking down into
its murky depths
walks in
undaunted
if but to hang on
to someone you love
as if going in yourself
you could bring him back.
I didn’t want you
to have to be that person
you who are too good
too kind
and now all too knowing
of what angels know
what is there
what the rest of us
can only wonder
assuming we are allowed
even to speculate
what it was you saw.
But it is telling now and
for me a haunting glimpse
when someone recently
asked you in mixed company
Carol what is it you are afraid of
you smiled and replied softly, kindly
in the only language you know –
I’m not afraid of anything anymore.




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