Sunday, May 31, 2020

UNBELIEVABLE

Like many of you, what happened to George Floyd affected me in a dramatic way. I know similar events have happened before, I’m sad to say, but to see it from start to finish on my TV tore at my heart.  That this still occurs in our world, a world that almost two hundred years ago freed the slaves, hasn't advanced, but more importantly, seeing someone no, not just someone, a “civil servant,” blantantly feeling justified in taking the life of another human being, no, committing murder, on-camera was beyond words.  The poem that follows is my attempt.



DESPICABLE
By Pat Severin

I think that it’s despicable that prejudice still reigns,
That some Whites view their race as pure, while hatred leave such stains.
What makes them feel they’re justified to put the Black race down,
Regard themselves superior to the ones whose skin is brown?

Have they not learned a single thing since blacks were bought and sold,
The lesson of the Golden Rule, so simple and so old?
For ALL men have been created by the perfect Master’s hand.
If one race stands above the rest the flames of hate are fanned.

But CRUELTY is race-less and must be judged as that
No matter who engages in a thoughtless heinous act.
For no one is above the law, it stands for HUMAN justice;
When men pledge to uphold those laws, ALL citizens should trust this.

What’s happened to our country that Blacks must live in fear…
Of being judged because they’re black, where is the justice here?
Our laws are made for ALL men and applies to all the races
And yet the black man's singled out, just tell me where the grace is?

It must be this that laws are laws no matter who you are   
And treatment is humane to all and doesn’t go too far.
Aren’t all regarded innocent before considered guilty
And shouldn't those who take an oath, uphold it as it should be?

And what conclusion should we draw when one who should know better
Ignores the law and demonstrates how he’s by hatred fettered,
Then filled with hate and vitriol feels murder’s justified,
That George Floyd’s not deserving of his basic human rights?

But if we let our anger rule, the harm of that deduction
Is innocents will suffer from our unchecked mass destruction.
And what is gained from cursing those, can that change this injustice?
It only makes the ones who watch grow more and more disgusted.

All I can say is this MUST stop, that justice must prevail,
And never should we stand to hear another black man wail…
That he “can’t breathe” and watch such hatred daily taking place!
We can’t stand by while men are judged by the color of their face!

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

WHEN?

Guess we're all in the same boat but the boat has a hole in it so when will we sink?  Yes, that is the question for boats and for America.  If I hear the word "unprecedented" one more time I think I'm going to lose my lunch!  It is, mind you, unprecedented times we're going through but "find another word!"  All I'll say on the subject is we'd all be better off if we could make it "unpresidented" time.  Wake up, America and above all else, VOTE, AMERICA,VOTE!

“New Normal?”

Pandemic, pandemic, upending our lives,
We’re hoping that someday our “normal” arrives…
So we can go back to the way things had been.
But dreams that are like that are hollow and thin…

Because things have changed & forever will be
A new kind of "normal" for you and to me.
No more big events, no public embraces,
No more giving kisses, there’re masks on our faces.

When will it be safe to again shop in stores,
Or bathe in the sun, collect shells by the shore?
We’ll have to remember six feet is as close 
As we'll ever be for but how long? No one knows.

Vaccine, oh vaccine, how we long for completion
But when will it happen? no rhyme and no reason,
For those who’re in charge, oh, I use the term loosely,
Keep us in the dark, so when will the truth be…

Given to us for we all need to know it,
But the evil’s so deep, keep it quiet, don’t show it.
Yes, we’re in the hands of such liars and cheaters
Whose role is to be our country’s mistreaters.

America's dying not just from the virus.
It’s death executed by those in disguises
Who care not for us but only their gains
And love of themselves and the sound of their names.

For fame and for money, does that sound familiar?
Their only allegience is found in their mirrors.
So please open slowly, be careful and wise
This virus' contagious…
                                    just look in their eyes!

Saturday, March 21, 2020

BECAUSE...


QUESTIONS?

How can this be, why is it so?
Where is the end, why don’t they know?
We came to this so unprepared,
But who's to blame, yes, who has erred?
And if we knew, would this thing pass?
Would all be cured, this gone at last?
These questions come but answers don’t,
For those in charge, the answers won’t
Come easily for this is new
And some succumb, more than a few.
So if I’m careful to contain
The ones I love, will health remain?
But what is sacrificed for this?
A hand’s sweet touch, a tender kiss?
Togetherness of old is gone
My loved ones near, for this I long.
Mere memories can’t take its place,
With FaceTime, Skype there’s no embrace.
No comfort from this means I find
And so I fear I’ll lose my mind.
For now we leave our lives behind
Not leave the house, remain confined,
And be content to spend our days
Until outside we catch the rays
Of morning sun that filters through
The tree’s green leaves that dapple you,
Reminding us that summer’s here,
Though not like those of other years.
So we must pray and pray some more
For this to pass so spirits soar
And life becomes as once it was,
God’s still in charge, that’s why…BECAUSE!

A CHAOTIC LIFE

So here we are in the midst of something that most of us have never seen in our lifetime.  I can't say anything profound or deep or anything you don't know about this terrible Pandemic.  It's taken over our lives and we are left wanting.  But as always my thoughts on this are best expressed through poetry.

PANDEMIC

Another day I’m stuck at home
While longing to be free to roam
Through stores to look, perchance to buy
A trinket that has caught my eye.
I took for granted times like these,
The freedom to go where I’d please.
But now restricted, wondering when,
When we'll be free to roam again.

Pandemic’s what they call this thing
But I, I’d call it shattering.
This virus strain not seen before,
We watch each day as cases sore.
But all we want is life to be
The way it used to be, you see,
Back to before, to yesterday.
We promise we’d respect the way
We lived our lives that seemed mundane
And thoughtlessly would oft complain.

But now we see through different eyes
Our life before, sometimes despised,
Is one we long for, hope can be
A life returned, yes, now we see
How precious were those days gone by.
And thinking back can’t help but cry
Such tears of sadness for we know
The gift we had, we’ve seen it go,
And pray it will return again
But none can say exactly when.

So here it is, another day
We’re stuck at home until they say,
“We’ve found the cure, the answer’s clear,
A new vaccine's been engineered.
Your life can now return to be
The life you had, a life that’s free.”

Will we remember what we’ve learned
Before our “normal” is returned?

Saturday, February 29, 2020

A CHILDREN'S STORY & HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Alright, already!  I know, I know, but I've been really busy.  I finished the biography on my Mother and have gotten a proof copy and ordered the books for my collection and they will be here in about a week.  As much as I've neglected this blog I have been writing.   I wrote two poems, one each for my grandsons for Christmas, wrote poems for my wonderful neighbors for all the help they continue to give us, wrote a Christmas poem to go into my Christmas letter and have been active with my writing and critiquing for the Children's Book Writer group to which a belong. Phew!!  So you see I haven't stopped writing.

I just posted one of my Children's stories to our critique site just a few minutes ago so I'll add it here to share with all of you.


MONSTERS
By Pat Severin                                          

If you’re scared of monsters like I used to be

I’ve something to tell you, just listen, you’ll see.

I had that scared feeling, I used to, before.

I used to be frightened but NOT anymore.


Monsters aren’t real, they DO NOT exist.
           
I KNOW that they don’t, in fact, I INSIST!    

But it’s so much fun pretending they do,
   
I made up this story especially for you.

                                   
My story starts out with me snuggling in bed.

I pull up the covers right over my head,
                                                                       
I say to my Mom, “Do you hear it, that noise?”
                       
I point to my closet, “It’s beneath all my toys!”

                       
I say, “Mom, it’s scary, like nothing I’ve heard.

Just listen, Mom, listen…and don’t say a word.

I say, “It’s a Monster, and boy, he sounds mad.”

I whisper, “Pretend with me, Mom.  Go get Dad.”


They wink, play along and say, “We hear it, too!

That noise is so scary, oh what should we do?”

I tell Mom, “He’s hungry, I’m worried he might

Start eating my toys and not just a bite!”


“In that case,” my Dad says, “It’s all up to you,”

Your bedroom, your closet, your toys and your rules!”

I say, “Pretend monster, you get out of there!

Come out of my closet, come out!  I’m not scared!”


But Mom says, “It’s bedtime, now get into bed.”

So she tucks me in with a kiss on the head.

For a while, when she’s gone, I pretend I’m asleep
Then tiptoe my way to my closet and peek,

And whisper, “Now, monster, I will let your stay
But not in my closet, off limits, no way!”
(I always talk quiet when I make believe.
It sounds more convincing, now don’t you agree?)                                                                    

 I say to my Monster, “Now, here is the deal.

The toys in my closet should NOT be a meal.”

“Go sleep in the corner, not under my bed!

Now, listen up, Monster! D’you hear what I said?”


 I wait till he’s settled and I hear him snore,

Then cover him up and prop open the door

In case he gets thirsty and might want a drink,

Then he can get up and go right to the sink.


And maybe tomorrow we’ll play hide and seek.

If he’s having fun, he might stay for a week.

We’ll play lots of games, my Monster and I.

I bet that he’s real good at playing “I Spy!”


So my pretend monster and I became friends
And that’s just exactly how my story ends.
The story’s pretend and my monster is too.

Since monsters aren’t real, they can’t frighten you.


Tonight when your Mom comes to tuck you in bed,

Look right in your closet, remember I said,

“Monsters aren’t real, they’re not anywhere,

Not under your bed, in your closet, by your chair.


You’ll probably find shoes and a whole lot of toys,

But nothing’s in there that can make a strange noise.

You’ll see for yourself, NO MONSTERS IN THERE!

Monsters aren’t real, they aren’t ANYWHERE.


 If you’re scared of monsters I want you to know

That fear that you're feeling, just let it go.

Monsters aren’t real, now do you see?

They do not exist, just take it from me!

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

THE REASON FOR THE SEASON TIME TWO



Today's blog offers you two poems I wrote for the upcoming Christmas season. Although the slogan 
The Reason for the Season is one with which we're familiar, it's easy to forget in the hustle and bustle of preparing for our own festivities. To that end the first little short offering puts it back on track, back to where we should be, reminding us that we celebrate Christmas because of the birth of Our King.

The second poem is one I wrote a number of years ago when I was teaching pre-schoolers.  The message is the same but it's written from the perspective of a child.  Out of the mouths of babes...

The Promise Made Came True


Thanksgiving now behind us,
We long for Christmas time,
A time for friends and family,
A time when church bells chime
And all with glee prepare for this,
Hang stockings by the fire,
Put up the tree with presents 'round
And hear the angel choir
As we recall the Christmas when
The promise made came true.
And now as then, the Christ Child comes,
He comes for me and you.
Not just a Babe but Savior He
Who died that we might live
Forever there, in Heaven with Him.
His Love your sins forgive.


THE BESTEST GIFT OF ALL
 
Baby Jesus, you’re so small
And yet I have been told
That you did really big, big things
When you were grown up old.
 
I ‘member Grandma told me that
You didn’t have a bed,
And so your Mama, carefully,
Laid down your little head
 
Into a manger made for cows,
But it was soft and clean.
She said you were the cutest boy
That she had ever seen!
 
And shepherds saw some angels white,
All singing in the sky.
At first they felt real scared inside,
Until they knew just why!
 
And fancy kings in golden coats
They came from very far,
To visit you because they saw
A bright and shiny star!
 
I wish I could have been there, too,
To see you as a baby.
If Mary said it was alright
I’d come real close and maybe
 
I’d pick you up so carefully
And whisper “I Love You.”
I may not understand all this
But I believe it’s true
 
That you growed up, became a man,
And died for everyone,
And someday I’ll see you for real.
We’ll both have lots of fun!
 
 I’ll see my Grandma once again.
I loved her soft, soft face.
Mom says they’ll be no wrinkles there,
She says you can erase!
 
The same way you erase my sins,
I know sometimes I’m bad,
But I know you forgive me,
And that you don’t get mad.
 
Mom tells me that she loves me
And that you love me, too.
I wish I was in Bethlehem
And I could visit you.
 
I love to hear the story of
Your birthday, long ago.
I know that’s why there’s Christmas time,
So everyone will know
 
That, Baby Jesus, you were born,
So soft and pink and small,
Of all the presents you're the best,
The bestest gift of all!

Saturday, November 23, 2019

LOSS OF A LOVED ONE

Last Tuesday our dear, sweet Cooper left us, left us with the impossible task of deciding whether he should stay with us a bit longer or leave this world suffering.  He had developed a tumor that occupied his entire internal cavity, was unable to eat and eliminate and was in pain.  It didn't matter that we had him in our lives for 14 years, the thought of him not being with us was agonizing.  Yet we had to make a decision that even given all the medical facts was a difficult one.  Anyone who's had to make that decision will attest, it doesn't get much harder than that.  But we made the decision, the only one we could, a decision out of love not to let him suffer. And even though we know it was the right one, it doesn't make us miss him any less.  This poem is dedicated to him and all those out there that have had to deal with the loss of a pet.


 DEEP WITHIN

They have a way of getting deep within the heart of you.
They fill your days with happiness and love their whole life through.
We call them pet and yet they are much more than that to us.
Their love is unconditional, they give because they must.

They fill our days with happiness, so glad when we are there,
That faithful wag, it tells us that they’ll always, always care.
A walk, a meal, a stroke, a hug, makes their whole world complete
For seeing us is all they need when gone an hour, a week.

It matters not the length of time we’ve left them there because
They know that we’ll return again, that tail is our applause.
The years go by and often we can take them so for granted.
We’re sure they’ll always be with us, not leave our world dismantled.

But life without them’s not the same, we miss them, miss them so,
No matter if their life was long, can’t bear to see them go.
And that’s because that part they had inside our hearts must be
Relinquished to the emptiness if we no longer see

That loving soul that’s occupied that special place within.
Our longing heart just wishes that we’d see that face again.
Yes, we are left in agony because we never thought
About that day when they’d be gone, conveniently forgot.

So here we are with lonliness and sadness that won’t end.
We’ve lost a part that can’t be filled except by that dear friend.
Impossible to fill the void that we must bear alone
But better we have been because they graced our life and home.