Last week at my Writers Guild meeting, one young lady shared some of her poetry with us and I was just blown away by her talent. She had been coming to the meetings for several months and had never shared anything before. Her poem about her future children gave me goosebumps. I have never been a big fan of poetry but I like this work a bunch.
Leandra agreed to let me share some of her work here on my page and what an honor that is for me. So please enjoy some real writing for once on this blog…Ladies and Gentlemen, a few works by Leandra Tuggle.
I wait for them. My children
for whom I dream and have dreamt.
I soothe their sorrows with batches of
imagined kisses and uneaten cookies.
I talk to them – about their day, their teachers and friends;
unanswered questions whispered into a metal whisk.
I imagine chaotic mornings searching for lost
socks and mittens and scurrying out the door in a flash.
When I close my eyes as I close my door,
I can almost hear them calling for me.
And their names – oh their names – I have spent years
searching for the perfect name. I fall in love with
characters and crayons and strangers and streets whose
names resonate life and color. I draw them out on pieces of paper
in hopes to find the perfect shade for
the shades of myself.
Eleanor ask me where I found her name and I tell
her I never found it, it found me. Like the hidden book in
a neglected library whose dusty jacket stands out amongst the rest;
a name possessed by tradition and honor.
Little Liam tells me that his name is too girly, but I tell
him that his name reminded me of green meadows and deep
forests – where only an adventurer could live.
And my precious Evangeline, or Evie as I whisper to her as I carry
her to bed; her dark hair and light eyes needed a name as
beautiful – my heavenly angel, my shooting star.
I remember all the other contenders: Avery and Holden and
Lydia and Lincoln. They’re still in the back of my mind playing with
blocks or crudely coloring in the shapes of bears and dinosaurs.
As I fall asleep, I hold my breath so I can hear their reassuring
snores and imagine what they are dreaming: juice boxes and
squeaky swings and faraway castles and talking dragons.
And in the morning, I imagine waking to their peering eyes rather
than those of the inconsiderate sun, who fails to give me even just a
few more minutes to play and talk and laugh and hold them
in my dreams.
I lay here;
the cottage cheese bed folding in around me
like the shameful palms pursed around a pleading prayer.
I stare at the bedside table.
It rests like a forgotten child used only for the neglected flowers that
I claim that you gave me.
The woman with the flower cart had a lazy eye
and she sang the saddest song.
Of the hills of Czechoslovakia (or
another country I only pretend to know exists)
and as she sang this song
Your face was everywhere.
In the driver of the parked taxicab.
In the reflection of a window.
In the murky puddle beneath my feet.
And I felt sorry for myself
But sorrier for the
and all her
lazy-eyed children, so I bought the
Now when I stare at them, your
eyes look up from every petal,
and I feel sick.
So I rest my cheek upon the cool nakedness of the pillow
while a bouquet of tears collect beneath my chin.
There was me and you and the moonlight. We existed
in threes. Our wholes divided and melded into one.
Your hands were my hands. My heart yours too. Even
the moon took the same shape as your eyes, they staring
at me staring at you.
I wish we could’ve stayed there forever. The world stopping
for one goddamn moment so that I could breathe you into me
I want to create a hole in the world the shape of us and
never escape. The world can keep turning, keep bleeding, but
you and me will rise above it below it between it.
That night will always bring me joy. In my old age, my
abandoned mind will return to that moment. The nurses will feed me
pills and pears and pillows and I’ll go on babbling about how soft the
blades of your shoulders felt poured into my palms and the tickle of
your stubble on my knee.
And that fucking moonlight – that blinds me from everything that
I once thought was important, real.
For more information on Leandra Tuggle please seek her out here: