Poem: Without Shame


Without Shame

The tricycle sits in the corner,
no longer used,
too small for you or your children.
A memory in metal,
it’s red paint old and pitted,

like your childhood,
rarely pristine, often marred by misuse,
strangely still loved.

When you were a boy,
you rode your second-hand bicycle
through ditches and yards.
You pedaled it through the forests behind your house
with complete disregard for the damage done
to you and the shaped metal you rode.

You became a master of repair at a young age,
never a restoration, but just enough
to ride away another day,
a resilient mess of a boy,
never quite broken, never quite whole,
always on the mend,
always on the move,
sure somehow that as long as you moved
you were safe.

Today you know you were not.
You bear the scars of falls and crashes,
if not proudly, at least, at last,
without shame.

About this poem

I keep more than a few things around my house that remind me of my life. Not all of them are of good things. It’s been an interesting life, mistakes, abuse, horror, brokenness, resurrection,  joy and love and all.

All of it is worth remembering. .

The photograph was taken at the Skeine Manor in Whitehall, New York.



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