Repression–dVerse Poetics


 

Photo: Family Scrapbook

Photo: Family Scrapbook

 

When I give her the scrapbook,
my mother touches his photo,

caressing his still-young face.

Pages turn slowly until she comes
across the proof she’d asked for.

She closes her eyes.
She closes the book.
She closes the wound—
memories that bleed once more.

Written for dVerse Poetics. Today’s prompt is to write about an object in your home. It must seem that I’m fixated on death these days, but today is the 70th anniversary of my father’s death in World War II. My mom asked me to research what happened and when I gave her the details she set them aside and told me, “I know, but I guess I chose to forget.” 

National Poetry Month, Day 8

Photo: Family Scrap, Letter from War Department informing her of his death.

Photo: Family Scrap, Letter from War Department informing her of his death.

 

 

 

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30 thoughts on “Repression–dVerse Poetics

  1. Jamie Dedes says:

    Oh my heart. Choked up. Poignant poem and the picture is wonderful. Thanks for sharing it here along with the poem. What a handsome dad.

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  2. Mama Zen says:

    This is truly powerful, Victoria.

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  3. tigerbrite says:

    Heart wrenching Victoria. A beautiful tribute to a handsome father. My father survived the D Day landing, he was in the Royal Signals. He never spoke about it until he was 85.

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  4. Lasha says:

    I had tears when I read these………. Its sad to see some one close die in a far away unknown land where u could only prey and cant even have to chance to read their last mind………….

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  5. kamana says:

    what a heartfelt longing you have captured here

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  6. kkkkaty says:

    A treasure to keep for sure…such a sad story and I see how you might see intrigue with the subject of death…and she loved him still.

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  7. billgncs says:

    A lovely poem – and sorry for your loss. My dad was in a Higgens boat at Normandy, the only one of 49 men to make it to shore. It wasn’t until I visited Normandy a few years ago that I understood. What a price your mother paid.

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  8. Beautifully written Victoria but also very sad the things done during those time are so sad as so many people were left to cope alone, it must have been a very hard time for so many.

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  9. In response to some of the comments–I never knew my father. I was only 3 months old. My mom’s parents told her not to cry, that it would upset me. I sometimes wonder if I didn’t absorb something that led me to a life work with death and dying and why I write about it so often. She didn’t really mourn him until after my “adopted” father died. She remarried when I was 7. And yes, she did repress what she learned about his death…it was brutal. That’s how she coped.

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  10. shanyns says:

    Profound love and loss. And carried for so many years. A touching piece.

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  11. rmp says:

    this is beautifully stunning. so simple and yet holds so much within. lovely!

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  12. Grace says:

    Some memories we keep, some memories we don’t want to remember ~ This is powerfully written Victoria ~

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  13. Bryan Ens says:

    This is beautiful, yet so very sad. Your mom’s comment, “I know, but I guess I chose to forget” really sums it all up.

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  14. What a very long time to miss your father, Victoria – for you and for her – a lifetime………….such a sad poem, so real.

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  15. Death is part of life – it’s unavoidable. So, no need to worry. I asked a genealogist to research a branch of my dad’s family history, with the idea that we could investigate it together and i could share some new things with him. Sadly, he died before I could do that, so now, I don’t know what to do with it. We never forget the ones we love, do we? I couldn’t bear to look at photos of my dad for a while after died. It’s still hard to believe he is gone. I imagine that is how your mum feels.

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  16. ayala says:

    I feel your pain, so sad. Love is forever.

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  17. MarinaSofia says:

    Very, very moving. Beautifully described, with simple, unadorned words, yet each one exactly in the right place.

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  18. Glenn Buttkus says:

    So touching, visceral, honest–the kind of sharing poets can be really good at; as you are. I never knew my father, mother married the first soldier who believed he might have been my Dad; so I used to fantasize that my father had died in WWII; for some reason I pictured him as a sailor.

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  19. This is such a powerful write. It gave me goose bumps.

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  20. Something very precious. But I think your mother’s forgetting was a way of anaesthetising the pain of loss.

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  21. wolfsrosebud says:

    awh… some pain too great to bear… praise God for men like your Dad

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  22. kaykuala says:

    So poignant and so true. Not mentioned in too many words but the underlying love is there to be reminded anytime if need be. Great write Victoria!

    http://imagery77.blogspot.com/2014/04/golfing-enthusiast-pro-advised.html

    Hank
    P/S Being a golfer especially linked for you, Ma’am!

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  23. C.J. Black says:

    Forever memories Victoria.

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  24. brian miller says:

    i am sorry for the death…what an emotional reaction the wanting to touch the tangible memories…to see the proof…and the depth of feeling still attached to it 70 years later….powerful piece v

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  25. This brought tears to me.. what a painful yet important undertaking.. reliving the history.. redoing it again.. yes memories are important, yet painful.

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  26. Gabriella says:

    This is a very poigant poem, Victoria! Your mother’s pain is still palpable, so is her love for your dad – despite the years. Your scrapbook is a very moving treasure.

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  27. Angela says:

    Such a beautifully touching poem, Victoria… and your last line is an eternal continuance.

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  28. The pain of losing someone you love still remains even when the years go by. Emotions that touch heart… Poignant writing.

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  29. Mary says:

    This poem gave me chills, Victoria. I could just picture the scene with your mother and the scrapbook. Her love still lives, and that is a wonderful thing. But her loss still is profound, as is your poem

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