Yes, Poetry Friday is here. Please leave a link to your post here in the comments and I’ll add them to the post throughout the day.

I wasn’t sure what I was going to post for this week’s Poetry Friday. Then a few people sent me their links early and I went and read their posts (and sniffled a little) and was struck with a childhood memory that I had pushed to the back of my mind for over 45 years. I was compelled to try and capture the memory in a poem and then either brave enough or foolish enough to post it here. The poem might upset some people and for that, I apologize.


My friends had fathers
who all were soldiers,
who went off to fight
instead of staying safe, at home.

My mother had a father
who did his part,
and an uncle who enlisted
the day he turned 18.

My grandmother had two brothers
who carried guns to battle, side by side.
One came home without a leg.
One never came home at all

I had a mother who shoved me in the closet
when the men in suits, came to the door

Shush now, don’t tell them
where your father went.

Easy enough.
I didn’t know.

I wish my father had been strong enough,
not of body but of heart,
strong enough to do the right thing,
even if he felt afraid

I wish my father had been someone I could be proud of,
someone who fought for us,
someone who believed his family and his country,
were worth protecting.

I wish my father
had been a soldier.

— Susan Taylor Brown
May 21, 2009

© Susan Taylor Brown, 2009

Leave a link to your Poetry Friday post here in the comments and I’ll add them to the post throughout the day. Please remember I am in California for there may be a slight time delay.

NOTE: Please leave your NAME and a PERMALINK  to your post so that I don’t have to go visit every blog just to do the round-up. Thanks!


I will continue to add to this throughout the day.

We had a lot of original poems this week. I love that poets are sharing original work on the blogs and I thank them all for letting us see these pieces of their work that may or may not ever appear anywhere else.


I have an original poem about my draft doging father above,

Violet at Book Brew posted her original poem Wisdom of the Scarecrow.

Over at Gotta Book, Greg talks about two of his favorite topics, baseball and poetry, and about a site that mixes them both, including an original poem of his own.

A Wrung Sponge was inspired by it feeling like summer with the neighborhood kids cavorting and posted an original haiku. and Lorie Ann Grover, rgz diva/author has Highlighted, another original haiku.

Kristy Dempsey is in with her own take on hope (a la Dickinson’s feathery version).

There’s an amazing bunch of 15 Words or Less poems–all eggshell-inspired–up today at with Laura Salas.

Irene Latham contributes another original poem in her historical women series, this one about Picasso’s widow Jacqueline.

Mitali Perkins says, “I’m in with a poem about old world parents raising a new world teen — Pathos by 17-year-old Miranda, the third-prize winner from last year’s Fire Escape poetry contest.”

MiaZagora was inspired to rework the words of her nephew into a poem here. (Note, you can’t comment on this poem unless you are a member of the team.)

The theme of loss is strong this week. A husband missing his wife shares his original poem Waiting to Sleep . Another original poem is, Shadow Loss, by Tiel Aisha and Lost is an original poem by Priya Ganesan at Book Crumbs.

Holly Cupala posts a poem she wrote from a workshop with poet Ellen Hopkins.

Melissa D. Johnston shares an original poem about her grandmother.

Serena Woods shares her original poem Genetics

Mer Blackwood says, “I posted an outtake from my major work in progress, a fantasy poem I’ve been working on since 1999. A while back, I had to cut out a subplot. I think this scene, The Endless Echo of Defeat can stand alone as a vignette.


Keep a tissue handy when you read Sara Lewis Holmes post about her poetry and tear filled visit to the Liberty Bell.

Stop by The Write Sisters  Was a Man by Philip Booth,  a poem about introspection.

Celebrations abound this Poetry Friday as Julie at The Drift Record celebrates the appointment of Ruth Padel, to the position of Oxford Professor of Poetry (the first woman to hold the post since it was created in 1708) with Padel’s poem Tigers Drinking Over at Forest Pool.

Jama Marattigan celebrates National Strawberry Month with a poem by Genevieve Taggard and in honor of her niece, Meg, who is graduating from high school today, Carol posted God Says Yes To Me

Kurious Kitty shares Eavan Boland’s Dublin, 1959 and Karen Edmisten introduces us to Barbara Crooker,

Everything’s coming up Roses and Rue by Oscar Wilde, thanks to Little Willow.

Pull on your cowboy books and mosey over to Liz Scanlon and read all about the great big state of Texas.

Poems about animals? Of course we have them. First there is St. Francis and the Sow by Galway Kinnell over at 7-Imp and then over at readertotz you can read Kookaburra.

Susan shares Morning 85 a poem by a local poet she discovered in a literary tour of her hometown.

Semicolon talks about poetry and hymnic research.

The Stenhouse Blog posts What I Know About Epistemology by John Surowiecki.

Amy Planchak Graves shares Green Grass and Dandelions by Margaret Wise Brown.

Another post  dedicated to our heroes in our lives from Stella.

Mary Lee has a poem for teachers by Tracy Vaughn Zimmer for teachers.

Sarah Rettger says, “This week’s poem is a big thank you to all the people who think about race in writing, put themselves out there, and push me to challenge my privilege. Y’all are awesome, and don’t get nearly enough credit. Read it here at  Archimedes Forgets


Tracie Vaughn Zimmer has an interview and teacher guide for Hope Anita Smith’s book Mother Poems and MsMac has an interview with Sage Cohen, local Portland author who donated her poetry books to the Bridget Zinn auction.

Elaine Magliaro says, “At Wild Rose Reader, I have recommendations for poetry collections and anthologies that are wonderful for sharing with young children–as well as a link to a post about using a “poetry suitcase” to get kids excited about hearing and talikng about poems.”

Kelly Herold (welcome back to blogging, Kelly) is in with a review of  a biography of William Carlos Williams for the youngsters.

But wait, there are more reviews!

John Mutford reviews a collection by Canadian poet Di Brandt called Speaking of Power ,Anastasia Suen talks about Kristy Dempsey’s brand-new picture book debut Me With You and over on Great Kid Books, Mary Ann recommends Tap Dancing on the Roof, by Linda Sue Park. It’s full of funny poems that make kids think.

Kelly Fineman has terrific interview with Ryan Mecum, the author of ZOMBIE HAIKU.


At Blue Rose Girls Elaine shares a Favorite Poem Project video of Stephen Conteaguero talking about his life and reciting the poem Politics by William Butler Yates in honor of Memorial Day.

Diane Myar takes a look at Today I look at YouTube poetry .