Caroline Marie

caroline marie

caroline marie
northern city, United States
July 24
Temperamental Story Teller
posts will tell


JANUARY 24, 2010 5:55PM

Do I rescue little girls or eat them for breakfast?

Rate: 14 Flag

I catch a glimpse of myself in your eyes

and the view is not flattering.

A trace of disdain escapes

as you smile at me and look away.


What is the problem?

One thousand and one possibilities

immediately come to mind.

I am 39 and single

a renter

frumpy dresser

in this neighborhood

of high-six-figure homes 

and well coifed stay-at-home moms.


We carpool our daughters to gymnastics 

and so taking a deep breath

I ignore the attitude

and approach you for small talk.


Your dismissiveness continues

but then

a small miracle occurs

and you are forthcoming with your thoughts

on what is wrong with me.


(Being from Chicago, I appreciate directness.  Come on you Lutheran sons of farmers, just say what is on your mind!) 


So your daughter tells me you have 3 older children?



There is nothing wrong with ME.

You have me confused

with my daughter's birth mother.

And since my kid

is in the go-tell-it-on-the-mountain

stage of trauma

who knows what you have heard

on your bi-weekly car trips?

Tales of drug deals, maniac boyfriends,  

teenage kids scattered around the country

in and out of jail?


I smile.


She has older sibings

but I just adopted her a couple of years ago.


The sun comes out.

Trumpets blare.

Your eyes reveal my transformation from

drug addicted loser

to woman-without-sin.

Mother Theresa.

I am a HERO for godsakes! 


My smile back is genuine

for a moment

until I remember

that I am no saint.


In fact, I yell when I am angry

I swear like a sailor

my parenting style is somewhat chilly

I am sure I have scarred my child's heart more than once


I could go on

but the point is 

I am not my child's Holy Savior.


Thank you for reminding me. 





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I feel this same way sometimes, you have said it so very well!
I have been reflected in someone's mirror as well. But I think you handled it better than did I.
Don't you just hate that once over head to toes look? The poem is good.
I thought this was just terrific. r
Right on. I know of these type of mothers in school parking lots and on school field trips. Who sniff around for any and all type of info. Quick to come to conclusions.

My inclination would be to tell then to eff right off but then my child would suffer from my mouth so I remained quiet instead. So, I also know the redemption of which you write of in this fabulous poem.

So nice to find you here Caroline Marie or is that Joan Crawford :)
Wow - beautiful style of writing. Love this piece.
my transformation from
drug addicted loser
to woman-without-sin.

I just love the way you write.
Lord, how I understand this poem . . . on so many levels. This is well wrought!
Well-told story in just a few short lines. It's weird how when we don't know what people don't like about us, we can supply the answers ourselves. Strangers have mistaken me for a saint before too. I keep the truth to myself, mainly. Nice post.
perfectly stated, beautifully written.
Thank you so much everyone! I truly appreciate each of your comments. This is the first new piece I've written in years. It feels good getting back into the writing habit, doesn't it?
Caroline Marie, that is beautiful. And yes, I know the sniffing out of information among parents only too well. Congrats to you for doing a hard job, even if you're not Mother Theresa. (who is?)
Excruciatingly common - that judgmental attitude. Only thing worse - what you describe here ... not your internal dialogue, but the phony eurka moment.