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JULY 15, 2010 6:25PM

The Girl Across the Street

Rate: 31 Flag

Late summer, mid summer, it's the heat, death, and the suicide sambas.




Wandering around today

I continue to be dismayed


The girl across the street

Grew up

She drove a cool car

She went out


She got pregnant

She had a baby girl

Grandpa used to take

Her outside and walk with



Her little self

Just a toddler

Blond hair peeking out

A white starched bonnet


She was so sweet

I forever see her picture in my


A little girl walking with her grandpa


Between the two large fir trees

Framed by them


Flowers with arranged planting



Time stands still each time I see it

She grew too

She went to school

Her mother worked a bit


But then it went awry

Somehow it all fell down

She was seven when she



In her bed, in your locked room

At your mothers house

Across the street

She was lost

Then she was found

Like a sleeping angel

Blond hair

Cold body

Dead in her bed



Not by love

By a pillow

It was not real



I turned down our lane

Police were everywhere

Such a quiet place

The woods

The creek


The house across the street



A large garden of beautiful



One less

Two less

After you took her breath away

You stood on the track

Some distance away


You did not face the train

You stood with your back to the conductor

You chose to do this

You could not fight


You were ashamed for years

Of being an unwed mother

Having a bastard child

As always your mother introduced



We never knew

How the shame was poured upon you

How you struggled with the child’s


Drunken father


Suddenly trying to make her

A part of his life

How she pleaded not to go


What fears she had

What fears you had

We did not know


How you hung out in coffee


Bringing your child with

Hours on end in a shop

Coloring books and a laptop


One bagel you could afford, the other

They gave you for the little blondie

Your poetry

Your writing 


What your life was really like

How your mother would not, perhaps could not

Be left alone with your daughter

How you lived


You did not see anyway out

Yet if you did

Your shame

Kept you from it


So you practiced


And the little princess was

No more


We came to the wake.

I would not view the casket

The blond hair was visible from far

I did not need to die again


As I did when I heard

Your mother in pieces, regret, shame

You in shreds

Cried out from your slab in the morgue

I mourned her, you


The old village in the old country

The old ways

The tradition

The religion


A broken grandfather

Who cried for months

Who we hugged continually

Who worked so hard

Who said he did not know




 girl in bonnet



  Image from: tatteredandlostphotographs

Copyright 2010 SheilaTGTG55 

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ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh You honored her here. Beautifully.

I know this story, in a little different way, but the same story.
Wow! Sad, Sad, Sad. The things people do to each other. Sad. R-
Sheila, This was the first thing I read when I got in from work. Your words and form, so strong here. Compelling poetry of a horrifc situation. My mother used to tell a similiar story. She knew of a family whose child's neck was broken but they successfully hushed it and passed it off as an accident. Heinous crimes. Goes to show shame begets shame. What a tragedy.
walkingupslowly: Thank you. It is something which is raw still. We move on, but somehow they do not. I see them sometimes, things replay like a movie.

Dave: I know a word, here or there, her life might have been different.

Scarlett: I had to write it. So much talk on OS lately, this kept coming to mind. I know people have their individual stories, but this was and still is very very raw. I wanted the poem to stand on its own, without a preface or documentation. I did not want any more shame for anyone about it, but it was all very misunderstood at the time.
Me too.
I now a similar tale but this was written brilliantly.
Rated with hugs
frenetic, sad and too close to home. wonderfully written.
Has the quality of a folk song, Sheila. These awful things happen more than we realize.
So sad for no one to see when you cry out in pain. Poor babies, mother and child.
powerfully presented in clear chilling truthful terse God. Great work with an impossibly difficult subject! wow r
Linda: So sad that others know a similar story. We had no idea what had happened for days. Until the grandpa called. Thank you for the compliment.

Chuck: I tried to convey the feeling of being jostled by this quake. One reporter described our lane as bucolic. They wandered for days hoping for a bit of flesh to chew on. Greeted by the cameras at my door one day I said, "Do you even know what this feels like? Can you even understand what has happened here." Off the record I talked about the old country where they had come from, how the village mentality might have influenced this outcome, how it might have been infanticide. Nothing else made any sense to me. The camera man who was from a Latin country understood immediately. He tried to explain it to the middle aged white reporters. He was a young man probably no older than the girl who did this. I had first thought it was an unknown assailant, then that someone had pushed her onto the tracks. But no. It is an old wound brought
fresh . R
Lea: Well, maybe I will send it off to Nashville. There is a contest about now for song writers.

Lunchlady2: Yes, or the wrong people to see, who will not, should no, or cannot help. Her legacy of personality started when she was herself a child, her mother did not like her, according to her father. She preferred her son. She molded and shaped this incubating time bomb and taunted her for becoming pregnant. She had very poor self image as a result, came off kind of tough, but it was a lot of angst.

A Persistent muse: Thank you I have been searching for a way for sometime to say all this. I have a manuscript that I started too. But I was struck by how the word suicide kept showing up in the feed, and in the papers around here again. So I did it. As best I could to get it off me.
This is truly powerful.
Well structured, building all the way to the end. Sad and powerful.
Thanks for sharing the story so well

Jim K
you captured the sad.
Oh my God, Sheila ... a very sad and tragic truth but so beautifully and powerfully presented.

I've read over and over and will continue to just sit with this, and my own memories, for a while longer ...
Wow. Powerful. Beautiful. Unsettling.
Oh. A deep sigh for these lost lives. You wrote it so well._r
Very powerful. Want to re-read a few times.
Such heartbreak. Oh, how we humans hurt each other with words. I wish I could hug the grandfather.
Mypsyche: Thank you, yes, powerful.

sophieh: Thank you. There was so much sadness and misunderstanding, involving some cultural differences and people trying to sensationalize it all. It was destructive, like watching it over and over.

James: Thank you. Nothing so haunting as the death of a child.

Mimetalker: The sad is still here, but there has been a wedding of the son, two children born and their lives different, more connected to the community in a way. Big changes took place in the family itself.

Little Kate: Thank you Kate. I shed some of the shock after a time. But in a way it is so fresh. Especially when I look out and remember.

RARoberts: Yes, unsettling. It changed everything I knew.

Joan: Yes, the lives lost, the haunting nature of such a violent thing in such a peaceful place.

O'Really?: Thank you.

fernsey: Re-reading it helps me too. I see the pictures in my head with it though.

the ranting boomer: Yes, it is all in the words. How hurtful or uncivilized...the words.
"The horror, the horror."
My God, Sheila. You have made the horrific approachable. I will sleep so uneasy now. R.
What Sadness.
I would be embarrassed to tell you how long I sat here. This peek into your heart was beautiful.
Sometimes my Mind wanders to a beautiful memory. Flowers, honeybees, fragrance, a tiny insect under a garden magnifier, a beautiful countenance, a gesture with a beautiful smile, Oh, and distant far away, and then I'll awaken to this Place, and on and on.
Life can be a juggling act. Balanced? Beauty is always preferable. Many days I think quietly. Beauty. But, images of enormous sadness awaken me to thing this. What sadness, images flood my weary soul. Memories return without my invitation. Spontaneous. Being, in that emotionally, all I can say to myself is` Wow, AM I am bummed and hurting emotionally now. Enormously sad. Wow, AM I wishing WE mortal human beings peace. Purity. WOW WE'd Have a Life Licked If Images that we prefer to eradicate from 'our' Mind Were Washed Away. Sadness would never be. Beauty is all that we'd see. What Mind's Purity.
I Wish We People Could Think only upon the images that are Reminders of Good, and what is of Good Report, admirable, uplifting, edifying, kind, benevolent, eternal, and Love one another forever. Sadness is etched deeply as in written in the heart, which is where the 'seat' of emotions are stored. Sadness is sure in the lyrics I'm remembering. Sad Lyrics. Images are naturally evoked within all humans.
Youth does not last.
Of course, we grow older.
Life unfurls and blossoms wilt.
So, let's try to believe in beauty.
Images unfurl within our hearts.
Toss blueberries in some ones mouth.
Share the same peach and be juicy too.
Nibble on the same peach pit together.
The discussion was about a young woman.
The mother`Your daughter is so very sad.
She asked to speak to you in her bedroom.
Dad saw his daughter hanging from a rope.
He took a knife to cut her down from rope.
Sadness must have been within those eyes.
Written on a note tucked in her heart said`
Within my Life is beauty. I died from Love.
I don't remember the vocalist who san that.
I'll find out. I have no other detail. Beauty.
Thanks for taking my Mind way far away.
This was excruciating to read and visualize. Beautifully written, horribly wrong in it's ungodly act of pure evil.
Wow. This was really powerful and sparely written. I think this might be my favorite of your posts, Sheila.
Children, whichever the way they come into our lives, are blessings. It does not do to shame endlessly.

A very difficult read.
Scylla: I appreciate you so much and your visit here today.

Jon: Pain and goodness come in very often equal measures. I hope you slept well, I send you a reflection of yourself, which is goodness.

Art: You honor me with your words from the heart. I am comforted.

Cathy: Yes, you are right evil is very personal and it inflicts impersonally at times.

Linda: Thank you for that high compliment. I am touched.
Vanessa: Children are the innocent pawns in adult behavior, wanted or not, they are gifts to those who view them as such. To others, we cannot understand what their motivation is, but they destroy. Thanks for stopping by.
Rated, but nothing more to say.
Procopius: Thank you.
This was so sad. There are terrible, terrible things that happen to children everyday, all because of stupid beliefs!
Horrible story so beautifully told. You did honor her. Especially because you spoke for her.
scanner: I agree and sometimes I feel if we talk about these things, some people who might not otherwise understand or realize will come to know and behave differently. One can only hope.

Sally: Yes, her story is important, her side is important. There was so much to understand.
Powerful. Your line breaks are fascinating.
No words here.

Just sadness for what was found and what was lost.
How tragic how true.
You brought honor to all..your poem was wonderful!!
consonantandvowels: Thank you. I think this is the one thing that is really part of my style. I hear it this way in my head, so I write it this way. I have been doing this for years but because I did not conform to poetic formulas, had a hard time believing it was really any kind of poetry until OS and people responded to it how I felt it. Go figure. OS is a good place for writers.

Mission: Very sad, there are times when it will just not be avoided.

Gianna: It was so tragic, it was almost surreal. I never expected to know anything in my life like this.

Cindy: I have been a person who cannot really make a decision at times because I am constantly analyzing or over analyzing somethings. I am known for this in some circles, being definitive and very sure on some critical issues, but put me in a room with tons of research and no emotional baggage with something and I can spend hours, days in fact, pondering the correct course of action. I feel and sense the opposite points of view and I value what each brings forward in some cases, because it is a result of so many factors, in this case I do have an opinion, but I am so empathetic and sad that my opinion does not even matter. I did try to honor here. I am glad that was seen.
so sad and sensitive.
This poem is beautiful and haunting.
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