Hers was the last tear
falling from her cheek.
A thousand others filled
a sea of regret and pride.
For he had died, after all,
for his country.
A soldier he, his dream to be,
lived out on a battlefield.
A skirmish never won,
he lived and died for fun.
For he had died, after all,
for his country.
–Victoria Emmons, 2017
death, Destiny, life, Love, Musings, Patriotism, poems, Poetry, Terrorism, War
death, Patriotism, war
Nov · 11
Music comforts, charms and fascinates us. A palace with a huge, gilded room dedicated to music can be most inspiring.
death, Fear, Hope, Loss, Music, Musings, poems, Poetry, Thoughts
death, Fear, life, music
Sep · 26
I feel the warmth of your arms surround me
as years wash away, a long moment of grief
expressed in a hug too tight for a child,
a man without a father.
History powerful enough to tear down
walls of time belies reason.
A sepia photograph reminds of
bygone youth, shared play,
picnics at the zoo.
Sadness and joy clash on this day,
memories well up in your eyes and mine.
Tales to tell, remembrances, laughter and love.
Shrimp, crayfish and oysters
on the table before us.
Thundering rain upon heavy limbs
laden with green resurrection ferns.
A damp night of conversation and thoughtful
stories, but no campfire.
Spring awaits summer, hot and sticky,
sweat follows the length of your temples,
beads on your forehead.
Love beats in your heart.
Family swells in your mind.
A homecoming of sorts, we gather to mourn,
remark the change in lines on our faces,
spill our absent lives into one another’s.
Four score years should not pass
before shared warmth.
Believing the other will always exist,
somewhere in the annals of our history,
part of the natural order of our universe,
a comfort zone to our souls,
does not make it so.
Create a pact, dear ones.
Share more of life in
years to come.
Let’s not wait for
the next family funeral.
—Victoria Emmons, May 2017
Aging, Cousins, death, Family, Father, Grief, Home, Loss, Love, Memories, Musings, Pain, Poetry, Relationships, Reunion
Cousins, death, family, love
May · 31
The invisible line is cast across the river,
across the canyon, or the ages, obstacles
that find us as we travel dusty roads, always
searching, forever unsure. Pleasure in
windblown branches hobbled against the slant
of a craggy mountain, predicted to lose,
yet they blossom, somehow gaining strength
from light and the occasional storm.
Rain is approaching current location
and is expected within thirty minutes.
The line reaches out, centuries compelled
to forge a lineage unbroken. The invisible line.
Our heritage. We cannot see them, nor they us.
Mere black and white images painted by the
hand of a craftsman or a Brownie Instamatic.
They smile or laugh, more often
furrow brows within the frames of their lives.
History recorded in a frown, perhaps too serious
the thought of the invisible line.
Rain is falling now.
The burden remains. Casting the line is all
too frightening, creates a link in a chain that
cannot be undone. Populate. Procreate. Pass.
The cycle begs for renewal. And so we perform.
In our innocence and duty, the people perform,
create the invisible line that stretches from
one generation to another. The line sends all
our oneness to the next and the next,
on down the line.
The wind blows harder.
Never an end of the line, just a passing
of the wonderment of life, love, creation,
knowledge, laughter, responsibility, inspiration,
thoughtfulness, caring, tolerance, joy, simplicity.
Never an end. Always a new beginning.
The invisible line is not broken, merely
reflected in the crystal blue eyes of a child,
the exploration of a scientific discovery,
the digital painting of a sorrowful face.
Black clouds ahead.
Cast your line. An ocean awaits. Sandy shores
reside amongst the clouds, no matter their color
or shape. The line must be cast. Too late for
indecision. Stretch out your heart to the next
in line. Leave your trace of glory to be retold
in story after story. The blessed line.
Follow it and find the softest space in Heaven,
find those who climbed in before you.
Rain clearing by tomorrow morning.
–Victoria Emmons, May 2017
for Uncle Jim
Age, Aging, Challenges, Children, death, Destiny, Family, Grief, life, Love, Loyalty, Mountains, Musings, Ocean, poems, Poetry, sand, Sea, Writing
death, family, grief, lineage, passing
May · 20
A gift of mud
From a dear friend
Turns my head
In a new direction
Not just any mud,
Of course, since
This mud traveled
Weighting down an
Already heavy suitcase
Of trinkets and souvenirs
This mud revered
By millions over time
Anecdote for pain
Soothing an ache or two
And now mine
To ease the hurt
Of an aging body
And cloudy mind
The mud draws me
Pulls me toward
The clear water
Over the edge
Like so many
Nights I remember
The sound of the flow
As it eased his pain
Warmth the only remedy
For his affliction
All these years
I could not go
Near the water
Or the memories
Of that huge tub
Filled with pain
Loneliness and sorrow
At night I hear
The faucet running still
As it was those dark
And deadly nights
Awakening me with
The reality of a cancer
Poisoning life as
We once knew it
The mud equals
Renewal and healing
Fifteen to twenty minutes
Is all it promises
Skin renewed, soft
Rinsed away in
I can do this
My aging flesh
Will accept the hot
Pool beneath me
No longer must I hide
From the bathtub of death
When life beckons
Me to play
The birth of
This renewal mud
The Dead Sea
—Victoria Emmons © 2015
Challenges, death, Destiny, Hope, illness, life, Loss, Love, Loyalty, Marriage, Mud, Musings, Nature, Pain, Persistence, poems, Poetry, Relationships, Sea, Thoughts, Time, Water, Writing
cancer, death, life, love, mourning, poems, renewal
Feb · 10
Vultures in the sky
Await the season of death
To prolong their lives
–Victoria Emmons, © 2013
I am the sole guest
At my dinner table
No one to please
Save my own palate
The hour is late
As work takes over
On this holiday week
With no one to share
A Roomful of Blues
Plays Solid Jam
Awakening my soul
Soul of another kind
I scour cookbooks
For fresh recipes
Savor Gouda and gherkins
With a vodka chase
My kitchen dance begins
10 o’clock piano jazz
And smooth lyrics
To hide my fears
Let me love you, baby
He repeats throughout
A tune that will fade
As love fades, too, after a while
Butter sizzles in the pan
Hot pools of taste
Wait for the main dish
Washed and patted dry
Flour encases the fillets
Protects them from harm
Wish it were so easy
To protect me, too
Wrapped in flour
Browned and moist
Seasoned well over time
Sole Meunière survives
–Victoria Emmons, Copyright 2014
Challenges, Hope, Loss, Love, Musings, Persistence, Poetry, Thoughts, Time, Writing
death, family, food, hope, life, loss, love, musings, singles, survival, thoughts
Jul · 22
Take it away
My every breath
Never to return
You gave me life
Those words you sent
In a tiny box
Magnified our love
We were sixteen
Or so it felt
For a while
The many years
More than minutes
–Victoria Emmons ©2011
Challenges, Family, Hope, Loss, Love, Musings, Poetry, Thoughts, Time, Writing
couples, death, life, loss, love, marriage, poetry, survival, thoughts, writing
Jul · 20
new light burns
last night’s rain
from the fence
once wet drops
turn to mist and
dissolve into morning
just as my old self
into a new life
by Victoria Emmons, 2010
from “Word Movers”, An Anthology of Creative Writings by Seniors, City of Oakland, 2014
Age, Challenges, Family, Hope, Loss, Love, Musings, Poetry, Thoughts, Time, Writing
death, loss, love, poems, poetry, thoughts, writing
Jun · 28
Rage washes over me
Like the river on the rocks In a Montana woodside walk Through the chapters of my life
A wistful rage if there is one
This deep acceptance of what is And not what I dream it to be In my world of friendship and love
Clouds produce tears on my head
Just as I drop tears of regret Droplets of remorse and sorrow Of what would never be, nor should
My brain will not think otherwise
As the logical mind speaks truth Yet my heart plays with fancy Until it finally cracks in two
So drawn to he who can
Charm the world and me Into believing him and his lies Loving each moment of untruth
Like a snake charmer, he curses
Those who fall into his slithering trap Never to escape the dread Pain and horror of it all
He lies again and again while smiling
Believers follow his lead to nowhere Praise and adore him, laugh forever At his brilliance and polish
Rage lies deep within, seething
Flooding every vessel Until a poison develops Moving like fire to my head
Tears and sweat dance cheek to cheek
Seeking solace as they pool in my palm The sultry heat of summer is Unbearable for this new reality
Uncertainty is my certain future
A crown of Never Ever Land To place upon my dripping brow And hide all the rage inside
–Victoria Emmons Montana, 2014
Challenges, Loss, Love, Musings, Poetry, Thoughts, Writing
death, Fear, love, poetry, thoughts, writing
Jun · 21