Turquoise Women

From a long line of turquoise loving women,
fiery, like opals of Mexico.
Unpolished, our souls, semi-precious,
full of narratives, to be recorded.

Red heads, educated, full of extremes and suicides,
tales of unrequited love filled my young head
igniting the story teller in me, where to start?
Where to stop? Do men get writ in?

What of the men? Grave diggers and thieves,
fed Thanksgiving dinner to the dogs to punish
mother for working that day, she didn’t like turkey,
there was never another holiday.

And what of the women that look like me, in
history, the ones I never met but cannot forget –
unphotographed, crowding my dreams, screaming
about: alcoholics, gamblers and philanderers,

a group of phenomenal women who loved turquoise,
world – I ask, ‘are you ready for the fiery souls of Mexico?’

-L.J. Lenehan-

turquoise

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My Beautiful Boy

On a day in August (forget what year now) – 
you were so new, 
so beautiful.

I promised, I would always be there, for you
I dreamt of reading Dickinson, just you and me 
on an itchy blanket, in the shade, under a tree.

I knew you needed a big name – 
to match the mark you would make on the world.
I promised you the life of an artist – 

the dreamers, the laughers, the lovers,
the reminders that life is for creating.
That morning I packed you up – 

Just me and you, walked to the bus stop 
In one hundred and twenty degree heat
paid eighty cents, to meet a girl – 

I’m sure was an angel, she said, 
‘spread your wings and fly’ I laughed
but whispered it in your sleeping ear.

Determined to teach you kindness,
I thought a good heart was better than any doctor’s degree
I was young, I didn’t know the life of an artist –

Could be hardship full of mixed emotions
about a world that could be, should be, better.
Brought you home – I stayed up all night, admiring you.

Now you are bigger than me, you have your own dreams,
I pray every night they come true, for you – 
my beautiful little boy, I believe in you…

-L.J. Lenehan-

dreams

My Darling Daughter – I Am Lead By You

Anticipating you, I planned our journey:
All we would do, all I would teach you,
Inwardly I prepared to surrender to you,
You arrived, my life seismically shifted
And you became my teacher:

And I your willing pupil – your mother:

You taught me unconditional love the moment we met,
You taught me I was selfish, because now I am selfless,
You taught me true heartbreak – I feel your every tear,
You taught me guidance does not mean being right,
You taught me building memories is in the simplicity of the day,

My daughter, my darling, my pride and joy –
how can I ever thank you for showing me the way?

-L.J. Lenehan-

My Darling Daughter

 

This beautiful painting by:http://neitin.deviantart.com/art/unconditional-love-197921606

My big empty heart,
marketed as a fool,
my life lost in despair.
I hoped for something different
to my mothers.

After years went by, I realised:
I have to be the change
I want to see in the world.
Compassion in my soul
got one more chance.

It has been a struggle,
lost my money,
lost my mind,
turned to alcohol,
that did not go well.

But, I found my key,
to life – stay soft,
in my heart, like a small child,
in awe of beauty, mystery, and
transform this story into a great novel.

– L.J. Lenehan –

The photo was captured by Gone-Hiking Photography:https://www.facebook.com/NatureThroughTheLens

I Love You, Honey

Rocking in a spacious corner,
blankly repeating,
I love you, honey.

He left,
he took the girls,
he did not visit.

Red brick walls,
two windows,
I love you, honey.

He moved on,
leaving me rocking,
locked in the memories:

of birthday cakes,
pine trees at Christmas,
lazy Sunday days.

Reverberating
in the empty room,
I love you, honey.

Perplexed by time passed,
he told the girls, I died,
they love another mother.

I love you, honey, echoes,
in my vacant life,
I wish, he had loved me too.

– L.J. Lenehan –

Laywoman

                                                     Scrubbing my house for a third time today
I think to myself, is there poetry in this?
Frustrated, at the source of this mess,
I wonder if my cleaning spray contains iambic pentameter.

I would not hear it anyway,
I’m tone deaf.

Anger in my soul I consider a place with no:
working, rushing, planning, cleaning
only the source of words to mull over.
Oscar Wilde’s beautiful Dorian Grey comes to mind, all grace,
his horror of a face locked away behind mortar
until the day his corpse mirrored his soul.

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers lyric
‘long after the fun of living is done’ comes to mind,
full of plans that year, I was graduating,
back when life excited me,
distinctly, I remember not understanding that line
And was convinced I never would.

I identify with Nathaniel Hawthorn’s Hester Prynne
young mothers unaware of troubles in store
old mothers keep quiet to protect the legacy.
Epiphany:
lines engraved on a women’s face
are the cost of membership.

I wish my days were spent in University with ghosts of:
Edgar Allen Po, Dickinson, Joyce, Keats, Ginsberg and Kerouac.
Learning poetry
in its dissected form
but no time for that
dust mites are calling.

– L.J. Lenehan –

Ode To Gaelic 4 Mothers & Others

Since 1890, Ireland’s Gaelic mother has been supporting football,
Eagerly anticipating, her offspring’s contribution in Spring’s competition,
Origin of sport, boasts from the sideline, ‘my lad is first port of call!’
19th century Gaelic mother’s never thought Gaelic Games would be permissioned.

Mothers shed tears in defeat but also delight, when their boys brought home silver,
Another chance for pride started in 1970s, when the Ladies got playing,
Every mother, wanted GAA to teach their teenage athlete how to be a leader,
Busy washing contents of gear bags, chauffeuring matches, she never noticed her hair greying.

But now Gaelic mothers are in the 21st century, role of supporter has metamorphosed to player,
Taking time to display their talents as forwards, backs, midfielders, goalkeepers and substitutes,
Contemporary Gaelic mothers brought in a few others, for a bit of craic over the summer,
Wearing hearts on their boots, Gaelic mothers show off knowledge of their traditional roots.

In thirty two counties, mothers have burst on to Gaelic football fields with love,
Of the sport they created over a century ago…

– L.J. Lenehan –

Personalised Father’s Day Poem

I was asked to write a poem for the father of a beautiful one year old by his mother so that she could make him a special card. This is the poem:

 

A year ago, I was a newborn;

You promised, to help me grow to a woman.

I promise, that if you really try;

I will always meet you half way.

Treat me affectionately;

And I will always run to you,

Even when your arms are empty.

The news today is that even on Father’s Day;

You are my gift – Daddy.

 

– L.J. Lenehan –

Inheritance betrayed by poverty;
Children abandoned,
To plant seeds for a new way.

Memories unspoken;
Photographs a token,
Price of a life more penchant.

Tidiness keeps the house;
From reminding,
Appearances protected.

Children are growing;
No love from the home,
Alone with their stains.

Trials, tribulations and joys;
Remain unknown.

– L.J. Lenehan –

Protecting descendants –

Nourishing children.

Depicted as virgins, whores and centrefolds –

Lady Madonna, Virgin Mary, Mother Teresa,

You’ve got nothing on us.

Venus unites –

The banshee; sings for equality.

Adam gave his rib –

But Eve gave her baby.

Female warriors of eternity.

Striving for private time;

Poems created at dinner,

Books behind the mountain of ironing,

Bandaging knees while seeking to be cultured.

Strip off the titles and learn our names.

Wishing for Prince Charming –

Only to find we are the Queens of the Castle.

Depended on –

Uniquely needed; to secure,

The human legacy.

– L.J. Lenehan –