Poetry

Picking Petals

By 14th April 2009December 9th, 2019No Comments

Picking Petals

The petals vulnerable and delicate were crushed with water droplets,
They were battered by the wind and the rain, interminably damaged: dead,
Those petals are my son: the wind and water, the war,
The constant deep despair which my mind keeps me in custody since his loss,
The pleading with oneself to be set free from the horrific memory,
The vivid images of murder and deceit that flow through my disturbed mind are horrific,
Things have never been seen like this before, through my own two eyes,
The world so distorted and dark,
I have always known the world to be a happy place; my son’s joyous laughter, his youthful singing that danced down my tunnelled ear, confirmed this,
I am a brave woman, so it surprises me slightly when I can no longer continue this charade, his death too much to bear,
Death takes when it is time; guns steal when it is not,
My life now not diluted by love, but a concentrate of pure hatred, repulsion towards the world, is now crippled: I let him go; he never returned,
I did not know, how could I have known, I was not told of the horrors, he always wrote with such enthusiasm,
How could I have known?
No longer shall I only live for my neighbours, smiling when their sons’ telegrams reach home,
They will soon fall in front of me, like I did to them, pleading and begging for reassurance that life’s cruel game hasn’t picked them as its target,
Eventually they get dealt the same fate as mine: their babies dead,
How can I just sit here and let this go on, yet I am a woman, in this society, how can I not,
Everyone has a right to life, and everyone has the right to take theirs, but not others’,
I am grossly repulsed, dampened with my tears, but I refuse to just sit here and let this go on,
My son: my petal: my child: my baby: gone,
Her son: her petal: her child: her baby: gone,
Her husband: her petal: her love: her protector: gone: picked,
All consumed by a bullet,
I now know what to do, having questioned this life: its meaning,
I will not sit here and do nothing, I will help,
I will try and make a difference, like my son,
I will fight, fight for the fighting to be over,
I will spread this message: War is not a game which naive young soldiers; boys thought it was at first,
For I wish everyone to hear this; I found out too late,
My son: my life: my petal, was taken,
Taken by a sharp crisp autumn leaf that was lost in a gust,
Taken by the men deluded with power; men who ordered me to let him go.

Julia Whitehouse

Author Julia Whitehouse

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