Poem of the Month: Isthmus


That last, fleet summer, they thumped down stairs

my son and his large friends, hale, merry, loud

about to leave home, disperse the cloud

of habits and rules, cautionary airs

eager to take on new scenes, fresh cares.

They moved as one, that jostling, joking crowd

electric as race horses, and as proud

cocky, charming peddlers, themselves for wares.

Sidelined, I stood unobserved on their beach

wanting to implore but keeping my place

longing to take the hand of each and each

draw them a moment from bright ocean’s brace

entreat someone: let them loiter in reach

let me wrap him dry once more, touch his face.


“Isthmus” was published in the journal, Third Wednesday, Ypsilanti, MI, 2009.


  1. a lovely poem – heartfelt emotion, beautifully crafted. I remember this moment in your lives because my close connection to Victor and the intensity of his experience.


  2. I really love this; I can really feel the pain of sadness of having to let your son go and be launched into the tumult of life…ouch. And yet accept you must..beautiful vivid imagery ‘electric as race horses’.


  3. This one always gets me. They do grow up and leave


  4. Change. After moving to Charleston, SC, for the 2nd time 3 years ago, my daughter and her family will be moving again. This time to Portland, ME. Much closer to Atlanta than Seattle & Italy. This leap to New England will be closer to home ground & a multitude of family & friends. I doubt if we’ll move with them. We shall, however, support Daughter while she remains where they are & help our grand daughters with remote leaning. This will be a major shift for me, from hermit to diving into their emotions lives speaking chaotically at each other, & no one listening. I hope that I have it in me to change for them & for myself.


  5. One grandson, Jake, launched last year and has been back on his campus since early July. He goes to the US Naval Academy. He’s had a fun summer after his two week quarantine ended. He’s on the offshore sailing team and spent hours practicing his skills. Great sport!!
    Another grandson, Andrew, moved into his dorm this morning. The photos of this newly launched young man look great. Nice room, good looking campus and UF is only 2 hours away! Drew is smart and will enjoy college. Studying chemical engineering and statistics because he “loves numbers”….!
    Why does all this happiness hurt my heart💕? I was old on Wednesday—75 now! Maybe my heart’s just getting so fragile, it’s breaking into pieces.


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