Friday, February 01, 2019

Miracle Story Poems

This month I am writing with my Poetry Sisters. We are all writing prose poems in the style of Marilyn Nelson’s “Minor Miracle,” about a small, miraculous thing you have seen or know. Click the link in the poem's title to read Nelson's poem so you know where we are headed. The Poetry Sisters have been writing together for over ten years now, which is hard to believe. This year we are excited to be joined by Rebecca Holmes, starting next month.

What I love most about Marilyn Nelson's poem is the exquisite details in her setting. You can just feel yourself on that bike ride through the countryside, and hear the dialog rip. Also, of course, the amazing turn as the miracle is revealed at the very end. I have been racking my brain for an experience of a small miracle that would fit in a poem. I can think of so many miracles, as God is so good. But they are not small. Maybe none are, right?

So anyway, we got a kitten just after Christmas this year. Talk about small, this cat's tiny. And full of zip. The more I thought about him, the more miracle I saw. It seemed the Spirit was showing me a miracle to write about and share. Here's what I got:

Talk About Minor Miracle

Which reminds me of another bit of fluff
that saved us. When the littlest kitten
skittered into our house, it was a house of broken
hearts, wrung out, stretched thin fears, and
no more family dinners. We’d got to when no one
could stand to sit down together
in case tears choked or fists flew.

After losing so much, there was plenty of space
for a tiny flutter of pin prick, skinny boned,
all sass curiosity that could dash up and
down silly with wide eyed jade gaze. Hungry. Bold
enough and fool enough to catch any dangling
loose end; forgotten strings, crumpled receipts,
dust bunnies or tumbled scraps left too long
for want of care, want of will. We’d lost a child.
Lost a brother. Lost.

“Where’s the kitten?” The youngest son would say,
tipping his head around my door; come out of his cave,
from out the silence around the screen glow. He’d scoop
up kitten from amongst my quilts, pretending
to toss him over. But really, snuggling
that beating heart. The way a teenage
boy grabs a hug, sliding sideways as if.
The wonder of how a curl of fur
fits in a hoodie pocket, finds a warm lap,
accepts kisses. All start and go and what? Eager
to trouble the waters.
-Andromeda Jazmon

Please go visit the blogs of my Poetry Sisters to read their poems, 

Also, please visit the Poetry
Friday Round up at Tabitha Yeatts' blog The Opposite of Indifference. Happy Friday!


Sara said...

There is an ENORMOUS amount of love and detail in this poem, and I adore it. It's like your words are tiny claws, making us pay attention, to both the pain and the joy.

Tabatha said...

There are no minor miracles, are there? Your poem is wonderful. Love that imagery of the tiny flutter of cat, and the sliding sideways hug-acceptance, and how troubling the waters can actually smooth them.

patfarnelli said...

I love this so much. This kitten is the son of my stray/foundling cat Clover. I am so happy he has found this home with a family I love. I hope he uses all his healing and restorative powers there.

tanita✿davis said...

A tiny flutter of pinprick is my FAVORITE phrase to describe a cat of all time. So lovely.

laurasalas said...

Andi, your poem brings me right into your home, being mended in tiny ways by this little spitfire! " After losing so much, there was plenty of space
for a tiny flutter of pin prick, skinny boned,
all sass curiosity that could dash up and
down silly with wide eyed jade gaze. "
I was teary-eyed but smiling all through your poem, but those lines especially made me nod and bob and snuffle. Love.

Tara Smith said...

Your little, furry miracle is a healing miracle - loved the way you described your son's transformation, too. That kitten is a blessing indeed.

Tricia said...

I mentioned on Facebook how much I adored this poem. It is bittersweet, funny, and heartbreaking. On a second read, these lines strikes me:
The way a teenage
boy grabs a hug, sliding sideways as if.
Yup, I know that well. You've chosen just the write words to convey the details of your poem. Thanks for sharing this lovely bit of heartache and hope.

jama said...

Love this, Andi!! Every bit of it.

Mary Lee said...

I love the photos and the glimpses in your poem of all the ways this little bit of spit and vinegar is helping your family to heal! No minor miracles, indeed!

Linda B said...

Plenty of space open, needing to be filled & you've shown us how that (as Laura quotes, too) "tiny flutter of pin prick, skinny boned/all sass curiosity that could dash up and/down silly", yes, helping by being itself, right? Beautifully shown little miracle, Andi!