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Sleep well my child


Lake
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Sleep well my child

--A lament for a lost child in Sichuan earthquake

 

No, you were not like this before – lying there, breathless.

Never! Your shirt is wrinkled with dirt, your tangled hair

covering a smeared face that wears a painful frown.

A girl amiable to everyone in this little town,

now has fallen asleep too early too soon, even without

giving me a good-night hug, without, as usual, waiting

for me to tuck you up. I’ll not wake you up, my child. But

gently I’ll wash your face with my tears, comb your hair

into a smooth ponytail and set the alarm clock for the dawn .

What’s in your dream? Homework? House chores?

Put them all aside for now because you are so tired.

Sleep well my child; sleep well in my arms…

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Aleksandra

What a touching piece Lake. It's so sad all of that what happened in China. This Sichuan earthquake what happened on 12 May took many lives and that is so sad. I was watching on TV some parts of that. Here we started with humanitarian help. I am planing to help with something like a lots of people. All of these sad helpless people needs now everything, food, clothes, medicines, so all world should help.

Anyway, you expressed in this poem a part of that huge sadness. A lot of people are sharing same destiny right now. This is expressed perfectly but nothing can help when we see all those lost child's lives.

 

This poem broke my heart.

 

My deep compassion Lake for this not happy event for Chinese people.

 

God help them.

 

Aleksandra

The poet is a liar who always speaks the truth - Jean Cocteau

History of Macedonia

 

 

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Hi Lake,

 

This somber, occasional poem soberly adds a human face to this devastating natural disaster. I think one of the reasons is because of the line lengths, and because the poem itself is just the right length -- not too short and not too long.

 

Also, you made me, as a reader, feel the impact --

 

A girl amiable to everyone in this little town,

now has fallen asleep too early too soon ...

 

What’s in your dream? Homework? House chores?

Put them all aside for now because you are so tired ....

 

The sleep metaphor is very effective. You carry it through from beginning to end very well.

 

Tony

Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

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goldenlangur

Hi Lake,

 

What a timely and moving poem! That you use the voice of a parent, one imagines a heartbroken mother, makes it immensely poignant and powerful:

 

Lake wrote:

--- I’ll not wake you up, my child. But

gently I’ll wash your face with my tears, comb your hair

into a smooth ponytail and set the alarm clock for the dawn .

What’s in your dream? Homework? House chores?

Put them all aside for now because you are so tired.

Sleep well my child; sleep well in my arms…

 

The pain, loss, anxiety and misery of those who were made homeless, sundered from parents,children, siblings and friends in this devastating earthquake, make for such tragedy. In our local monastery, we offered prayers for the victims of this earthquake. Your poem is a touching tribute to a child victim, so many must have succumbed to their injuries. You have given voice to a parent's inexpressible sorrow and loss.

 

goldenlangur

goldenlangur

 

 

Even a single enemy is too many and a thousand friends too few - Bhutanese saying.

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Hi Lake, Nothing can be more heartbreaking than the loss of a child. You memorialize all of the child victims of this devastating quake and the parents that mourn them in this one small girl child who sleeps too early. Sadness is too shallow a word for this tragedy. The ponytail got me.

 

~~Tink

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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Lake, what a moving piece that captures an aspect of the China tragedy. Your long lines, I felt, were appropriate with the reverie of a parent holding his/her dead child.

"Words are not things, and yet they are not non-things either." - Ann Lauterbach

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Thanks everyone for your help and sympathy.

 

Aleksandra, thank you for your humanitarian help which is very much needed.

 

Tony, I'm glad you think the length of the poem works and you caught the metaphor of sleep.

 

goldenlangur, thanks for your sincere prayers. Any form of help is greatly appreciated.

 

Tinker, you are so right saying 'Sadness is too shallow a word for this tragedy.' I described this feeling in my other poem. Glad to know 'ponytail' touched you.

 

JoelJosol, thanks again for your poem to the earthquake victims. You again confirmed the right length of the lines. Thank you.

 

I know it is hard to crit on the poem with such content, but still I am open to any suggestions. You all know me. Yes?

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Larsen M. Callirhoe

hi lake, icon_biggrin.png

 

very touching tribute due tio unfortunate circumstances in china because of the quake.

 

larsen

Larsen M. Callirhoe

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Frank E Gibbard

One in so many tragedies lately you depict very movingly Lake. I do not want to be picky the overall sweep and involvement of the read is so effective but did I sense a tense anomoly in the first line, would it not be "were like this before." Sorry it's a tiny point. You may not see it the same. Good timely and sympathetic piece though Lake.

Frank

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Frank E Gibbard wrote:

 

but did I sense a tense anomoly in the first line, would it not be "were like this before." Sorry it's a tiny point. You may not see it the same.

Frank

 

Thanks Frank for pointing this out. Actually, I was struggling with the verb tense while writing this poem. I knew there was something not quite right. Thanks again for the confirmation.

 

Lake

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Only a mother could write this one, and that's all there is to it.

It makes me wonder about my mom....and if she thought such things....

I sense the sacredness of life for sure in this poem.

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A girl amiable to everyone in this little town,

now has fallen asleep too early too soon, even without

giving me a good-night hug, without, as usual, waiting

for me to tuck you up.

 

an impact begins in my eyes, the sentence is not in highly embelishmented but something it says strick my thoughts and reminds me of a cute little child who has decent dreams to live. World is not a good place for all.

 

 

 

I’ll not wake you up, my child. But

gently I’ll wash your face with my tears, comb your hair

into a smooth ponytail and set the alarm clock for the dawn .

 

the melody is in every words which has been a crated by a mother who is smiling with tears remembering her child is alive.

 

How emotional picture you have created.....just a person of great mind can do this.....but my eyes just got wet....

 

hat off to you, DUDE

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