The Soul of this Place No Longer Resonates, a poem

Sometimes, a portrait speaks to me.  I find myself falling in and becoming part of the scene.  It is not that what I see, what I hear, or what I think is based on reality.  Instead, it is – what story does this image speak to me.  Sometimes I follow an easy path and other times I am lost within that image.  Either way, the story always starts out unknown to me and it gently unravels as I continue writing.  This poem should be part of my Portraits Series Poetry, but I just couldn’t help but share it now (instead of later).  I hope you enjoy.


I hear church bells in the distance,

it methodically counts the passing moments

one, two, three – are already spent.

It is a Monday afternoon and the sun is shining

I hear the water lapping against the leaning bridge

whose rotting beams has brought me here.

I choose to sit far away from the street,

and find shade beneath an old oak tree.

The bench I sit on, has been here longer than I

and the seat is worn, but comfortable.

Here is where I catch up with silence.

I wonder at the passing clouds, the call of seagulls overhead

I listen to the laughter of children play on the sidewalks

as school is finally dismissed.

I wonder at the passing of time

for I too, once played in these streets

calling out “Olley Olley Oxenfree!”

when the task of finding was difficult.

I remember Mr. Wagoner’s store on First Street

where we would buy candy – one penny each.

Sometimes you could find us laughing,

walking around town puffing candy cigarettes.

It was a gentle time, growing up

beneath the shade of a close knit community

where every house contained –

people that you knew, or thought you knew

and their watchful eye would keep you in place

somehow, there was just a comfort in being home.

I remember my college years, time spent in the big city

and I dreamt of my return to this comfortable haven.

I spent my time working hard, struggling to make ends meet

and though I was successful, it was nothing quite like home.

It was there that I met Mary, a dainty lass of twenty

with flowing, long red hair and a head full of dreams.

After college, we returned – Mary and I, and now, our son.

Mother and Father were delighted, for their home would not know silence

and we have raised our child upon these very streets.

People moved away and others moved in

and though the scenery didn’t change, the soul of this place vanished.

Neighbors never say hello and children no longer play along the pathways.

You still hear laughter at the end of school, but it’s just not the same,

for once the bell strikes four, the streets are empty once again.

Children are all inside, burdened heavy with books and lessons

or perhaps jettisoned to the nearby park for contact sports

there is that mad dash of – attaining something

and before their day is complete, perhaps there will be a round of

computer games, videos, or an active game of fighting over the television

there is no time to play.

Things have changed…

things have changed so much that the soul of this place no longer resonates

I feel the orphaned consequence of dissonance

and though sad, I smile to see my son

trotting across the bridge to greet me.

Another day is done,

and for the moment, I have forgotten my longing

but as soon as I look into his eyes, I cannot help but cry inside

for the childhood I cannot give him.

© Sumyanna 2017


8 Comments Add yours

  1. Absolutely amazing!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sumyanna says:

      Wow – thank you.


  2. leigha66 says:

    Times have sure changed for youth… wonderfully written.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. 7128788elf says:

    Beautiful, haunting, but sad, yes our way of life and loving communication is indeed dying rather rapidly, one can only muse as to why we have got into such a tight corner, and how we can all move forward from it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sumyanna says:

      Hopefully we will find out way through it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. 7128788elf says:

        Yes, one can but hope and pray that we can, and put a positive and loving message out there through our writing. Best wishes and blessings, Charles.


  4. Serendipitous Web Life. : ) says:

    Poignantly beautiful. : )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sumyanna says:

      Thank you – wow, some of that took me down memory lane 🙂 Not all of it is true, but some of it is.


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