The Windows of My Soul: I Have Learned (#31), Do You Know? (#32), A Little Love (#33)

These three poems go together, not just in time, but in subject. I don’t know the exact timing of events, but I know it was around this time that Brenda discovered her husband had raped their oldest daughter. We saw signs of his abuse in some of her prior poems. The next few years of her life were very turbulent. It’s hard for me to write all the things I know about, and I’m sure there are things I don’t know about as well.

Let’s just go with the poetry for now.

I Have Learned (#31)
© Brenda

How do we spell my name these days? 
     We spell it F-O-O-L. 
         Do we not?

I have learned something of great value 
     Contrary to my open and honest soul 
          I have learned ~ I can hate.
I have tied away in a corner of my heart 
     All my happiness and love 
          Maybe they will die.

And for the first time in my life 
     The bitterness is so very great 
          I cannot even cry.

How do we spell my name these days? 
     We spell it F-O-O-L. 
          Do we not?

October 21, 1971


Do You Know? (#32)
© Brenda

Do you know
What you have asked of me
Do you know

To take up all the good in me
The beautiful, the kind
My tenderness and compassion
The quiet of my mind

Trade them in on furs and jewels
Gifts given, I suppose, without malice
Things offered in atonement
But your fists are hard, your mind callous.

Take my love and dirty it
Hurt me in our marriage bed
Wring out the tears, forevermore
My heart is made of lead.

Hide the hurt, shelve the love
Be courteous and cool
You’ll never understand ~ I’d rather
Have your love, if you were not so cruel.

Do you know?

October 28, 1971


A Little Love (#33)
© Brenda

Why have you left me here alone
Why take away my light
Block out my mind
Wash out my soul
Leave me closed up tight?

A little love, a little light
A touch, a word, a song
And I would jump
To dance this time
Right a grievous wrong.

Don’t leave me here with nothing
I cannot live like this
I have nothing
Left to me
No memories to miss.

October 28, 1971

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