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Poem: Mother

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Posted with permission.

As I prepare to give my mom her 7 year sobriety cake on Tuesday evening, I wanted to share one of my most personal poems. I asked my mom if I could share the poem I wrote her after her first year when she was presented with her medallion and she said yes.

Mother

As a little boy you held my hand

You protected me fiercely

You took a stand

As a sensitive child you wiped my face

From the tears of discrimination

That my spirit couldn’t face

You held me up for the world to see

Loving me as I was

You saw the beauty in me

Over the years, the spirit became poisoned

By the drink of choice

Despite the warning voices

My child inside wanted to curl up and die

As any evening with the drink

would be soon be filled with lies

I let down my mom

What a terrible son

Could you not see it coming?

Was the rant I kept running.

Not from a judgmental son

But from a place of missing my mom

As time whispered by

the tears wept dry

until the moment in time

when you were all alone

Bleeding, hurting, dying

Maybe not this time

The fall on your head

Was a gift you said

As you are standing here today with your cake, all but alone

It has finally occurred to me

My mom has come home

Carl Meadows

February 3, 2009

Poem: If tomorrow didn’t come

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If tomorrow didn’t come

Today’s a day like any day

Did I walk past a bird and forget to notice its song

Did I worry about something meaningless that’s faded away, and now gone

Did I forget to let my parents know

I love them more now, than ever before

Did I forget to tell my lover “I love you”

before I closed the door

Did I forget to tell my sisters how much they mean to me

All our childhood memories

That created the man I became to be

Did I forget to tell grandma how much she meant

Was it too late when I came through the door, to see her time clock was spent

What if tomorrow didn’t arrive

Would I have spent all my “I love you’s”

Or have a stockpile inside

Every second, of every day this story plays out

Have you expressed your love or sadly held out

If tomorrow didn’t come, what would you do?

Do it today, as the hourglass may be staring at you

Carl Meadows

September 26, 2012

Poem: They came in the night

In 2010 my husband and I, took our 3 nieces to Berlin and visited Sachsenhausen death camp where over 6000 Gays were killed. Under article 175 of the penal code they were arrested by the SS. The irony, is the niece that grabbed my hand and said; “uncle it will be ok” while I was sobbing, came out of the closet as lesbian years later. I will never forget.

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They came in the night

As I walked thought the gates of this horrible place

Wondering how many like me had marched, on their untimely fait

As the SS came, sweeping homes in the night

To take gays away to an unknown site

A place far away, so cold and grey

When lovers are separated so quickly, what could they say?

Could love be such a crime that you would murder for the third Reich?

As hands crossed hands, and eyes met eyes

Station Z became the final stop for those who refused to lie

As my feet walked along the camp of others destiny

How many before me had given up their dreams of hope and liberty

Sitting night by night, day by day

Listing to the screams and the tears of other gays

Do I run far away, or be shot while I stay

Do I hang by my wrist or die in the clay,

The brickyards are harsh and three months is the promise

But the lie they don’t tell, is that it ends in blood, bullets and darkness

The loneliness would be worse than the branding

The heartache would kill you more than anything I could imagine

As I walked through the gates and saw the memorial plaque,

It was hard to walk on, without turning my back

the Homosexual spirits of Sachsenhausen continue to endeavor

With my promise secured to forget, but never

as I walked past the gates of this horrible place

their voices must live on today and forever,

as liberty for them came all but too late

Carl Meadows Jr,

September 12, 2010

Poem: Loner

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Loner

I can only see you when you are not there

I listen through the ear of whispers

Noticing my existence, was about who I wasn’t

I wasn’t like the other boys, I wasn’t focused, I wasn’t welcome, I wasn’t good enough to fit in

I was followed, silently as if there was something to emerge, unbeknownst to I

As if walking through a field of land mines, others wait to see what happens as an experiment of courage or naivety

Ideas and vision create sparks of resistance

Internal voices constantly doubting significance

The polarity of dynamic opposition; the place where only the strongest survive

My armour fitted and secure

Vulnerabilities are known to very few, only those who could bring me down crashing to my knees

As if intentionally giving them a key to my demise; the poison to be given on the eve of my success; no abort plan in place

Ideas to be left behind, after the shell will be long gone

As I walk toward this unknown place, I pick up bird feathers, knowing others have come before me

As I look behind, I see no one in sight, yet I hear crowds of laughter

I ache with fear, as neither direction is a place I know

I take my first step; the sinking sand beneath my feet startles me

Something is calling me forward, like an invisible rope tugging

My heart wants to belong to the laughter but there is something stronger,

as there always has been

I stand alone, not lonely; a loner

Carl Meadows

January 2, 2015

Poem: Stepping into me

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Stepping into me

I wonder who I’d be if I stepped into me

Would I watch the setting sun, close my eyes and smell the sea

Who would I be, if I set my worries free?

Throw them up to the air for others to see

What would I do if I stepped into you?

Have a conversation; one, maybe two?

What would I do, if I just made the time?

Embrace my one life or crumble and die?

What would it look like, if I lived life for me?

Would the baggage I’ve carried finally drop free?

What would integrity look like, if it were something to watch?

Would I fly like a kite, or sting like a wasp?

What if my nectar had everything to give?

Nourish a poet, a writer, a friend?

Walking away from authenticity and trust,

Is like a masterpiece sculpture waiting to rust

What if I am, what I needed to be?

Would you comfort my heart, when my soul is set free?

What would I do to get closer to you?

Tell others my stories, or keep them for you

What could I do to be closer to me?

Will my life be a lie, or will I set myself free?

What would courage look like if I gave it a face?

Would it be covered with smiles, laughter or grace?

Would it climb a big mountain and scream from the top?

That I’ve finally arrived, remembering those who I lost

Rejections burn, leaves a visible scar

But life without truth, is death to your heart

What would I do if I stepped into you?

Give you your freedom, or put you in a zoo?

Will I lie dying, having lived another persons dream?

Or surrounded by those who have always loved me, for me?

As I look in your eyes, I finally can see

A lifetime of dreams, as you stepped into me

Carl Meadows

January 15, 2011

Poem: Insignificant

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Insignificant

As I walked towards what I thought was a dry lake bed, I froze as I dropped the glass

The seconds were counted by the beat of my heart, the crash startled the birds, the wind from their wings was felt on my tender skin

I stood frozen in two worlds; in front of a lake that once was, the coolness of the moisture seeping underneath my parched feet and the quench of thirst

Each step would require grief to consume me. The shards of glass would reignite memories of you, as I walked towards the grail in search of something greater than me

As I turned away, I lifted my arm to protect me from your blinding light

My insignificance became daunting; I closed my eyes and hoped for a moment of being wanted

Did I drink the poison or was it always there; the broken glass, the drought, the malaise

As I lifted myself off of what used to be an oasis, now stood as a wasteland

As I opened my eyes, you were holding me, touching me, and with the most gentle strokes you were pulling the glass from by feet

You leaned over and whispered what sounded like a melody, as you told me you would be there until every wound was healed

I knew then, you would be there forever

Carl Meadows

December 23, 2014

Poem: Cinderella Man

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Cinderella Man

As I looked into your icy blue eyes, your instructions were abundantly clear

As you touched my skin and whispered the words; I knew it was for a day and not for years

As you turned around and walked away, you gave me a smirk that etched in my brain

And then there was me standing, wondering, dreaming

I pushed the doors with all my might, and the vision of elation sat in front of me like a golden temple

With my external armour and the whispers of possibility, I emerged alone

My beauty was currency, my charm was wealth, and my fragrance had the flowers bend their ways to reach me

The clock tower began to sway and the dial went into slow motion as I could see what no one else could; my external facade was about to crumble

The prince didn’t have time to say goodbye and my run through the moonlit Forest became haunting, as each branch and thorn tore my skin, reminding me of who I wasn’t

The blood dripped from my hands, as I reached my destiny and stained the doors with my vulnerability

I pushed as hard as I could only to see you again

Your blue eyes reflected what was there all along; a prince who had always known the truth

Carl Meadows
December 21, 2014

Sent from my iPod

Poem: The Men of Los Lomas

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This poem doesn’t need any intro, only that it captures the experience of our human life when moments emerge and we realize beauty and passion is abundant and comes when we least expect it.

The Men of Los Lomas

Longing for adventure, watching for signs

The invitation appeared as an oasis in the parched heat

Lust covered me with an insatiable hunger

Shimmering sunlight on moist skin;

Masculinity and torsos as beautiful as mahogany trees

Ocean spray sobering my memory of young love; childhood spirit awaken

Did my beauty emerge long enough to remember it?

Did I find the men of Los Lomas or did they find me?

Missing many words, finding language in sensuality

Was it the beginning or the end?

Photographs undeveloped; pictures only appear in my dreams

My heart ached to say good-bye; the infamous kiss

The men of Los Lomas;

the men or the metaphor, permanently etched in my heart forever

Carl Meadows

January 12, 2013