Growing up in my home.

Secret Rituals

Their arguments always scared me
They composed a kind of weather
that had come to seem
natural, normal in our household.

I could almost predict the storms
and how they would end,
but this one was different.

This one was crazy,
this one had no words,
shouted or whispered
to clarify it.

There were no tears
or slamming doors.
This one was silent
and dead sober.

I'd stumbled upon a secret ritual
of marriage and hatred
No whisky to explain it,
only a shameful rotten craziness
at the heart of our home.
How I hated them both.

She had told him of her affair
so she could feel honest--if not pure.
She wanted to hurt him
for the weeks and months
she had spent alone.

For the career she'd forsaken
to traipse the country in tow of his.

For The Cause,
that was his highest love.

For the whisky,
that was his closest friend.

For everything I don't know about
and never will.

Poetry by Ashe The PoetBay support member heart!
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Written on 2014-12-11 at 14:30

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Lawrence Beck The PoetBay support member heart!
This is a really nice poem, Ashe. It's stark and painful, but well-written.

Ivan R
This poem is an excellent piece of work.
What conundrum the speechless battle between the grownups so often is, and what sadness that parents donĀ“t realize that the child still understands the greater part of that untold mystery. This poem is marvelous in its way of unfolding much of that mystery ...

I see that I perhaps wasn't very "eloquent" in my comment . . . I meant to say that unlike so many writing about such a sad and sensitive subject, this is eloquent and in a way that makes it even more moving.

Rarely does something like this lend itself to eloquence . . . perhaps it always takes a remove of some years and the experiences of our own life to begin to understand it, at least some of it, and to give it voice.

I'm reminded of Tolstoy's opening line of "Anna Karenina" -
"All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way."