A Widow Instead of a Wife

On the jury, a once in a lifetime event –
after several days of deliberations
– listening & not much talking on my part,
we concluded with my saying
“It sounds like we’re all in agreement,
why don’t we take a vote?”
sentencing a gang member for murder
to life without parole
(out to collect money for electric)
taking the life of a young lover
on the night before exchanging vows
leaving a ‘widow’ to mourn
instead of wed

Growth & Decay

I have no one clear objective
to be found in the supernatural
You can see it in the headlines
‘No New News Today’

First impressions can last a lifetime
with energies all their own
sometimes so influential
they change the course of one’s life

In Catholic school I was teacher’s pet
attentive to my studies
but by 9th grade I chose to go public
and nurture personality further

Schoolwork was no longer a priority
but my grades got me into college
where I broadened my horizons
and explored the facts of life

I adhere to the rules of fair play
subtle in my own  way
neither pretentious nor over-elated
as a seeker of higher aims

Tightly Strung

Stripped of my innocence
I set out on my own
no sense of direction
no place to call home

Frightened by shadows
lost and alone
I wandered the avenues
of the city I’d known

Found a government job
and excelled in my skills
went from office to office
to pay the bills

Had to fight for my rights
psychologically challenged
until the time came around
demanding departure

Tested by chatter in my head
ideally I read and write
trying harder and harder
to better my fate