Waiting for and Writing With Olivia

Seeing my first granddaughter Olivia became a life-giving incentive for me to keep the faith through my cancer journey. She was born mid-country away, mid-way through my treatments. But the first time I saw her in the flesh—she was four months old—I fell in love. She felt like a miracle. To now hold her in my arms, my ordeal behind me, felt like a miracle too.

Visiting her in Texas this past spring—nearly eleven years after that initial embrace, I learned that she had started writing “poems” about her life, her thoughts, her hopes. She took out her notebook as I lay across her bed, listening as she read them to me. Who knew we would share this healing art?

I want to share one of her poems here, and follow it with one I wrote after our visit.

“Dawn” by Olivia Gomez

Wonder colors are tossed around, they make a piece of art I am glad I can see every morning. I wonder how heaven makes the colors so bright and elegant and magical with a hint of spice in the mix? Wonderful artwork made by the mighty hands of our master so elegant and peaceful it’s a wonder we can even express the beauty we see. It’s sad how most of our world does not see it as blessing. Just colors, he says, but does he not know that it’s our luck to see, or is he blinded by his phone? We have grace, we have peace, our colors are OUR color to have to love to make into our own little flower. Do you not see yourself in those colors? Do you not? Well, look closer, harder; look for the beauty of yourself you see in the wonderful sky that belongs to YOU, that belongs to us. Watch the colors shine like you, little flower in my garden.

Olivia, Nearly Eleven, and Me

We take off together
me pedaling scooter, she on bike
hardly a match;
she allows at the corners
sixty some years to catch up
finally arrive
at a place of beauty
her eyes discovered before me

My heart gets taught—
pink wildflowers carry wishes
sung out loud if they come true;
dragonflies with chocolate stripes
circle off, fly back
spilling secrets at your feet;
unicorns no doubt shower
atop fountains
spraying rainbows
most days to no one watching

but here we are
weeks before eleven
sitting silently
on the pond ledge
dangling our legs
how a moment
could ever be better
than this

June, 2018

1 Comment. Leave new

  • Nancy Furnas

    Wow. Olivia’s poem blew me away. She’s eleven??? My favorite line… “Does he not know… or is he blinded by his phone?” Remarkable insight, gifted expression


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