The poem below is the second one I wrote for the book “Wounds I Healed: The Poetry of Strong Women”. There were many submissions for the book, which became a #1 bestseller on Amazon in just one day; I consider myself very fortunate to have been among those selected to appear in this important and timely anthology of the challenges and adversities women face and how they overcome them. I hope you enjoy my poem “The Shells”.

Shells scattered along the shore

Some glittering in the golden sunlight

Lapis lazuli kisses of blue and green upon the water

So wondrous in their radiant beauty

Delicate as the blossoms of a dewy lilac tree

Day and night the waves wash over the shells

Yet they retain their brilliant resilience 

Trodden upon by eyes bewitched by shooting stars

In the blackness of the night

Some are picked up and tossed into the sea

Only to return upon the next wave

Those trampled into the sand do not sink

They are not swallowed up by the sea 

Nor do they disappear

For as fragile and tenuous as they may appear

They stand the eternal test of time

Ever rising as an Easter Morn

For they are the She Shells

They are women

NAR © 2022


Along with a group of about 100, I can proudly say I am a #1 bestselling author! We made it to #1 on Amazon!!

When I was first approached by Gabriela Marie Milton to contribute two poems to “Wounds I Healed: The Poetry of Strong Women“, I was somewhat taken aback. “I’m a storyteller, not a poet” I said to myself. Although I have written a few poems, poetry is not my wheelhouse and I was reluctant to accept Gabriela’s offer. However, after learning what this anthology was about, I realized I could not refuse. I put pen to paper and imagined I was Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

To my amazement both my poems were accepted and now I can add poet to my resume! This has been a unique experience – both profoundly rewarding and humbling – and the subject is of utmost importance in our society today: the challenges women face and how they found the courage and strength to overcome them. If I should ever be asked again to contribute my poems, I will do so without hesitation.

I am a wife, a grandmother, a lover, a friend, a singer, a writer, a poet and a dreamer. I am a woman. I hope you enjoy the first of my two poems, Bird of Promise. Thank you for the privilege.

It was just a fling, just one of those things she fell upon
quite by accident with no intent of malice or harm.
She never meant for the strong desire so wrong to last so long.

No child, she. A life well spent with no sense
or scent of doubt or regret
for she was a one off, a rare and spirited
bird of promise in thought, action and word.

She knew herself better than any woman or man
who came to her with open heart and hand,
never afraid to take a stand,
without trying she could command
a room of strangers or friends
for she was the willow that always bends.

Never intimidated, she wouldn’t allow herself to be
berated, deflated, abused or humiliated. 

Then this thing, this once in a lifetime fling
blossomed like the bouquets of spring,
bursting with an uncontrollable,
unstoppable, insurmountable
force she could not rein in.

How did she allow herself to be so exposed,
for him to see her inner core,
wanting and demanding more
than she could give or afford
while inflicting pain with nothing to gain
except stress and blame
and risking the loss of all things
she held near and dear,
almost extinguishing
her brightest inner flame.

Resolve restored she said
“No more!” She’d said it before,
two, three times, maybe four.
Get up off the floor, open the door;
be that bird of promise and soar.
This time she meant it but her heart was broken
and sore like those who suffered
and bore
the ravages of war.

She loved him;
that was her greatest sin.

NAR © 2022