Lisa Rhodes-Ryabchich | Poems on forgiveness

             — for my father

Thinking about you—
I want to cry and cringe.
You are so unfair
And unaware of the things
You do—-how you had
Cut the chords that connected us
Like falling from an airplane
Without a parachute—
Something you’d seen
In the Marine Corps
And I don’t want to crash and burn—
Become a monument to a tumultuous time.

But you are not that age anymore
And this has happened years ago
And I have been stung and I want to
Release all hurt— it’s over and finished!
We can’t go back and redo those moments,
Now pieces from an intricate web of future generations.
Our decisions—we think are slight when we are unaware
Of fate and how its every crucial heartbeat means
Something— a part of a complex multi-dimensional
World that we had no control of—the same way we
Don’t have control of our emotions sometimes

And if we could what a miraculous life we could create—
The perfect future—the cures for possible diseases—
The limits are endless, but that isn’t how life really is.
We are human and not machines locked up without feelings.
And this is what I want to say… I forgive you….
I don’t think I can say it but I want to walk away from
The past, and let you know that there is a future
And a light will shine and take over the sky and blast
Through the universe looking for all the compassion
To send our way, each and every day/ night /moment
Till only the earth is filled with our spirit in its pores—
Breathing relief—
Bringing chaos to a close encounter unknown to all.



Why was I jealous…?
I was pretty.

To be driven by self-respect, tenacity, resilience…
Where was mine? I copied my sister; I wanted to be her.

She was my role model, my surrogate mother.
Nice I was to my nieces; I really loved them.

Pushed over the edge… from a loveless relationship—
it happens. I was outraged. My paychecks paid his tuition.

Desperation made my self-esteem low…
Illness can be so strong.

I was Full of self-hate… desire to die. I was so confused.
I felt used—I didn’t want a divorce—

Revengeful, I took my seed with me.
End the family, I told myself—total self-rejection.

I felt cast away like a bad seed, rejected & dejected.
Feeling like a whore who was going to be screwed—
A failure, I was ashamed— embarrassed…
I felt unloved, disillusioned by a lie
that I was ever in a loving relationship.


Lisa Rhodes-Ryabchich is the author of  Opening the Black Ovule Gate, forthcoming in February of 2018 with Finishing Line Press and We Are Beautiful Like Snowflakes (2016). She has recent publications in Praxis, Gather Round: A Collaboration of Workshop and Retreat Poets, and The Journal of Poetry Therapy. She was a recipient of a MVICW scholarship in 2016 and has an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College and lives in Piermont, NY.

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