It Was Never You, nor I ~ with audio


 
It Was Never You, nor I

But we both know it was the children, sad as that is to say,
for the gift they have been. Your direction and mine,
different as night and day, had one exception,
their well-being and success. Discord
may have been evident, but not forefront,
as we gave to them what we could not give
to each other, a love that is true and unending.
There was no sacrifice on our part in fulfilling
the only desire we truly had and the reward it returned.

But that time has passed. It is now time
for us to follow our own directions.
Yours.
Mine.

This poem is in response to Reena’s Exploration Challenge #171, which is to use the provided image/dialogue, “take it forward from the perspective of the opposite gender, not yours.” I initially wrote this as a short prose poem, but I feel it works better with stanzas.

Regarding the prompt – without trying to sound sexist – I’m not sure if this works, as I once was told that I don’t do well in capturing “the female voice.” And I don’t mean the audio recording.

It Was Never You, Nor I

But we both know it was the children, sad as that is to say, for the gift they have been.
Your direction and mine, different as night and day, had one exception, their well-being
and success. Discord may have been evident, but not forefront, as we gave to them what
we could not give to each other, a love that is true and unending. There was no sacrifice
on our part in fulfilling the only desire we truly had and the reward it returned.

But that time has passed. It is now time for us to follow our own directions. Yours. Mine.

Also shared with Did you know you’re in my circle? — the OpenLinkNight at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

 

 

59 thoughts on “It Was Never You, nor I ~ with audio

  1. Yeah, I’m not sure i could ever undertake such a challenge, but you have clearly mastered it here, Ken. Very impressive approach to and almost unspeakable inner voice. Awesomely delivered.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Very powerful and impressive write Ken and beautifully read too – thank you so much… A rich experience, my fave of the night so far. Work of a professional standard, in my opinion…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I listened to the audio while reading along. I found this sad. One thinks a couple must have had more in common before they had children. When they first got together…when it was just them. What caused them to drift so far apart that the only reason for their being a couple was the children? Could the children sense it? How would the children feel after they’ve left home to see their parents leave each other then? Was it a sham? This is just a really hard post to read. Powerful in its reality for many. I wish it were not so.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Enduring and that too for a long period of time for the sake of one’s children is undoubtedly hard. This is an evocative poem. You have captured the female voice, sentiments perfectly. 💝

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You write with righteous fervor, and scintillating sadness, vibrating heart strings and stirring naked hidden emotions. It sounds and feels like personal sharing, one of the tales of woe we all carry on the back burner.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m sorry it didn’t work out between you and your ex, Ken. It says a lot about each of your characters that you were able to work as one in the best interests of your children. Your poem made me think of this song by Cake. Hope you don’t mind me posting the youtube link to it. If you do, please feel free to delete.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Lisa. Some things just are.

      The Cake video can stay. As it happens, “I Want to Love You Madly” from the same album has been a favorite of my mine (introduced to me by my wife shortly after we met) for 10 years. It’s both irreverent and sincere at the same time, and it was on the playlist for our wedding.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re welcome, Ken. I got into Cake music when younger son went to college in the UP. The buddy he rode back and forth with was a Cake fiend and somehow I had a taste and never looked back. Very cool on your Cake connection 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Beautifully read – I prefer the poem form. Your words/lines convey a truth that is hard to accept until you realize you’re in its grip: people change after children come into their lives. Two people who were happy together change, are not the same two people, and are no longer happy together. I wasn’t so strong nor was my first husband. We split when our kids were still young. We stayed friendly, never put the kids in the middle. Still, reading this, I’m envious – such a tremendous gift you gave your kids.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Your poem and reading resonated deeply … for those of us who could not go the ‘long haul’ but worked in tandem on parenting I say Cheers / Bravo! We ended when our children were 18, 17, 16, 11 …. it took a while to “right ourselves” but we did and they are OK … and so are we, friends forever.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. These words resonate Ken. But your wonderful children show that you and your ex made the right decision. I know many who have stayed together through difficult times because of children. Sadness, but no shame. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh this is so relatable. Sometimes, when I see my mom and dad together not talking just sitting in the drawing room minding their own business, I get a bitersweet feeling which is perfectly described by your heart touching poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. This is poignant, but lovely in the way two people who couldn’t live and love each other could still have their children’s best interests in mind. I read/heard this as a story of you and your ex (your point of view).
    I think my parents felt this way, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. This definitely resonated, as so many have said and as a child of divorced parents as well as the wife of a divorced father. My preference is for the poem version, each line giving space and time to sink in, achieve maximum effect.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I agree with you Ken, that the poetic form has more impact than the prose. The pace and grace of your reading amplifies the tenor and mood. I also think this voice works equally well for any gender, because loss and love are not exclusive to either. ~

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Michael. As much as I like enjambment, I have to remind myself that it’s their to draw the readers attention to paths they might not otherwise consider, regardless of how it sounds when read aloud.
      Yes, there is no monopoly on loss and love.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Pingback: Reena’s Xploration Challenge #172 – Reena Saxena

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