In my youth
homophobia and rape took my innocence away
religion wounded the joy in life
family became a prison
search for love was fruitless: it was a sin and a criminal act
sports were full of bullies
school was a hazard
numbness was the shield from the besieged country in war
sex was the forbidden fruit reserved for marriage and procreation.
I first met
love from grandma
freedom in nature and travelling
peace in books that took me away from the harsh realities
happiness in single little moments and a transistor radio
joy from people I loved and loved me back
respect by fully embracing every work and job I've done
passion in art.
Years went by
and I find myself in the autumn of my life
longing for family and friends that seems to dissolve beneath
unreachable distances and the passing of time
yearning for a first youth love that never happened
and with memories of thousands of people and places
that were but unlikely will be again.
I love my man and my children and grandchildren
the future is unclear
the body starts to fail
the soul fears
but the mind is sharp
and with the wisdom to look back
and recognize what a rich and wonderful life I had!