Poetry by Sheri

The first part of Helium, by Sheri

The doll’s baby breath in her hand

was bubbles. I laid her out to dry.

The yard was jelly. Right there

was a train track. We never slowed

down. I was younger in the

summer than winter. I was never

late. The doll had many names

but one set of clothes. I called

her my own until the future was

the voice of God in a tin can and

the sun was the yellow string.

I saw more deaf people than Down

syndrome. I think I may have heard

I’d always be on my knees. I used

to stroke your skin and smile and

babble to you in the stores. Now

you love the stores. You were

my backward baby with clothes

inside out wearing a winter coat

on a hot spring day. You are the

unteachable kind that only repeats.

I had a doll but it didn’t teach me

much. You wouldn’t sit still and

then you wouldn’t sleep and then

you wouldn’t eat. I worried you’d

get hurt or wander away. You like

colored lights. You like movies.

You like spaghetti. You don’t know

which shoe goes on which foot.

You walk carefree.

We have no social pact with others.

There is no editing. There is never

a certainty circling the day like a bird.

The doll was only half way through

my childhood winding around the

seasons with that yellow string. You

are all the way through my adulthood

and tied to me like truth. The motion

in the air is fallen hearts in place

of leaves. You don’t turn with the

the times. You swing in the backyard.

Mine was everyone’s.


This is beyond amazing

thanks, girl. I reached down deep.

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You are a wordsmith. And you have the substance to put it to work.

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I really like this - images and ideas

You should keep writing

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