Finding home... RSS

Finding home...

16 April, 2018: Finding home...


by Eric Odum

Finding home…
…in others

Latin women, move like tree leaves on dance floors,
Their hips, look like home
They understand, who I want to be.

Latin men dance like
they have pendulums in
their hips,
Sweat as sweet as
mango juice.
I’ve always wanted to
love someone,
Who could fill in the
gaps my splintered
identity struggles to.

They are full,
Remind me of places I’ve only seen in dreams,

I’ve always wanted to
kiss someone,
Whose tongue was
familiar with the sound
of home.

Never make me feel like gringo
Makes me feel like I too,
Can claim our ancestry

I wish I knew what it
was like to be whole,
Not ripped down the
A tree struck by
A mountain crushed by
By men with too much
ambition and not
enough time to love.

Did you know,
The hardest place for anyone to be is between two
Pulling you until you break,
Like concrete, under hammers.

Did you know I’ve
always wanted,
To listen to a man play
his guitar,
Just for me, in my
With the windows open,
The smell of night
blossoms and ocean
water invited in,
Like old friends.

I wish,
I could sit between legs,
Arms resting on thighs.
Rub my head, smooth my chaos,
Part my scalp to peer into my memories,

I want every moment,
To feel like Deja Vu.
I want our hands—
rough and thick,
to get
caught up in one
Have heads cradled in
collar bones like hickeys.

Understand the buried best of me.
Place a kiss, on my crown and tell me....
“You can be King of the world,
If you can conquer the voices, in your head.”

This isn’t a love poem,
It is a plea made on
shooting stars

“Finding home…in others” by Eric Odum, from Unpacking. GTK Community Press, 2015. Used by permission of the author.
Eric Odum is the program director of One Mic Open and a lover of poetry and the stage. He has been writing since he was 9 years old and performing on stage since he was 15. A three-time member of the national Youth Slam Team and, as of 2018, a three-time coach as well, he loves his Puerto Rican culture and strives to learn more about his people and customs every day. Odum has a strong foundation, with friends and family who continue to hold him up and push him to continue reaching new milestones as an artist and educator.


The Polish poet Wisława Szymborska has a poem titled “In Praise of My Sister” that begins, “My sister does not write poems.” Write a poem in praise of someone you know who does not write poems. What does that person do instead?

N. K. Hasen
In Praise of My Dog

My dog does not write poems.
She unable to anyways; for she has
four paws with no way to hold a pen.
I guess if she did start; would have to use
her mouth to write. But, then the words
she knows is not that much.
They would probably be: sit, stay, watch,
treat, leave it, toy, outside and dog.
Neither does she read poems, even though
it does when she is having a photo taken
of her with a poetry book under paws.
She would rather sleep the day away.
She plays with toys she grabs
from toy box in bed room.
Zoom around the room; smiles a smile
with doggy grin to say:
OK, right now try to chase me around the room.
She is happy just lounging nearby me,
as I stroke her fur when watching TV.
She loves the walks; we go outside,
sniffs everything, she can find nearby.
She licks to show she loves you,
that is the way she communicates;
besides being a good listener too.
If she does write poems, they are in her head;
For I have not seen any pages lying about.
Her parents which I will never know,
never wrote poems, they have paws too.
My childhood dog was the same too,
no poems I saw, but intelligent eyes
stared out to give me pause;
that if she could, she would have something to say.
My dog inspires me to write;
her actions are what speak volumes
in poems I write about her.
4/16/2018 10:07:56 AM

Jim Lawless
Hello from Doc

The black and white cat
slips easily beside me nestled
softly under my hand.

He pushes up against
my touch, grabbing the warmth
of love by gravity.

His noise breaks silence,
assuring both of us he
needs and wants me back.

Jim Lawless
April14, 2017
4/16/2018 10:03:54 AM


READ + WRITE: 30 Days of Poetry is a collaboration between Cuyahoga County Public Library and poet Diane Kendig. Our thanks go to Diane and the poets of Northeast Ohio who allowed us to share their poetry.