Thursday, August 22, 2019

WEP - The Red Wheelbarrow - August 2019 Challenge

There's a first time for everything, right? So this is my first attempt at WEP: Write, Edit, Publish. When I visited the site to find out more about WEP, the image smacked me in the face, bringing lots of emotional stuff to the front of my brain. I had to relieve the pressure by writing!

So, how did I get to WEP? I actually took some time to read recent blog posts from friends this afternoon, and as sometimes happens, I began leap-frogging from one blog to another on some sort of crazy link trail. That's how I stumbled, and became ensnared in, the WEP challenge!

WEP Blog

There it sat, forgotten and forlorn.
Flecks of red paint were all that shown
That once it was new, shiny and bright,
With handles of ash that were almost white.
The bed of the wagon canted to one side;
The leg brace was bent from too much pressure applied
When Larken mounded a pile that weighed far too much.
He’d hauled on the handles, with a guttural grunt,
The handles had bowed, the brace gave way
And Larken, swearing loudly, called it a day.

His daughter wandered from house to yard 
As memories assaulted her brain: sluggish and scarred.
She watched total strangers pick up objects to inspect,
Knowing they didn’t necessarily mean disrespect.
They couldn't know the stories or the memories each held
And she ached to shout out to them, she wanted to yell
That each one of these objects had been caressed by worn hands
Of Larken: a farmer, a grandpa, a scholar. Her dad. 
Her heart clenched, her throat closed, not a sound could she make.
She could only watch as the strangers would take
Another piece of Dad’s life to the cashier of the sale,
Tears welled in her eyes, she struggled to exhale.

A mere girl pulled her man toward the barn by his hand
And pointed to the wheel barrow; He must understand!
This is just what I need for our little place.
It can be my garden with a coat of red of paint.
You can straighten the leg and I’ll add some dirt,
And plant zinnias and mums and purple larkspur.
The daughter smiled. Dad's wheelbarrow, no longer old and worn,
Would get a new life as it was reborn.

I value your comments.

278 carefully chosen words! So hard to pick just the perfect one!


  1. My sentimental eyes got a bit misty here.
    Loved your poem, and hooray for the very best type of fresh starts.

  2. Hi Cyndi. This is beautifully poignant told from the daughter's POV. You have shown her emotions so well - 'Her heart clenched, her throat closed, not a sound could she make.' The wheelbarrow, no longer forgotten and forlorn, has found a loving home.

    I love how you describe finding WEP. Welcome! It is always wonderful to have new people! A few this month! I hope you enjoy the experience and return for our October prompt.

    Thanks for sharing your poem with us!

  3. A heartwarming poem, with such an emotional punch. Welcome to WEP, Cyndi.

  4. Beautiful poem and I liked how her emotions progressed. Lovely take on the prompt.

  5. What a lovely poem and so nice to have an uplifting ending.

  6. Lovely - such a warm and cozy ending. Got a little misty-eyed as I read.
    Glad you've joined the WEP!

  7. Touching, and from the start
    I felt this poem deep in my heart.

    The journey of an object, from one owner to another, goes often unseen, forgotten, and seldom written about... you've done such a beautiful job here.

  8. Hi Cyndi - loved this ... you really told the sad tale of clearing out stuff that was valuable once, but needed to go ... yet there's a soul waiting to restore and repair ... I enjoyed your take ... cheers Hilary

  9. Great flow indeed. Can be sad when one's belongings are cleared out after death, but at least the wheelbarrow found a great home.

  10. This hit close to home. I know the pain of losing someone and having to watch as their things are sold. It's a tough thing. I'm glad to see her find a new life for something that will also bring her good memories.

  11. A lovely piece. I hope the wheelbarrow brings as much joy to this family too.

  12. Welcome, Cyndi. Emotional creation in a lovely poem. Marvellous ending and a new life for a treasure.

    On your profile you mention, Goldens and Haflingers - what a wonderful combination. I had a Golden years ago, well before I became an equestrian journalists and thrilled at wonderful Austria horses - or is that ponies.

  13. Hi,
    Closure! In the first verse, I thought of closure. Maybe because I am going through the closure process of my husband who died this year. You have written a very poignant poem that spoke to my emotion. I enjoyed reading it.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G

  14. This is such a lovely and sad poem. So much emotion described and felt in its reading. There's the loss of someone, then the loss of selling off their belongings, and then the hope of a fresh start. Nicely done. Welcome.

  15. A nice rhyme scheme that serves and bolster's the poem's sense of flow. Well done.

  16. Your poem tells a story of loss and healing with lovely images. Rhyming poems can be a difficult medium, but here, the lines sing.

  17. An uplifting and poignant poem, the daughter's POV is done very well. Always great to find a poetry entry at the WEP. Welcome! and looking forward to reading more from you.

  18. This was so touching. Your description showed how the daughter's grief was a physical pain for her. I'm glad she was able to find the silver lining in the sad circumstances.

  19. Hi Cyndi - congratulations on being 2nd ... brilliant result for your first entry ... look forward to more! Cheers Hilary


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