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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Writing a Letter (handwritten correspondence) (10/21/10)

TITLE: My Life in Letters
By Verna Cole Mitchell


My life’s revealed through letters I’ve
Received across the years,
Identities for who I am
Among my souvenirs.

The faded ink that shows my name
On papers creased and folded
Portrays the ones who played a part
In how my life was molded.

“Dear Daughter” brings to mind the love
My parents had for me,
Their prayers and aspirations for
The woman I would be.

My Dad would write in poetry—
A family tradition,
While Mom would mainly concentrate
On gentle admonition.

“Dear Sister” from my sister speaks
Of childhood and the past,
Of deep concerns and lessons learned,
And years that went too fast,

Of love and blood that bound us with
Our brothers ever tighter,
Of burdens shared among us all
That caused them to be lighter.

“Dear Sweetheart,” ah, the memories
That special name evokes—
My husband’s hopes and promises,
His funny little jokes.

When I read now the words he wrote
At times we were apart,
I clearly see from what he said
My place within his heart.

“Dear Mom” appears in childish scrawls;
To read them is such fun.
“You’ll always be my mother, and
I’ll always be your son,”

“Dear Mom, you know I love you and
The ‘hurrycane’ does, too.”
These treasured scripts still make me laugh
And warm me through and through.

Their later letters demonstrate
The changes in their stations,
Their college days—their wedding plans,
Their grown-up situations.

“Dear Grandmother” has brought me joy
I could not have imagined;
Their letters march across the years,
A fascinating pageant

Along with those from family,
Are letters to “Dear Friend.”
Reminders of our special ties
I find in words they penned.

“Dear Teacher, you have taught me more
Than I had cared to learn,’
Defines another entity
Of one I’d cause to earn.

My correspondence, long preserved,
Helps me to recollect
The scope of my identity
As I read and reflect.

And yet, “Dear Daughter of the King,”
My highest appellation,
Was written to me with that name
Before the earth’s creation.

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This article has been read 730 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Linda Wright10/28/10
I love this very original poem. Good job.
Mona Purvis10/28/10
WOW. I took a trip with you down memory lane. The sweetness is all there. But, most of all I love the ending. Just grand.

Lillian Rhoades 10/28/10
Creative,great rhythm and rhyme. Loved it!
Beth LaBuff 10/28/10
Gorgeous memories! ...and as good as they were, you saved the best for last! I love this exquisite poem!
Rachel Phelps10/30/10
This poem is so sweet and evocative. Loved it!
Barbara Lynn Culler10/30/10
I have not experienced receiving most of the letters you referred to in this delightful poem, but the ending gave me goose bumps!

Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/31/10
What a beautiful trip through your life and how special to have those wonderful reminders of all of your stages and personas.
Mariane Holbrook 10/31/10
What a lovely, sensitive, reflective poem! It brought to mind many of the same kinds of letters from my own family, especially from my youngest son who wrote so tenderly when he was just a second grader. Your ending was a lovely surprise and perfect. Kudos!
Nancy Sullivan 10/31/10
How blessed you are to have such wonderful and treasured possessions from the lovely people in your life. I agree - the last line was the cherry on top of a special treat. Thanks for sharing.
Connie Dixon11/01/10
This was so well done. I love your perspective and the natural flow of words. Awesome piece.
Yvonne Blake 11/02/10
Great memories!
I have a box like this, too!
Carol Penhorwood 11/02/10
I could so relate to your poem this week of letters cherished through the years. They do contain your life's story.
Linda Wright11/04/10
I was disappointed that this lovely poem didn't place. I especially loved the line, "Their letters march across the years,
A fascinating pageant" I may not be a "real" judge, but I loved your poem!

Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 11/04/10
Congratulations for placing 15th in level 4 and 22nd overall!