short sharp shocked

punch in the gut that girl
scrabbly busking in the streets
you'd link arms with her
what was the protest then
---i've come a long way
---i've come a long way
---you can drive for hours never leave LA

all the girls were there
your lover
didn't care
about some chick folksinger
you left him behind
---leroy says send a picture
---leroy says hello

---leroy says keep on rockin' girl
do you remember how you shook
when she raised her arms and sang
do you remember finding
nothing reflected in his eyes
---your love love love
---don't keep me satisfied
---it's always greener on the greener side

you know you were looking
in that green moment
you knew it was not there

you must learn to listen
---when i grow up i wanna be an old woman

Dedicated to Michelle Shocked with love and gratitude.

I wrote this in response to Kerry's request that the Real Toads write a poem that's an internal monologue. Though truthfully, my poem went off the rails somewhere in its creation and I don't think it's particularly responsive to the prompt. I'll try again, Kerry.


  1. If was derailed from it's original course, I feel the new direction it took was worth all the jostling that must have occurred, as it bounced from the tracks.

  2. I thought it fit really well. Exactly the kind of voice I thought of when I saw the prompt. This one had a novel plot and story line in it...damnation...I loved it.

  3. Ha! Loved Michelle Shocked's music back in the day. I had that album on vinyl... This brought back those days of young adulthood, when I dared to grasp onto individual freedom.

  4. Looks like an interior monologue to me--sometimes the best conversations, as Kerry notes in her post, are the ones we have with ourselves.

  5. i was researching for my as-yet-unwritten music prompt and got totally derailed by landing on her video for "come a long way." which brought an enormous flood of feelings that i then just had to deal with. :)
    i feel lucky to have seen Michelle Shocked live once, sometime in the 80's.

  6. Love this! My memories come like that mixed with song, mixed into a day's routines. This is such a powerful moment to share self to self.

  7. Sigh. This was a WONDERFUL internal monologue. You took me right there, took me back to the girl full of love, seeing those empty eyes looking back at her.......and I so love the last line. I AM one, now, though I dont feel it, and it sure beats all that angst I remember from back then.

  8. Just watched her youtube 'Come a Long Way' ~ what a delight when she drove off with the little trailer hitched to her cycle!! Must confess to not knowing her before your poem ~~ many thanks!

  9. Perfect monologue, Marian. It says so much.

  10. i'm glad you all liked this one, i felt like it was lacking, and maybe i'll come back to it. Helen, that video! it's the BEST. oh i want to throw my family in a trailer and take off!! my daughter, who is six, has asked to watch it about a dozen times, so i think i've done good :)


Thank you for sharing your thoughts!