You Poor, Unfortunate Woman

Last Monday was a special day for me.
You got that big promotion and the raise!
I pity you, for now your life will be
a rat race through a long, nightmarish maze.

You’re doomed to spend that extra salary
on nerve pills and work late six days a week.
While I breeze through my work days trouble-free,
you’ll wrestle with a future dark and bleak.

You’ll have less time to spend with your new man.
I was engaged to him a year ago.
When suddenly he dumped me, I began
to see he’s evil. Soon you too will know!

__The lucky ones like me don’t wear a frown.
__We’ve no romance or wealth to tie us down.

 

Words

I’ve written many poems to declare
my joy to be inhabiting this earth.
I’ve found my words, if numerous or spare,
inadequate to capture life’s full worth.

I chose the sonnet and the triolet,
in hopes that each would help me speak my heart
on love of life with clarity and wit
in phrases neither syrupy nor tart.

When words fell short, I tried the villanelle,
pantoum, and kyrielle to help me say
I love the Lord and those with whom I dwell.
Perhaps words will be adequate someday.

__We must tell God and loved ones how we feel;
__so at the throne of language we must kneel.

 

Janice Canerdy is a retired high-school English teacher from Potts Camp, Mississippi. Her poems and prose writings have appeared in several publications, including Society of Classical Poets Journal, Wild Violet, Light Quarterly, The Road Not Taken, Lyric, Parody, Bitterroot, Cyclamens and Swords, Westward Quarterly, Lighten Up Online, Better Than Starbucks, Indiana Voice Journal and Southern Tablet; and anthologies, including those published by the Mississippi Poetry Society, the National Federation of State Poetry Societies, Whispering Angel Books, and Quill Books. Her first book, Expressions of Faith (Christian Faith Publishing), was published in December 2016. 

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5 Responses

  1. Joseph Tessitore

    Wow, are these good!

    I especially love the way the first one leaves you wondering!

    Very well done!

    Reply
  2. Alan Sugar

    I left a comment, but it seems that it hasn’t posted.
    So, here it is once again (with feeling):
    I enjoyed reading these both, and I will reread them, I know.
    The first is a bit Dorothy Parker, but lighter and more loving in tone. As Gershwin might add: “Folks with plenty of plenty keep a lock on the door… “
    “Words” expresses so humbly the writer’s quest. You speak for so many. I especially like the repetition of “we must” at the end— which is, after all, the beginning!

    Reply
    • Monty

      Dot Parker . . now THERE was a woman who weren’t shy about saying things as they were; that’s why many people of her time and place deluded themselves into thinking they didn’t like her . . when really they just didn’t like the truth.

      She also came out with what maybe my most-liked adage about cash. It goes something like: ‘If ya wanna know what god thinks about money: just look at some of the people he gives it to’ . . . she was a classy girl.

      Reply
  3. Joseph S. Salemi

    Dorothy Parker was an absolutely brilliant and first-class poet in the traditions of classical English verse that this website is trying to revive. She was tough, unafraid, and had more real testosterone than the 82nd Airborne. And yet she could also be as gentle and as verbally exquisite as Walter De La Mare.

    We don’t need poetry that is “lighter” and “more loving” in tone. That kind of pabulum is for Hallmark Cards.

    Good work, Ms. Canerdy.

    Reply
  4. Alan Sugar

    I agree. I considered these same sentiments after I left my comments. I’m not even sure why I used those words: lighter, more loving. I didn’t intend to suggest any comparisons to Hallmark cards either. And I agree with you about Dorothy Parker.
    Well, in any case, I like these two poems very much.

    Reply

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