Three Poems by Gary A. Glasser


Is 9 years old and 7

Is always hungry and cautious

Is blue eyed and freckled

Is sometimes messy and isn’t

Passion is 9 years old and 7

My heart beats but not without them

My lungs breathe and they are my air

I am alone and yet my passion comes in pairs

You have an angel

I have two

My feet are bigger than their largest shoe

Passion is 9 years old and 7

What am I without them?

What am I supposed to do?

What is a living life within heaven?

Passion is 9 years old and 7



Is it a word too late?

A word that is a step before and end

To give a false hope or to save intimacy between

The single word a doctor says for months of a loved
ones life being insecure

Hope is to give faith to the faithless

Damn that word when you can’t quite promise your time
to a child

For that child knows no definition but the simple
phrases of “Yes we can” and “I love you.”

The word and feeling felt with your hands in your
pocket listening for just some change

And all that is heard and felt is the word “hope,” and
the trembling from within

As if that word itself has stabbed you as a knife, a
word cutting you in two

Forget about its praises and its bright blaring light
as if straight from the sun

Shadows truly lurk in that word, many mountains
crossed in challenge

And only then when you can actually see a near to the
end of a journey does that word apply

Why would you use such a word if you only knew it
would be a final, a good-by?

I can see your heart now, I have made it across or

Hope to see you very shortly, or hope you missed me

A child is sick, a parent is sick or a friend

You wish them well, Hallmark says it would make amends

It’s just a word with no dreams attached to

And I hoped there was a pot of gold at the end of
every rainbow looking through the car windshield

A mother is pregnant and for her first time

Does she dream about what her children will become?

Does she count the toes on her newborn child?

Did she prey that it will grow to be a healthy boy or

Does she hope that her son will not be in prison long?

Or does she hope her fourth shot of whiskey will be as

A child awakes in the morning

The sun is up and the TV switched on

The child doesn’t hope but knows that their favorite
cartoons are on

And dad is at work, and mom is in bed

Hope is a word that our children use when they walk
out the front door to “Hope” their friends can play


We say we love them and have held their hands

And we say we will protect them at the same time
making trivial plans

They jump up to give us a hug

And they have walked to us across a well-worn rug

And they called us from miles upon empty miles

Hoping that the shear distance is filled while we
speak into an inexpensive phone

The television plays alone in the family room taking
up space, giving out a glow

Today’s paper is unfolded and separated from itself on
the floor

Political irony on the first page and loss of someone
loved says the second page

But the cartoons and the movie page are just as
important, and a coupon clipped

The warmth of your hand was felt, when?

And the words you spoke last, did someone accept them

A loved one’s kiss upon your cheek, did you even
notice it soft?

Did you even smell the fragrance in their hair as they
approached you close?

Was his smile repeated and her smile accepted into
your busy glance?

And the dinner at her friends were only simple
calculated rituals

The words were spoken but nothing said

More words were spoken and yet the conversation

Grins shown teeth and reflected acknowledgment of

Of what he said and she said and they said, finally
the dinner was done

Tears are wept and cries heard aloud over the TV

Tissue to wipe the seeping clear fluid, the tissue box
matches the decor

A heart hurt and then we hug?

Pavlov’s dog and the mice that we are, we ate the

I sent a card, and an email and another empty phone

We wake to eat and to work and then to sleep

No one ever tries to touch the precious air that we

Nobody holds their child until they demand to be let

And no one sees a lover hold another until each other
has missed the time

Have you embraced me until there was a bruise?

Embrace me to bruise me and know that you hurt me
because you love me and it hurts us both to feel each
other after our arms have fallen to our sides

Kiss my mouth as yours mouth breaks across the front
of my face and the taste of my bleeding lip tells me
it hurts only to be so far away

Embrace me to hold me and to let go would only tear