This Poem was Submitted By: Drenda D. Cooper On Date: 2002-08-12 16:07:09 . . . Click Here To Mail this Poem to a Friend!

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Suicide Note Of A Seaman's Wife (Revised)

Prologue: And so she walked down to the sea again In the cold, wet darkness of night. Her tears became one with the blinding rain As the waves swept her soon out of sight. Next morning dawned clear, but bitterly cold. The incoming tide had just washed away One set of footprints with the story they told. The smooth, silent sand had nothing to say.. An envelope with a tearstained note Lay damp on the old writing table.  It held last thoughts, she so hurriedly wrote To her husband while she was still able.  Addressed to a man whose heart was torn By his love for this woman, his wife; And his first love, the sea, that was so inborn That sailing to him was his life.     He knew she loved him more than she should; She'd spend months on end all alone. But she'd hide her heartache as best she could, And smile when she welcomed him home. Then one cold day the first of December From a nine month long trip he returned. It was a sad day he would long remember, For the light he expected no longer burned. He read the following note that he found; Wailing winds echoed his heartbreaking grief. When the winds ended, there was not a sound To break the stark silence of his disbelief. The Note:  The thirtieth of November, the year 1885, I know you'll be home soon, my heart, But by then I shall not be alive. I really do not know where I should start....... So, I'm leaving this note for you to read, For when morning's tide floods in; Some small solace you will need, If you are to begin again. I've loved you with all the strength I possess, Since that first day you took my hand. My heart, ever constant, I must now confess, I had hoped you could learn to love land. But your heart was clasped to a jealous ship's mast And it ebbed and flowed with the tide. After some years, hope of change gone at last, Memories and loyalty helped me abide. I busied myself with landlubbers' dreams, Building sandcastles down on the beach, Painting in pastels the fresh water streams, Keeping loneliness just out of reach. Then God blessed me with twin baby boys, Who filled up my days and my nights; With such blessed, indescribable joys And rainbow-colored delights. Just as my life took on new meaning, Both my sons, a month short of seven; So cruelly struck down by nature's gleaning, And both of them taken to heaven. You stayed with me through my insanity. You knew I could not be alone, 'Til my mind could accept the reality That my precious babes were gone. When I healed enough to understand I must finally get on with life, You had been nigh three years on land To comfort your desolate wife.   But I knew I must give you back to the sea, Bedeviled were you by that siren's voice. I would not be the source of your misery In demanding for love that you make a choice. So you left me again on a red-skyed morning. A few weeks hence, I fell deathly ill. The doctor came by, but could only give warning For my malady there was no curative pill. I suffered greatly, the tides kept turning; Still my love for you remained pure. In my breast was a blazened brutal burning, That I could no longer endure.   So I walked alone beside the shore Until midnight in the rain. Enclosed by the cold mists, just once more, I begged for God's mercy in my pain. The struggle had ended for the sands Being swallowed now by the tide. I let some trickle through both my hands, As I knelt for a while and cried. A sudden storm's dark forceful fury, Though, often, so quickly spent; In its brief hour of watery glory, May leave the strongest oaks bent. Hurricane winds have swept my soul. Leaving naught but a garish grief. My agonized body, no longer whole, Seeks in death, only mortal relief. Do not mistake my lack of courage To face what I cannot face, As a sign that you must ever pay homage To my final thoughts made in grace. My last hope is that you be forgiving, And grieve, but for a short while; Before setting sail once more with the living, Remembering only my smile. I would never have dreamt while I had breath, Though weakened, I would succumb; And accept the cold embrace of death, Leaving you to endure all alone. My faithful lover and dearest friend, I have said about all I can say. With all my love this note I shall end, And for your forgiveness I'll pray.

Copyright © August 2002 Drenda D. Cooper

Additional Notes:
I apologize for the length of this one..I added the prologue and changed the ending a bit..I hope it works better this way..I also apologize for the sing song effect that these rhymed lines may give rise to ..I just hope it has a few redeeming qualities...At least it is sad, is it not??

This Poem was Critiqued By: Claire H. Currier On Date: 2003-09-08 11:43:27
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 8.81481
Indeed sad, very sad and the form you choose to express it works so very well and the words, they just seem to float as if on the waves that carried her out to sea so she could be with him always.....sad, yes, his loss forever to carry within his heart and on each voyage he travels to hopefully find her somewhere within the deep blue of the ocean he travels and longs to call home......I enjoyed all parts of this read no matter how sad it felt within and the images you send forth with the flare of your husband served in the Coast Guard and was gone for a year at a time so her loneliness I understand, her missing and wanting him to remain ashore that too.......yet it does not always work out that way. Thank you for posting and sharing this emotional piece with us.....I do not find any way to offer suggestions for improvement for to me it stands so very well on its own. Be safe my friend and God Bless, Claire

This Poem was Critiqued By: Andrea M. Taylor On Date: 2003-09-04 09:08:52
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 1.00000
Drenda, It may have bent the mighty oaks...but it truly broke my heart. This is a wonderfully imaginative piece place well in its era. I could actually picture the seaman standing on the Widow(er)'s peak as salted breeze flavored his tears while he rereads and rereads the note. He finally looks out towards the ocean. I could smell his mistress, the sea, as she beckons him, and whispers, "The land is nevermore!" I do rhyming and sing song effect. The affect works for me. A very nice read. I appreciate you letting me know about it. God's speed and comfort. Andrea
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