The Kids Will All Write

Ever since I started blogging I’ve been driving my family crazy. I follow my husband around, iPhone in hand, reading him my poetry from the drafts in my email account. Often times this is when he is trying to get ready for work. Or in the shower. Or on the toilet. For some reason, unfathomable to me, he seems a bit annoyed by this.

My 11 year old son, on the other hand, is a much better sounding board. He listens attentively, and finds my poems just as hilarious as I do. Not only that, but he is genuinely concerned about the response my blogs get. And, if I follow your blog on a regular basis, chances are he’s read one or two of yours as well (age appropriate, of course).

But lest you think my son is some kind of goody two shoes who heads the Dean’s List and runs for school council, he is not. Although my son has above average intelligence, his grades often teeter on the wrong side of a B average, all due to a lack of passion and work ethic.

When I suggested my son do a guest blog for me, I thought it would be met with all the enthusiasm of reading a ‘Fun with Mathematics’ text book over the weekend. But I was wrong. Instead my son bombarded me with questions; what should he write? when should he write it? when would I publish it?

I am not much of one for participating in or suggesting challenges, or that a blog with my meager following will be able to sustain this, but if you have or know a kid who writes, and want to publish it, let me know about it, in comments or a link to any blog, and I will reblog it. Artwork is welcome too. This is about getting our kids writing and welcoming a new generation of bloggers.

I am publishing my sons guest blog, ‘Stupidity Is Infectious’, in conjunction with this one. I ask you all, shamelessly, to please come out and support it. You won’t be disappointed. Thanks.


In the meantime, please enjoy my daughter’s artwork (A.B. age 7)

I Suffer In Silence

My daughter’s birthday hand in hand,
With memories of Legoland,
A broken shoe, a bag forgotten,
Could not make my memories rotten.
A hotel room where it would be sheer luck,
To escape lice and bed bugs,
And my patience wearing thin,
With all the lines that we stood in.
But all this would barely matter,
My daughter’s happiness I would rather,
Nor did it dampen the spirits of our foursome,
Lest we think it any less than awesome.
But my soul with Satan I’ll secretly haggle,
To see this place drowned in Kragle.


That’s My Girl!

Oh, my sweet dear darling child,

Never could my imagination be so wild,

As to think heaven could bless me,

With a child quite so lovely as thee.

What wonderful thing did I do or say,

To have you as a gift for Mother’s Day,

And as I look at her and all her charms,

I long to hold her in my arms.

Her face so sweet, so little and cute,

But all she says is “I have to toot,”

And then produces an odor so foul,

All I can say is “That’s my gal!”


Happy 7th To My Sweet Anjeli-cat!

Potty Mouth

When my children were born,
I tried to be caring,
And I swore I would.
Swear off swearing.

But my anecdotes,
Just wouldn’t work,
When I could call my boss,
No more than a jerk.

And the F word,
Couldn’t be duplicated,
In all it’s glory by using,

The stuff on the floor,
Became just that – stuff,
And the expression shoot,
Not quite strong enough.

It was difficult to give people,
Insulting one liners,
Capped off by calling them penises,
And vaginas.

So I’ll go with ‘fuck off’,
Rather than ‘beat it’,
And hope that my children,
Never repeat it.



Napowrimo Entry #7

The Non Conformist Conformist

Jenny had a tattoo and I thought it was cool,
So I went out and I got one too.
Johnny got a lip ring I thought it looked great,
So I got a lip ring just like my mate.
Stacy went and dyed her hair green.
I dyed my hair purple so now we’re a team.

We all get together and wear black and brood,
And talk about how we’re all misunderstood,
And if you don’t like our music well that’s just tough,
Cause there’s no one quite as bad ass as us.

But I look around to see something quite awful,
That group over there, they have tattoos also!
And pierced lips, looking hip and I fume all the while,
At all of these amateurs trying to cop our style!
I swear to myself, “These punks will learn their lesson!”
And fall into my favorite state, a deep, dark depression.

I come home and my mother is there
She says, “I did something, you’ll never guess what dear!”
I say, “Okay, mom, what did you do?”
She lifts her sleeve to reveal a brand new tattoo.


image credit:

Why Hannah Can’t Spel

Some children might be good at math,
And think it not so telling,
When they make a mistake,
Like a minor misspelling.

But I thought it rather sad,
And by no means funny,
When on my neighbor’s door hung her daughter’s sign,
Saying, “Welcome Ester Bunny.”

Spelling’s not always an easy task,
So by no means should we berate her,
I think the problem begins,
When we congratulate her.

If you celebrate her mistakes,
Your efforts will be foiled,
When you find yourself a victim of,
A child that is spoiled.

And if you are too careful ‘bout,
What will or won’t upset her,
Soon a grown woman will be,
Wishing all a Happy Ester.


Shel Silverstein, Where Have You Gone?

When I was in elementary school, there was a newsletter that came out called ‘The Headliner’ where children could submit poems. For me it was never a question of whether to submit, but rather what to submit.

Then a writer came along who validated everything I thought I knew about writing. He told me to create something no matter how crazy, he told me there could be magic in a puzzle piece lying on the sidewalk.

images-5If you Google Shel Silverstein’s ‘The Giving Tree’, you will find that countless people have tried to analyze it. There are religious connotations, environmental interpretations, and even some sickos who see the boy and the tree as having a sadomasochistic relationship. I think Shel Silverstein was just trying to show us love.

But, looking back on that book, after all these years, I think Shel Silverstein is The Giving Tree. His words, the fruits and branches that we delighted in as children, his books something we could give to our children when we get older, and the companionship of his literature, something we can take with us into old age.

Whenever my children choose this book as the one they want read to them, I’m always a little apprehensive. They look at each other in embarrassment and wonder why silly old mommy’s voice starts to catch in her throat, why tears are coming from her eyes.

Shel Silverstein has done so much for me, so much for the world, I feel like the least I can do is pay it forward, if only in a very, very small way.

Shel Silverstein, where have you gone?
Gone where the sidewalk ends?
Or in the sky polishing stars
With three headed Ann and her friends?

Shel Silverstein where are you now?
You were taken away too soon
Bored in the Land of Happy?
Or trying to catch the moon?

Your words like branches to play in,
I read them again and again,
And now that I have children of my own,
I’ll give the books to them.

And maybe when I’m old and gray,
And your books are torn with wear,
I’ll sit on an old tree stump and read them,
And pretend that you are there.

Cause there’s something whistling on the wind,
That let’s me know without a doubt,
That when I see that light in the attic shine,
You’re on the inside looking out.


Something I Forgot

Everything is nice and neat
But yet I keep on fretting
This nagging feeling in my mind
There’s something I’m forgetting

The dinner has been prepared
The dishes have been done
My glasses hang around my neck
The clothes have all been hung

I know I locked the door at work
But still my head it takes me
To summon up this vague notion
Of what surely must escape me

That familiar car door slamming
The footsteps coming near
For now it’s nearly 5 o’ clock
My husband must be here

He walks in through the doorway
And the first thing he says is,
“You’ve done a great job on the house but honey…
Where’s the kids?”


But You Doesn’t Hasta Call Me Victoria

I don’t think I really had a name until I was about 20. But I suppose that is the plight of an identical twin . Before that it was ‘hey you’, the cringe worthy ‘twin’ or a horrifying amalgamation of both of our names, ‘Marissa-Victoria Victoria-Marissa’. I  am just happy that we predated the Bennifers and Brangelinas or we would have surely been Vicrissa or, worse yet, Maroria.

Baffled friends regarded us, studying our faces before even saying a word, in a pathetic attempt at that Holy Grail of knowledge that would answer the question, “Which one is which?” My boyfriends scratched their heads in wonder before clumsily sticking their tongues down my sister’s throat.

Then, when I was in my 20s, something terrible happened. I fell in love.

People wondered why I chose Jon as the object of my affections. He was short, with unconventional looks, and, although he was in a semi cool rock band, he was only the drummer. The thing was, Jon was the first boy who was brave enough to call me by my name. Often. And with feeling. Like it was a term of endearment. I guess anyone might find that charming and flirtatious, but oh readers, if he knew what that did for me…

Well, as you can well imagine, that relationship quickly ended in disaster as most young relationships do. However, soon other boys would come along who called me by my name. And as I established my own identity, I found other people, in different situations, calling me by my name more and more often .

But alas, no sooner had my identity had been established, then I found it all too quickly taken away. I soon married and had children and, once again I was no longer Marissa but Mommy, Mrs. Bergen, or Anjelica’s and/or Jesse’s mom. In fact, it seems the only time I am addressed by my name nowadays, is when  I’m at work or when my order is ready at El Pollo Loco.

Even my husband rarely calls me by my name. With him it’s usually ‘Babe’ (equally cringe worthy). I think he’s still a bit afraid he will call me ‘Victoria’.

And if you’re wondering whether he ever ended up with his tongue down my sister’s throat…well…that is the story for another blog.