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Hope is Not Canceled – Poem by Jennifer Jean

Originally published in Solstice Lit Mag

Without a boogie board,
you’d fling your body
into the curve of the Pacific.
Without baby oil, you’d still burn
& be tender for days.
Without a blanket, you’d drop
your faded Eddie shirt,
sit—or later, shake it out &
mop off the salt. Without
shades, you’d razor
your hand like a visor—squint
at five footers rushing up,
at gulls. Without money
you’d drink from a fluoridated bubbler—
you’d eat that deflated pb&j,
box of raisins, yellow apple.
Without a comb, your hair would turn
to loose dreads—damp
with foam, with mist. Without shoes,
your hot, calloused,
hobbling feet
would be fleet, would crave
the Pacific. Without a boom box,
you’d hear other people’s music—
you’d walk the slanted shore
till you found your
music. Without some body’s love,
there’d be a miracle—
there’d be today.

Jennifer Jean is the founder of Free2Write: Poetry Workshops for Trauma Survivors. She is also a codirector of the Morning Garden Artists Retreats, poetry editor of Mom Egg Review, and managing editor of Talking Writing Magazine. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and children.


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