James B. Earley

(5 April 1934 / Mounds, Il)

Distant Haze


There was a knock upon my door
…In…the light…was she
Grab your coat and in the rain
Come take a walk with me

So many times we’d hop the bus
To…A faraway…picture show
Days of Summer we’d take our poles
…And fishing…we would go

We’d sit atop the earthen bank
…Reflections in…the rippling…water
Laughing and talking…the two of us
…Without…romance…to bother

Graduation night…A distant haze
I’ve struggled with…so much
…The day…we went....our separate way
And failed to keep in touch

…Inquiring…of her…sometime ago
From a relative I chanced to meet
'A prostitute…on drugs…she is
……….Working…some city street'

Stinging words…….in that reply
An avalanche…of tears…inside
The pain of which I won’t deny
And now…I hear....that she....has died

If perchance…it was…her darkest hour
…When that path......she chose......to take
Then…may God please…forgive…the call
………..The call……I failed…to make

Submitted: Monday, February 25, 2008
Edited: Monday, June 03, 2013

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  • Shirley Hanley (1/31/2010 5:35:00 PM)

    Wow James... talk about destiny taking us down different paths! Life is interesting if nothing else. I felt your pain in this one James.

    Shirley (Report) Reply

  • Seema Chowdhury (3/23/2009 6:51:00 AM)

    the second last stanza is so beautiful.... i don't have words to express. thanks alot for sharing this poem with me. (Report) Reply

  • Bonnie Collins (3/16/2009 10:12:00 PM)

    A very touching piece of work. Filled with much sadness, but the saddest truth is, this can all most be anyone in this saddend world of sin that surrounds us... Very moving a 10.... (Report) Reply

  • Rani Turton (3/16/2009 4:08:00 AM)

    Sad poem with regrets to cloud memory. She also could have gone another way after all, so you should not have that kind of guilt. She also could have called. We choose to live our lives in a certain way. (Report) Reply

  • Jasmin Whyte (3/16/2009 3:49:00 AM)

    It seems to me you two enjoyed some of the happiest times of both your lives, James. (Report) Reply

  • Karin Anderson (sorry can't vote or comment) . (3/16/2009 1:04:00 AM)

    A sad and reflective poem that has left you wondering why there was such an outcome and whether you could have helped in some way. It is written with a beautiful style and genuine concern for another human being. Lovely work. Karin Anderson (Report) Reply

  • Marie Shine (3/15/2009 2:49:00 PM)

    A very poignant, beautiful poem.Well written and full of memories.As in life, all is not good and all is not bad but somewhat a mixture.We must forgive ourselves for the not so good and leave it behind to do better next time.I love this poem James. It is very human. A well deserved 10 from me. THANK YOU for sharing. (Report) Reply

  • Fay Slimm (3/15/2009 12:58:00 AM)

    Tragic consequences are sometimes unavoidable James - - and we have to take the view that we are not wholly to blame for outcomes - this is a sad poem - but beautifully written -- best wishes to you from Fay.... (Report) Reply

  • Lynda Robson (3/14/2009 3:42:00 PM)

    Poignant, and I sense guilt that you never rang her, but what becomes of people is not always to do with fate, beautifully written James, thank you
    Lynda xx 10 (Report) Reply

  • Linda Winchell (3/14/2009 1:22:00 PM)

    Sometimes even a call won't change what happens to people. Great poem! Possibly one of the best I've read in a long while. God Be With You! Linda (Report) Reply

  • Christine Kerr (3/14/2009 12:18:00 PM)

    Im keeping this one, It is beautiful. Seems to follow suit with my 'We're not The Same Kids. Thankyou for sharing 10+++ (Report) Reply

  • Chitra - (3/14/2009 11:38:00 AM)

    Thought provoking, these strong words...make me feel the sense of your loss (Report) Reply

  • Catrina Heart (3/14/2009 10:50:00 AM)

    A distant haze written in a very touching narration or say pictorial of a very sad story......nicey penned.10+++++++++++ (Report) Reply

  • Estrella Baldemosa (8/18/2008 12:52:00 AM)

    heart -wrenching story...celebrate the happy moments and i think that's what she wants...a very touching poem. (Report) Reply

  • Bonnie Collins (7/27/2008 12:56:00 AM)

    James this is trully touching, and so tender... You have managed to bring tears to my eyes, as your potrayal of what is unfortuatly all only too recoginized in todays society.. This is very good... Your flow of your words brings out the compasion within you.....

    Bonnie (Report) Reply

  • Shirley Hedrick (7/25/2008 11:22:00 PM)

    James that was very touching..We never know what will happen in our lives..Or what the past will bring. (Report) Reply

  • Tanny Quin (7/21/2008 1:52:00 PM)

    How perfect the first line'There was a knock upon my door'! Sometimes we
    miss it and need to forgive ourselves. enjoy your flow of words and capturing
    the heart of description. Phebe (Report) Reply

Read all 25 comments »

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