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  • Grant Handgis

Grant Handgis ~ Poet/Author


“letter to Sandra”

i'm writing you cause we were friends,

even though you called me a whore

when rickie feller put his hand up my dress

and made me bleed all over,

before you left to michigan last spring

with bobby howard and benjy miller.

no one says much to me anymore except my folks

but they've been drinking a lot again,

so i'm goin away too cause i don't want

to be hurt like my mother, when my dad

calls her those names and uses his belt

or takes her into the bedroom

to teach her a lesson.

and i've been kinda sick lately and

the bruises won't heal from last week

when i was late for supper on sunday.

i hear there is a place in california

that will help me with the pain

i've been having from the bleeding

in the place where i had the baby

just before it died.

Copyright 1979-2011

This was the first of a series of poems on social issues, from first hand observation of life as I saw it in action. It was also a period when irony in life became a subject that I would write about in more than one form over the ensuing forty years. It is a sense of humor that co-balances the angst of irony with personal acceptance of life’s travails. The elimination of grammatical structure and capitalization was for dramatization of the character for which it was written. The story is all too real, in too many instances, which screamed for me to write something which might address such a family issue. This focus on social expectations through traditional values became a theme for me, and many more poems sprang from this well of material.


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