Poetry By Chuck



One day, while on vacation,  at Cape Cod,
with my wife and daughter,
it occurred to me that perhaps in all our lifetimes
we would never get back to Atlantic Ocean and the East Coast.

It was a stormy windy day,
with the cloud cover low and gray.

Our voices were whipped up and away.
Our disappointments heightened by the grey.

For we had come such a long way.
To face a tossed sea and waves pounding the bay.

My little girl jumped and capered away.
Not a bit disappointed by such a hard day.

I wanted to remember how much I loved her play.
I wanted her to remember something from today.

I wanted to give her a gift like no other.
A gift of love from her father.

A gift that she would remember.
Long past this time in mid-September.

So I thought of what lasted beyond our dreams.
The eons of time, the endless stream.

On vacation, back when my 28 year old daughter was
just eleven, we were standing on the shore of Cape Cod.  
I told her to go down to the waters edge and pick out a small stone.

She wondered...why?  
I said she would take that stone back with her,
we live on the west coast.
There she would keep it until the next time
we visited the ocean.

Can you figure out....why?

Author notes

Written June 24th, 2004


Touchof1der Moderators member
July 4, 2004
  • Damn! It looks like this one is driving everybody nuts. I'm thinking it was your way of promising your daugther that the two of you would be together again, eventually, to once again share your time and memories. But what the hell - I could be just as wrong as everyone else.  This one is fun. I like the way you wrote this and made everyone think and guess and interact. First time I've ever seen or read an interactive poem!
    Edited on Jul 04, 9:11 because ''.

  • stompsalot
    June 28, 2004
    To me this means taking a piece of a spectacular vacation and bringing it back. Connecting a happy memory and making it part of your life / your nature back home.
    I remember as a young child going to Florida. My older sisters would take an empty bread bag, like a prized possession. I didn't quite understand. As they filled their bags with the fresh sand from the beach, I was wondering "Where is my bread bag?" Hmmmm
    Thanks for stirring up some fine memories.

  • InxomniaXpiral
    June 26, 2004
    Well, i'm taking a stab at it, but don't laugh if i'm completely wrong: My first thought was what if you never got to go back. Atleast this way you have something to remember it by.

    Either way, i like this. Quite simple, quite involving. I felt it was something i wish i could have felt with my father. Don't get me wrong, i've had some great moments with him, but i feel they've been dulled considerably since my realization that he's no where near the pedestal i had put him on growing up. It's enbittered me quite a bit. This is beautiful though. I'd be lying if i said i didn't envy your experience.


  • kvwriter silver member
    June 26, 2004
    I've always tried to take something with me, such as a stone, a seashell, a twig from the forest, or anything with me, to take back, where I then put the object in what I call my "Treasure Drawer." I also have wood boxes for such things, but they're still for my "treasures." I taught my children to do the same thing, and the three of us have these small tokens, treasures from another place, because these treasures help us remember where we've been, even if we go there again, which we often do. But, these "treasures" also serve to teach my children, as I taught myself as a child, that we are all connected, and just like people are all over this world, and relatives and any or all loved ones may live in the North, South, East or West, we're still all connected, because distance doesn't change a thing. Tokens/treasures, such as stones, and thoughts, bring memories back to us, and when we remember, we are as close to a loved one who may live very far away, just because one thought can bring them near, right beside, us in a heartbeat. Same for a token taken, stored and tucked away from another place on earth, or even dirt stored in a bottle taken from the moon. Distance can never build walls to keep us from someone or somewhere and vica versa. Remembering is the key to closeness, and memories are like spirits in a way. But, that's not all. Even when I'm hiking in the Rocky Mountains, I might have a seashell with me, so that I might be far away from the ocean, but by having a piece of that ocean with me, I'm near the ocean and in the mountains at the same time. There's more. I gave my mother, who is battling level-3 ovarian cancer, an opal ring a long, long time ago, because she saw it on my finger during a visit and she loves opal rings; she collects them. But, I also wrote a poem to go with the ring and part of that poem stated that, "Whereever you go, you'll never be alone; as long as you wear this ring, 'cause my heart beats within the stone." And, because I can't be with her for all of her chemotherapy treatments, she wears this ring to every one of her treatments, so it helps her to know that I'm with her, all the time, in spirit, if not physically. Anyhow, this is my very long answer, or call it a theory, but this is what I think you might be looking for. As well, and I'm sorry this is so long, there have been times when I have taken a stone from someplace, and when I returned, I also returned the stone that might have been taken a decade earlier, only to thank the place for being with me all those years. But, I replaced it. My memories were good enough, or I might pick up a "new" stone before I departed again. I've carved my initials in a few trees too, especially when I used to hike a lot, and these were trees that were not likely to ever be found by another human being. But, it meant I was there, and I knew I left my mark there, even if it was only my initials carved into an old tree. That place would know of my presence for as long as that tree stood, and even beyond. It's just a different way of thinking, and of being . . . there.--Kel    (Well, now I feel as though I've written a book! Wish I could get as much written in so little time as I've done here, because I'd sure have a lot more articles and books published. LOL! Thanks for bringing me here, and causing me to ponder your little puzzle. Took my mind off some things I've been dealing with here, and that was like a breath of fresh air. As well, Chuck, I might still be way off base concerning the answer to your puzzle, but regardless, this is the way I view it, and have for years. I'd still be interested in your own theory as to the "why." If you'd be inclined to share it, I'd appreciate it. Either way, I hope you let me know, one way or the other. I like things that make me think. And, I've also enjoyed reading the comments from other people too, learning their perceptions. That's always a pleasure. Hope you're doing well. Gonna have to head off to bed here shortly. Put in a long day working in the garden. Even got some writing done yesterday, and it's been a long time coming for that. But, to be physically tired is actually a good feeling. I know I'll sleep well. When I'm mentally and/or emotionally exhausted, I tend not to sleep as well as when I'm physically tired. Enjoyed! Be well, Friend and be safe! Love, light and truth!--Kel

  • Chuck Johnson silver member
    June 26, 2004

    Yes! Exactly. But why would I want her to do that? That is the real question.
    Edited on Jun 26, 9:21 because ''.

  • cherche -d -ame gold member
    June 25, 2004
    1)if it was a wonderful vacation ...than that stone would not only give her a wonderful memory of that time , but it would keep hope alive that one day she would return to that place
    2)to show her that even if taken away from it's place of comfort , the stone would adjust to it's different environment
    3)that no matter what , the stone would always remain what it was ( a stone) just as she would forever remain what she was then , regardless of how many years would pass ( your little girl)
    Of course that stone is a metaphor , but it is driving me crazy....psssst , how about whispering it to me 

  • Chuck Johnson silver member
    June 25, 2004
    Certainly. But, this is an easy one. The clues are in there, you have only to find them.

  • Chuck Johnson silver member
    June 25, 2004 
    Fun is what its all about and a certain "awareness". A very important "awareness".

  • Chuck Johnson silver member
    June 25, 2004
    We were just visiting the East. Never lived there.
  • kittyom
    June 24, 2004


    i'm not really sure about his one.........maybe for remberance sake?.......a little nostalgia?????? very intriguing.....hmmmmmmmmmmmmm....... ~~~~~~~~~~~~Kittyom~~~~~~~~~~
  • Suspiria99
    June 24, 2004
    The perfect answer, of course, would be for the author to keep the answer to himself =) It's gonna be fun watching people trying to figure this one out. I have my own ideas, but I'm keeping them to myself LOL
  • Prodigee
    June 24, 2004
    Ok I totally have no idea why.I have not a clue in my brain as to why.But I really enjoyed reading what you had to say.
    Da gyrl magnet

  • O24376589
    June 24, 2004
    maybe to take some of the your old home with you to remember and to make your new home a little like your old one... just a thought. neat idea, lol

  • SurrealistPoet
    June 26, 2004
    Hmm.. this is one to ponder... The first thing I thought when I read,
    "There she would keep it until the next time we visited the ocean."
    I automatically assumed that you meant until they go back to Cape Cod.. But alas, there are oceans on the west coast as well.. After this realization, my mind began to work... I am still a little confused... But, my interpretation is something like, you take the stone from one of the coasts and just place it on the other side.
    Well... those are just my thoughts. Thank you for giving me something to chew on.. God Bless.

  • Chuck Johnson silver member
    June 25, 2004 
  • Yes! Tawney you have the idea.    She took the stone and brought it back thousands of miles to the West Coast so that she could toss it into the waters of the Pacific Ocean.   Never in our lifetimes, perhaps never in the lifetime of anyone who is ever born would this tiny rock make the journey from one Ocean to the other.   And.... she has done something no other has ever done to our knowledge.     What fun.    Next time you take your child to the ocean, or your choice of vacation, try to give them memories that are worth remembering...to this day 30 years later she remembers this.     After she tossed it in, I waited until she was not looking and picked it up again.  I put it away and years later in a nice looking box, I gave the stone back to my now adult daughter.   I imagine she has it still.