A Tongue Mightier Than a Sword


Happy Mother’s Day to mothers everywhere. This sonnet is dedicated to my hardworking wife. Her first name, Jianhua, means “strong foundation” in Putonghua (formerly Mandarin).

“Mightier than the sword thou art,
Thou can’st pierce like venomed dart,
Time and space count naught with thee,
Leagues of land or leagues of sea.”
—an excerpt from The Pen by Mary Weston Fordham, an African-American poet, born 1862.

Many people often lament that life’s a bitch
at least that’s one of the ways they portray it
you find ways to give that a positive switch
then I don’t really mind having to hear it
Somehow some days in some ways it
seems when you make a similar complaint
about what reality should be, is, and ain’t
online or when we’re talking on a cell phone
joking when speaking to or about our adult son
about work, your feet, me putting on weight
then you quickly turn the conversation towards
talk of some new thing you saw that was great
I want to hear more of what you have in store
living with you life never was and never is a bore.

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