In The Cracks

One in a series of poems about life in, relegated to
and ending up between the cracks.

she came
quietly – hidden
no highly anticipated
a mere beginning
of a life concealed
subdued, invisible –
loved on in the cracks

embraced by
strong arms of
a community
which always
lies low
avoids suspicion
keeps little ones close
fearing scrutiny by
the coward, the faceless who flings
crude disrespect at those in the cracks

lithe wisp in blue,
with lightning speed
outdistances, outshines
outperforms them all
yet recognition is denied
with patronizing platitudes –
unattainable for the
neglected and undesirable
relegated to the cracks

noble tenacity, nurturing
without prejudice –
connected in the cracks
where water collects and
organisms grow, ever widening
making room for more
glimpses of expansion, if no-one
treads them down
sprays them down
mows them down

there she lies – wilted,
motionless – in the heart
of what should have been
protected space
arms empty all around
wailing to heaven for
a promising baby girl
now out of reach
still outdistancing them all
soaring beyond the cracks


“there will be miracles”
they say
many cling to hope
some mock, others grow
dark with the bitterness
of it all
in the private place
where blood runs freely
they weep, as no one without
notices those within the cracks.

© Julia Penner-Zook, 2017
Photo Credit: Stacey L. Rhoades
Taken at Magnolia Farms, Waco, Texas


6 thoughts on “In The Cracks

  1. This is very moving and as a woman who has been relegated to the cracks during my lifetime, I understand it completely. There is only one thing to do and that is to never give up! Thank you so much – wishing you a beautiful Thursday and weekend ahead…janet :)x

    Liked by 1 person

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