Friday, March 25, 2016

My children will never know--By Pediatrician Kelley White--United States

My children will never know

the pleasure of hopping past cow pies dried
gray in the flowering meadow, coming
close enough to lay their foreheads against
the cows’ scratchy hair. The smell of clover,
of meadow, of milk, of a sky over
the little creek behind the neighbor’s fence,
nor feel the sound of the bees’ gold humming
nor the spit flick of a grasshoppers’ fried

buzzing in a newly hayed field. No toads
startling fly-flopping from a damp crevice
in a split pile of granite. No frog’s eggs
in a milk bottle, no pollywogs legs
appearing, tadpole tails at their service,
nor even silence, a forgotten road.

Pediatrician Kelley White worked in inner city Philadelphia and now works in rural New Hampshire. Her poems have appeared in journals including Exquisite Corpse, Rattle and JAMA. Her most recent books are Toxic Environment (Boston Poet Press) and Two Birds in Flame (Beech River Books.) She received a 2008 Pennsylvania Council on the Arts grant.


  1. Kelly, thank you for the great walk down memory lane; memories that you brought back to this old lady. I could just smell the smells, see the visions of a long ago childhood remembered, when I lived on a farm near a pond, frogs, hay fields and milk cows. Those sure were the days! I really enjoyed returning to those precious carefree moments and once again capturing the joy only children seem to be able to seize from the simple things in life. Thank you for your talent and well written poem.

  2. Yes, I agree with Charlene. Reflecting back we had freedom as children, were encouraged to explore the fields, the the brook near our house. We had rabbits, and cows, big gardens, and best of all wild strawberries and mother's pies. Thank you for such a lovely poem.

  3. Kelly, this is wonderful! Having spent time on a farm, I can totally relate to all you are talking about, wonderful piece! Thanks for sharing and reviving some great memories for me, I still miss those country roads, farm houses, barns and the life that housed them all.

  4. thank you so very much friends!

  5. A well written piece. Lots to ponder here, being of an age when the outdoor life was taken for granted. Thank you for sharing. Ralph

  6. A feast for the senses and for igniting similar childhood memories.
    So happy I read your words today. Best SuZ

  7. Oh how I can relate to this beautiful poem which takes me back in time, Kelly. I was brought up in my grandfather's windmill and farm, and this brings back many lovely memories! Regards ~ paul