the sound of your heart


i wanted your story to end like this




-both of us looking up at the light that spills into your room

streaming across your bed

-kissing yout face.

my head on yout heart ear listening to its music

while you stroke my tangled hair like you had done many times before.

the sound of your heart

my first and last lullaby.

you close your eyes as if to sleep

and i hear the final notes of your song.











J. Hamilton












in the wake of spring

rain pic

It is spring

and the rain spills its large drops on my bare legs,

sandled feet.

In hair

loose in a pony tail

that sits across my shoulders.

On my face,

where tears

go unnoticed

in the down pour.

It is true what she says,

that rain is a kind

of letting go.

It is so much nicer than the sun,

she often says.

Maybe if I wait a while

I will listen to its music

and slowly

let go.

And accept

two deaths

in the wake of spring;

-my mother’s parting-

her cold

alabaster skin, pale like the lilies that filled my room when she died.

and the second death –

when my heart knew it was over

and I was left with pieces

of myself I had to put back together.

J. Hamilton











In my hair

on my face,




At the very top of a cotton bag

filled with your clothes


a beige summer hat with a butterfly stitched into its fabric.

I remember you in this hat

sitting on a patio

with sunlight dancing across your face.

And your beautiful

oversized movie-star glasses


your delicate features.

I managed to keep those glasses

along with your summer hat

your floral tops

a cotton nightgown

that you were saving for summer months-And

a flannel nightgown you wore many times,

-I remember hugging you in.

And a small box of treasures

from Italy;

including two orphaned earrings that I hope to turn into a pendant,

something to always remind me of you.

For now

I cannot sort through the contents of this bag,

but I know when I do

Your perfume will envelope me

like the scent of stargazer lilies

that leave their scent

in a room they once occupied.

By J. Hamilton










Dedicated to my mother – butterfly


I have walked this path

many times before.

In spring before the trees leafed,

in summer

when shadows and fireflies filled the air,

in fall when the smell of leaves turning lingered on my sweater long after.

in winter, once again.

a january night

steeped in darkness.

I have felt alone before but this feeling seems different.

Yet the trees

though they sleep in their drowsy charcoaled  outlines


in their own shadows across the cold cement

and the stars

blinking in a vast  sky of onyx,

surround me.

I am alone yet

a part of this sleepy



In a single breath

I become

this landscape. – J. Hamilton


for my father

I watched you breathe

a breath at a time,

the day before you left.

I remembered the legends  you loved to tell

on the red clay you spun on your potter’s wheel.

Pegasus for my 15th birthday.

Smooth black paint

on a red baked amphora.

a winged horse,

the son of Poseidon,

god of the sea.

I wondered if when your breath stopped

you would be free

to fly

to see Mount Helicon

and at last

live high up in the night sky

among the constellations.

By J. Hamilton