Faye Arcand

How Can a Poem and Its Meaning Make a Difference for Anyone?

I was recently asked to read a fellow writers book of poetry and then offer comments to be used as blurbs on her book cover. I just completed it and am overwhelmed how powerful poetry is and how we can tell a story with so few words.

Her work stirs up deep emotion in me and a protectiveness over the child she was. You see, she was a victim of the 60’s scoop. Taken from her young mother’s arms right after birth and raised by people who didn’t necessarily have her best interests at heart, she made her way through the world–never quite fitting in. She lost her culture. Her language. Her Family.

The reason I share Carol GoldenEagle’s poem with you here is because it’s a reminder to all about how powerful words are–both positive and negative. Her words will resonate with the child within you.

Reading a poem and letting the words wash over you can be healing. Writing a poem of your own can help too, as you reach deep within and find your truth.

I know… I know….Poety is yucky…we had to do it in school and it sucked…. But, it’s different now. I not sharing a limerick or ditty, I sharing a story written as a poem. Just try it for your ol’ Auntie.

Words and the sharing of stories with our children and those around us is powerful and keeps the stories alive. Carol was taken from her young mother in the hospital shortly after being born. Her biological mother died in a car accident before Carol ever had the opportunity to meet her.

Read the poem. Let me know what you think. Here, Carol is using her words to thank her adoptive dad. Enjoy.

Carol GoldenEagle

The following is the first poem of Carol’s that I ever read. I’ll now be a lifetime reader. It made me weep (be warned). This is an homage to her adopted dad. Thank you for letting me share it.


Racist uncle knocks at the screen door

it is made of old wood that used to be part of a barn

torn down years ago after being damaged by wicked winds

seemingly ever present on the plains

Daddy answers

Hey what’s up?  Just put on a pot

come on in

the discussion with his older brother

amicable for a bit

gas prices are up

sure could use some rain already

did you know you can make soup from rhubarb?

But small talk comes to an abrupt end when racist uncle feels entitled

to foolishly venture towards the unspoken

the off-limits

the forbidden

Not still thinking about adopting that schwartze    I hope?

Don’t call her that

No, I’m serious     you are only asking for trouble.

I am warning you drop it

Be reasonable, I know she is like a pet to you   but really.

She is my daughter    you arse

She’s an Indian.

That doesn’t matter

What the hell?  There is no need for you to take her in like this.  For Christ sake    even her own mother got rid of her.

I am warning you.  Stop talking.  Apologize for that.  This is my daughter you are saying these things about

I’m not apologizing for anything.  Shit!  What’s wrong with you?  Defending a goddam little Indian    for Christ sakes?


this exchange lasts less than one minute 

but stays with me a lifetime

and in my young life

I never saw anyone so upset they were shaking

both of them     for differing reasons

Okay that is it.     If you cannot say anything nice then get the hell out of my house   and don’t come back until you can apologize!

With a slam of fists atop a round formica table

cold coffee splashing  to mark the spot

mark the day

racist uncle wears a look of shock


and slowly turns to walk out the old wooden door

he never visits our house again

It is the first of many times I remember 

Daddy stepping in

deflecting a hit 

sheltering me from the harm and the hatred

I never got a chance to say 

thank you

for carrying me on your shoulders

for lifting me out of those battles

the raging war where I never enlisted

but found myself living

I also thank Creator for showing me

love is colour blind

so was Daddy

ever my hero 

never remaining silent

in times of need

I miss him

Rest in peace

winged warrior

I will tell good stories about you

Auntie Lesson

What we need to remember is that everyone has their own story. It may not be evident at first, or at all. Everyone, regardless of who they are, should be allowed to share their truth. I hope you enjoyed Carol GoldenEagle’s poem and it helps you understand a time hidden in recent history that many still fail to see. The words shared in a poem can resonate with many and give voice to those who feel they don’t have one.

13 thoughts on “How Can a Poem and Its Meaning Make a Difference for Anyone?”

  1. That brought tears to my eyes Faye. A powerful poem?story? That brings many emotions to me. A poem? I guess poems come in all shapes and sizes. I wish all poems were so direct. I might like poetry more haha

    Sent from my iPhone


    1. Welcome Back! Yes. it brought tears to my eyes too. I’ve come to learn that poetry is presented in so many ways and I love it. The short, emotional, cut to the chase scenes and gut reactions. I love the direct too. I don’t want to ponder for twelve days what something means…lol. Thanks for stopping by Caryn. It means a lot.

  2. Everyone has their own story indeed, and sometimes said stories can really change the lives of others, as far-fetched as that sounds. That alone is enough reason to write. Thanks for sharing Carol’s poem, Faye!

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