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a butterfly lands on a flower
Judith Tanen & Pamela Lear
July 21, 2022

On Transitions

Poems by Revelers

I watch myself - - fighting all the changes.


by Pamela Lear

I watch my children as adults, parents themselves.

   How could this be?

I watch my mother wither and die; 

   she really didn’t want to go.

I watch my father soften. 

   He laughs more now than ever before.

I watch my husband get older;

   he’s beginning to remind me of his father. 

I watch my grandchildren becoming. 

   Yes, becoming. 

I watch my friends fade away; new friends appear

   with stages of life.

I watch my work bloom, droop, fail, then bloom again

   – for no reason I can ascertain.  

I watch myself - - fighting all the changes, 

   yet finding the only way to be is 

      accepting, loving, and graceful 

         in the face of all the unknown. 

Unforced Error

by Judith Tanen

A moment of transition:  Easy peasy.  Two weeks ago, at my daughter’s house.  I was totally unprepared for the transition I stupidly thought I had already conquered.  What was I thinking?  The first day threw me immediately into the sad fact that I was no longer in charge.  Surely, I had figured that out a long time ago, so what happened?  I fell down.  Maybe it was my feeble, unrealistic, and frankly stupid attempt to hold onto some relevance, some power, some sense of importance.  What an idiot, I was, mostly because I was so oblivious that I thought I was helping.  What did I do?  I spoke to the preschool teacher about my grandson.  Sadly, I was proud of myself!  It all worked out in the end, but it was yet another reminder of where we both are now.  She is an adult mother of two children, and I am a 62-year-old divorced woman who doesn’t really mother anymore.  All that is really fine, but looking back now, I think I am most bothered by my regression.  I am here in New York -- free, independent, doing what I want, so why was I clutching to get back into her family?  Love, I think.  And enmeshment, and wanting to go back, at least ideally, go back to when she was mine and we had each other.  Go back to having a family.  But then, I took off my pink colored glasses and went to the Strand.  Now I read.


Judith Tanen is a recently retired high school Spanish teacher in search of a new chapter.  Judith is an addicted lap swimmer, reader and artist wannabe who welcomes new connections and experiences.

Pamela Lear hails from Santa Barbara, CA but now is comfortably ensconced in Miami, FL and is happily aging into her writing. At the age of 60, she is working towards her MFA in Creative Nonfiction. She primarily writes personal essays and is working on a memoir. Her greatest joys are her 3 and 4-year old granddaughters, and she consistently wears herself out playing with them. They return the favor by providing inspiration and joy.

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