Scars of a Broken Heart

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It was a warm Sunday afternoon. Jim took a small hand-ax with him as he climbed the ridge behind her farm. They had been friends since primary school, but now, seven years later she had broken his heart. Tommy Butler beat him to the draw, asking Julie Anne to the middle school dance… and she said yes.

With all his strength he chopped at the initials carved into the side of the tall sugar maple. He carved them there when he was thirteen. Now it was a bleeding scar where a heart of love once lived.

When Jim, told George what he had done, a smile crossed his wise old, wrinkled face.

“When I was your age, I had a girl who broke my heart as well. She played with my heart, then ‘she’d had it sliced away leaving a scar’. It still hurts.”

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Sarah asked us to write a prosery story of 144 words, which must include the line: ‘she’d had it sliced away leaving a scar’. from a poem by Michael Donaghy. (

I decided to continue my conversations of Jim and his friend Old George.

Join us at:

Ghosts Floating


Ghosts Floating   

Every now and then a ghost from the past

Floats through from the cobwebs of my mind

A friend I once knew breezes through

Clear reminders of events and actions

Some worth remembering and others well

Maybe not so good

Ghosts hidden for years suddenly appear

Carrying me like Scrooge through time and space

Reminding me of that first kiss

In the dark halls of the church

Feeling the mixed excitement coming of age

A broken heart from time to time

Ghosts of a friend who taught me more

Than I should have known at the time

Doing adolescent crazy things

That now can never be changed

Associating with a borderline petty thief

Bragging of his devious exploits and sexploits

Being older and more daring he plotted

Who knows how much was true at the time

Exaggerated imagination for a friends ears

Impressions that last a lifetime

Ghosts of accidents and death

Drowning in the river

A crushing cave in

Leaving deadly impressions on my young mind

Putting the fear of God in me

Reminded by parents of dangerous risks that

Should never be taken

Amazing how Ghosts can haunt us

Whether sixty or seventy they still come by

Visiting on occasion

Reminding me

Nothing is ever really forgotten

What we learn when young

Stays with us for ever


Photo: Dwight L. Roth


A Tree Grew From My Heart

A Tree Grew

A tree grew out of my heart

With roots entwined around my toes

Each year for seventy years it grew

Rings of varying width tell stories true

Years of small beginnings fragile and thin

Others of great growth and scars within

Good years of encouragement and strength

Branching out each season increasing in length

Showing beautiful new growth as new rings swell

Shedding the bark of last season’s junk

Reaching out each morning to the warmth of the sun

A tree grew out of my heart

And in the middle of winter it broke and shattered

Split right down the middle and some limbs scattered

Feeling like it would never recover

But bruises heal time recovers that broken heart

Growing ever stronger with each new season

Putting down roots drawing deeply from its source

Knowing spring will come once again one day

This is just another step adding beauty to its depth

A tree grew out of my heart

Through every season of my life

Creating nurturing nests for the young

Shading them from the heat of the sun

Weathering hurricane storms

And the fires of life

Only to come back again and again

And now I am here in the winter of my life

This oak that grew for the past seventy years

Revealing its colors in leaves of gold

Character comes out in flaming beauty

Knowing fall is here and winter is near

This tree that has grown out of the center of my heart

Provides a resource and life for generations that follow

Who knows what will be made of my wood

In the trees of their hearts both far and near

In the forest of the future they will carry on