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Growing Up and In

Jen Selinsky

Copyright © 2007 by Jen Selinsky

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Cover Art Copyright © 2010 by Jen Selinsky


*Not every poem included in this book is dated in chronological order.  This is not an oversight on my part. Rather, I have made changes and substitutions over the years.



It’s just a wonder of science that

You were ever created, but your

Knowledge doesn’t always reach out

To the best players in our society.

To them, your claims are inconceivable,

Yet you are one of the most famed

Thinkers of the twentieth century.

Not many people who I know can

Quite “do the math” in their

Own minds, yet many would

Think it an honor simply

To have met you and shake your hand.

However, the sad fact that

You’re no longer with us

Still remains, but your work

Shall be remembered by many

Great minds alike…

*dedicated to Albert Einstein


Will you still need me when it seems,

As if I’ve drifted off to a faraway land?

Because all the times are changing,

And I have nothing better to do.

A vacation of sorts would be the ideal,

And I will not be happy until I walk

To the ends of the earth.

Please tell me that you will

Not be so dependent as to rely

On me for every next move.

I know you better than that

And see you will get along

Just fine—wait and see!


Do we not bleed when you prick us?

Do we not have the same biological

Functions as you?

Even though some of our anatomy is

Different, it doesn’t mean that we cannot

Equal your standards.

Don’t you dare try to strike us if

We decide to speak our minds or

If you think our mild actions need to be controlled!

As much as I love men as a whole,

There are still a few that I bring myself to hate.

I know that our society is getting better,

And that we are protected by a common law.

But, I must do more than shake a

Disappointed finger at those of you

Who think that we are only property

And sex objects—just because there

Were female scholars fewer and

Further between, doesn’t mean that they

Aren’t as powerful, or they never existed!

It’s people like you who erase their records

And try to take their immortality.

Are we just walking breasts and wombs

(To the likes of you) with which

To produce and suckle your children?

That is the most ludicrous thought

That anyone could ever decide

Just wait until all our

Fires start burning—

When we act like “little robots,”

Gone completely out of control!

The south shall rise again but only

Because you place

Us so much lower.

(We’re) against

The union of such

Right-hand buffoons, whose

Opinions have shot us down from

The skies and deprived

Us of our rights.

They take away the rights of all

The good men as well, but not many

People know that,

And it is high time

That they must be informed.

Now, the so-called “radicals” will

Not rest until the positive results

Outweigh the rest.

The skies open up and call out

Our names again.


Your indelible image has

Embedded itself in my head.

What was all this crazy talk

Of you deciding to leave?

I never thought that you would

Have the courage to say so

Because that wasn’t part of

The original plan.

I have to let you know what

Everything is about so that

We can both follow our dreams

And give everything back

That we allow.

Put away the face value, and

Let everything else go by command;

That’s the ticket to our lives!


He kept me up all night,

Cryin’ an eyeful of big old tears.

I asked him, “Baby, what’s the

Matter with you?” and he told me

‘bout all them fears.

Just like the day he broke away

And called himself a fool.

Honey, I know what you’re thinkin,’

And it sure doesn’t break the rules.

Dry those tears away ‘cause

I know what life’s all about.

Honey, you gotta stay right

By my side ‘cause I can give you

What you need.

Those other women can’t

Protect you and give you lovin’

Like me.

So you better stay with me

‘Cause I can give you

What you need!


The Party

All throughout my life,

I have waited for a guardian angel,

And I got my wish over four

Years ago.

I’m glad that I can be here today

To witness the celebration

Of another (your brother).

If you did not have such a love

For me, then I wouldn’t be

Here today.

We have seen so much together;

Thank you for your love!

*dedicated to Chris LoBue


Even if you are unhappy with most

Of my decisions, please keep in mind

That you’re not the one to blame.

Nothing that you do can be wrong,

And the words from your mouth

Are meant to be encouraging.

Don’t get upset at the little things

That happen because they take no

Toll on our love.

You’re the only one who can

Truly make me happy, and you’re

The only one who can really make

Me cry.

My whole world revolves around

You and how you feel about me.

Please tell me that nothing will come

Between us because I want our love

To last forever.

Even if God gave me only

One reason to live, I know that you

Are certainly worth twenty lifetimes.

Let me live out the rest of my days

With you so that nothing can

Go wrong in our lives.

I try to make you proud in everything

That I do so that I can

Feel good in turn.

Thank you for all that you

Have done for me!


You gave me the alternative to

Postpone the election because I had

No time to cast my vote on you.

Just let me come back some

Other day so that you can win

My attention and validate

My claim.

I assure you that all the votes

Are in your favor, and nothing

Is going to change the public opinion.

Once my mind is made up, I’m

Staying there for life.

But who wouldn’t want

To stick with best candidate,

Even though no one else can

Do a thing for themselves?

Now we will announce the

Winning results…


Thank you for all the love

You’ve given me, even though

I may have taken it for granted.

Thank you for all your support,

Even though I might not have

Thought you cared.

Thank you for being the best

Mother you could be;

You’ll get no argument from me!

*dedicated to Toni C. Selinsky


You gave me the alternative


I never had a golden chariot

Or a silver spoon.

Don’t you know that I have

Worked for a living and earned

All the good grades that I have?

Don’t tell me that you are jealous

Because you have no motivation;

Most of the opportunity you had

You almost threw away.

I do admit that you work(ed) hard,

But it was only for the paycheck.

Why do you play (the part of)

The hypocrite and chastise me

For the things that you do?

Perfectly charmed my life would be

If you did not interfere.


Waiting beyond the depths

Of time, to find out where you’ve

Been before.

You may say that I’m being

Too intrusive, but I have to

Get my facts straight.

Cooperation on your part,

Right now, would be a great

Help at this point.

The pain will be over soon,

And we can resume our

Normal lives and forget that

Any of this has ever happened.


I came so close to shutting the door

In your face, and you came so close

To being out of my life.

What you did was simply not funny;

Everyone could back me up on that claim.

Any more of these stunts would have you

Kissing the pavement, so I’d watch out

If I were you.

The votes, right now, are not in your favor;

You’d have to clean up your act to win me

Over again.

My heart is not a toy, and my body’s

Not made of steel; you can’t make me

Do these things (unless you want to fight).

It’s my God-given right to be here!


Oh, here we are, back at the

Same old place during the

Same old time.

Nothing much has changed,

Except for the things that

I did not want to leave.

Something exciting is bound to

Happen, but I may not be at

The right location at the

Right time.

You’ll just have to wait and see

When all these things are

Bound to happen because

Our time has yet to come up.

Patience be us with us now.


When are you going to grow up,

Little girl, and start a life of your own?

When will you get these rock fantasies

Out of your head?

Get a career and start a family;

Just think of the man you

Used to see.

He’s getting married the next day.

My musicians are so passé,

And no one thinks of their

Talent anymore.

Forty-somethings with lives

Of their own, waiting for their

Children to turn out just like them.

Oh, why can’t they be young again;

Why can’t I be young again?!

Oh, damn it all, their obsessive


They obviously want to make something

Different out of me because I’m not

Good enough in their eyes.

Some sexual object or some foolish girl,

Who’s a bitch if she thinks about herself

Every once in a while.

No matter, they will all see the light

When I’m dead and gone—

Water carrying me slowly down

The river; I’m come undone,

Come to this dramatic ending

What more is left to say?


Let me direct you to the corner

Where we can take things

Really slow, yeah, S.L.O.W.

Time will not stand still for us,

But who are we to have to

Rely on such ridiculous medicines?

It only brings us an excuse to think

We have nothing to look forward to.

Now your hand is on my shoulder,

And I like it just like that.

All the pretty colors pass right

By us, as we find ourselves

Left in the dark.

No matter, because we have

Already learned to improvise,

And this lifestyle, I’ve learned,

Is already suiting to us.


You have seen many things

That my eyes don’t usually

Allow to bounce from one person

To another.

A potential setup for disaster,

Sometimes, people don’t know

What I have in my mind and

Up my sleeve.

People have to watch when

They see me approach because

No one quite knows what I am

Capable of doing.

Sometimes, I go two feet for

Others to know what I am

Doing, because they are all too

Wrapped up in my actions.

Only the swiftest actions

Can catch up with what

I’m going to do.


To My Special Friends on This

Special Day

Oh, this once I can say that I did

Something quite worthwhile

And momentous.

Dedicating just a small fraction

Of my life in order to

Make someone else’s better.

I am glad to have brought you together,

My friends, I am glad to share this

Opportunity in your lives.

No matter what harsh cruelty

Was thrown at me at an earlier date—

In a previous state, it is comforting

For me to get to see you together.

It actually warms my heart

To detect such a presence.

For once, I can raise my head to the heavens,

And finally thank God and all my lucky

Stars, for allowing me such a splendid opportunity!

Tears I plea to let me be as this overwhelming

Happiness has taken a residence in my heart.

And, now, the Lord bless you and keep you,

My friend, as your hearts fill with love,

And your feelings strengthen by the moment

Oh, I have partaken of such tremendous joy

Now that I know that two of my best friends

Are truly happy!


Green is no longer the color

Of envy for me.

It does not lead me to hate,

But it leads me to the

Mystery of things that I have

Yet to discover.

I can only imagine the infinite

Possibilities, especially the ones

That have started since the

Beginning of time.

It’s amazing how we started off

Virtually without a clue, and

Saw the progress, which has

Followed us into this century

What else can the rest of

Earth’s existence bring,

Even long after mine has expired?

Only time will tell…


You don’t need to know why

I love you; just know that I do

To be quite honest, I don’t even

Know the reason(s) myself!

Please keep in mind that I have

No reason to let you go, even

Though I hardly know your name,

Or how you came into my life

Such a strange sequence of events

Has led me to believe that my life

Has taken me in an odd direction

Maybe you’re such a great reason

For this bizarre transition,

And maybe this is all some kind of


We’ll have to find out someday soon…


Just how prepared are you into

Thinking that you are ready to

Go into battle?

I see you have your back

Facing the world, so be prepared

For trouble.

I do not know that it is so easy

To think of these things

As a common occurrence, and

You are lacking so much in

Common sense, that you think

The world is ready for your


You, too, have to be placed under

The same structure as I because

Not everything is as it appears to be.

The world may not miss you,

But a loss is still a loss.


Anything remotely resembling

Our conversation will remain

Behind closed doors.

No one has to know, no one has

To know that I’m still alive.

Contrary to the growing public

Opinion, I see myself as an

Individual in our massive society.

If you do not like it, I tell you all

To find a new kind of mentality;

The one you have adopted seems to me

To be outdated and infamous

To the point besides—giving you

Nothing new to see.


Catch me in a loose whirlwind,

A fond embrace; you know how

To flatter (me) and how to bring me

Down at the same time.

I hate having my tears stain my cheeks,

Just before I am about to say

That I’m through with you forever.

And, just like a gift from God,

You came to my rescue, right before

I went and did something drastic.

Once I’ve recovered you, go back

And disappear into the night—like the

Elusive creature that you are.

It frustrates me so much when

You give me your act of stupidity

And helplessness, because I am

Really the part that you pretended to play.

Sometimes, I would like to tell you

To fuck off and disconnect the program

That allows me to talk to you, and

Other times I would like to invite you

To jump into my arms.

Stop playing these foolish, mindless games—

Either take me as I am or leave me the

Hell alone.

I don’t need this from you,

Or anyone else.

Consider this a last fair warning

And take it into what little heart

You have.


What things we could do together—

The stones we could overturn just by

Unlocking our minds.

It’s the beginning of time, and the

Possibilities are limitless.

Today, we could discuss the origins

Of man and how all these

Things came to be.

You know that I would like to

Talk to you, but we haven’t even

Formulated a language.

All this time to think of

Something original, but

It’s not as easy six-thousand

Years later.

Mankind needs to get in everything

While it still can because it won’t

Be much later, when the copyright

Laws are going to come around

And make us all give up

The great ideas that we have.

I could not steal another’s work

And keep insisting that

It’s my own; it goes against

My code of ethics, but people

Back then didn’t mind if you

Took anything of theirs.

It’s almost as if it was as natural,

As the rising of sun, or the setting

Of the moon.

We can continue this conversation

Soon, but now we must rest

Our weary minds because we

Have a long eternity ahead of us!


My Gaelic Heritage

As a child, I saw this day

As just another excuse for green

Decorations and food, but those

Impressionable days of youth

Have long since disappeared.

And, recently, it has been brought

To my attention about my

Gaelic heritage.

I’m interesting, belonging to

One of those nationalities that

I’ve always wanted to have

(One of an English-speaking

Country, perhaps a bit too

Much underrated).

I am part of Irish descent,

But I have never seen the country

From which my father’s

Ancestors came.

Neither my sister nor I are

Ashamed to admit it

I don’t know if people have all

That much to be ashamed of

These days.

I come from a strong breed, who

Is never afraid to show their

True heritage.

Let me speak for my part, as

A whole, only to say that I, too,

Stand up for your beliefs!


Thank God I found you

On that desperate day when

I thought that I wanted to

Rid the world if my existence!

Crying, naked, and vulnerable,

But my incessant sobbing

Did not fail to make me notice

You, reaching out to me

Through the screen.

Tears still falling down my cheeks,

Wondering what you

Are about to say.

Sputtering words, flinging curses

At myself out of my mouth,

Further pinning this hideous

Creature to shame.

No doubt, you played the part

Of an angel, rescuing me from myself—

Such reckless tendencies.

You transformed this being from

An empty soul to a creature of light

And love.

You, being this beautiful spectacular

Entity, who has given his time

To such an unworthy beast of burden.

That day I can say you saved a life

That was going nowhere

And instilled in this failing

Heart a sense of being, thus

Giving me a new light and

Character to look forward to—

Reaching up to infinity and beyond,

The start.

This light inside me is rapid,

And it’s growing.

Ever since the day you extended

Your hand, I have had this

New feeling of hope

And new recollection of the tides

That flow through my body.

So this is what it is like

To finally experience joy!

Rapture beyond my wildest dreams.


What price must I pay,

If any, in order to get what

I really desire—

To have all this hatred put to an end

Those fools, those scoundrels have

The whole world thinking in

A terrible direction!

They impose until no pressure

Points are left, and they leave us

So that we feel vulnerable

And humiliated, crushed underneath

The massive jaw.

And those who are not deterred will

Have to fight, for what seems like

The rest of their lives, for something

That may never be resolved.

Underneath the swinging pendulum,

Our existence is still in peril;

Perhaps I shouldn’t have started off

By pointing my finger.


So cold, just when I thought things

Were going to get easier, I find out

That I have to face the perils of

The outside world.

I am aware of my German heritage,

But I do not think that I contain

Any Viking blood.

Thor would look down on me in shame,

But I would prefer to be associated

With Athena.

(At least, in the Mediterranean,

They get to be warm.)

Where will I be six months from now?

The heater will be shut off, and I will

Greatly anticipate the warmth of the

Following morning.

No more having to duck in cover every time

I feel a cold front appear, but I’m not sure

It’s worth it to suffer the chauvinism

Of my male counterparts,

Who inherit our money when they

Marry us and want us gone when

Important company is over.

The Romans weren’t much better,

So let us forget that area, even though

I hate the cold—

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