“between shooting people
he writes poetry” i say,
(yeah i Do have a weird fantasy
at times), but can’t you picture him,
grey, full hair, chubby fingers,
scribbling letters in a
black wrapped notebook,
(with a pencil– 4B
on the graphite scale)

to relax a bit
when business is
harder than expected, (like right now
when Jason Statham’s
in his way)

we need our islands, right?

three pairs of eyes on me,
fam shakes their heads–

we watch “Safe”,
near the border, gaps
in every bone, her suitcase

leaned against
the ballet mirror in her room,
i’ve yet
to smuggle love notes in
between sanitary items, socks
& all the raw excitement of
studying for half a year
abroad, i’m slingering

between continents
& later, as night falls

in tar-black blankets
on me, he draws magic circles,
each a pond
with fresh, clear water
gurgling from the ground,
after he loved me,

“are we safe?” i ask

“remember what he
answered Mei?”

“we live today” i say,

“we do”, & that i think is
the best answer ever


(in the original english version of the movie “Safe”, Jason Statham answers the little chinese girl’s Mei question “Are we safe” with “until my dying day”.. in the german version he says translated “we live today” – if you haven’t seen the movie yet, I can really highly recommend it, it’s fantastic..)…and daughter’s flying to Sydney next monday, she’s doing her abroad-semester in Australia and that is a fantastic opportunity…smiles…it’s OpenLinkNight at dVerse again…my pleasure to serve drinks behind the bar…would be great if you’d stop by… the party starts at 3pm EST


79 responses to “Safe

  1. Claudia, I don’t believe this could happen. I just dropped by the Pub after a month away, and titled it “LIFE IS NOW, BABEEE!”

    Next, I come across your excellent words, ending with “…we live today.” We’re looking at the same moon, Ma’am!

    Australia for your daughter. I love New Zealand, also…Maybe right now, two of the best places to live.

  2. dang it how did i know steve was going to beat me to it…luckily i am not the kind to shoot people…nor do i have stubby fingers but…smiles…some beautiful pieces of life in this…the smugling of those love notes…your dau’s suitcase, and you somewhere between excited and sad to see her go i am sure….the intimate moment with your husband…beautifully crafted claudia…smiles…

  3. Hey Claudia

    Some of the top opening lines uncannily strafe my OLN poem for tmrw
    but then you take it your way and intergrate the other picture into a world
    that i recognise as being yours (or at least the poetic version that you
    share so well:)

    the personal insight and close character

    allow for a connection and a smile 🙂

    saying goobye to your daughter
    will be a little sad but what an experience she will have!

    marvelous 🙂

  4. i do so love how you translate your real life into poetry with emotions from love and passion to the joint excitement and anticipated loneliness of your daughter’s time in Australia. so wonderfully Claudia! i am envious of your talent!

  5. Wonderful poem, it feels rather fragile while trying to be strong…but the ending is superb…we live today…that’s it really. I haven’t heard of Safe but I will have to check it out…and I’m sure you’re daughter will love Australia…it’s fabulous but then again I am rather biased. 🙂

  6. Very cool that your daughter will be studying in Sydney, ClaudiaI! Oh, what a beautiful city to choose! It’s a fav of mine. How nice that you will put some love notes in for her when she arrives. And yes, indeed, we do live TODAY. That definitely has been the theme of my thinking for quite a while now. All we have really…ever. I wish you a beautiful today and your daughter a good flight.

  7. Claudia- So tender and loving, filled with a mother’s apprehension and lots of love… I so enjoyed this!

  8. Again, those intimate family moments…shared so freely, weaved so wonderfully…this one could make me cry as I think about my own little one growing up so quick…but I’ll take it a day at a time and cherish every moment…and I’ll check out the movie too…see you soon!

  9. I like the snippet of your family life ~ This is an exciting time for your daughter, like that smuggling of love notes in her toiletries ~ We live today, a great motto to live by ~ Will have to check out the movie ~ Happy Tuesday ~

  10. so much life woven into these words… and so much love. what a great opportunity for your daughter, ours actually did the same, she loved it there.

  11. The poetry of every day is evident in your words, as are the love that fills your life and your home. Hope your daughter enjoys Sydney.

  12. The lines: ‘i’m slingering / between continents’ esp as they bridge two stanzas, are extraordinary ~ love the evocative nature of ‘slingering’ ~ fab new word Claudia 🙂

  13. ‘we live today’…I love it. Woven masterfully again Claudia. You bring it all together perfectly. I haven’t seen that movie, so thanks for the recommend too.

  14. Hi Claudia – a lot of interesting in and out – so interesting too the combination of the kind of brutal movie (I’m guessing) and the sweetness of love notes in sanitary items – all very interesting – slingeresting! Good luck on her trip. k

  15. We live today…true. I always say that’s all we have promised to us is right now. How exciting for your daughter to have such a fantastic opportunity. I hope she is safe and I hope that she has an amazing time.

  16. Love the suitcase leaning against the mirror and your mischievous note planting plan – great opportunities and great for the receiver. Thought provoking Claudia !

  17. Haven’t seen the movie, but I love that there are multiple meanings for viewers who know both languages. I get some of that in the Japanese movies/shows I watch. I also like the title. (Using the title of the movie, right?) I found myself doubting it, the concept of safe, throughout the poem. When something starts with that idea, it seems it could venture in two directions at least. When the very first lines talking about shooting people, the doubt is rooted. I enjoyed the mix of personal and imagery. Thank you for the visit and for another enjoyable offering.

  18. I really marvel at how you connected this “Safe” to your own life experiences…I have got to see that movie! Great opportunity for daughter, and wish her lots of luck!

  19. oh, so much here, Claudia. I had a mantra for years, and it was simply …”I am safe, I am safe, I am safe” clearly wanting to learn to feel that way. Your poem covers a lot of territory, like our minds and hearts, no?

  20. lovely! I enjoyed the description at the beginning. between the magic circles and the final dialogue, this end with a breathy sigh.

  21. Claudia! Love those details like the 4B pencil, and an incredible beginning line 🙂 I’ll be thinking of you, and missing your daughter–hugs

  22. ‘Carpe diem’ or ‘seize the day’ is the the way that I interpret that answer to Mei being translated into our everyday lives. Live it, and live it to the fullest, because this is the only day we are guaranteed, for now.

  23. I spent 4 great months in Sydney as an actor in 1977; loved the people, hated the flies, feared the sharks, ate kangaroo, drove on the left. SAFE is certainly one of Statham’s best films; very cohesive and well constructed. Just saw PARKER today; also better than many of his straight action movies. Hope your husband continues to heal, and continues to make appearances in your poetry.

  24. Love what you don’t say here Claudia.. slingering between continents is a fab way of catching that idea. As for the anxieties, this is perfect:

    in every bone,

    All striking many chords with me.. especially your finale.

  25. I love what you do and how you do it. You can take us to Australia and back to packing, to an intimate moment…musings and worryings in your mind…and the knowing that we have today…so enjoyable.

  26. This is so cool Claudia and snapped me back to watching this movie and following that little girl – I think both times I saw the movie I was in the air over an ocean – love it too … you capture the feel of the movie and your daughter going away so well … (an aside that’s related to nothing but an odd synchronicty for me, MEI are my Mom’s initials – which I noticed when I saw the movie – and am now recalling again as she died over Christmas, so I’ve been doing a lot of paper-work with her name etc on it …just odd, that’s all)Anyway, that’s neither here nor there – great poem as always and good to have you at the dVerse helm…

  27. Tomorrow is not promised, is it, Claudia? You are deep, and sometimes I wonder if I understand poetry. My daughter said to me tonight, you are a poet? Like you write poetry? I said yes, well I do write poetry…she said, “so you’re like Shakespeare?” and I am like, Um, no. no. Yes, today…we live, my friend. Beautiful words and I wonder if I will ever be deep enough to get it all…

  28. I like how you set your day in poetry, giving a lovely sheen to the ordinary – making it the perfect setting for the special events. 🙂

  29. safe sounds wonderful.. and your poetry, as always is lovely too.
    ‘to smuggle love notes’ – i am sure she will enjoy finding those tucked away as she unpacks..

  30. Wow the movie seems to hang on a phrase and your poems always take me “around the world”. Not seeing any movies these days and I’m caught between two places. Each day and minute requires that same strength and sense of adventure. Always love to stop by and read your poems..they keep my spirit alive.

  31. ..I felt as if I was right there…thanks for sharing the personal family time…everyone else has covered thoroughly, dissected your poem…your talent is great….all those eyes on you, too 😉

  32. Wow.
    Really love the way you bring the tension and fragility of life on the run from the film to the tender uncertainty of encroaching adulthood in family life and manage to tie them together with no visible knot. Just the one I feel coming as I watch my boy grow up so fast. *sigh* Ya did it to me again.

  33. Great work, touching look at what it means to send our kids off into the world, hoping all will be safe. I remember some of those notes from Mom in my luggage–those words mean the world.

  34. I am very late getting to the party, Claudia. Life is busy for me at the moment. I love this poem and I am wishing safe travels for your daughter.


  35. nice mixture of reflection and the movie. i typically enjoy his films. Not a huge action nut, but there’s something to the themes in his films that go beyond the stereotypical action genre. This was one of the better ones thematically, felt for that girl in this one, especially the way her heartstrings were being tugged with her mother. Really found the interpretation very interesting, how the line is altered, very neat. Nicely done Claudia. Definitely enjoyed this. Thanks

  36. When I read your work I feel like I am sitting in your lounge watching the family communicate. In this one, I felt as if I watched a film. You are gifted in the development of scenery, Claudia.

  37. Claudia, I’ve only seen one J. Statham movie, The Italian Job, but after your poem, I may see this one, because I trust your taste! When you commented on my Puerto Rico poem, you mentioned the translation aspect. Just as with this one, SO MUCH is lost when the form is English. “We live today” is not only the stronger translation; it is also more honest, even if the little girl is not as assured. Thanks so much, Amy

  38. Wonderful about your daughter. Killing, so many ways to do it…so many motivations ;o.

    I try to stay in the right now. Somtimes I succeed.

  39. Your poetry never fails to fascinate and interest Claudia. So many moves from one shot to the next, like it was depicting a trailor to a movie! This impresses me, a lot, as ever your poetry does.

  40. “We live today ” is the best to follow in life ..I loved the poem .Its good to know about your daughter..All the best…
    Thanks a lot for being so co-operative and generous..
    All smiles

  41. haha -Jason Statham’s in his way… yeah try getting past that… but the end – we do – and it really is he nest answer ever. The comfort in ‘I do’ is perennial and so eminently human

  42. “are we safe?” i ask
    “remember what he
    answered Mei?”
    “we live today” i say,
    “we do”, & that i think is
    the best answer ever…”

    Hi! Claudia…
    I really like your poetic moment poems: Where you share a “glimpse” in your personal life with human touches thrown in for good measure.

    I like the poem [“Safe”] because it’s have a moment Of bitter-sweetness and Godspeed to your daughter too!