Hour 1 — Dirt and Diamonds

Beth A. Fleisher

Hour 1


Prompt:  Write a poem about an influential woman you know personally.




Linda was born in the South, transplanted long ago to Oregon,

living in the country with husband, Bob, and inspiration-cat, Gracie.

Green fields, color-packed planters and free-form flower beds,

a homey house where you can take your shoes off, brew yourself a cup of tea

from dozens of choices, and settle into her living room couch for a chat

about anything from your kids to Black Lives Matter, work place politics to

spirituality, an inspirational book to a heartfelt thank-you letter from

one of her clients at the women’s prison.

Women mired deep in the dirt,

sometimes a hole they dug,

sometimes a hole dug by a friend or a lover.


Locked inside the facility to do groups for a few hours a day,

Linda changes lives, one woman at a time.

Women who don’t trust anyone,

especially not themselves,

women with no hope of a different future.

Or any future.

Until they encounter Linda: a petite 5’4” package of pure optimism,

a warm smile and astute blue eyes,

that ingrained Southern charm that catches you off guard.

Voice soft, inviting you to listen hard as she starts

rebuilding self-confidence and self-esteem,

day by day,

group session by group session,

until you know in your knower that you can do this!

Your past does not dictate your future,

only you

can limit how far you go.

You can discover diamonds in the dirt,

If you just do the work.

It’s okay if you don’t believe at first —

Linda will believe for you,

until you can believe for yourself.

Her influence reaches far,

But her heart reaches farther.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *