can’t run away… by Toni L.A. Cross

scuffed pink saddle shoes
dangling down
kicking against
a frilly white bedspread

an open suitcase
tossed to one side of
a distraught and determined
little girl in pigtails
the contents
spilling out
into a jumbled heap
of girlish necessities

in her lap are
her two favorite dolls
she sniffles
looks back and forth
between them
trying to decide
who to leave behind

she remembers
when she got
Nellie Sue
with her porcelain face
her pretty blond curls
the look
on her Daddy’s face
when she reached up
to hug him
squealing "thank you"

and she pictures
buying Anna May
when Mama took
her shopping
just the two of them
counting out the money
from her little purse
and mother smiling
proudly and saying
"you are growing up…"

she looks at
her attempt at packing
her diary
her locket
her favorite clothes
a book of poems
an apple
some bread

a strangled cry
a whimper
and then come the tears
a rush
a gush
a violent flood

she cannot go
she must stay
so the road
is forgotten
for another day
and passion
and rage
and longing
and then
she is homesick
in her very own room
til another day


buttercup’s minstrel, Written By Toni L.A. Cross on 1/6/10

O slender stem
O molten petals
O mysterious flower
Leads to treasure like dreidels

golden silk
buttercup dress
for a fairy queen


magic milk
buttercup liquid
of metallic sheen

royalty’s ilk
buttercup chalice
sparkling clean

O slender stem
O molten petals
O mysterious flower
Leads to treasure like dreidels


Runaway’s Ballad: Multimedia Poem

This is the runaway’s ballad, with a background music track and pictures added.

The Runaway’s Ballad, Written by Toni L.A. Cross 12/8/09

a girl not so young

a woman not yet grown

decides she needs the world to see

she gathers her treasures

and bundles them together

she counts out her riches

to pay for her fare


to adventure

to freedom

to find her own heart

a journey to end all- an epic of self


she has not enough

to travel in style

she buckles her shoes on

and sets out skipping

for a while at least

the sun to her back

as she runs to the west


to hope

to destiny

to find out the truth

a journey to end all- an epic of self


her hair is disheveled

dust streaking her face

she trudges along

not wanting to turn back

the road stretches long

and the sun rises high

home is behind now


to somewhere

to something

to reach the great “more”

a journey to end all- an epic of self

This poem is a part of my experiment with different styles of poetry. Click on the category to see others.
Ballad: This is an old style of writing poetry, which was used to tell stories. A ballad usually has stanzas made up of either seven or eight or ten lines, and ends with a short four or five line stanza. Each stanza ends with the same line, which is called ‘a refrain’.