Child Bride? By Toni L.A. Cross

 Grossly underage marriages are far more common today than you think. In situations where the husband is much older, there is often frequent domestic abuse.

Some Facts:

  • More than 100 million girls in the developing world will be married during the next 10 years.
  • Although the definition of child marriage includes boys, most children married under the age of 18 years are girls.
  • While the practice has decreased globally over the last 30 years, it remains common in rural areas and among the poorest of the poor.
  • In Southern Asia, 48%—nearly 10 million—of girls are married before the age of 18.
  • In Africa, 42% of girls were married before turning 18.
  • In Latin America and the Caribbean, 29% of girls are married by age 18.

  • Excerpt taken from

    What are you doing

    Taking that life?

    What are you thinking

    This child is your wife?

    What do you want

    To control someone else?

    Why do you beat her

    With your leather belts?

    To crush a spirit

    Is that your game?

    To rule over silence

    A person with no name?

    Then don’t call it marriage

    This dictatorship

    Just call it slavery

    With an overseer’s whip


    Think That Thought? by Toni L.A. Cross

    A skittering concept
    Born of emotion
    Grows in rapid
    Hectic motion
    Breath caught
    Fills void space
    In a frantic race
    A second
    An unguarded neutron
    A moment of brilliance
    And darkness revealed
    A thought
    Just a thought
    And a nation froths
    They simmer
    They boil
    Deceptive calm
    Broken survivor
    Who dared to think
    That thought

    A Pitcher Full of Time… By Toni L.A. Cross


    My fellow poet Charles Martin sent me this photo of his as a photo/poetry challenge. (Make sure you click on his name, to check out some of his work!)

    Having recently watched the movie Inception, I’ve been thinking extensively about time. Thus, the two things have melded into this.



    People ask how time as we know it


    And why cruel death stole into our world

    They ask if eternity

    Is a line or a circle, meter or a wheel?

    But it is neither and it is both

    Eternity is liquid

    Within an endless, bottomless void

    There are no lapping shores of time

    There is no rocky bottom

    Its ripple-rings spread out


    Eternity cannot

    Should not

    Be contained


    Long ago in eternity past

    Whispers of doubt and deceit

    Filled the once untainted mind of man

    Pride was born

    And stretched itself

    Like a cat awakening

    What if eternity was caught?

    What if it was compressed

    Into boundaries and space?

    Ageless immortal hands

    That had never known disease

    Dug into the earth from whence they came

    And scooped up humble clay

    Moist and soft

    He flung it on a wheel

    Spinning, spinning wheel.

    Man shaped his own creation

    Dampening his labor

    With the sweat of his own conceit

    Building and throwing down

    Immense and elaborate plans

    Grandiose schemes made of mud


    Simplicity struck his tired being

    And in that blasphemous workshop

    A rude pitcher resulted

    The surface he hardened

    With the heat of his burning anger

    To think that God had lied

    That eternity was now his to control


    He grasped the handle

    Reaching into the void

    He scooped up eternity

    Into his vessel

    And held it triumphantly aloft

    But some things are not meant

    To be made that small

    And unbeknownst to him

    The essence within had changed

    He grasped not eternity

    But lost it altogether

    And was left with a base extracted matter




    But generations lauded

    This failed attempt of man

    Raising a temple of sorts

    On an arid desert plain

    Guarding the pitcher

    With great blocks of sandstone

    Until time was lost within itself

    To evaporate slowly


    In this sepulcher of independence