The Locked Box - Poem By Cathy Nerujen

End of a perfect day, after our picnic –
the forest so alive - and so were we -
anticipation bubbling –
(took my eye off you for a moment)
When in a clearing, I found a box –
locked tight – no key –
(and not liking mysteries)
I tried but couldn’t open it.

image by Cathy Nerujen
image by Cathy Nerujen

What’s a box doing locked?
Keeping people out?
Or keeping something hid -
buried deep inside?
Should I keep it or discard it?
Was this a challenge? Was it a test?

(Not liking to be kept from something...)
I smashed the box with a rock –
no difference –
it lay awkward and damaged –
refusing to yield
its secret.

I was curious so I took it back to our clearing –
but you had disappeared –
(and not liking to sit and wait about)
I fumbled with the lock and a hair pin
to no avail.
Beautiful old wood
and rusty metal.

Sun re-canting its raison d’etre –
and trees were closing ranks -
(and not liking to stay out late in
the evening chill - )
I could not find you, so I
took the box home.
Halfway through supper you
rang me.

“Where are you?” I asked –
the line was bad, but you were
distant and confused –
you were in a strange twilight place –
and feeling lost with no way out -
then you said you needed me.

You were crying and upset –
(and not liking to hear you cry,
and suddenly knowing what to do
because I love you -)
I put on my coat
and grabbed the box –
drove back to the forest through the rain –
I found our clearing – now a swamp –
left the box there and went
looking for you –

I called your name – I called
it a hundred times –
worried sick, I got the torch from the car –
when I turned and there you were.
dishevelled, wet and confused.
We kissed and hugged like crazy –
it was a relief to find you –
I fussed like anything and put you
in the car.

“Where were you?” I asked finally –
we had become separated - you got stuck in a dark strange space –
you felt lost - alone and confused – but after a time
you heard my voice and
(your eyes are beautiful when you look at me)
now we found each other.

Making sure we had everything – I said
“let’s go home, baby” – feeling a
warm wave of love coming from you,
as you snuggled on my shoulder,
I kissed you again -
and we headed back.
(And not liking to leave out anything
I didn’t bother with the box -
I knew it would be open anyway...)

Copyright (c) 2011 to 2016 Cathy Nerujen. All rights reserved. This is part of a selection of romantic poems taken from a soon-to-be-published poetry collection by Cathy Nerujen, scheduled for 2016. See more about poetry at www.flashstarmagazine.com

Behind The Poem

What follows is a brief explanation of this unusual poem.

Source

Behind The Poem... The Story.

The inspiration for this poem and it's curious surreal story inside it - came from a conversation with hubber Blaise25, better known as Marifel Dungo, poet and my girlfriend, and with Cassy (Cheeky Girl).

This strange and unusual story was somehow destined to be a poem. I labored over this poem for several days. Producing nothing I liked, and not feeling that rhyme suited the subject, I temporarily abandoned the poem in frustration. Call it writer's block, but thankfully, later on Mother's Day, whilst enjoying our day out on a picnic, I found the inspiration and I wrote it again, very differently. My Mum's recounting of my getting lost in a forest as a kid, was the inspirational story for this potry as it stands, (a recalled story that everyone found very funny) when the one who got lost had been me. Thankfully I lived to tell the tale, and changed things around and reversed characters, as poetic license and imagination allows. And I wrote my poem as you see it now. So I did "unlock" that box after all...

The locked box is a "trope" for something, or perhaps things - but that is for you to discover, as I want to let you enjoy the mystery here. Sometimes poetry allows to travel further and what we end up with is more than poetry.Thanks to you Mum, and Fehl and Cassy for inspiring me - and more besides, and this is dedicated to you all.

Please leave a comment and let me know what you think...

Source

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Comments 57 comments

bellawritter23 profile image

bellawritter23 5 years ago from California

This was a great write I enjoyed every word, had me guessing the whole time I wanted the box to open!!

smiles :)

bella


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi bellawritter23, wooh you are first to comment here, take a bow. :) Thank you for reading my poem, it had you guessing? Really? It does have a mystery romance in it. Smiles back at ya. :)

Cathy


bbnix profile image

bbnix 5 years ago from Southern California

The wonderful thing about your writing Cathy is the point of love from which you write - just incredible!!

Perhaps, I'm wrong, but the box seems like a part of my life, the ADD type that I am.

I'm easily distracted and passionate too - I often find little lost boxes where I give my all too, and yet I always realize so slow, my sweetest wife Robin, has yet again been left all alone in the dew.

But a quick note I must say, my friend, she's always there true, and much like your love my friend, a bit disheveled and blue, but I always do find her again having finally a clue...

Voted up and awesome, my friend..


acaetnna profile image

acaetnna 5 years ago from Guildford

Oh wow Cathy I have so missed you. This is fantastic and so worth waiting for. Love shines through everything doesn't it?!


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Will, thank you for the comment, and yes, love always comes back to me like a boomerang. Heh. It just does that. Distractions are okay, long as they don't take us away from what is important. Poor Robin needs to be spoiled, sounds like she needs cheering up. Look after her. Well my poem took some liberties, and I try not to become too blue (she said, trying to hide her avatar picture. LOL.)

Nice of you to vote me up too, Will. :D

Hey acaetnna, you missed me. For some reason that makes me smile, I guess its nice to be missed in a way. Life has a way of dragging me away from my poems and my Locked Box poem was wrecking my head. I am happy with the final strange result. LOL. Yes, love shines right through everything. We both have that in common with our poems. Snap! :D


bbnix profile image

bbnix 5 years ago from Southern California

Thank you Cathy. Currently, I'm spending much quality time with Robin and she's doing well. Your right she certainly deserves to be spoiled...

Thanks again, my friend... :)


Rochelle Frank profile image

Rochelle Frank 5 years ago from California Gold Country

Yes, an interesting mystery. Perhaps one locked inside the of the mind.


Darlene Sabella profile image

Darlene Sabella 5 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

Awesome, and I felt that I was right their with you. Tell Cassy I love, and I love your poem. Rate up love & peace darski


blaise25 profile image

blaise25 5 years ago from close to you...

Wow I am lost for words. So beautiful! So haunting and I was right all along. The locked box is a port key. A thing when touched you'll be taken to another place and time. Then you'll wonder who you are..what you want. Then it would feel like you want to stay..suddenly you're lost. Feels like you left something but the fact is they've been there all along. The locked box may be a symbol of hidden secrets or wishes, too. I told you sweetie, my imagination is insane LOL

Anyway, this is once again one of the best poetry I would love to read again and again along with my favorites :) And I am keeping this inside my special box. ;D It's not locked btw. I am lame with keys. LOL

Thanks so much for dedicating this to me, too. Did your mom read it already? It's golden forever. :) Mwah!

Me rating up though beautiful and awesome aren't enough :)


Nikkij504gurl profile image

Nikkij504gurl 5 years ago from Louisiana

the box wasn't really a box...but a symbol of the treasure you already had. the moment you realized she was lost and needed your help you realized how important this person was to you, therefore opening the box without even knowing it.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Will (BBNix): yes spoil the special lady in your life, and see the love returned to you, hopefully. :)

Hi Rochelle, yes it is to do with the mind and memory and displacement, and a few other things... I am so glad you liked the mystery in it too. :)

Hi Darski, oh thank you for this, bless your soul for saying that. :) Cassy knows and so do I. You are a star. :) You are a true fan of poetry, and a great writer too. Love & peace & hugs always from us. :D

Hello Fehl (blaise), I finally got it finished, after some false starts admittedly. Yes, the box is a cross between a portal and also a trope for something very simple... And you got it. Heh. Oh no, your imagination is just fine, you are as crazy as I am. (!) Me joking. But perhaps the more we understand friendship and love, the more we understand the poem, and the meaning of the box too. I don't want to give away the obvious secrets to the meaning but I know everyone will figure it out.

I just want to write about love in all kinds of new and exciting ways, and the comments in your hub about the locked boxes made me think hard. People should read your recent hubs to see where the inspiration began... ^_^

Thank you for the comments, and yes, I like your comment about the special box, I am smiling now... (I put my keyring in my wallet wrap.) Aw, I am happy to dedicate to you, Fehl. :) I told her about it, but her and Dad don't have internet... I have printed it out for her.

Your ratings and comments & everyone's comments mean a lot to me. You are all wonderful, thank you for this.

Thanks Fehl, you are so supportive and awesome. Mwah! :D

Hi Nikki: well done, you are correct. And the symbol is one that we can open any time, so it is not an ordinary locked box, but something far more...

And yes, the person who is lost, she is very close and special too... Gosh, you are all figuring out my Locked Box. Next time I will have to try making it harder to figure out. Ha! Thank you Nikki, perceptive as ever. :)


Nikkij504gurl profile image

Nikkij504gurl 5 years ago from Louisiana

hehe yay i'm smart! lol some poetry may never be figured out, but only for the poet who wrote it to know its true meaning.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Nikki, it's nice to leave some parts of the mystery intact too. Yes, some poets are a total mystery and can be enigmatic. But there is so much to discover in poetry if it is written well and can be so rewarding. Thank you for liking this. I think my Locked Box has been unlocked now. Heh. :)


blaise25 profile image

blaise25 5 years ago from close to you...

You've polished it perfectly. :) So beautiful. Your poetry always capture the readers to the scene. I felt like I've been there. Felt like you kissed me. ^,^

Your parents would love this for sure especially your mum :) XO


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Helloooo Fehl! :) Polish translates into re-writing till it shines, so yes, good analogy, Princess. LOL. Well, I love to be inspired, and I look for amazing subjects to write on and make into romantic poems. And I have found a bounty... It is so close to me. Um did you really? ^u^ Maybe I did. Sweet. Heh. My Mum loved this, and she gets it too. She is the more bookish one and loves poetry.

PS, Tina read all my hubs this week for the first time. LOL. Lasso that moon if you see it. Hehehe. ;) XXOO


blaise25 profile image

blaise25 5 years ago from close to you...

:) The locked box is a super amazing subject. Did I really what? lol ^,^ That's Minka, my owl. :D Hmmm you did? Sweet! Heh! Aw, send my TLC to your mom. Hopes she read mine :)

Wow, happy for you. My sisters just read my book. Would be happier if they read my hubs, too. lol XO


epigramman profile image

epigramman 5 years ago

...well I don't need to unlock that mystery box ....because I have you!!!!! And with every great writer - less is more - and you allow me to 'fire' up my own imagination!


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Fehl. Thankyou for so loving my locked box poem. Oh the owl is yours. I thought it was a smiley thing. They are better than the sideways thing. :) That one. But they are fun too. Heh. Aw, I will tell my Mum. My Dad has now read three of my hubs. It's official. LOL. Tina said "Dad, do you know thousands of people have been reading Cathy's poetry, and you haven't read even one..."

Anyway, today is a happy day for me. ^_^ Thank you for the TLC. You are an angel, you know that? XOX

They finally read your Toss and Turn. Yaaaayyy. LOL. Are they on the internet? Get them reading all your hubs, Fehl. Word of mouth. That how it works. One customer and viewer at a time, they build up, that's what Cassy says. Oh sorry about the email mix up. Damn I should red the manual again. Heh. XOXO

Hi Colin: thanks for checking out my Locked Box hub. Yes, you have me. :) I am easy to spot, the one with the smallest poem count on hub pages, but it is growing slowly. Ha. I'd refer "more is more" right now, but thank you for that. Well your imagination is awesome, so keep going. LOL. XO


Amanda Severn profile image

Amanda Severn 5 years ago from UK

Great poem, and totally engaging. I love metaphors, and this is one of the best.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Amanda. Thank you for the comments. I am glad you found my Locked Box poem engaging. Yes, I love metaphors too, and being able to "dress up" a love poem in a new or unusual way is always a delight to me. Have a great day, Amanda.


The Suburban Poet profile image

The Suburban Poet 5 years ago from Austin, Texas

I like the little parenthetical remarks that tells us about yourself and what drives you to do things.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Suburban Poet, oh my parenthesis marks are my calling card in a lot of my poetry. A hang up from reading too many Emily Dickinson poems as a kid. Glad you like my poem. Thank you for the nice comments. :)


Dim Flaxenwick profile image

Dim Flaxenwick 5 years ago from Great Britain

Awesome. A really beautiful tale. Sorry for being so late coming to this poem. All the best comments have been said.

Take care xx


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Dim, thank you for the comment. Oh I am rubbish at advertising, that's probably why. I always appreciate your comments. You take care too. xx


MrDSpade2 5 years ago

Good read, Astra Nomik, although i'm still waiting know what was in that box, lol...


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi, I'm glad you liked the poem. Um, if you don't get it...then try reading it again...you'll figure it out.


kimberlyslyrics 5 years ago

Astra, this poem is fabulous, as are you. I always love reading you and don't do enough of it.

bravo

up/awesome/beautiful and shared

kiss


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Kimberly, oh thank you for the fabulous comment. (blush) I have some new poems planned for this weekend. I'd have them published already except I got kidnapped (and spent a night in a hotel...very willingly, I admit. Heh.) So much for my crazy mind. Thank you for the vote and more. You are wonderful. Have a sweet day and please enjoy your weekend. I have been enjoying your posts on Facebook lately. :) Take care. (kisses too)


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida

Not a wasted word. Beaitiful!!!


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi GNelson, thank you for the nice comments. That is sweet. :)


the pink umbrella profile image

the pink umbrella 5 years ago from the darkened forest deep within me.

i felt like i was inside of this piece. worthy of publication, no doubt.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 5 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Pink Umbrella, yes I had a few people say similar here. It seems to be one of those poems. And yes, it is being added to my forthcoming Poetry Book. Thank you for the comment. :)


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Some peeps left comments at my website. Thank you for this so much. I appreciate it. :)


carolinemd21 profile image

carolinemd21 4 years ago from Close to Heaven

Beautiful writing Astra. You're a great writer. Can't wait to see new poetry from you. :)


Cheeky Girl profile image

Cheeky Girl 4 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

Babe, did you digitally remaster this or something? This is beautiful!!!!!

The photos are stunning! The Locked Box is superb! Going to put on Facebook! Need to share this awesomeness! :D


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Oh I updated this pictures, I wanted something better reflecting the hub and the locked box deserved this. LOL. Digitally remaster? It's not music or a CD, Cass. You are funny. :)


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

I fixed the comments thingy as you asked. Sorry I did not see it earlier. Thank you as always, Cass. XO


Marina Lester 4 years ago

I loved the metaphor of the box, and getting lost in the woods did a lot for my imagination. But what I really loved was the ending, made me smile. And we all thank you for all the love you put in the world.


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Marina. Thank you, and yes the locked box is a trope for something. It does have that effect on the imagination, but that was something I hoped would happen. It's supposed to make the reader think a bit. Heh.

Aw thank you for the nice comments, Marina. You are so kind. Have a sweet day. :)


unknown spy profile image

unknown spy 4 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

Gee..this is fantastic! Truly a gifted writer, this is a masterpiece. Love it so much Astra.

Voted up and all.


STEVEW13 profile image

STEVEW13 4 years ago from Norwich, England

This awesome, came across it quite by accident and enjoyed what was a fantastic read, you write so well :)


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi unknown spy, what an unusual name you have. I'm glad you liked the Locked Box poem. I was inspired by some friends and family to write it, and it was not my first attempt to write it either. It's funny how writing can ccome to us like that. Thank you for the votes, and I enjoyed reading your hubs too. :)

STEVEW13; thank you for the comments, Steve. You are welcome to read my other hubs, as they are mostly poems, and all romantic.


NikiiLeeReyes 4 years ago

You always find ways to touch my heart, and send the world swirling before me.

How lucky I am to have found and your work

-Nika *


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Nika, it's funny you saying that about this hub. This is the weirdest hub I think I have written. It was a request from Fehl and Cassy. And it took a few tries to get this poem the way I wanted it. LOL.

Aw, you say the sweetest things about my writing, Nika. *Hugs you for this*

Listening to some music by Charlotte Gainsbourg just now. I hope your weekend ia good, Nika. :)


NikiiLeeReyes 4 years ago

Oh my gosh! let me correct myself

*How lucky I am to have found you* and your work*

Sorry! lol. Must've been typing so fast..

It is weird, but its different; and sweet.

I dont like secrets either; its wonderful.

:Hugs back tightly:

Hmm Ill have to check out Charlotte Gainsbourg on youtube when I have the chance.

I hope you've enjoyed your weekend and is prepared for the work-week ahead...

Im not! lol.

ttys

-Nika


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Nika, you are a wonderful friend, and thank you so much for the lovely compliment. :)

I think that works both ways as I am very glad I have discovered your amazing hubs and your writing too. There is more to you than being a great writer. And I love that you can infuse your writing with those parts of who you are and those special qualities.

Thank you for the hugs. :)

Oh you have got to listen to "5.55" her first album she made with the French group "Air" and some songs co-wrote by jarvis Cocker of "Pulp" and the guy from "Divine Comedy". It is one of my favorite albums.

Oh wow, you're not prepared for the week ahead? LOL. Ouch. :)

Have a sweet day, Nika. :)


BeyondMax profile image

BeyondMax 4 years ago from Sydney, Australia

Very beautiful, captivating mystery, engaging metaphorical labyrinth, so clever! Love it a lot =)


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Thank you Max for the nice comments. My Locked Box poem was a special request poem. LOL. :)


Ken S Harris profile image

Ken S Harris 4 years ago from Richmond, KY

I love it! It takes a great deal of courage to be a poet in today's society - it's just not what's expected of writers. And I admire that! Keep up the good work!


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 4 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Ken, thank you for the comments. Yes, this was an interesting poem with a nice mystery added to it, and a brain teaser. I take courage in writing from the heart. I take courage from the power words can have in poems and other things. Words are amazing. I envy writers and poets like Seamus Heaney, who get to become professors of writing and the creative writing process. They can teach us so much...

The poetry sections in my local bookstores are brimming with great books of poetry. Poetry is alive and so full of possibilities. Every writer should follow her (or his) heart. That's where it starts...


Cheeky Girl profile image

Cheeky Girl 3 years ago from UK and Nerujenia

This poem always just gets me Cathy. That brilliant awesome imagination of yours was working overtime when you wrote this. Checking out some cool hubs here today! Right now, you're it!


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 3 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Cassy, remember I showed this to mum. and it took a few reads for her to um... figure it out... You how things can set off an idea... :) Our conversations can do that sometimes.

Please publish that Narcissus hub soon. I am impatient. :P


Katya Mills 2 years ago

I like how your poem reads, like a story, and heartfelt also. thank you


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 2 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Katya. You are right. This is a story, and yet a poem as well. It took a few attempts before I got this into the poetry shape I wanted. Some stories are surreal and abstract but then so is the dream that inspired them. Poetry is awesome, because we can do anything and go to any places in poetry, and poetry is very free. Thank you Katya for checking out my poems. I have more here, so feel free to read my poetry work. They are mostly romantic and love positive. :)

Cathy


Sannel Larson 2 years ago

Cathy, you're such a talented and wonderful writer. This poem/story is so beautiful and sweet. Absolutely spellbinding!

I'm so happy that Cassy shared this on fb, otherwise I may have missed it.

My love and hugs,

Sannel


Astra Nomik profile image

Astra Nomik 2 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space Author

Hi Sannel, thank you for the lovely comments. Coming from an awesome beautiful writer such as you, I am humbled. Oh I wrote this poem "The Locked Box" based on a conversation with Fehl, and this was my umpteenth attempt to write it. It's very abstract and unusual. Thankfully it's just how I want it now. I think it's nice to stretch the imagination now and then.

I saw your new book

"You are perfect just the way you are" - on sale on Amazon today. What a great message you are putting here in this book for young people, Sannel.

I am so happy to see your book writing career coming good for you. You really deserve it. Gosh, you are so productive and you have so many great titles now, Sannel. Cassy says a warm cheeky hello from here. We all hope things are good there and wish you happiness and good health always.

Lots of love and hugs from us, and from me.

Cathy


girishpuri profile image

girishpuri 2 years ago from NCR , INDIA

CATHY a wonderful piece of poetry. God bless

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