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Daffodils Dark Dripping Dank

(In Response to a Prompt from Rachel Deeming

By Randy Wayne Jellison-KnockPublished 2 months ago 3 min read
Top Story - February 2024
Daffodils Dark Dripping Dank
Photo by Peter Wimberg on Unsplash

She stands there silent,

not fifty meters from my post,

dark daffodils dripping dank

in her hands.


Staring blank.


Not one step closer

she knows ‘tis forbidden

though what she needs

is here.


With me.


They’re watching my duty,

observing my all,

though my heart may be yearning

to reach out.


I cannot.


I know what she wants,

what she needs from me,

standing there staring

quiet & still.


Shalom. Salam.


Dark daffodils in her hands,

dripping dank with hope,

with promise forestalled,

hungry with thirst.


Freedom denied.


Why does she stare,

this child barely five,

all her tears spent,

dried on her cheeks?


Streaked & dirty.


Daffodils dark,

from whence have they come,

ever dank with despair

coldly dripping?




Averting my eyes,

ignoring her plight,

all the world watching,

eyes upon me.


Dangerous times.


Our leaders have told us,

drilled into our heads,

it will be our destruction

should I waver.


Who’s with her?


I see only shadows,

daffodils dark,

dripping dank down my throat,

hard to swallow.


I shoulder.


My rifle in hand,

I wave her away,

still she stands staring blank,

staring through me.


I’m breaking.


I’m wanting to run to her,

hold her so tightly,

to say this will pass,

soon be over.


Knowing better.


My leaders won’t barter,

hers will not bend,

this apartheid between us

ne’er ending.




Do I see something else,

held so tight in her hands,

within daffodils dark,

dankly dripping?




I look through my scope,

see a shade something wrong,

in the hands of this child,

pull the trigger.


She falls.


I kneel down beside her,

remove from her hands,

only daffodils dark,

dankly dripping.


Eyes still open.


Return to my post,

heavy heart but full knowing,

that no one was watching

her falling.




Begging the moment

when all this will change,

but ‘til then I’ll hold onto

these daffodils dark dripping dank.


Never leaving.


Written for all those on both sides of this Palestinian-Israeli conflict, especially for those innumerable & all too often unnamed as anything more than collateral damage. And for those who cannot imagine peace from either side, may our hearts, hopes & realities soon be changed, for truly we are sisters & brothers one to another.

social commentarysad poetryFree VerseCONTENT WARNING

About the Creator

Randy Wayne Jellison-Knock

Retired Ordained Elder in The United Methodist Church having served for a total of 30 years in Missouri, South Dakota & Kansas.

Born in Watertown, SD on 9/26/1959. Married to Sandra Jellison-Knock on 1/24/1986. One son, Keenan, deceased.

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  3. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  1. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  2. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

Add your insights

Comments (38)

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  • Rebekah Crawleyabout a month ago

    Absolutely heartbreaking, and so powerful. Well done, this can’t have been easy to write. Hopefully one day we can have peace on earth amongst all humans 🤍

  • Natasha Collazo2 months ago

    I really like this. Reading it flowed like a river!

  • Hannah Moore2 months ago

    Oh this is so traumatic, beautifully evoking the humanity of the situation.

  • Daphsam2 months ago

    You wrote a very thought-provoking poignant poem here. I could feel the words as I read. Sadly, beautiful.Well done.

  • olymoolla2 months ago

    Your stat is challenging your story is so beautiful you write like this you will be a great writer I wish and yes one more thing please open my vocal id and a story come later

  • This one was hard to read knowing and thinking of the innocent lives lost in all conflicts

  • Salomé Saffiri2 months ago

    Thank you

  • Anna 2 months ago

    Congrats on Top Story!!

  • Tiffany Gordon 2 months ago

    A sad reality. Stunning work! Very very well done Randy!

  • Beautifully written but so heartbreaking Randy 🤍 Why do we never bloody learn?

  • Test2 months ago

    Hats off to your work! Keep it going—congrats!

  • Manisha Dhalani2 months ago

    My heart breaks. Thank you for writing this. Well deserved top story.

  • Caroline Craven2 months ago

    Gosh. This was so good. Really highlights the futility of war. Great piece.

  • Babs Iverson2 months ago

    Heartbreaking!!! Congratulations on Top Story!!!♥️♥️💕

  • Lamar Wiggins2 months ago

    This surged the emotions on so many levels. I don't think I have watched the news in over a year because I know there will be at least one story that will ruin my day. I do get news notifications on my phone and pick and choose what I want to read but will definitely continue avoiding televised news. So sad. I loved your poem. The title and the repetition of it was very effective. Congrats, Randy. Great work!

  • Back to say congratulations on your Top Story! 🎉💖🎊🎉💖🎊

  • Melissa Ingoldsby2 months ago

    The repressed trauma and grief represented in this piece is agonizing and truly devastating, what a tragic and very unique piece

  • Novel Allen2 months ago

    Israel, Africa, Caribbean, Russia, gangs on streets everywhere. It is everywhere. Sadly we can only pray.

  • Leslie Writes2 months ago

    Oh my goodness, Randy. This was so moving. Why must people dehumanize one another over and over?

  • L.C. Schäfer2 months ago

    This was even darker than I expected. But refreshing to see compassion for the ordinary people on both sides.

  • Colleen Millsteed 2 months ago

    Wow Randy, this message hits the reader hard. Well done my friend.

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    That was so well done. The soldier on duty, his empathy with the little girl, and his fear are all so strongly portrayed. This is heartbreaking, real and raw. Well done.

  • Oneg In The Arctic2 months ago

    Collateral damage. That’s what innocent Palestinian lives have been water downed to. A dark poem indeed.

  • Gerard DiLeo2 months ago

    Very "angst'y." Very powerful. Never have I felt so helpless to watch unfolding tragedy. Well done.

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