Melinda Coppola

twenty four may | from the inside out

Melinda Coppola

twenty four may | from the inside out

About My Blog

I started this blog to quiet the voices in my head and heart that have been whispering and cajoling and sometimes yelling at me to write more.

This is a space where all the parts of me—mother, poet, wife, lover of beach stones and furry creatures and frequent toe-dipper in the river of song, Yoga practitioner, and teacher and she-who-cooks and she-who-makes-art and she-who-loves-silence, where all the parts of me can come out to play.

I started this blog to keep myself engaged in dialogue with my soul. If what I write interests you, educates you, moves you, …well, that’s a beautiful bonus.

Most Recent Blog Post

Eloquence as Legacy

My mother Victoria took prolific notes.  Her handwriting was an elegant cursive, quite different from my chicken scratch (that even I have difficulty deciphering sometimes).  She penned lovely postcards during her travels.  Clever greeting cards with her thoughtfully  composed messages  and a favorite quote or two enriched birthdays, anniversaries, and milestones of all sorts.  She was keenly interested in the doings of the world and it’s inhabitants and would often send copies of articles about Yoga, nature, health, wellness, science, spirituality, death and dying. And she left behind a small sampling of all of it, from journals with wide gaps of time between entries to folders stuffed with newspaper clippings and little rectangular pieces of paper with those ubiquitous quotes. Her immigrant parents spoke Albanian  at home while taking night classes to learn English, yet my mother won a spelling contest at 9 years old.  The woman loved words.

The poem below is one of the recent batch of five published in The Turning Leaf Journal.



Yesterday My Mother Died Again

And I was there as before,
noted last breath,
slackened jaw, her mouth
caving in to emptiness
below her sunken cheeks.

I saw the words she’d owned
and set free—
millions to the air,
thousands onto pages,
journals and lists,
her seven address books
representing the chapters
of her life.

There were
vowels and consonants
in common-law traditions
in commas and colons,
dashes and exclamation points,

within paragraphs,
novellas, a tome or two.

They danced
in the stale air
around her lifeless body,

all that text
sentencing like chains,
not to bind but to decorate—
gaudy or subtle,
tasteful, eccentric.

When I cracked a window,
as much for her comfort
as my own,
forgetting she’d left,

the words—
in their shiny rows and lines,
necklacing her last weeks
and months,
all her decades
a bijouterie of verbiage—

slipped out happily
between sash and sill,
flew madly upwards
into the kiln of midday sun.


–Melinda Coppola





Read More Blog Posts

It Goes Like This

You smile down on me from a slightly precarious perch on the shelf above my messy desk. It’s my favorite photo of you—young and exuberantly happy, arms flung wide, dressed in colorful layers that reflect your signature style. I’d never seen this picture until your Memorial Service, but I loved

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A 2022 Story, Part 6

And why, you might be asking, is she still working on a 2022 story? We are, after all, a few sturdy strides into 2023 spring. The answer is in the story itself. If you’ve been reading these discontinuous pieces, thank you!   A 2022 Story You can read part 5

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A 2022 Story, Part 5

A 2022 Story   You can read part four here: htts://   Part 5 Little Stream wasn’t sure Lily Pond had heard her question, so she asked again. “Wee Lily Pond, do you think there is a way out of this raging river? I really miss my quiet life.” Wee

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(She is) Unbroken

Unbroken There were times I imagined you different. My young mother mind pictured you— normal, typical, non-disabled. I can’t use those words anymore for their opposites evoke— lack, absence, tragedy, and you, my child, are a celebration of plenty, a bounty of delight, a well of fascination. In fact, you

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a 2022 Story, Part 4

You can read part three here: Part 4   Little Stream and Wee Lily Pond bounced amicably against each other as they were rushed along in Big River’s mighty flow. “So, how’d you get here anyway?” asked Lily. Little felt her waters swirl with pleasure at the burbling of

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First Digit Singular

This Is What Really Happened Trigger warnings: Run-on sentences. Querulousness.   Thirteen days ago I had my thumb joint reconstructed. This was  elective and a long time coming—both carpo-metacarpals whittled down to bone on bone, naked osseous matter grinding boorishly against its equally unclothed neighbor, hyaline cartilage having fled years

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A 2022 Story, Part 3

A 2022 Story Part 3* Nudge, nudge. Tap, tap. There it was again!  A pattern, far from random. Little Stream was weary from the effort of holding herself together for an unknown number of suns and moons. Could she summon the energy to speak again? Try. I’ll try, she thought.

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A 2022 Story, Part 2

Little Stream Part 2* Little Stream could feel herself being pushed and pulled and hurried along in Big River’s watery trajectory. For the first time in her flowing life she lost track of the passage of days.  Whole moons or suns got lost when she was tugged under a strong

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A 2022 Story

  There was a little stream—more of a rivulet, really—that dribbled and dripped and murmured along through a swath of untamed land.  Many moons and suns cast their light upon her waters as she found her way around boulders and hills and the wide trunks of venerable trees. She was

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