Honor of Wendi Winters–Poem for Healing

A pro-active poem for healing

In honor of  Wendi Winters

By Nadja Maril


June 28th2018

The Facebook post says mark me safe

I’m safe, here in Annapolis Maryland

I’m safe, I’m safe

Did you hear the news?

White man with long gun and ponytail

An angry vigilante

Glass shattered at the newspaper office

Several people down, possibly dead

But mark me safe


Such a tragedy

Did you know anyone?

Do you recognize the names?

Five people killed, five souls

Did you know anyone?



My friend Wendi Winters

My writing colleague Wendi Winter

A  prolific and tireless journalist.


Wendi wrote about people

Happy people, lucky people,

People with a cause to promote

Houses, fashion, recreation, the arts

Teen of the Week

A Veteran to be honored

A spectacular home to admire

The United States Naval Academy

The Bay Bridge 10K Race

Sailing regattas, Parades and Fireworks

All part of Wendi’s beat.


Writer, photographer, Girl Scout leader

Publicity and Event Consultant

Former model and fashion expert

The woman who volunteered to chaperone

Just about every teenage event at our church

She served on multiple committees

Ushered, greeted and prepared snacks

The perennial volunteer who always showed up.


It’s not easy to be a newspaper journalist

Few jobs, long hours, low pay

No one bothers to read what you write

And now it’s downright dangerous

Grow a thick skin to shield you from criticism

And start wearing a bulletproof vest

You’re the one they’ll blame when truth is revealed.



Who will fill her shoes?

Tall, slim and fearless

Laughing at the challenges

Taking pictures, always taking pictures

Dramatic, chic, daring

Passionate about her children

About causes for social justice

Organized and precise

Never taking a vacation

Balancing a tight budget

Embarking on adventures

Savoring bread and wine

Music and beauty.



Mark me not safe

Not immune to crying

Mark me not safe

I’m sad and afraid

Of the destructive hate

Infecting the minds of those

Angry enough to hold a gun in their hand

Angry enough to take another’s life

Angry enough to think it’s okay

To steal a mother from a family

To steal the future from a child

To shatter a community with violence.

Wendi with Hat

Wendi Winters-, one of the 5 victims of the June 28th Shooting in Annapolis.

My daughter’s prom dress

Last night I wore my daughter’s prom dress to a formal gala. And I got plenty of compliments. “What an absolutely beautiful dress,” people were saying. “It’s so gorgeous. Fits you like a glove.”    The original intention was that it would fit my daughter Alex like a glove. And it did. It was too big, when she purchased it three years ago, so she had it tailored to perfectly hug her figure. A few months later, she left for college. And everyone knows what happens your first year of college.. you gain a few pounds.

Alex is taller than me. by two inches, and she has a very nice figure. But she can’t get back into the dress, so it is hanging in her closet  at home and I keep borrowing it. I like the color–a soft olive green and the beaded shoulder strap. It’s not that I don’t have other gowns I could wear, but wearing her gown makes me think of Alex. And I miss her so much, that it’s almost as if she were with me when I’m standing in a crowd or out on the dance floor. Plus people keep complimenting me on my excellent taste, and I get to explain it’s really my daughter’s taste. She’s the one who picked it out, not for me, but for herself.

“And how is Alex?” They ask.  She’ studying hard, I say and I get to brag a little about her courage in attending a college so far from home and her serious intent in pursuing a career as a physician’s assistant which means a pre-med curriculum.
Are there other mother’s out there who get to wear their daughter’s gowns. I don’t know, but I certainly consider myself lucky to have a beautiful daughter with great taste and to get to wear her clothes. And yes, sometimes she borrows mine. It’s a two way street!

Nadja wearing daugher Alex's prom gown.
Nadja wearing daugher Alex’s prom gown.