The Truth I Must Invent

I’m excited to report I have a new poetry collection available. It’s entitled The Truth I Must Invent, and it was my pleasure working with publisher Akshay Sonthalia from Poets’ Choice to bring the book to fruition.

The Truth I Must Invent book cover. Cover Design by Koni Deraz; Cover Photo by Engin Akyurt; Book Design by Adil Ilyas.

You can find a print version on the publisher’s site. It’s also available on Bookshop.

The Truth I Must Invent is a collection of narrative and philosophical poems written in free-verse style. In it, I explore the themes of self, identity, loneliness, memory, existence, family, parenthood, disability, gratitude, and compassion. The work examines the conflicting web of emotions all adults face and the truths that lie in between. It also suggests that even in our darkest moments, joy and contentment can be found through resilience and a willingness to hope.

Here are a few excerpts:

Cake Mistake

Peggy made a huge mistake
when she baked a
grocery store celebration cake.
She put a D
where a T should be
in the middle of the

The customer was pissed.
But Peggy kept silent
as the irate woman left the store
without paying for her order.

Peggy’s manager docked her pay,
and yelled at her for making
such a stupid mistake,
to which Peggy replied:

“Look, I never went to college
and there’s no spell-check when baking a cake.
And I’m sorry I screwed up, but I think that D
will taste just as sweet as a T,
so I’ll take that cake home for my kids to eat.”

Camera Angle

What would I choose
if I were given a chance
to lead a different life?

What mistakes
would I correct?
What new road
would I take?

But you can’t splice
the scenes of your life
to edit the past.
You can only point
the camera forward
and zoom into the future.

Observation After Eating Out

Pity for my son swells.
Yet I feel helpless,
Unable to intervene
To make his autism
Go away.

Our patience dwindles
As his outbursts intensify.
But love does not wane.
Instead, it grows stronger.

I have only one son.
Yes, he is different.
He is noisy and
Requires constant attention.
But I am thankful for
His presence in my life.
And who needs the quiet anyway?

©2023 Francis DiClemente
The Truth I Must Invent (Poets’ Choice)