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Meredith Poems

ICSA Today, Vol. 7, No. 2, 2016, 18-19

Meredith Poems

Katharina Meredith

(Poem accompanying Freedom and Shit Happens)

2006. I went to my first ICSA conference.

I presented a painting, neat and pretty.

I myself was neat and pretty.

The painting was called Freedom

What a pretty word.

2015. I went to my second ICSA conference.

I was mad: at the world, at my parents.

All the pain had broken loose.

A wave that was brutal.

I was able to feel again.

This is my painting now.

This is me now. Full of the past.

Full of the present.

With a future.


(The painting is now titled Shit Happens)

Poem accompanying Disappearing Mother)

“I am” is not wanted
“I am a mother” not allowed

“I am” is not what I deserve anymore
“I am a child” not true
a distraction, a negative
a hindrance to my parents
unfit to parent
unable to give a part of myself to my children
invisible to my children
invisible to my parents
just follow the rules
don’t feel, don’t cry

don’t mourn for your mother, your father, your brother
push them away
for love that’s true, love that’s strong
could keep us human.

About the Artist

Katharina Meredith grew up in the Lichtoase, a small, new-age cult in Germany. From ages 10 through 20, she watched her parents act like strangers and remain quiet as abuse happened; and she felt invisible to them. Later in life, she had trouble connecting with her own daughter; the fear of the past created a glass wall, allowing neither negative nor positive feelings to flow freely. Smashing that wall has been her hardest and grandest achievement to date. Katharina also created the website, with a large focus on recovery for second-generation adults (SGAs—people born or raised in cults), and she blogs on She is a Web designer, artist, and photographer. Her work has been included in the Phoenix Project at ICSA annual conferences and can be seen at