He called me “My Angel” – Carmen A. Cisnadean featured in the photograph

The Astronaut’s Box of Stars-Shaped Buttons
poem by
Carmen A. Cisnadean

They said, “you have no mama”
And I went to my box
Of stars-shaped buttons
To pray for a mother.
They said, “you have no dada”
And I went to my box
Of stars-shaped buttons
To pray for a father.

Nobody seemed to come
Wanderlust pounding within, I thought
If I only could be with the stars
So I gazed at my stars-shaped buttons
Seeing the trivial dawn on me
Until I met her, the one with words as elixir,
Who flew my soul to the stars
And life turned to the page of self-love,
There ain’t nothing fatuous
About my box of stars-shaped buttons
And the one thanks to whom
I could gaze at the starlight inside.    

They once vilified me, “nobody’s gonna love ya”
And I went to my stars-garbed sky
To thank the heavens
For stars that don’t live in boxes.
They once badgered me, “you’re a nobody”
And I went to tell them  
That I turned astronaut
Thanks to a voice that was medicine
For a man who was once an orphan
And no, she was not my mother,
She was my angel, in my case, even better.

@Copyright 2021 Carmen A. Cisnadean (aka Kraela)

For a recital of my poem “The Astronaut’s Box of Stars-Shaped Buttons,” please click below:

My poem “The Astronaut’s Box of Stars-Shaped Buttons” which will be someday part of my “A Poetess’ First Flight” sequel, was written as a reflection of a study on child development. The poem is about an orphan boy who overcomes obstacles and accomplishes great things despite any and all prejudice because of the influence a woman’s words had on his life. The power of a boy who decided to not listen to negative words but rather lean on the powerful words of a woman whose voice turns into healing for him. The boy goes on to become a successful astronaut by studying hard, believing in self, and protecting himself from the harm caused by the verbal abuse from those who turned him down rather than lift him up. The boy turns to the poetess’ words who encourage him to turn his star-shaped buttons consolation to the study of constellation and the love of stars.

From my study on child abuse, as part of my week’s school assignment: “Child abuse is extremely damaging to a child’s physical, emotional and, overall, developmental well-being regardless of the form of abuse be it neglect, physical abuse, psychological maltreatment, or sexual abuse. Each of these forms of abuse will lead to stress in a child’s life. Those children who experience toxic stress, meaning extremely stressful situations of abuse over long periods of time, can suffer long-lasting emotional, physical, and psychological damage. For instance, stress can have direct impact on the brain of a child, such as on a child’s memory when the stress hormone cortisol reduces the size of the hippocampus in the midbrain. Aside from reducing immunity to disease, resilience to stressful situations in the future, there are many other concerns to consider. (Rio Solado College PSY240, Child Abuse and Social Development section) In a study on facial displays of emotion, using two types of parenting involving physical abuse and physical neglect, “physical abuse included bruises, abrasions, or welts to the child’s body, excessive physical punishment, burns or lacerations, disfiguring or life-threatening injuries, and severe injuries requiring hospital treatment. Examples of physical neglect included failure to ensure medical care or follow through on medical recommendations, reports of children being very hungry and missing meals frequently, a child’s living environment being condemned as unfit for habitation, and young children being left unsupervised for several hours in potentially life-threatening situations.” (American Psychological Association, 2000, Footnotes section). In addition, the study proclaims that “For the physically abused child, displays of anger may be the strongest predictor of threat; however, increased sensitivity to anger could result in decreased attention to other emotional cues. The neglected child, in contrast, may suffer from an extremely limited emotional learning environment.” (American Psychological Association, 2000, para. 3). Clearly, both abused children and neglected children deal with a series of psychological stressors which could in turn impact their physical, mental, and emotional well-being as well. In a child welfare study in Illinois, in the Journal of Family Violence, patterns of trauma exposure indicated that child trauma has a wide ranging and complex structural, behavioral, and cognitive effects on brain development. Furthermore, “studies have shown that exposure to complex, interpersonal trauma is linked to a greater number and severity of functional and mental health problems both in child welfare and in other service settings.” (Journal of Family Violence, 2014, para. 3) In conclusion, as I mention on the YouTube video I created entitled “From Child to Adulthood,” with parenting and/or child-caretaking comes great responsibility and power that cannot be taken for granted. (Kraela, 2021)”

For a full reading on my personal website, click here:

For a brief statement related to child development and the importance of parenting, please click below:

Kraela (2021, March). From Child to Adulthood. [Video]. Carmen A. C. Channel. YouTube.

Rio Salado College PSY240 (2019). Developmental Psychology. Module 6.4. Parenting Styles.

American Psychological Association (2000). Developmental Psychology, Vol. 36. (5), pp. 679-688. Recognizing emotion in faces: Developmental effects of child abuse and neglect.

Kisiel, L, Cassandra, Fehrenbach, Tracy, Torgersen, Elizabeth, Stolbach, Brad, McClelland, Gary, Griffin, Gene, & Burkman, Kristine (2014). Journal of Family Violence, Vol. 29. Constellations of Interpersonal Trauma and Symptoms in Child Welfare: Implications for a Developmental Trauma Framework.

@Copyright 2021 Carmen A. Cisnadean (aka Kraela)
The Creative Visionary
Love to you, ALWAYS, just love…
always LOVE…


  • Carmen A. Cisnadean

    The Creative Visionary

    My love and passion for the written word, for the power of language and communication, has led me to receive a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and a Minor in Russian from the University of South Carolina, a school that graced me with cum laude honors. My intention was born out of an immense appreciation for language as a powerful means of communication, a vital and indispensable component of human life. Studying language and culture, augmented my appreciation for the complexity and importance of language and the written word as a whole in the context of not only human life but also social interaction. When I was a child, my favorite toy was a movie projector. I was fascinated with the process of storytelling and loved being the narrator. For me, however, it wasn’t just about the words and how the words were precisely spoken and carefully chosen, but also about the visual art accompanying the words, the experience as a whole, and the overall message which fascinated me.

    In my free time, I love to sketch, ink, draw, read, learn, research, listen to classical music, create, spend time in nature, and experiment with words. When it comes to writing, my poetry writing is very closely linked to outstanding music and fantastic visual art, both which serve as major sources of inspiration and influence in my life. I have many artists I adore, but two of my absolute favorites are the Russian artist Michael Cheval and the English artist John William Waterhouse. Two of my favorite composers of music are the Polish composer Abel Korzeniowski and the German composer Hans Zimmer, both composers of film scores, and composers like Dvorak, Wagner, Paganini, Rossini, Schubert, Vivaldi, Korsakov, Mozart, Saint-Saëns, to name just a few. When it comes to literature I love the romantics. My favorite poetess is Emily Dickinson and my favorite poet is Mihai Eminescu.

    In summary, I am a woman that believes in the power and beauty of authentic artistic expression, in the power to be a positive influence in the world. Should you desire to learn more, please visit my website at https://www.carmenthecreativevisionary.com/