Monday, June 18, 2018

The mother of hail storms

Tomato plants are shredded
the leaves on the delicate cherry tree have been stripped
from their branches,
the lettuce is in tatters and the ground is 
covered in hail.
the hoods of cars bear the scars, the once smooth metal
now decorated with dimples,
my cucumber plants are nowhere to be seen
the towering beans are battened to the ground.
by the time I realized it was serious, it was too late
to run outside, having to hold a lid over my head, 
unable to cover the plants with one hand and 
a bed sheet.
And so, when it's day again, I will go outside
to see if anything can be salvaged.
I  doubt it.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Pondering Poetry

pondering poetry, or lack thereof.
a paucity of poetry, preposterous, puzzling.
every night for years, a poem prepared itself.
I never forgot, I'd write quickly as bedtime had long since passed.
now, I forget to write, poetry pops into my head
predominantly as I pause to ponder,
not poetry,
but a photograph, a Chinese countryside
carved in cork perched on the windowsill.

Sunday, June 10, 2018


I dream of writing poems of rushing rivers,
the heat rising from the playground lots,
children jumping in and out of swimming pools.
instead i sit alone shirking the heat,
my black dog passed out on the rug next to me
I'm going through piles of paperwork,
my pen sits idle, postcards unwritten.
I'm not dreaming, really, as sometimes
dreams come true,

Monday, June 4, 2018

The top 25 in France and London

He was so happy to see me,
and I, him, riding up behind him as he
slowly pushed his walker, his small poodle at his side.

I want the top 25, he said, the top 25 things you loved,
make that 50, tell me when you come to see me.

Wine, the trips starts with single glasses of red
by the end, drinking from the bottle on picnic
vineyards as far as the eye can see,
blue skies,
baguettes, the crunch of the crust,
speaking French with old men sitting at the intersection
of the bike path and a country road,
sharing gardening tips with old men tilling their plot,
Buying a dress and sandals designed in Spain in Souillac
Bingeing on cassoulet, the real stuff, eating too much
and not getting a tummy ache.
Having everything I need in all ways
and appreciating it, including the husband.
FlexiRoam SIM card working in England,
Playing pandeiro on the streets of Bordeaux
readers, you can stop here, if you're getting jealous or bored.
but for me, to remember, no, to witness, to document,
because once my head is buried in calculations and dishwashing,
all the tiny streams of experience will flow into a river called
"It was great."

and so,
climbing a spiral staircase of stone
The view from the top onto Chateau Turenne
That electric bike, I could leave Stephen behind on hills
or anywhere.
Being moved, and reminded, in the Holocaust Gallery
a four hour kayak trip down the river in Les Eyzies,
People watching in Victoria Station
finding an escalator in the Tube station
Roses climbing up a stone wall along the route
We found water in every cemetery to fill our bottles!
Three more, and I'm sure I can do it!
Drinking beer in an English Pub with Stephen
although I prefer eating crepes in a small French village
We stayed in an apartment in Bordeaux like my Grandmother's
Last but not least, watching Stephen eat a bite of andouillette,
with the predictable response.

Great trip, good to be home.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

All I need

my feet to travel the distance,
socks and sandals to protect them.
a blouse to cover my torso
and a sweater to cover my blouse
when the wind blows or the temperature drops.
a swimsuit, in case, and a scarf or two,
because we may want to look fancy.
a couple of summer dresses, in case,
and some pajamas for the certainty of sleep.
my feet, a few clothes,
that's all I need to travel the world.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

In trouble with the Beefeater at London Tower

he hates when people say how cute he is in his costume,
this stern, yet rotund, smiling, yet commanding figure
in his military uniform in his role as one of Yeoman Warders,
a Sovereign Guard, a Beefeater, for those who drink gin.
Many times medalled, Afghanistan, Iraq, 
not one to mess with, and I did, leaning in a bit
too close, inside the allowable circle
knowing he could have knocked my head off,
all for a goofy photo for my love.