Cover a balding head with a
purple and yellow pom-pom from her high school days.
white and black paint to cover a few shaving cuts,
whatever happened to his lovely beard,
she is lovely, with or without her mask,
her black cloak dating from high school.
his black cloak from middle school,
old costumes never go away,
I'm wearing my apron and cooking pumpkin seeds,
the kids are busy trick or treating
in other neighborhoods.
If there are to be costumes, we must don
I know I have the easy life.
the sun shines in my window most every day and
as I bike to work, my lunch settled into the bottom of the
bag a dear friend provided for me, leaves crunching under my tires,
I know I'm lucky, I have an easy life.
I'm eating fresh cherry pie from a lovely neighbor,
my jeans fit just right and
I got new shower curtains for the downstairs bath.
my bed is soft,
I get hugs when I want them
I just got back from visiting a dear friend.
I have such an easy life, there is no hardship,
my children are healthy and independent,
the dog doesn't bark when we're away.
the only thing I would change is Bella's habit
for rolling in stinky things.
The flight attendant goaded us to laugh at his terrible jokes
The only thing that would be free on this flight
I knew this, but still didn't laugh
I stretched out across three seats and drank my
$7 red wine, adequate for the task.
We flew in low over Minneapolis, lights
Dancing over the runway, the pilot executed
A perfect landing.
My friend arrived at door #2 as soon as I texted her
Fifteen years ago we hugged good-bye
It was good to hug hello.
Sometimes it's money.
When I walk inside the drab building
When I walk inside my windowless office
And the sun is shining outside, or it's raining
Or snowing, but it's ....outside
Where I want to be.
I can convince myself this where I need to be
If I imagine the whirring sound of an ATM
Except it's my computer and every few minutes,
A crisp bill comes out and drops into my purse.
Payment for borrowing my brain for a bit
And I think of what I can do with that money,
A trip to Mexico in March,
An electric bike,
Savings for sunny days when I don't have to go
Into a windowless office in a drab building.
Adventures, visits to friends and family,
Food on the table, flute lessons
And French, and it feels better somehow
To be in that office.
Just keep that cash machine
I lost again
In spite of having a smart partner
Sitting across from me, her cards
Held close to her chest.
I had hoped for better, had hoped to
Hammer the two white males on the opposite
Side of the table, so to speak.
We lost but we laughed along the way
And on on the ride home, when I said it was all
About luck, he told me that every card game takes
Skill, and I don't have it.
this is the outcome of first setting eyes on the Rocky Mountains,
of gazing back through the rear window of our 1968 Packard
while heading home, east to Chicago.
I never called it home except in name alone
333 South Highland Avenue, a place of mostly unhappiness,
a shell to hold books to keep me entertained, to live in another world.
and this poem, written a day later than planned, is the outcome of
the squirrely nature of internet connections on the second floor
of this old house,
this old house that is home in all ways,
where a poem starts to write itself and gets paused
for no real reason except for the above stated vagaries.
and so life traveling across the plains in a Packard wagon,
throwing up out the back window since I always got stuck
back there and so car sick,
I ended up here in the beautiful Rocky Mountains
where I belong.
we could eat chocolate chip cookies while
watching the Trump-Clinton debate
but I couldn't walk the dog without falling off the curb.
I admit that before checking my injuries I
checked to make sure no one saw me.
yes, my hand and my hip hurt
and all the cookies are eaten so there is
nothing to ease the pain and embarrassment.
speaking of embarrassment, does that man have
no shame, making faces and spewing lies,
not even signing up to accept the election results,
maybe he has fallen off too many curbs.
I'll keep him,
he has a generous smile
and ambles along amiably with whatever
or whoever comes his way.
he makes a mean margarita and knows
how to grill like every man should.
he hugs me at night and tells me I'm beautiful,
even when he says I think too much,
he says it nicely.
I've kept him longer than any other
and it's not just that I'm too tired to go for
He's the best mate for me.
bodies dancing at a distance
a side kick sails over the other's head
as he bows, then springs forth with a full
frontal kick as the other side steps
as they have for centuries,
practicing for battle,
never touching the ones
Is it worth it
to trot out your old things
to bring to a second hand store,
the ones that can still be worn, that should be
worn, that still call to be loved
by someone else -
how about those books that still look new
that should be read by someone else,
not left to rot in a damp dumpster to be
churned into a new roll of toilet paper,
these things seem too precious to throw away.
that goes against my grain.
regardless of The Magic Art of Throwing Out,
the book I read and want to sell back
because it's not really my way.
I guess it's worth trotting out my old
to find a new home, and to buy their old
as it needs a new home.
I am happy to provide it.
J’étais la directrice,
reining in the slightly tipsy joueurs,
directing them to play their hand, no
not that one, tu as une carte "crevée"!
jette une carte, et prends une autre.
Ok, toi, c'est ton tour.
And so, it went, me directing every player
to take their turn and, surtout a Michele
de ne pas tricher!
Oui, il nous manquait 10 cartes sur 112,
mais pour notre niveau, ça ne fait rien.
Joan a insiste a suivre les règles, mais
je l'ai ignore.
Ce sont mes cartes de jeu, quand même,
celles que j'ai joue comme enfant,
comme mère des jeunes enfants.
Je sais bien les règles, celles que
I said she looked young for her age, I noted
the smooth jawline, firm skin, a nice smile.
she said she worked for the post office delivering mail
for many years
she must have worn sunscreen religiously and a hat.
we said the young couple across the table were
good together, that they would go the distance.
he said he was on a plane all the time for his job
but it was only 45 minutes to the airport at 4 am.
we ate good food and drank wine and cocktails,
I asked how long they had been married and
he said 42 years
that's a long time
I hadn't even gotten married the first time.
they seem like super nice people
We said that we'd look forward to seeing them
the outgoing officers were there,
seated at the big table.
the remaining three of us were scattered about,
trying to look invisible, to dodge being elected
for tasks for the next year.
two of us were prepared, we knew we
would have to dive in again,
head first, headstrong, ideas,
do, ask forgiveness later.
neighbors are like family, you can
never get rid of them so you try your
best to get along, sometimes it's harder
than other times.
I try to stay focused on getting something done
regardless, and if they want to come along,
that would make it easier.
no one from the group responds within 24 hours,
I'll read my own book with my favorite cup of tea. Or
I'll call a friend who actually shows up
even if it's just for a bit, or to play some cards.
the others will miss the laughter when she
puts her "Crevée" card on my 200
and we'll even share a bottle of champagne.
Si jamais, someone from the group responds
at the 11th hour, we'll invite her, too,
but she will have missed the first hand
the most important one.
what is boredom but
a lack of imagination
not bothering to get out of bed
to explore the world,
not bothering to stay in bed while
imagining new worlds of ideas,
composing poems in your head,
concertos or feeling the muscles in your
toes move as you stretch them.
what is boredom but a certain laziness,
why not come up with 10 new ideas,
I did that one day.
the choice is yours, my friend.
push past boredom or at least
find it interesting!
I watched the movie Young Frankenstein at the theatre tonight.
Before the show, there was a screening of Mel Brooks at a theatre somewhere,
slowly climbing three stairs to a large stage.
His tie was garish and crooked, and his face was gutted by age.
a few of his old cronies were in the audience, the rest are dead now.
he will be, too, probably soon.
the film was funny but I kept thinking of the conveyor belt of life,
like the toasters at restaurants where the bread goes in soft and white
on the left, travels through a heat zone and drops out the other side brown
and crunchy. Sometimes it falls in the trash. Mostly it gets eaten, nutrition
for another life.
I think about these things alot
I see the youngster in every old face, a jump and a hop in each
leaden step, the bright eyes behind every cataract.
I wonder if everyone goes through this phase of looking
at death, not imminent, but creeping up every minute, hour and day.
the years go by and Mel Brooks and Gene Hackman are very old.
President Obama entered office with black hair and is now grey.
I enjoyed the movie and I laughed.
It was a good movie.
just as water turns to ice
and back again, the relentlessness
a fissure forms in solid rock
just as one tooth grinds against the other
the smallest crack opens up
a cavity, tiny opening where
this hurt in my heart
that no dentist can fix
no steady snow fall will fill
a bit more with every chafe
and innocent comment
not meant to force open the
tiny cracks, not meant to chill
my bones like cold air on a broken tooth.
no one knows but you
but how long can it stay this