Monday, March 15, 2010

Old Stuff

So, here it is mid-March, which is not to be confused with Middlemarch - a rather formidable read at least for me). So, I feel compelled to say Beware the Ides of March! But not compelled to say, or write, much else. For that reason I'm going to post a poem about March that I wrote a couple years ago and still like.

March teases us with glimpses of spring,
Toying with our affections;
One day all sunshine and smiles
The next, throwing a snowy snit.
Or she can be mysterious,
Shrouding herself in fog.
Buds and grasses green
At times, in spite of her.

We see the sins winter has hidden
Now laid bare before us:
November's leavings,
With the floatsam and jetsam
Of our own humanity
The first flies buzz, sun-drunk
Reminding us there are advantages
To the dead time.

The frozen ground softenes;
A few brave Snowdrops
Shoulder their way through.
Resurrection is hard work.

Friday, March 5, 2010


I have been thinking about secrets lately. The good and the bad of them. And when does a secret change from some lovely, hidden gem into poison? For it seems they become radioactive... Now it brings to mind a foreign bit trapped deep under the skin, that causes infection. The area grows sore to the touch, full of puss. Then finally it bursts, and only after it has been thoroughly cleaned out and open to the air and sunlight, does healing begin.
But of course, there are lovely secrets too...precious little things that make us feel special or confident or loved. And then too, there is the fall-out after a secret has been told....
Well, here is a first little poem about secrets.

Secret Keeper

Secret keeper
Secret maker
Secret giver
Secret taker
Who do you tell your secrets to?
Do you drop a hint, leave a clue?
Is your silence golden?
Or are you beholdin’
to someone you’ve shared with
someone you’ve cared with
someone who’s helped to ease you mind
someone who's understanding and kind,
for what we all seem to want
is a true and trusted confidante
but I thought the keeper of your secret key
was a job you would entrust to me

Wise Words's what a couple pretty impressive guys said about poetry:

A poet's work is to name the unnamable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments, shape the world, and stop it going to sleep. - Salman Rushdie

The best theories are poetic creations. -Stephen Hawking

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Free Verse Poem #2

Free Verse Poem #2

There is this lovely house
I drive past every day
So cozy and inviting -
Yard and garden neatly tended.
I thought of the joy
Within those walls,
And envied that family
Just a little.
Until one day
Driving by with a friend
I saw a FOR SALE sign
In that well-kept yard.
My friend just
Shook her head
‘So sad’ she said
I looked perplexed
And then she said,
‘Oh, didn’t you hear?
He beat his wife to death
With a garden spade.’

Free verse poem #1

So, February is over. It's March. The short poem/short month idea didn't pan out so well. This month I'm just going to try to write a lot. A lot of poems. So far I have two poems which I'm not terribly pleased with, but maybe by the end of the month, if I keep it up, there will be a few that I like. So, here is the first... I actually wanted to talk about appearance vs. reality, but it ended up a little off kilter in both poems. Still, maybe the next one will come closer to the mark.

Pretty as a Picture?

From the outside
Looking in
We make a pretty picture -
One could almost say
A work of art.
But all that’s seen
From that vantage point
(From the outside
Looking in)
Is a flat, varnished finish;
No one can see
What’s beneath the surface
Or the way the colors
Have run and separated -
Not so much a masterpiece
As a failed still-life.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Weddings and Funerals

So here is something really dumb that I did last weekend:

We had a busy weekend coming up. An out of town wedding, Tom's cousin's daughter was going to be married in Madison and we were going to stay overnight at a nearby hotel. Before going though we had a wake to attend Friday night. It was a man who we barely knew, who lived a few miles down the road from us - which counts as a neighbor out here in the middle of nowhere. Also, his grandson is a good friend of our son. So, on Friday I shop for groceries and pick up, so things are ready for the house sitter, who is actually needed to care for the dog, not the house, but is still referred to as a house sitter (or as Derek). Also, I am so organized that I buy cards for the upcoming events ahead, instead of detouring to pick one up on the way to each event. So, Friday night, I sign the first card and stuff money in the envelope in the parking lot of the funeral parlor, just before walking in. (I can't be totally organized, you know!) We go in, meet, greet, extend our sympathies and head home to pack. The next morning we leave for the wedding at the crack of 11:00 AM. We still get there in time to check into the hotel first, where we meet a cousin of Tom's and his wife (aka Scutter and Mary Kay). So, by mutual concent they ride to the wedding with us. Once again in the parking lot right before the service, I sign the card and stuff money in the envelope. Just as I stick the card in I notice on the front it says 'With Deepest Sympathy'
I show Tom. He very helpfully screams, 'You're the one who filled out the cards!' Yes dear. (so glad he reminded me that this is totally MY FAULT) So, now as I'm trying to remember just what the other card said (something like 'As You Begin Your New Life?) Mary Kay sees the card and begins to cackle. Then we are all laughing, but inside I die a little. Tom suggests we send a card from home, and no one will ever know the difference. Good plan, until we walk in and say hi to the father of the bride, Emma. (No, it's not a really hip and liberal family, Emma is a very misguided nickname for 'John'. Anyway, before we even say hi, Mary Kay blares loud enough for everyone in the county to hear, "Tell him about the card!" Well, what can I do? I can think of several options but only one that's not a felony, so I tell the whole story. We laugh until we cry. By the end of the evening every guest at the wedding knows, and I'm wondering if there is an equivalent of a witness protection program for people who commit stupid,social blunders. And, I'm also thinking about how to apologize to the people on the funeral end of this debacle.
Back home the next afternoon I call the widow, Mary, to explain and apologize profusely. She is so nice about it; laughs then says she doesn't remember seeing any wedding cards. But she is just going to write thank you cards this afternoon, and will let me know when she comes across my card. About 90 seconds later I get a call back from Mary. She tells me I sent her a very nice SYMPATHY card. So, good news - bad news. I didn't screw up both events this weekend, but I confessed for no reason. Here I could have had one person not realize what a disorganized nut-job I am. Oh well. Of course, the real mystery is: What happened to the wedding card? I have two theories on this.
1. When I picked up the sympathy card I accidentally grabbed two, and there is still a wedding card floating around somewhere in the depths of my purse, or
2. The wedding card I bought actually changed on a molecular level, and transformed into a sympathy card - which, I believe, does not bode well for that marriage!

Ok, lots of silly stuff, not a lot of paragraphs, and no poetry! The next entry here will be a poem - I promise!

Random Comments

Random Comments:

The problem with pushing the envelope too much is that eventually the envelope rips, and then you are left with a torn envelope, which is not much use to anyone.

Only in Wisconsin is 38F/4C temp. considered appropriate weather to go outside without a coat!

If what I thought up is a good idea, is what you thought of a good yourdea?

A favorite quote of mine:
Sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast. -Lewis Carroll