Friday, July 31, 2009

Poetry 2009 Synergy


Pencil point dulls from racing across a page
keeping up with my thoughts…
Scribbled words captured to physical form before
escaping the process; an endurance marathon
between synapse and hand; thought and movement;
reflection and response… stream of conscious writing -
a synergy of mind, heart and soul.

EMM 7/31/2009

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Poetry 2009 Prism

Light rays spin uncontrollably across the room.
Miniature prisms animated by air currents
hitting the sun catcher hung from the valance.
Confined to an indoor existence, radiant fragments
mimic rainbows and long for the sky.

EMM 7/29/2009

Poetry 2009 Sigh

Feel the sigh around me – radiating outward –
It dampens my aura with moist breath…
The automatic intake/outtake – the simple act
of breathing brings disruptive moisture that clings
to my body on this sultry summer’s night.
The fan does nothing but move thickened
air over my recumbent form.
Sweat soaked bedding and nightgown
steadily increase this night’s discomfort.
Unable to sleep, thoughts become jumbled
waiting for relief from July’s oppressive heat.


Poetry 2009 Night Journey

Floating among the stars;
Bumping into threads of light;
Drifting through the dark night…
Pin pricks from ancient nebula lead me on.
Cushioned in ambiguous fluid of dreams,
I head toward morning with a handful
of words gathered from midnight to dawn.
They stray across the blank page
coming to rest with first light.

EMMM 7/28/09

Poetry 2009 July

A July summer’s day of scorching
temperatures brings an equally hot night…
The fan’s white noise drowns out nocturnal sounds;
Sweltering heat slows thoughts to a trickle.
The whirr of the blades cutting through the thick
air bring dreams dusted with magic.
Dreams intertwined with childhood memories:
Catching fireflies to illuminate my bedroom at night;
Midnight canoe rides circling the flat glass surface of the lake;
The roll of bass near the shore as they rose to pull down a moth;
The clicking sound of bats dancing across a diamond studded sky.
Nights so still, so quiet you could hear the air move under their wings.
Scents of water, pine, flowers clung to clothing and hair.
Nights dusted with magic…

EMM 7/27/09

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Poetry 2009 Restless

Restless again, dreams toss me
from a sound sleep. Shadows
seep within the midnight hour;
A tight circle of light brings
quiet comfort in this dark time.
Pulling the blankets tight, the shades
recede into gloom escaping illumination.

EMM 7/24/2009
1st draft 6/2008

Poetry 2009 Lion's Mane

Lion’s Mane

Dry hair frames my face -
barbed wire gone mad…
Former curls now straight;
A lion’s mane of frizz
once thick and rich colored
changed to salt and pepper;
this lion’s heart beats true.

EMM 7/23/09
11/12/08 first draft

Poetry 2009 Distortions


Past perceptions bind me… blind me.
Myopic vision - a fish bowl filled with fluid
dreams interspersed with real time events.
Suspended… submerged in consciousness
looking out through a thick layer of glass;
protection or self imposed confinement in
water, my element… all ways in this
saturated kingdom are lost in distortions.

EMM 7/23/2009
gleaned from morning pages 10/2008

Poetry 2009 Words on my Lips

I woke up with words on my lips…
turning to morning mumbles;
Birds sang their psalm to the light.
Star dusted hair faded as moonbeams
completed a final waltz across sleep
drenched features coated with dreams.
Earth’s rotation spun the celestial murmurs
into the twilight; phrases lost to sunrise.

7/22/2009 EMM

Poetry 2009 Dream Time

Dream Time

In shades of gray, elusive shadows appear;
Strange caricatures of past loved ones…
Their uneasy presence makes no sense.
Out of sequence from real time events,
I argue with my mother, “You died first.”
“No I didn’t.. Your father did.”
Turning to dust at day break, vague
memories shadow my thoughts.

7/4/08 revised 9/17/09

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Poetry 1998-2007 Childhood

Childhood seems a million light years
from this moment.
My big girl bedroom was robin egg blue with
white woodwork.
My closet seemed immense to me at age four;
Plenty of room for my cowboy friend and his horse…
linoleum protected the hardwood floors from horse
accidents or hoof marks.
Every bedtime I would walk him to the door a
nd wish him a good night.
Could he still be in my bedroom closet?
I’m three thousand miles from my childhood home;
Mentally I can visualize numerous events from that time.
I’m not sure when I saw him last…
Alone - he might be waiting for my return.


Poetry 1998-2007 Frozen

Frozen beneath ice and snow; chilled to non-productivity,
the garden waits for the sun to begin its longer day cycle.
Cold dark days of winter become a mini hibernation.
Distance to the spring equinox from the winter solstice
weighs heavily as I work to clear the driveway.
The night sky is immense - mute stars pop out of the inky black;
steady streams of light thread earthward.
Frustration spills out as I shovel and sand the recent batch of frozen crystals.
The snow shovel scraps through layers of white to reveal the black asphalt;
Lines of black marks cross the length and width created in a steady rhythm.
Calligraphy, black on white, created by swift movements
that shift and change the meaning.
Long distant Native American runners had to find
the North Star to guide them on their way,
I look to it to lead me to spring.

Emm 2/23/99

Poetry 1998-2007 Increments


Make it through the day - sink into the night.
The stars and moon, my second treasures
scatter across the sky just out of reach.
Even when I stretch on my tip toes, my frame
isn’t tall enough to pull down one star
or grasp comets strands whispering in their orbits.
I want to weave the tails together;
hitch a ride through silent softness.
Invisible to the ones below, I would ride
the night until the first rays of morning
flip night to day engulfing me in sunshine warmth
and chasing the chill from my soul.
Soaked with stardust and filled with sunlight,
no longer can I divide myself into dark or light.


Poetry 2009 The Sky

The sky is falling into my lap:
light and dark – bits of brilliance,
shades of blue to black, disintegrate.
Slipping through my fingers,
the grit streams onto the floor.
Extinguished stars, brittle dust of ages,
drift like snow driven by fierce winter winds.
Circling within the room - a hurricane’s eye,
the immense deposit of silvery ash
obscures the remaining light.

EMM 7/6/2009

Poetry 2009 Taking Turns

Taking turns – exchanging words of sorrow –
Written in darkness or light these emotion filled pages
reach out across a generation, time and place...
How is it that my son has the same sorrows as I do?
His words express his deep longing for connection;
for a relationship filled with reassurance of touch and voice;
for a respite from life’s interminable challenges.
Are we tapping into world thought? – the universal
reality that people of any race, religion, or place
at any given time are utterly alone with their sorrows.
Facing life’s travails without loving support;
Struggling against the immensity of turmoil;
Loosing their sense of hope, despair engulfs them.
Weighed down in stature, physically weary,
convulsed with tears, mind numb with resignation …
they expire longing for relief, peace, health, love.
Souls bereft of solace – a discordant death song
embeds the collective consciousness with life’s agony.

EMM 7/13/2009

Poetry 2009 Surreal Night Visions

Surreal Night Visions

Some nights I don’t achieve lift off…
a sound sleep with normal dreams.
Some nights are warped and twisted
causing my heart to race – wildly beating
the sound of blood pounds in my ears.
My body moves erratically –
covers rumple entangling my limbs
while moans escape my lips.
I lurch awake nightgown drenched in sweat;
my breath ragged – bizarre images flash
in my mind before dissolving into nocturnal ether.
There in infernal darkness – no comfort of touch;
no soothing voice – I watch the clock.
Second by second flip across the digital screen
while I elude these surreal night visions.
Some nights I am drained and weary.

EMM 7/10/2009

Poetry 2009 My Pocket

My Pocket

What’s in my pocket became clearer;
Carried as long as I can remember
from one pocket to another:
blue jeans to cords, wool skirt to cotton jumper,
summer shorts to warmer winter pants…
Neither a burden nor regret – a joy or sorrow.
Translucent - part of my being –
I am who I am… as simple as that.

EMM 6/21/09

Poetry 2009 Rare Occurance

I wailed today – a rare occurrence.
Tears, blurred vision, emotional pain…
An all encompassing racking pain
filled my body exploding into my cracked voice,
a cascade of hot tears seared my cheeks
splashing onto the counter, gulping breaths,
muscles shaking a release and the dogs
came to lean against my legs through the outburst.
Their puzzled faces looked up for direction;
what command was this unusual sound?
Nothing directly precipitated this discharge…
Surprised at the intensity and actual mass of tears,
I pulled myself to center only to have a second
eruption stronger than the first out pouring.
Holding onto the counter, the upheaval continued
the deliverance of emotional fireworks long dormant.
One sob after another lit the atmosphere filling
the space with sound while drowning out everything else.
Confusion blotted my face, rasping breath slowed
returning to normal and the dogs wandered off.
Finishing the dishes, water soothed the raw edges
brought about by a rare occurrence –
today I wept.

EMM 6/221/09

Poetry 2009 Give up the Struggle

Give Up the Struggle

Things are clearer in one sense…
I’m more in focus than I have been in months.
Facing life with no denial -
some things you just can’t change:
You are who you are – whether family history,
life experience, or childhood environment –
whatever helped mold your personality,
your outlook, your thinking process, et all.
Integrated into every cell of your being,
it would take a miracle to change who you are;
how you respond to life’s challenges;
how you treat yourself or even how that internal
critic convolutes your impressions of events.
I give up the struggle to make a miraculous change.

Some days -
I am a frustrated soul:
out of time, place and connection.
I am who I am…
I have been a victim and find safety as an introvert;
not trusting my own judgment, I watch from a distance.
I am alone, sometimes lonely, but wary of being hurt.
I am who I am…
I possess a creative spirit: manifesting in sumi-e,
collage, metalwork and words.
I am sensitive to the environment, to others in pain
whether creature or human.
I am a mentor:
joyously sharing my talents.
I am a gardener…
my fingers caress the soil,
I am a nurturer…
but must avoid rescuing souls at my expense.
I am a dreamer…
who holds hope gently not to crush its fragile nature.

EMM 6/21/09

Poetry 2009 Drifting

Drifting on a sea of sorrows,
I’m too tired to dip the oars
in the fluid mirrored surface.
Hot sun reflections sear my mind.
Eyes close against this assault;
Blinding light pierces my sealed lids.
No breeze, no clouds, no respite:
Dehydrated thoughts shimmer;
A freakish mirage distorted dream.

EMM 7/6/09

Poetry 2009 Mini Events of Living

Mini Events of Living

Did I say I wish I had died…
How is that for a statement?
Surgery can be tricky –
an unexpected end to your journey.
Intolerant – the constant state of struggle
was just getting unbelievably intolerant.
Frustrated beyond belief, I desired escape…
Continual stress wears you down
into a spiral of exhaustion; induces
tunnel vision which inspires neglect
of the examination of simple things:
a pin head sized spider, seed germination,
beauty of nature, extremes of weather,
the tenacity of living things to survive.

EMM 6/21/09

Poetry 2009 Opposites


You are such a powerful force:
confident, competent… self assured.
Your grace moves you through your
life with passion and self expression.
Success is evident in your accomplishments;
Perseverance and clear sight has paid off.

I am easily diminished; this internal self critic
eats away my confidence with ease;
Repeating phrases - this discordant vibration
fills my mind with negativities.
You’ll never do this or that …
Why do I accept this repetition as reality?

EMM 6/21/2009

Poetry 2009 Words

Words fall into my dreams –
sharp mirror shards
reflecting bits of the day
into night’s darkest corners.
Words shifting into visions
dancing through levels of REM;
some leave a trace, scattered,
jumbled and out of context when
summoned with a wide-awake mind.
Ghosts of reality out of sequence;
random puzzle pieces with
no interlocking corners;
glimpses into past or present
requiring diligence to record
once dreamt; vaporous –
these illusive images fade
often leaving nothing to grasp.

6/8/2009 2nd draft EMM

Poetry 2009 Still


Still out of focus, I realized the other day
that it wasn't all about the physical surgery
but the emotional and mental challenge.
Worry about negative possibilities,
worry about paying bills, the struggle to exist...
Both my mother and grandmother
died around the Christmas holidays -
was I going to go too?
Was I finished with this journey?
Scattered spirit slowly reforms,
perseveres against the wasteful "what ifs",
physically strength returns, discomfort diminishes,
mentally my perspective clears,
and I begin again to create...
thankful to the Universe.

EMM 3/7/09

Poetry 2009 Observations


Life is struggle.
Beginning to end -
no easy way through it.
Circular in nature –
relative to circumstances,
experience, training, goals,
expectations and assumptions.


Loneliness creeps…
encompassing all thoughts.
Nor’easter waves crashing
over and over again
onto a gravel beach
scouring a body already
numb from emotional pain.


Circles in the air, circles in the water.
Winds clear constricted fear;
Buffeting thoughts, life skips forward
heeling against the natural force.
Slicing through negative patterns,
I grasp the time left and go
for a ride instead of being safe.

reworked general notes from 9/12/2008

Poetry 2009 Empty


Day-dreams are safe…
Guaranteed risk free -
No pain – emotional or physical.
Time shudders past my pseudo reality.
I imagine a happier life:
peace of mind, body and soul:
nurtured and protected.
Delusions of perfection;
isolated in my desire,
I withdraw empty but safe
but not without pain.

2nd draft 3/17/09

Poetry 2009 My Pen

My pen hangs poised over the paper

My thoughts rush,
colliding, careening.
Where to start?
Where to end?
Why haven’t I a clue?
I am encompassed
in a woman’s body;
I know nothing about.

I neglect, ignore,
disrespect it…
or am I just afraid.
Why disheveled?
Worn out cloths;
Being overweight-
repeal any eye appeal.

Shadows skim the surface
Temporarily revealed…
A chronic victim
Neglected body,
Lack of eye contact.
Am I correct? Abuse?

EMM 3/17/2009

Poetry 2009 Direction


Which way to go,
Certainly not backwards
Weighed down by memory.
One purpose – to survive
. to express creativity
Forward into the wind,
Meet the force
Buffeted – whipped -
push back
Against the unseen.

Which way to go,
not backwards
Weighed down by memory.
what purpose – to just survive
or to express heart and soul.
Forward into the chaos,
Meet the force
Buffeted – whipped -
push back
Against the unseen.
Rest in focus.

Which way to go,
Move to the right…left…
Forward not backwards
Weighed down by memory.
what purpose –
to just survive in fear or to fully live.
Walk forward into the chaos,
Meet the force…
Buffeted and whipped -
push back
Against the unseen.
Resist despair with focus.


Poetry 2009 Turn Signal

Turn Signal

The sound of the turn signal
permeated my sleep.
Reaching, I grabbed for the lever…
still the soft sound continued.
Tic, Tic, Tic - like a wind up clock
marking the passage of each second.
I began to push and pull the various knobs.
A built-in cigarette lighter?
Where did that come from?
Confused, my hand continued the search as I drove.
Radio, defroster, emergency flasher…
Why won’t it turn off?
Right, Right, Right…
The signal light flashed
a static rhythm in the night.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Poetry 2008 Words


Damn, these words keep running together.
Criss - crossed and scrambled…
Loops and twists of a continuous line.
This scribble of incoherence tumbles,
rolls, wanders from my pen.
Folding inward the meaningless threads
Given movement by thoughts
Are nothing but broken symbols
Desecrating a blank page.

6/4/08 EMM

Poetry 2008 Stuck


If you read my morning pages,
you’d see the same topics over and over.
So stuck in this manifestation –
I dream of escape where I am free.
Free of worry, free of the struggle –
at peace, calm and centered.
Life is struggle but I need a break.
I need; what I need…
What do I need that I don’t inherently already
know how to do, say or be?
Stuck in my own box, narrow and confining
I desire to be released.
But do I really? Isn’t it safe to be
stuck in what is known?
I made this mess, I created these circumstances
or at least accepted them at face value.
Freedom, I actually do have the freedom of choice
but fears erode what gains I make.
What makes one person succeed and another falters
and breaks even when the goal in site.
Sitting quietly, the flute music sings
a soul, pure and open.
My spirit is free.

Emm 12/22/08

Poetry 2008 Morning Page Thoughts

The page crawls with scrawl
A few lines left blank.
If I write bigger,
I will be finished.

Writing is so weird…
Little bits of line for letters
Letters form words
Words to sentences that complete thoughts
An odd eye brain hand connection
Do you see the words on the page and copy them
Or are they on a screen in your head?
Bits of this and that appear on the page
Expressing emotions or creating images
Line by line words form from my pen.

Given sound - words hurtle forward;
Not always loving or nurturing.
You know those words that cut to the quick.
We’ve all said them venting frustration.
If accepted as truth,
can you purge these barbs or do they sit and fester?
The debris darkens and poisons… embed deeply.

EMM 2008

Poetry 2008 Peace


I sailed off the edge of the earth…
I wasn’t afraid.
Pulling the sail taught, I shot
off into space.
The canvass fluttered and snapped
as the plunge took effect.
The wind whistled in my ears,
My hair tossed and my stomach
lurched against gravity’s pull.
Exhilarated, I held fast to the rudder
as if I could control the direction of my fall.
My craft thrust through the impending darkness.
I breathed calmly as the speed quadrupled.
I sailed off the edge of the earth…
I was at peace.

EMM 12/22/08

Poetry 2008 Night Companions

Night Companions –

Listen – what do you hear?
The profound silence in the darkness is
broken by the sniffing of my dogs.
I like to walk late at night when others are safe within their houses;
their lights blaze out to cut the night as we pass.
The dogs pull me forward into their world of scent and acute hearing.
They pause often to mark the grass;
as neighborhood dogs have done earlier in the day.
We travel the through the night, moving along at a good pace.
Enveloped in the cold, our breath marks time in bursts of visible mist.
Hearts elevated by the rigorous movement;
I feel the strength return to my legs as we move on our nightly path.
Can you hear the soft click of nails on tar and the scuff of my
sneakers through leaves that edge the road?
An owl calls out, we stop; intent on the source, ears swivel to
hone in on the direction.
Could you hear the owl within your home with windows
and doors shut tight?
Come out into the night, move within the deepening silence…
walk with me.

EMM 12/22/08

Poetry 2008 Loom

The warp on the loom of life is sustained by love.
Guided by heddle eyes,
The shuttle glides through the shed releasing the journey.
Harnesses raise and lower –
Steadily the weft develops an account of one soul.

EMM 7/13/08 Revised 10/2/08

Poetry 2008 Hall of Infamy

Hall of Infamy

Welcome to the hall of infamy.
Which, of course, are my relatives.
Dysfunction-ability at it’s normal best.
These images that stop time –
Frozen smiles held in their captive frames.

I remember when my aunts and uncles hit
mid-life: less smiles as they faced aging.
Life weary, a winter coat worn year round;
One by one, they passed to memories.

Today my face aches; muscles long to relax.
Let the pretext go: exhibit my senior angst
next to freeze frames of the past.

Emm 10/7/08
Revised 3/17/09

Poetry 2008 Fragmented


My collages exhibit balance, harmony, and focus.
My life on the other hand is fragmented, frustrating and draining.
I fight to survive; I forget the lesson to “just be”.
Observe, listen, and move on but here I am stuck in place
treading against the force of the water.
I am a water sign, Virgo.
I am bereft without water – ocean or lake, brook or river.
Water sooths and calms me, I remember the natural rhythm of life
found in the tides, the seasons, the pull of gravity, the length of light.
In nature, I become in balance, in harmony and in focus.


Poetry 2008 Fractured Chairs

Fractured Chairs

The noon sun warm on my back penetrated the clear water.
The waves made soft slapping sounds against the hull of the rowboat.
I began picking up debris from the shallow water.
Not bottles or old tires but broken white lawn chairs covered in algae.
This was a repetitive chore:
Lifting these objects to the surface;
Moving them from a reasonable and accessible depth;
Bringing the water soaked wood to the closest shoreline.
Back and forth filling the boat with ease, trip after trip…
There was no feeling of the passage of time.
The sun didn’t shift in the sky, the insects hummed and a slight breeze
fluttered across the surface of the lake.
I floated over an abyss - so black that I couldn’t see into it.
Peering down into the deep rent that scarred the lake bottom
I realized I was holding my breath while drifting past.
What would I find if I dared to search its depths?
Fear held me back; I went about my business of locating the useless chairs.
Purposely staying clear of the center, I gathered fractured rungs, legs, seats,
and arms as the floating boat safely caressed the edge of the lake.
All these pieces of wood covered in slim were lifted from the shallows and
left on shore in piles to dry in the sun.
What was the point of recovering these jumbled fragments?
Impossible to reassemble, to recreate a pristine white wooden lawn chair -
Never again to be placed in the shade by the water’s edge.

EMM 9/12/08
Revised 10/1/08

Poetry 2008 Fifth Element

A melt down of my words by water…
one of the five elements.
Water soaked pages of rambling thoughts;
Smeared, blurred, a now unreadable journal.
I am a water sign, a Virgo. A maiden kneeling
to fill a jug from a spring – the clear conscious.
A water bearer who is adept at replenishing
and bringing life to baked earth; quenching
the thirst of animal or human species.
Subconscious - the flip side of being present.
Words streaming out of control, spilling,
racing onto the page until my hand ached.
Scribbling - the effort to catch them before
they cascade beyond my focus – out of reach.
Set free by the deluge, the ink swirls from letters;
Dripping off the page, they return to unconscious.

EMM 2008

Poetry 2008 Essence


The swinging net moved through the air with
the barest whisper of a prayer.
The open weave missed the shimmer of thought.
Useless to capture the essence of her spirit,
the discarded net broke along with her hope…

[splinter of a dream]


Risk another relationship – not in this life - how sad…
A closed heart, compressed by established fear.
Lesson learned, I ignore the “look” of interest.
Hidden in excess flesh, I repulse rather than attract
so lonely that I ache to share closeness with another.
Broken beyond repair, I walk numbly through each day;


Steamed Chestnuts

Steamed Chestnuts

Steamed chestnuts fill the chipped pottery bowl.
Pin pricks vent steam while hot drops of water
burn fingers attempting to pull back the softened
mahogany skin with wide silver plated knives.
The bowl contents vanish as the hungry crowd
of relatives peel and reveal the sweet meat.
Dipped into butter, the still warm chestnuts
crumble with the first bite; butter dribbles on finger.
Hulls and nutmeat crumbs mount up in front
of elbows resting around the rickety kitchen table:
a simple holiday family tradition.

EMM 1999

Poems 1998-2007 Writen in the Dark

Written in the Dark

I didn’t take you away from them.
You came willingly on your own.
Your brother Joe thinks differently,
but it was your choice.
Duty bound to John, a past debt
drew you away from them.
A need to provide, to see to his needs
made you leave them behind.

They wouldn’t believe
that it was your suggestion.
Your love of skiing and New Hampshire
brought you here.
You put memories behind you
to begin anew, to fill a void
in John’s life.

Who knew it would
be for such a short time.

EMM 5/28/98
rev 6/1/98
rev 6/2/98

Poems 1998-2007 Word Garden

Word Garden

Nouns, verbs, subjects, objects
reflect my untilled state of mind.
Organized they become a garden,
row upon row of thoughts to be tended.
Imagination and passion guide the elements
of color, texture, form and structure.
Filled with nutrients, my emotions,
fertilize the prepared plot. Images
gleaned from experience and environment
become enriched mulch.
Sun and rain fuel the root stock.
Warmed moist earth enables
leaves and new roots to flourish, to cultivate
themselves in reality, phrase by phrase.
Photosynthesis, the process of life,
absorbs, transforms light to energy.

The flower beds of my existence expand with every season
communicating this soul’s journey.
Winter’s eternal cold clarifies perspective.
Spring encourages emotions dormant.
From the dank earth, buried below the surface,
perceptions emerge to expand into ideas.
Summer’s heat forces new growth.
Fall’s harvest marks the sacred passage.
Words are strong but when planted
together form a lasting design.

Clumps of words remain permanent thoughts,
perennials of my life’s garden.

EMM 7/27/98


I can’t shake this depression
weighing me down.
Tears held on pause,
I fear being a dried up old woman.

Karma, kismet, my fate,
to be lonely
for a whole life. Why?
Was I that wasteful
of relationships
in the last life? Must a destroyer of hearts
face retribution?
Vicious little voices hound me,
“You’ll never be loved.”
I’m my own worst enemy,
a naysayer to the nth degree.

Is there a glimmer of hope to lead me
toward the truth?
I feel my way in the darkness of longing,
stumbling forward,
wishing for a beacon to follow.

EMM 9/2/98

Poems 1998-2007 Wishes


Genie bottle, sea refuse,
shore washed and scrubbed,
your amber glass pitted and worn
is soft in my hands.
I twist the rusted cap
to reveal the nothingness
of a life sprung from wishes.

EMM 10/19/98

Poems 1998-2007 - My Closet

My closet is full,
very full,
actually ... overflowing with clothes,
many never worn.
Some retain original price tags.
A variety of sizes and styles
greet the eye from the doorway.
They hang waiting,
perhaps to be worn, recycled, or discarded.
Memories hang in that full closet,
some good, some bad, some best forgotten.
Mom’s favorite coat still smells faintly of her.
My cobalt velvet wedding skirt sewn by me,
an unfinished embroidered maternity blouse,
and a few baby clothes are neatly stored in boxes.
Mistakes, bargains, gifts, memories
hang in neat rows or fill boxes in my full closet.
waiting for a time when a choice will be made.

EMM 3/23/98

Poems 1998-2007 Wackier the Better

Wackier the Better

I want an Adam’s Family type house filled
with oddities, with collections of cast offs,
with an outlandish disdain for taste.
I’m bored with the picturesque.
I say down with Martha Stewart,
throw out the Better Homes & Garden’s look.
I don’t wish to live in a museum of sameness,
I crave changing exhibits of nonsensical display.
I don’t want to be Tame
anymore. I long to express
what’s been stuffed and stifled.
I need to put fun back into my world.
Laughter and joy will decorate the walls.


Poems 1998-2007 Voyeur


I’m a voyeur, not a peeping Tom
peering into lighted windows at night,
just someone who watches couples
wondering how connected they are.
Are they there for the duration,
just tolerating each other
or are they in a caring relationship
striving to gain balance, support, love?

I peer into their eyes, watch their body language
for signs, intolerance to a causal touch,
eyes dull with boredom or weary from abuse.
I listen to the tone of their voices,
their comments to each other.

Alone I wonder, if someone,
somewhere is happy,
satisfied within a relationship.
I am the perpetual pessimist.
I can let hope die.

EMM 11/1/98

Poems 1998-2007 Two-Dimensional


Depression freezes me in place.
I hold my breath and look out
at the world passing me by.
Am I blue from lack of oxygen,
of movement, of interaction?

Flattened, this cartoon character
has been steam rolled.
I used to bounce back, make adjustments,
forge ahead against the odds.

I’ve been thrown down too often.
My resiliency is lacking,
my outlook narrowed in defeat.
The glass is half empty,
the contents sour to the taste.

I close my eyes, take a deep breath
to expand my two-dimensional body.


Poems 1998-2007 Tumbled Thoughts

Tumbled Thoughts

Slid down the hell well of despair this week,
my fingernails wore off
clawing the wall to slow my descent.
Arm muscles shaking from the effort to hold onto hope,
my feet searched the slick surface,
stretching in vain for a toe hold.
So alone the pain blinded me and I fell
wailing to the bottom.

To my surprise there was a floor to this black pit.
Jarred by the landing, I collapsed into misery.

Faraway -- a first star to wish on made dim by distance,
a pinpoint of light flickered into the depths
where I was alone with tumbled thoughts.

EMM 9/6/98

Poems 1998-2007 Tracks


I love morning as much as late night,
quiet time in the house.
Late night wraps silence around me.
a soft worn comforter.
Morning light dances across the floor,
bathing me in stillness.
Quiet house, silent house wrapped in a cocoon
of warmth until the day’s requirements demand attention.
Words mind tumbled in light
spill out onto night pages.
Dream words woven in darkness
spring awakened to consciousness.
Pages accumulate, expressions of life’s quirks.
Neatly typed dispel chaos, organize disruptions,
enable me to function.
Observations, curses, regrets, tears,
fears and questions march across seasons.
Tracks to mark my passage.


Poems 1998-2007 Threads

The treads of life are intertwined.
Stitches in the quilt of life,
All equal in soul size.
The various colors
We bind the layers of fabric into one…
Unique to each family

EMM 2000

Poems 1998-2007 The Next Phase

The Next Phase

My grief is a birth process.
Mourning contractions wash over me
in waves of increasing intensity.
From the womb, despair
begins its journey outward,
Gaining momentum as it courses toward the narrow canal.
Tears spill out at the apex,
anguish escapes my lips,
crashing surf against a fissure.
Salt brine and sand rub my eyes raw,
as the tumbling churning emotional backwash
draws away until the next spasm
sends shock waves outward to breach.
Grief stricken at my father’s passing.
the process continues again and again.
Exhausted from this rhythmic cycle,
I am near collapse.
Raw emotions speed up the dilation.
Peace crowns.
A final push expels serenity outward past anguish.
Within minutes, desolation comes, an afterbirth
to be reverently disposed of by loving midwives.
Cradling this new-found peace,
I am inundated by hugs and prayers.
Surrounded by comfort,
I start the next phase of my journey.

EMM 4/5/98

Poems 1998-2007 Swing is Back

Swing is back.
The ballroom is alive
with zoot suits in flaming colors.
The dull flash of yesterday revived
to dance the Lindy, grasping and swinging.

Touch is back.
The ritual of intimate dancing
hugging while balloons descend.

The hour is at hand.
Celebrate the New Year,
clink the glasses.
throw back some liquid cheer.
EMM 12/10/98

Poems 1998-2007 Grammy's Summer Cottage

Grammy’s Summer Cottage

As I begin to drift into sleep, the rain on the roof
reminds me of my Grammy’s summer cottage.
Un-insulated, a leaf hitting the roof could be heard.
Across the water, the roller rink organ drifted bedtime lullabies.
My wake up call, fishermen’s trolling motors.
Sparkling patterns danced on the ceiling
as first light glided over the lake’s mirror.

Lying on the dock in my P.J.’s,
I watched the fish swim in and out of shadows
under perfect impressions of trees and sky.
Boat wakes gently lapped on the dock legs,
moved toward the rock retaining walls
built by my uncles and grandfather before I was born.
Birds chatted as they found their breakfast
among the overhanging bushes or untended lawn.

How is it that when young, I knew enough
to soak it all in? Now in middle age,
I race through the day barely pausing for a deep breath
deep as the clean clear water of Crystal Lake.
I miss taking in the beauty of an early morning’s reflections.
I miss the time to totally absorb myself in a quiet moment.

EMM 3/31/98

Poems 1998-2007 Staus Quo

Status Quo

I’m incomplete
according to statistics.
A Ms not a Mrs.,
without a partner,
I don’t count as a family.
An aberrant statistic,
not a standard family.
The world revolves
around couples.
Without a better half,
you earn less, pay more.
All the responsibility without
someone to share the joy, sorrow,
laughter and pain.

EMM 99

Poems 1998-2007 Soul Piece

Soul Piece

My hands ache from spreading color.
Primordial ooze clings to them,
temporary stains of growth.
Clawing my way onto the paper,
my nails fill with pigment.
Broken chunks of color scatter to the floor,
fragments from creation.
Ground down residue sticks to my thumb
to be resurrected reverently onto my paper.
I hold back sounds of release.
Silently I scrub my soul
with the colors of courage and perseverance.
Mud to brilliant hue cascade from my psyche,
filling the paper completely.
A vision quest in the making.


I stand before you, soul piece.
Questions formed by my upturned hands.
Your meaning, I seek your meaning.
Silence, only silence greets me.
Centering more, I close my eyes to listen.
Hidden, the meaning is hidden,
obscured beneath the layers of color.
Scrape, peel back, reveal.
Ear to canvas again and again.
Layer by layer to learn what you offer.

EMM 5/20/98
rev 6/1/98
rev 6/2/98

Poems 1998-2007 Someone


I long for someone
Or at least I think I do.
Look around…
Ad’s, TV sitcoms, women’s magazines,
Couple – young, svelte, nice clothes.
Is life fuller with a relationship?
Everything seems to point that way.
Alone, I wonder.
What is missing?
Companionship, support, love:
All provided by friends…
Intimacy – yes, missing.
Is that overrated? Probably
So three out of four ain’t bad!


Poems 1998-2007 Snow


Snowflakes float through the night sky.
Shimmering in the light from my window,
they pass silently, one by one to the ground.
None defy gravity for long, dancing on gusts
of wind temporarily extends their flight.
Inevitably they land, frosting the landscape
with a coating of the purest white.
Muffled by freshly falling snow,
music in the form of tire chains
and the base rumble of the snow plow,
lull me to sleep.

I dream of snows past: schools closing;
layering on the cloths; buckling the galoshes;
building snow horses and snowmen; coming inside
to the smell of freshly baked bread; listening
to the crackle of the fire with a cup of hot cocoa.
After hours of outside play, a day meant for reading,
curled up with my blanket in the wing chair.

A dream within a dream of comfort and quiet.

EMM 2/24/98
2nd draft 3/17/2009

Poems 1998-2007 Snapper


Your death was deliberate.
There was no other explanation.
The placement of your body on the double lines
spoke the truth.
No skid marks of avoidance, a perfect direct hit.
Some irate fisherman,
prejudice in place as he rounded the curve.
“God damn snappers”
Temptation overwhelming to risk traffic,
he drove on the double lines to hit you, his target.
Feeling the thump, hearing the crunch,
his rear view mirror reflected the triumphant results,
a bulls eye.

Your soul departed on impact.
This three-dimensional body would escape
being flattened to a two-dimensional asphalt bump.
Dragging your remains onto the sand
by a fist-sized back leg, a fishy odor clung to me.
Powerful claws frozen in a graceful curve,
dust covered skin embossed with irregular pattern,
the ebony carapace spilled its inner workings
to be recycled, turned back to the Earth naturally,
food for the teaming life above and below
the surface of the swamp.

EMM 7/16/98

Poems 1998-2007 Smile


There it is again -- plastered
to my face, stupid smile.
No matter how much shit
hits the fan, the smile is irrepressible.

Don’t know how you do it,
with all that you have been dealt.

No one likes a woe sayer, so
there it is again glued in place.
The smile that makes my muscles ache
to form upturned lips and reveal teeth.

She always has a smile,
no matter what.

Should I hide in the closet and wail?
It’s all a matter of perspective.
Here it comes again, that smile
that adheres to my face.

EMM 11/2/98

Poems 1998-2007 Smiles


Ruler of my life –
Protector of fragile sanity,
Alternative to reality bleak.
As easily as drinking water,
I drift in and out.
Lost in improbability,
Life is bearable.
Mask my face.

EMM 1998

Poems 1998-2007 Short Thoughts

Short Thoughts 12/3/98

The clock sat silent on the mantle.
Its worn face indicative of wisdom
was blank.
The Intricate hands were still.
The spring unwound by an idle key.

Postage stamps form foreign lands,
places I’ll never see,
Tease me.


Why put a gun to your head?
Is it really that bad?
Where is your perspective?

The man calmly removed his face
and held it to his chest.
At least no one could
read him now.


America salutes the full figured gal
but prefers them slim and young.


Liberty or Death,
Don’t tread on me.
The anthem for the abused woman.
If she stands up for her rights,
her abuser may finish her off.
Her freedom is her death.

Poems 1998-2007 Shadows


In the empty halls
dark and cold
Echoes of the past
Shadows of forgotten times
crept forth
Reminding us to be
present in the now
Least our souls remain
forever locked
Searching for love lost
waiting for renewal through death.

EMM 2000

Poems 1998-2007 Saturday Morning

Saturday Morning

The quiet of morning is broken.
The spring to fall Saturday morning ritual has begun.
One lawn mower after other roars into life.
Their mechanical chant resounds throughout the neighborhood.
Individual voices join from near and far;
A giant OM of droning gas spewing machines
moving across parcels of land;
neighborhood by neighborhood;
in towns and cities; rural to urban; across the state.
One by one the voices drop away;
their Saturday morning chanting complete.
Lawns trimmed short until next weekend
when the quiet of morning will be broken again.

EMM 2005

Poems 1998-2007 Rose

Rose shifted in the moonlight.
The soft night air of summer
was filled with her scent. Her perfection
glowed in the bright night as she stood waiting.
Moths flitted past to the porch light;
wings no match for her overpowering beauty.
A storm rumbled in the distance, lighting
flashed across the clouds that moved
rapidly to obscure the moon. The rumble
become louder as the fast moving storm
filled the night sky. Rain fell gently at first.
The sun dried soil soaked up the first small
drops of rain. The deluge obliterated Rose,
wrapped her in a relentless grey sheet.
She shuddered from the damp chill
and fell to the ground. First light found
her there among the garden mulch.
Scattered and tossed by the night’s storm,
Rose’s scent became a faded memory.

EMM 1/5/98

Poems 1998-2007 Reality


Hiding from my grim reality
multiple tasks fill the void.
Unrecognized pain is dark
Kept at bay by full schedules
And mindless ignorance during the day.

Lurking like nightmares unbidden
gaining strength when alone at night.
They struggle to be free from the locked chest,
until the lid buckles and the lock breaks.
For a few seconds brief,
Unleashing a torrent.

Pain escapes in sound
Muffled by a feather pillow.
Sobs rack my body.

All too soon like a summer downpour,
The lid is repaired.
The chest resealed with skilled practice.

Fitful sleep descends
Dreams ....
Morning comes too soon
for healing to begin
Or for it to be long lasting.

Escaping from my reality,
multiple tasks fill my life.

EMM 2/24/98

Poems 1998-2007 Possessions


The rush of the move is past,
hours of packing undone,
a hurricane’s devastation
of boxes and newspaper litter my floors.
Leaning towers of miscellaneous
belonging somewhere else
mark the trail to each room.
Why did I pack it all?
Replaceable objects spill into drawers
and cabinets, from one enclosure
into another. Contained
either way, I wonder when
they last saw use.
Dragged across the country
to reside as my possessions,
let someone else throw them out.


Poems 1998-2007 Crayons


My crayon box is half empty.
I seem to be missing
the color of a companion,
the color for a lasting relationship,
the colors that bring me hope
for my son’s future.

My bright colors are worn and broken.
The dull and dismal are strong and sharp.
Swirling the colors on my page
I blend them into one.
The dull with the bright,
the rich with the poor,
the fuzzy with the clear,
layer upon layer of tinted wax
fills the page of my world.

EMM 5/25/99

Poems 1998-2007 Moth Balls & Memories

Moth Balls and Memories

My Aunt Chris smelled of moth balls.
With a husband in the woolen mill business,
she had heaps of wool yardage: summer or winter weight
in gabardine, worsted, jersey, flannel and more.
A wide color palette was matched with an even
more varied array of woven patterns like hounds-tooth.
Crushed in her arms for the “welcome Auntie hug”,
the scent, so pungent, wafted from her protected clothing.
My Aunt had become a walking moth repellant.

The most common use: scattered in wool clothes repealing moths;
scattered in the garden to chase away skunks or other nocturnal pests;
scatter them in the attic to warn off the mice from boxes of books.
Found layered between faded cloth, worn out-of-date cloths,
army uniforms, shawls that never see the light of day.
When remembering the smell of old chests and their forgotten
treasures tucked in attics or back room closets, it’s the scent
of moth balls, dust and stale uncirculated air. These woolens
and other items remain memories of the past with no future.


Poems 1998-2007 Miss Perfect

Miss Perfect

Night and day,
the differences between my brother and I.
His existence tormented my parents,
embarrassed me at school.
To disassociate myself from him,
I pushed myself to the limits.
I became a goody-two-shoes.
Perfect, so good and perfect I was.

Our parents have passed away.
I’m stuck,
my house is chaos,
my mind confused.
Without my brother,
I’ve lost my purpose.
Without my parents,
there’s no fulfillment.

Little Miss Perfect is flawed.

EMM 10/26/98

Poems 1998-2007 March Wind

March Wind

Just when you think its safe
to put away your winter coat,
long-johns and flannel nightgown,
March winds roars out of the North.
Leaves released from blankets of snow
propel across yards and roads,
and clutch at anything in their path
to stop their frantic flight.
Gusts rattle windows and
the moaning from the eves
swells and fades denoting intensity.
I snuggle deeper into my covers
wondering how the newly arrived Robins
are fairing this windy night.
Are they wondering why
they left the South so soon?

EMM 3/23/98

Poems 1998-2007 Mantel Clock

Mantel Clock

The clock sits silent on the mantle,
it’s worn face indicative of wisdom
is blank.
The intricate hands are still,
the spring unwound.
the key lay idle.

The man calmly removes his face.
and holds it to his chest.
No one can read him this time.

EMM 12/5/98.

Poems 1998-2007 New Age Soul

New Age Soul

I can’t do it
I can’t say the Lord’s Prayer.
Amen, sung or spoken, is out of the question.
Throwbacks from childhood – subjected to every Sunday.
Unbending Methodists dust themselves off.
My mind narrows; I feel guilt being
a grown-up girl child turned bad.
My new age soul cringes, shrinks under
Patriarchal oppression:
The holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Ghost
contains no feminine energy.
The Virgin birth, conception without sex,
keeps the Holy Issue pure from taint.
Fables handed down to keep men in power,
To control the masses by suppressing
divergent thinking or beings.
I refuse to participate, to perpetuate an un-truth.
The will of God, abide in his place,
Comfort for our souls…
Makes my skin crawl.

EMM 1999

Poems 1998-2007 Looking Out

Looking Out

Generations look out from faded photos.
Tangible images frozen in time
mark the progress from birth to death.
Light and confident in youth,
life’s challenges change the expression
to one of steady determination by middle age.
Dreams dimmed, visions vanquished,
eyes softened by time
reflect the beginning of the end.

The images made permanent by chemical process --
negatives exposed to light,
shadows trapped on photography paper,
are silent.

We all think we’ll remember
the who, the what, the when.
With or without labeling,
generation after generation
have passed on
with no one left to ask.

EMM 9/21/98

Poems 1998-2007 Shining Armor

Fourteen years have passed.
No white, black or multi-colored
Knight in shining armor has shone up.
I have to take care of myself.
My womanly wiles never existed.
I couldn’t charm the pants off of any man.
I sit in wait, inactivity produces day dreams of romance.
I am stunning and witty, flirtatious but smart and self assured.
The mirror reveals middle aged ho hum,
Pleasantly plump, graying, sagging, crow’s feet
descend to join infinite lines.
The voice says you’ll never remarry.
I listen; daydreams abandoned.
I am who I am.
Alone, growing older
I scratch at the paper,
like the words will make a difference
If I could change, what would be…
I’m too afraid of men.
Their size and deep voice make me timid.
My dream persona mocks me:
all full of life and joy; fearless; strong.
Persona has taken it all; I am clueless.
No self help books anymore.
So where’s the white knight?
Where’s the happy ever after?
Parents should be punished
for reading that drivel to their kids.

EMM 1999

Poems 1998-2007 Is There Time?

Is there time?

Outside summer light halo’s his head.
“It’s wonderful.”
Breezes ruffle the leaves.
“Join me out here.”
Cat heavy, my full lap prevents movement.
“Play a game, Mom.”
Disabled, his injuries slow his movements.
“Do you have time?”
De-catting myself, I work on my list.
“Comin’ in.”
TV voices resound from his room.

EMM 6/22/99

Poems 1998-2007 Intact


hiding from myself
multiple tasks fill the void.
unrecognized pain is kept
at bay by full schedule.
beneath the surface of smiles,
blissful ignorance displayed.
Until the trunk lid buckles
unleashing a torrent.
For a few brief seconds
pain escapes in sound.
Muffled by a pillow
sobs rack my body.
all too soon the fleeting storm
passes by, fitful sleep descends.
With skilled practice
I keep the pain intact.

EMM 1999

Poems 1998-2007 Illusive


I lost it whatever it is.
I’ve looked everywhere for it.
Peering into closets, into drawers
under beds, it remains

Hard to put a finger on it,
I know it’s somewhere.
Advice given is to keep looking.
Nothing is really lost,
just misplaced.

EMM 3/3/99

Poems 1998-2007 Why


W ... h ... y,
Just three letters
in a row
that form such
a small word
that takes up
so much space
in my mind.

If I counted
those surfaced “whys”
that spontaneously appear
while I work,
they would equal
more than a
24 hour day.

If given a
dollar for each
time a why
occurs, I would
have grocery money
for a month.

If an answer,
just one answer,
made any sense
I would find,
peace of mind
instead of whys.

Emm 3/23/98

Poems 1998-2007 How Far?

How far will you come back?

The immensity of the task totally
inconceivable by most standards,
when divided becomes measurable
in small gains.
12, 24, 48 hours, a week, two.
Respirator removed – breathing on his own,
One down, so many more…. Don’t think.
Brain swelling – decreasing,
Consciousness – gained.
One healing at a time.
Stomach tube in, shut removed, IV lines out.
slowly recognition in his eyes.
Weeks trudge by –
Pediatric intensive care to floor unit,
Floor unit to rehab hospital…
Prone position to tilt table,
Wheelchair upright, diapers, walker.
One accomplishment at a time.
Pain…. Mutual: emotional-physical
Blended: inseparable – binding.
Movement, motor skills, sounds.
Words… memory
Who, what, when, where.
Why? I’m beyond that…
How far will you come back?
3, 6, 12 months…
1, 2,3, 4 years… four years ago.
Daily struggles,
Gains – large, small or nonexistent.
So much out of reach to him.
He sits and plays video games.
Once the fastest runner in his fifth grade class.
My realization… this isn’t the measles,
This won’t go away.
One corrective surgery, two, three…
One healing at a time,
One accomplishment… until
No more can be reached.
How far will you come back, John,
How far?

EMM 1998

Poems 1998-2007 Gardening


Dirt is crammed beneath my fingernails again.
Grubbing in the soil makes me whole.
The smell, the feel, the moisture content,
all dully noted as I work the gardens.
Flower beds have tripled under my tenure.
Painting in 3-D, I move perennials and shrubs.
Using my artist eye, I project the future --
size and shape, pattern, color and texture.

Weary from my chores, I wash the dirt
from my hands and knees
but my nails remain full of earth.


Poems 1998-2007 Fresh Sheets

Fresh Sheets

I love the feeling of climbing
into a freshly changed bed
in the middle of a winter night.
I'm exhausted from the day
and the sheets smell fresh
from the spring scented dryer sheets.
My comforter is filled with down,
lightweight, warm, and fluffy.
The flannel nightgown is fuzzy
and soft from repeated washings.
I feel cozy; the world seems right.

EMM 8/98

Poems 1998-2007 Eye Glasses

Eye Glasses

Eight pair of glasses,
reading, bi-focal, tri-focal,
measure in glass increments
your lifetime.

Aging eyes,
vision diminished,
soaked up the surroundings
until the very end.

Propped up against the urn,
the last pair reflect
our life.

emm 7/12/98

Poems 1998-2007 Emergency Room

Emergency Room

Wringing my hands, I sat frozen in a windowless room. Wringing my hands, locked away from emergency room action. Mind numb with images, emotions overloaded by the bombardment of recent events, visual recollections ricocheting around the corners of my mind. The force of thoughts slowed my body to a motionless state. Lips sealed tight against sound. Too filled with apprehension to pace, I sat glued to an arm chair of standard hospital issue. Waiting, waiting an eternity for the word trying to catch a thought, thoughts made slippery from the friction of motion.
“She’s in here” a peering face from partial open door announced to the hall. Crisply stated in my direction, “You can use the phone, bathroom is across the hall.” Mechanical rules delivered without thought. No comfort. No word. The face disappeared. The door shushed a reply.
Coiled like a viper, the phone sat ready to strike. Black, menacing, backed into a corner. Light reflections, fluorescent flickering, illuminated its round edges. The spots of light on the sleek surface drew my hand to the only object for communication. Numbers, trying to pull phone numbers to feed the uncoiled serpent cradled in my hand. Maniacal thoughts raced on, unstoppable. Thoughts set in motion creating a life of their own, perpetuating themselves by careening off each other. Energy begetting energy.
Forcing past the whirling dervish vortex , I located a darkened section where names and phone numbers were scattered. Shaking uncontrollably, my dialing digit spasmodically jumped from number to number. Answering machine, an answering machine. A voice sobbing, I heard a voice sobbing relating the debilitating event to a machine. Totally incoherent babbling to be interpreted by who... who did I dial? Brigitte... the goat woman. Brigitte, the pragmatic German picked up disconnecting the recording. Picking words from my gibberish, making sense enough to respond with words of courage and strength. Her familiar voice pulling me back from brink.
Amidst total chaos, another number floated to the surface. A gasping, choking voice passed over wires, electronic impulses invisible to sight, wires to wires to Eileen. I longed to be in her kitchen, a safe haven filled with seasonal scents. Idle chats enhanced by cups of Almond Sunset Tea. Mundane moments of sharing. Wired to her sunny yellow kitchen, her calm soothing voice travelled to my blue fluorescent cell. A spot of sun radiating warmth. Sobbing, I wait for the word.

Poems 1998-2007 Emerald Green

Emerald green, the green associated
with healing the heart.
I envision this soothing light
peacefully enveloping my chest,
reaching into the darkness,
pushing the hurt away,
encasing this precious organ
with a protective layer.

Green, emerald green, pulsing
through my veins,
reaching each cell,
propelling life to every corner.
My eyes look to a shimmering
universe before me.
Reflected, refracted
the light intensifies.

I wake to the sun streaming
onto my bed from the window.


Poems 1998-2007 Elzza

adventurer from birth,
independent soul,
defining her space in this universe.
Risk taker extraordinaire,
observer of human foibles,
participator in all that beckons,
she is weaving a life with rainbow colors.
Her energy, chaos and creativity
bring joy into this quiet house
that dissipates with her departure.
I want to bottle “Elzza Exuberance”
for the times between her visits
when middle-age responsibilities
carry too much weight.
A medicinal spoonful now and then
would prompt joy -
revive my energy, chaos and creativity.


Poems 1998-2007 Each Day

Each Day

I never planned any of this:
divorce, an accident-disabled son,
living with an aging parent, alone.
Harriet Nelson, I’m not -- nor Martha Stewart.
I don’t spend the day in homemaker dresses.
I careen from one thing to the next
with hardly the time for a single thought.

My frustration at times
seems like the Rock of Gibraltar,
huge, immovable and always in sight.
This life I lead takes a Universe,
a Universe of patience
that occasionally finds
a black hole of anger.

Try his shoes on.
A life of potential
wiped away at the age of 12.
Dependent for many of his needs,
in constant discomfort,
allergies, headaches, body pain.
he has no friends his age to relate to,
just two “old” people, a mom and a granddad,
who fill his time away from rehab school.

His frustration at times
seems like Mount Everest,
vast, insurmountable, and always visible.
This life he leads makes a Universe,
a Universe of pain,
that occasionally finds
a black hole of weeping.

Our patience and humor are allies.
Linked together, they get us through
each day.

EMM 3/23/98

Poems 1998-2007 Dots


Row after row of colorful dots
dance on a roll of crisp white paper.
Perfectly formed the split spheres
become a color wheel of taste
blending tone and hue.

Child size bits, minute crunches,
nibble by nibble,
reveal ribbons of blank paper.


Poems 1998-2007 Dance of Creation

Dance of Creation

Out from my
Colors move across one, two, three papers
Ever expanding shapes, patterns, forms -- appear and disappear...
not to thin thought but to thicken
Mindless focus frees my hands to reach deeper, to plumb depths to
long held captives of spirit.
The intensity of non-concentration intensifies

not bound by my rules
journeys to my canvass,
the dance of creation into the pulse of

EMM 5/30/98

Poems 1998-2007 Passing

Dad’s Passing April 3, 1998

“You old fart.” I’d say
“Bratty daughter” was the reply.
No one would understand
our poking fun.
“Deaf as a post”, I’d say.
You heard what you wanted to hear.
We loved you and your
curmudgeon ways
but you left us

How dare you cut out so soon?
John and I need you.
We thought we had
more time to share with you.
Not forever, just more

You passed away so suddenly.
We are numb in our mourning,
awaiting your
Cheshire-cat smile
to lighten
our day.

You took each challenge
in stride.
You set a steady pace
for your journey.
One lesson learned
at a time.

Gathering up the pieces,
we take this challenge
in stride.
Our lesson,
learned in time,
is to continue
from where you
left us.

EMM 4/18/98

Poems 1998-2007 Connectedness


I keep thinking I’ll wake some day
from this “bad dream”.
The sorrows and painful memories
of my divorce, my son’s accident, my friend’s death
will dissolve in the mist of morning,
vague nightmares, faded in the daylight.
Someone will be holding me, spooned
against my back, muttering good morning’s
in time to the alarm’s shocking jangle,
a last squeeze before launching into the day.

Where is the connectedness
that’s been forever
out of my reach?

EMM 11/1/98

Poems 1998-2007 Brother


Fury spews onto my paper.
Hot tears punctuate
the torrent of rage.
My mind replays the last straw --
“Let’s pilfer Dad’s tools!”
Sibling ties dissolve
in the acid of your insolence.
The shackles that bound us,
brother to sister,

The storm of anger abates,
I feel nothing for you.
I write you out of my life.


Poems 1998-2007 Breakfast


Cereal squatting in icy milk
greets John for breakfast.
a chilling start to the day.
This no brainer menu,
a miserable daily repetition,
is no comparison to Granddad’s fare.
Pancakes, waffles, omelet’s lovingly ...

effortlessly made to request.

Poems 1998-2207 Again


I feel guilty
leaving you
alone again.
I have to go
to work, to class, to complete
a hundred million chores.

You sit and wait
for a chunk
of my time.

Since the accident,
since the chaos of healing,
since your granddad’s death,
you sit and wait
alone again.

EMM 5/21/98