Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Stretch -- Poetry 2011

Mr. Tuxedo aka Gandalf takes up half my desk;

sprawling, his legs hang over the edge.

My blockade of loose papers doesn’t slow

his glacier advance as he oozes to the further edge

plowing the paperwork before his expansion.

If he curled up, I’d appreciate the minimal gain.

Deep in sleep, a few gentle pushes can slide him

into a curved compact mound until… the stretch.

Muscles strain and twitch unwinding the fur ball

back to his sprawl taking up half my desk…


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Plain -- Poetry 2011

Plain words


Like herself

No make up

No fancy clothes

No matching accessories.

Plain words


Without thesaurus

Not made-up

Nothing fancy

Few matching adjectives

Plain words

Gather in a journal

Trespass on blank pages

Reveal hidden recesses

Mental calculations

Dependent on vision.

Plain words

Explain plain days

Unadorned plain nights

Through plain eyes

Divested observations

Inordinate accuracy.


Required Maintenance Requisition -- Poetry 2011

Going to shut my overworked brain off

for the next 8+ hours for maximum efficiency.

Least when sleeping, it’s relatively quiet.

It just gets in the way most of the time.

It’s the part that worries that’s the problem;

constant whirring circulation of bad what if…

It’s the part that renews the passive victimitis…

that’s really where the major fault lies within.

How to out maneuver that tread on me policy?

No amount of time has changed it; it’s far too

embedded in the DNA – a cancer eating self-esteem

even when I think I’ve managed to change.

Maybe if I befriend it…

it is me, I am it… now what?

Required maintenance requisition sent

to the department of internal settings

demanding upgrade to non-victim status…


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Serious Diligence -- Poetry 2011

Made some sterling mental notes…

now I can’t remember where I put them.

The thoughts were raw thinking… short

of terrifyingly raw and that’s pretty much

how I like my encounters with gray matter to be.

Off-the-wall wacky to get those synapses snapping

but not necessarily  something I’d actually do or say.

It’s fun to peruse personas like exploring various lives

of characters when reading a good book – so safe.

The challenge is slipping from ensconced home body

sans wall flower demeanor to a believable charisma.

No amount of mirror practice or change in wardrobe

will accomplish this weaning from shyness, this desire

to remain hidden or this need to run into shadow...


“You live several lives while reading [a good book].”—William Styron

Nothing to say -- Poetry

She’s worn out her words.

Redundant proliferation

watered them down,

washed away their power,

diluted any residual meaning.

Speechless she fidgeted;

tearless eyes wandered

stopping always on the clock.

Second hand raced past

minutes in a warped way.

Windowless room, two chairs,

end table, a phone, the door

and the pervasive clock ticking.

Electricity connected, its audible

workings hummed and lurched;

falling into its rhythm, her inaudible

workings only lurched slightly.

Idle phone had left her with nothing

to say; she’d worn out her voice…


Saturday, August 27, 2011

Waterworks -- Poetry 2011

            What brings on tears?

Common and hardest to bare:

mourning someone’s passing,

mourning world woes or

evil done to one another.

If you have a soul you grieve…

There’s a softer distress -

sheer purity of a beautiful sunset

or sunrise, art work, a poem,

a melody or a singer's voice.

Natural reaction to a higher

level of spiritual insight.

Imaginative identification

ignites waterworks from

a passionate resonance

connecting with characters

in novels, plays or movies.

Mind knows its fiction;

emotional hooks sink deep.

But more often than not

something - a scent, a color,

a déjà vu trigger reminds us

of a time or a place or a person

or all three; tears of regret

or pain or fear or unrequited

longing splatter and drip.

Frozen memories thaws…


Friday, August 26, 2011

Wishing Skies -- Poetry 2011

Cloudless August skies -

finally a touch of perfect

Pacific Northwest summer days…

high temperatures slow inhabitants

used to unseasonably dreary summer.

Cool nights prevail due to proximity

to Puget Sound waters…

crickets finally emerge;

woefully deficient in numbers,

their scratching legs sing through warm nights.

Staring at wishing skies,

scanning for telltale streaks,

watching from darkened streets,

she had waited a whole year

to wish on summer’s falling stars.


Scattering -- Poetry 2011

Sucked into a holding pattern

from electronic stimulation;

not just TV tube endless sitcom dribble

but social media: face book, twitter…

depletion of social skills turned anti:

crowds bothered her –

too much movement;

babble bothered her –

too much to take in;

driving bothered her –

her night vision decreased.

Slipping into a semi silent state

accompanied by the flickering screen,

she was obsessive in her devotion.

Vicariously living in a cyber-world

by clicking the mouse;

by reading comments;

by having many user names…

anonymous, she periodically dislodged

crumbs, cat hair, lint from her keyboard;

TV and computer tables were cat draped

until the air can’s hiss sent them scattering…


Soured -- Poetry 2011

Adamant in her sighing

she forcefully exhaled


over and over each day.

Discontent was an ally…

a constant companion.

Life was empty;

dislodged from prior complacency,

sighing became a routine rhythm.

Breath in; breath out - sigh…

a prolonged and wispy exhale.

No one noticed;

no one commented either…

desecrated libido soured.

Wishing for a final exhale…


Summer: bah humbug!

Since she turned fifty…

no more family get-together events;

no endless picnics on hazy summer days.

That’s what she missed

since the family dispersed;

since the elders passed away;

since the family cottage was sold…

the connections disconnected.

Cousins spread across the country

disappeared across the continents.

She’d need age enhanced drawings

to recognize innumerable cousins

let alone their numerous offspring.

Who amongst the clan envisioned

this when they splashed their way

from June to September daring each other

to one more swim with teeth chattering and blue lips…


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Ok… -- Poetry 2011

After thinking about it for a little while

the conclusion rafted down turbulent rapids.

Taking on water to the gunnels, the outcome

was swamped but still floating outward.

Opening her mouth, the acrid wisdom

bailed her out; smiling, eternally thankful

for meditation, she said, no thank you…

sent the cat-chasing dog home, and now

all her cats are back, including shy Lizzard…


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

resilience of the cluck -- Poetry 2011

Extra Special Deluxe energy sprinkle dust

being dispensed at full capacity…

romping, leaping, pirouetting, twisting

over, through and into a replenishing fountain.

Vapid daydreams won’t do anymore;

I dream of a better world, where chickens can

cross the road without having their motives questioned.

Placards filled with Free Range or Cage Free

balloon letters advocate for the humble fowl.

Leading the squawking parade, we march to the Capitol.

Summer weather in August, windows open wide

at dawn allowing squawks as a morning wake-up-call.

Who doesn’t like the cackles and bwwwak bwauk bwak

announcing the triumph of a freshly laid egg?

Confused until eyes creak open… for a moment,

I was a child again waking to our Rhode Island Reds…


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Summer Rainfall -- Poetry 2011

An all-night rain after a couple of weeks without,

and everything smells fresh and new...

walking in the woods beats any gym, any day –

smell of damp leaf mulch, sweet scent of evergreens;

water drops nestled in every little natural depression

on leaves, rocks, branches catch filtered light…

small surprises on the gentle side of mother nature.

It’s macro beauty weighing against the destructive

force of severe weather or other natural disasters –

bane of man’s existence caught off guard at the power.

Complacent in wooden structures with light and warmth

programed to forget the unpredictable devastation from

earth, sea or sky – tuned to sunny days not black skies.

Walking in the woods, summer heat dries up overnight

showers turning air humid among primal nature scents.


Solar lentigo -- Poetry 2011

Brown dots form a constellation adding depth

to my universe of wrinkled thinning skin;

they cover the backs of my hands so much more

exposed to sun’s bright glare over these 64 years.

Maybe I should name them, make up tales

to explain their existence, give them a mystique

instead of their common misnomer of liver spots…


Wikipedia calls them Solar lentigo", "Lentigo senilis",

"Old age spot," "Senile freckle”…

Monday, August 22, 2011

Heading to work… -- Poetry 2011

Late, running late,

hitting every light…

red, red, red.

What a start?

Behind before beginning;

setting out materials,

everything out of sync.

Remembering to breathe,

pushing panic back,

staring at the ceiling…

phone startled me awake.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Cloche -- Poetry 2011

I need to stop abusing my snooze button;

I have so much to do today. My to-do list

is very time constrained. ack. Ack. ACK

Ahhh, the daily reset button – start again.

Kind of amazing concept that each day we get

to restart and if prepared make forever changes.

Clothed in a bubble of serenity or wild eyed

heart thumping frustration is a choice…

If I can sneak a cloche around with me, I’d

repel swirls of distraction and have smooth sailing.

Considering the summer sun, I’ll pass on the greenhouse

effect of being enclosed in an inverted glass bell jar –

what I really need is an invisibility cloak…


Completely Batty -- Poetry 2011

My neighbors will think I'm crazier than they already think I am.
I’ve gained a trusty attack bat to keep an ear on the place.
All in all, he's more trouble than he's worth. He stays up all night;

he certainly keeps weirder hours than I do… eats all my moths,
and can't even remember to set the DVR for my fav shows.
This little houseguest has his favorite places to hang around during the day:
certain picture frames, curtain rods, handles on the kitchen cabinets…
so I've been doing some homework to wrap my mind around a plan
to extricate him despite the fact that he’s so ugly he’s cute;
least he doesn’t raid the refrigerator or pantry for food but he leaves
moth wings all over the place. Not a big talker his chattering can be as
annoying as someone snoring as he wings around snapping at moths;
keeping any guests at bay- horrified shrieks are emitted once he makes
the most frightening appearance –  always popping up at the most inopportune
times, his crazy little sharp teeth form a grimace when he hisses;
reluctantly turning out the lights and opening the sliding glass door,
I think I might miss him a bit when he’s gone…


Friday, August 19, 2011

Unstated -- Poetry 2011

When my dreams fade into redundancy

becoming rutted like the journey I travel

in waking hours, how will I find hope?

Life and death walk hand in hand since

love collapsed in on itself at an early age;

hiding in the fear of picking another cruel

partner, I’ve never forgiven myself or

forgotten how I failed to stand up against him.

When I was young I never thought my dreams

would shatter; the broken shards irrevocably

wounded my soul for the rest of my life.

My fault again for not relinquishing the pain but

pain that was known was better than nothing.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Late -- Poetry 2011

Defying logic and reason should be on my resume.

Who else would commit to releasing locked artistic

ability starting at fifty four years old…  ten years later,

I’m extremely proficient for an old lady layered in cat

and Corgi fur. Finding my rhythm after relinquishing

it to recovery; switching media to explore idled visions

swings me back to Sumi-e – simple brush movement.

The collages are calm, harmonious and balanced

while the brush accomplishes flying white even

when pursuing whimsical cats, frogs and birds to paper.

And yeah, it was the right thing to do from every angle.

Passion, persistence and patience and practice,

I don't forget those four “P” words…

not aiming for fame, somehow the best things always

come out of this late commitment to expression.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Sometimes -- Poetry 2011

Cats in my life keep me sane;

cats in my life keep me insane…

they cycle in and out of existence.

Sometimes their stay is far too short;

sometimes their stay drags on…

their slow decline wears on my spirit.

It’s the rescuer in me wanting to stave

off death; cheat it for a while, keep the

physical presence of a treasured

friend draped on desk, lap or bed.

Sometimes you just have to let go…


Path -- Poetry 2011

Note to self:

stumble and fall,

lots of bad ideas

lots of hassles…

say no thank you.

Without anyone seeing,

am turning into a vampire.

Staying up all hours,

prowling the dark streets,

night’s Vulcan death grip.

A diligent presence

going with gut feelings.

Notice the clock…

people talk about 11:11

being the sign of right path.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Old Clothes -- Poetry 2011


Dreamed I hired a super laundry fairy;

I let you borrow her because you loaned

me your vacuum-sweep-mop-do-dishes fairy.

We discussed finding a scour-the-bathroom

and a clean-out-the garage fairies to trade.

It was amazing how fast the house became

white glove clean on every level - floor to ceiling.

Too bad it was only a dream; I dragged

a finger across the top of a framed Sumi-e

I was about to donate… scraping thick grime off.

Yuck!  Hot air heat, messy dogs and a broken

stove hood fan didn’t help any; plus, I figure

over my lifetime I’ve cleaned enough so with

the time left, I’d rather be doing art. Please

take off your glasses and wear old clothes…


Monday, August 15, 2011

I miss her

I have zombie dreams pretty often…

sometimes I’m not surprised I’m first to die;

while other times, I'm perfectly capable of killing

them before they eat my brains but it's super

stressful because there's always more of them.

There's no time to rest so I’m thankful when I wake

up for a bathroom trip; gives me a break before

battling the hordes of walking dead again…

Fascinating how often I have those dreams

where I can't run in panic situations or

I know I’d totally trip and get eaten. One night

that happened by getting tripped up by my mom.

We were clinging and running, laughing hysterically,

dragging each other away from the clumsy moaners.

Apparently my mom and I better get together

to start training. Watch those workout tapes

or set up a Wii to practice Kung Fu, Karate, Aikido.

You know we'd be kicking all kinds of zombie ass;

zombie dreams - if only she were still alive…


Morning -- Poetry 2011

I never know what day it is,

especially when first I wake up...

hurts to think that hard first thing in the morning.

Least I'm not asking where I am

or even worse – who am I?

Today I woke up with a massive headache;

thank you persistent migraine for stealing

an entire days productivity from me. I hoped

to drown you in a sea of painkillers and never let

you see daylight again; it took a while to subdue you

as I numbly went about my business holding my head.

Tomorrow I want to wake up and realize I couldn't

be happier to begin again – the promise of a fresh

start even if I don’t know what day it is…


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Attitude -- Poetry 2011

Courage an automatic response to crisis

only available if one is not overwhelmed

by worry –

worry is a form of imagination as in

what if.

Without equivocation worry is not equivalent

to imagination

worry is not creative or is it?

Most don’t know how courageous they are…


amazingly mind closes down chatter in some


physically holding still while the world spins


clutching the arm rests, pale, silent,


swirling a beverage cup –

half full or half empty?


Saturday, August 13, 2011

Alive -- Poetry 2011

Garlic coated

cruel deeds…

a wooden stake

driven deep

into raw heart;

half-life vision

leaving soul

to mourn alive…


Friday, August 12, 2011

Warped -- Poetry 2011

blind as brick wall -

since bats aren't blind

plus she hated clichés.

she was better than that

even though her vision was weak.

too much computer time;

too much time using cheap magnifying lenses;

too old to compensate any other way.

her parents had trifocals at her age...

sometimes they stumbled muttering curses

at the ground glass they were bound to.

there was no fear associated with turning

into them, well not them per say but similar

to what they had become toward the end:

wrinkled, droopy features, puffy eyed,

hard of hearing and vision loss... so much

to look forward to as age warped her appearance.


Tight Places -- Poetry 2011

Uncomfortable squished in the space behind

the seats, speeding up highway to Cape Cod.

Mickey, my high school best friend, was too

large to squeeze into the Triumph’s excuse

for storage; my legs and bottom were asleep.

Numb with formidable pressure of the confined

space; engine's whine filled the space making

conversation impossible too...

four hours later, I attempted to unfold myself

from the womb less prenatal position.

Leg muscles twitched and shook barely

allowing feet to find comfort on ground.

Terrae firma so welcome after steel and

leather encasement ceased encroaching

on my petite form struggling to straighten up.

Certainly the butt of many jokes that evening

as we sat around the kitchen table eating,

playing board games, drinking tea before bed.

Certainly one of the tightest places I'd been so far;

in college I was crammed into a hall locker;

I hid in a closet or two; was wedged into a kayak

but those are other stories...