frigid

moon

on this cold planet
exiled for loving too much
and too hard
presided by a moon
icy and unfeeling
I remember love

the thoughts of warm hands
and the heart of a champion
I recall a day when I was made queen
of one man, one seeker
and it reminds me not to let go
of the tether

to be carried through frigid space
to be sentenced for always
come to me again my love
with that fire
so red and angry it would
send that moon
splashing

Tantalizing Tuesday: Bette Davis, pt. 2

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As I have watched Bette Davis, what has impressed me most has been her staying power. There is a point in some actors’ careers where they find themselves unable to go further, due to bad press, pressure to compete with younger actors, perhaps even their own expectations and discouragement with aging. Not Bette Davis. She seemed to get better and better. She changed with the times and with age and its limitations, but she always showed up with class.

In her films post-1940’s there were a few stand-outs for me. As we’ve discussed before, All About Eve was released in 1950 and the subject of aging in Hollywood was approached head-on. Check out this scene with Bette and Gary Merrill. She was called paranoid by those around her- but her instinct was spot on. She knew it sooner than everyone about her, but too late to stop it from happening.

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Monday Random: winter

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When Chekhov saw the long winter, he saw a winter bleak and dark and bereft of hope. Yet we know that winter is just another step in the cycle of life. But standing here among the people of Punxsutawney and basking in the warmth of their hearths and hearts, I couldn’t imagine a better fate than a long and lustrous winter.

-Phil, Groundhog Day

  • One of my grown children has announced she might never return or at least live full-time again with four intense seasons like Chicago has. I think she meant winter.
  • It is clear that one’s tolerance or intolerance of winter is directly related to age of the car and ability to pay for good tires and repairs.
  • My body is confused about how to feel with yet another bout of warm weather in February. There is this ominous- how far is this climate change going to go- vs. hot damn it’s 65F, let’s go play!
  • Once a year I experience a walk through the first big snow. Can be very romantic – palpable -the crisp, clean feeling- the snow in my hair. Not being a ski-er or skater it loses it’s charm once I am driving.
  • If given the chance to move on,  would I leave four seasons for year-’round warm weather? I’m not  sure. I think winter makes spring that much sweeter.

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Sum of my parts

(2015)


I was composed by
Dickinson and Poe
Ingalls and Alcott
Cummings and Keats;
A pen with the ink of
Matthew, Mark, Luke
John, Ringo, George
And Paul, the apostle;

Shaped by the lashes
of a leather belt
and overcooked vegetables
with Sunday roast, and
endless vats of gravy
poured into cups

put food on the pain
eat until you’re stuffed;

Composed by Rock of Ages
What a friend we have in Jesus
sung by saints and the
pure-of-heart-
wife-beaters-closet bigots
friends and adulterers;

Unexpected kindnesses
wrapped in Jean Naté
and Chanel No. 5
a soft, wrinkled hand
with hard candy
wrappers that crinkled
during the prayer;

Constructed by long rainy walks
endless nights without sleep
teachers that saw through me
a welcome friend
in the middle of the heat;

Each cell, every organ complete
I won’t deny any of them
for to remove the painful limbs
would cause the others
to fall apart;

So I walk on
head up-chin out
this is me
take me or leave me
this is who I am
a sum of my life

Until I am done
I’m coming Grandma
some day-to sit next to you
and hear the rest of the stories

Of how we were all
written-prodded
stewed, and shoveled
into what we are





to drown




this room echoes
last night’s chatter
and the birds’ calls
before the sun rises
echo and repeat
each line so polite
so cutting in its precision

you called me friend
but you have left me here
to drown. Please do not
call me mate, I might
lose my grip on the buoy
all that is between here
and landfall, all I want

is a friend who is truthful
and to give in return

and birdsong

 

Cool wind (with apology)

blackbird

 

When the winds shift
next day after a storm
a cool wind (with apology)
I can smell you from over the water
please take me home
keep my feet on solid ground

There is no guarantee
that the dirt won’t shift
and all this we built might crumble to bits
but I am finding it hard to trust the breeze
flighty and self-centered

You make a fool of me
my dignity lost in the air
debris caught up and flying about
with your smell
the woods and rain that you live in

feeding my thoughts each day
waiting for them to propagate
watching for the moment
when seed becomes brain-child
when the scent of you and the juniper
are impossible to resist

 

 

silence (kills)

pigtails
dresses
sworn to silence
months that felt like years
years to get over months

is it unbearable
to not be cherished
then try to join the world
tentative
aloof
scared of shadows

staying mean
to keep the walls standing
middle of the crowd I screamed
my anguish

one on one
I was sworn to silence