Her bitterness grew, eating her organs gradually. When her doctor read the
x-rays, he showed her where her heart used to be, reduced, he said, to the
size of a radish.
“Why are things always compared to food?” she asked.
“Maybe,” he suggested to her, “because of what is eating you.”
She went away, pondering how she might grow a new heart. Perhaps it was
something she could bake in the oven or grow in the garden.
I don’t want anything of his when he is gone. Not a damned thing.
We didn’t talk for 20 years, and now he tells me stories. He tells me things about my mother I never knew, and I tuck them away like perfumed handkerchiefs in small drawers. I may never open them again, but they are there, preserved for posterity. Someone will want them and treasure them. Or someone careless will throw them in the trash.
it was snowing a few days before Christmas
and he put his jacket around my shoulders
the smell of leather, a memory, rose
in the clouds from our mouths
the snow looked like diamonds in my hair
he said, and kissed my forehead
while I finished my story, about
the one that got away, the one
that broke me in two for ten months–
he laughed a little at the end
and I shrugged, running a block ahead
while he picked up his jacket
brushed it off
and tried to make sense of me
catching up he grabbed my arm
and I pulled it away
then he called me sweetheart
and I stopped. ‘didn’t you break some hearts
back then?’ he asked–
I turned and smiled, and
he handed me his coat
putting my arms into the sleeves.
I held his hands
‘yeah I did, didn’t I? huh, I had forgotten,’
and we walked through the park
until it stopped snowing, until
we had run out of memories to tell
A shadow fell across me
and the shelves of canned tomatoes
before me at the local market
someone breathing–heavy enough
close enough to feel it upon my neck
I moved an obligatory two steps
toward the green beans
but the shadow moved with me
like the mouth-breathers from
I made a quick move to leave the aisle
when a black-robed figure
skirted around me, knocking off
half a dozen cans
with a garden tool
Finally in line, with my 2 cans
of pizza sauce and a rotisserie chicken
I saw the black robe putting groceries
on the conveyor, and when he turned
his head I saw it was the grim reaper
I said, “Hey man–how come
you have 32 items in the express lane?”
Everything stopped. The store
was shrouded in silence. The cashier
looked at me in horror
Death’s hand stopped in mid-air
holding a box of Corn Pops.
“You know,” I said
“That stuff’ll kill you.”
image by pixabay.com
The beginning of the story
One day in London turned into Petra and Robert replaying the good parts of Niagara Falls. The first two days were spent fasting, and nearly dehydrating, in their hotel room. On the third day Petra and Robert ventured out, finding their way to a restaurant, and then to a racetrack, somewhere Petra could place a bet. It could have been anywhere, but Robert did love the horses. They got his heart racing in a way that nothing else could with the exception of the roulette table. Petra went along with it without much to say. She could live without gambling for once– the entire escapade a gamble, whether they lived or died, together or alone.
Continue reading “Your Loss, pt. 11”
- I miss what Twinkies tasted like before. I can’t eat them often, but now and then it would be nice to have one taste like it used to
- I am still going through boxes and downsizing since the move. It was hard to get rid of some things then. Now, a little easier, but sometimes I still sit with a paper in my hand, or a book, or momento and I can’t let it go.
- I never thought that would happen to me
- I really don’t like clutter.
Continue reading “Monday Random: nostalgic”
Didn’t Charles say that he would always take care of her? Petra opened the expansive closet doors in her suite and surveyed what her husband had filled it up with. Dresses, gowns in several colors, skirts, blouses, an alpaca jacket, a pair of beaded lounge pants, and every ridiculous hat in fashion in both Paris and New York. Below were shoes, not shoes like someone might take on holiday, but shoes that a woman might accumulate over a lifetime. She did not react or squeal or get particularly excited or giddy, because this was her life. He had said she would never be left wanting and he had kept his part of the bargain. Her part was simple in theory–do everything he askd of her. So far she had done so, and without question. He had never had to get rough with her or even order her about. She was a tough girl and a little sadistic, just enough to enjoy what she was doing.
Continue reading “Your loss, pt. 5”
“Petra can’t be forced to be a witness at my trial. She’s my wife.” Robert took a long drag on the cigarette Margil handed to him from across the table. The guard watched closely from across the room, but allowed the exchange of cigarette and words between Robert and his lawyer during the ten minutes allowed on this prison visit.
“She ain’t your wife Robbie–she’s his wife, ain’t she?” Margil brought him back to the present, then followed the question with a raucous hacking cough. Still, he took another drag off the cigarette, watching his old friend and client. He was exploring every avenue to try and help him but he was running out of options.
“Then drag her in here!” Robert stood quickly, upsetting the folding chair. The guard took a step in his direction but he held his hand up that he was done, setting the chair to rights and sitting back down. He lowered his voice, leaning forward over the table. “Bring her in to testify. Bring her in here first, so we can find out what she’ll say. She knows the truth. She knows that I didn’t kill her aunt Sadie. Hell, I never killed nothin’ but time.”
Continue reading “Your Loss, pt. 4”
Niagara falls was heavenly. The weather was perfect for September and the landscape was lovely, just starting to change to the many hues of Autumn. Petra lay back on the bed. For two days she and Robert put aside the sadness and worries of Chicago. It turned out that Aunt Sadie had a brother from Altoona who didn’t like how long the police were taking to solve her murder. They were treating it like a random burglary gone awry, that Sadie had discovered the burglar and a gun went off in the panic. Unsatisfied, Uncle Max had put out a reward for information leading to the capture and arrest of the murderer. All the details rolled over in her head as she looked through the window at the falls from the bed in a honeymoon suite in their hotel.
Continue reading “Your loss, pt. 3”
As we return this year to an older feature, ‘Tantalizing Tuesdays’, let’s finish our peek at the work of Greta Garbo we began in December.
I never said, ‘I want to be alone.’ I only said, ‘I want to be left alone.’ There is all the difference.
– Greta Garbo
Mesmerizing. When Greta Garbo is on the screen, it is her eyes I am seeking out, her many-faceted expressions that add so much more to the dialogue than just words. It is more than tactile, innate beauty. There are many people born, as some would say, ‘classically beautiful.’ But there was something else, something I cannot name, coming from inside her.
Continue reading “Tantalizing Tuesday: Greta Garbo pt. 2”