Wednesday, February 28, 2007

PT: After the close woven touch

After the close woven touch,
Thorn and velvet tongue-tapping
Spindrift night,
After the firm dovetailing of nerves,
Gunner, crack-shot, shell and ball
Bridging the half-way halves--
(Taking the moon by the teeth)
The seeded flesh
Masters the inhaling womb.
Galleries of manshaped boys
Kicking a bellyful of heels,
Roll, grasp, leap toward the burst light,
Tear through thickets of bent bone
And drowned dark, crush and wane
In the cruel sweet and endless forever,
And empty in the capsized bed.
The salt and watery boys
Riding the shipwrecked waves

(An old poem, written when I was young and easy, and under the spell of Dylan Thomas.)


Monday, February 26, 2007

"Your Dreams Miss You!"

Remember that Rozerem ad where the diver, the beaver, and Abe Lincoln all tell the sleepless guy that his "dreams miss him." I saw a new ad this morning where the guy goes in to work, and explains his insomnia to his boss. "Tell me about it," she says without sympathy, and she walks past followed by a little blue pony....

This reminded me of a dream I had last night, where I met an unconfident, lost camel on the street. He looked remarkably like Joe Camel, if he'd been painted by El Greco--long and sad, rather like Don Quixote's horse. This camel told me he was trying to find his house, a red house, so I obliged and helped him look for it. At length, after going up and down several streets, I finally found a red house. I pointed it out to him. "Not THAT red house," he said irritably. The ungrateful wretch.

Aren't dreams wonderful?! They keep sleep from being such a total waste of time!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Lighten up!

Speaking of "The Body...."

Oh my heck,
It's time for THAT, again!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

PT: The Body


flattens me

gin in the veins
might help

tonight I fly on brittle bones
out of this skin

this old pain

my top and bottom

sleep waivers like mirages
in a white fossil sea of aspirin

that dulls the saw
between deeper jacknifed vertebrae

this great grey sleep of bone
sucks me dry

(painting, Salvatore Dali: My Wife, Nude, Contemplating Her Own Flesh Becoming Stairs,
Three Vertebrae of a Column, Sky and Architecture, 1945)


Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Gift from Hubble

But enough of Anna Nicole Smith and NATO and Sunni's and Britney's hair. Enough of consumer price raises. Enough of snow, and Baghdad and Scooter and nuclear goals. Contemplate this for a few minutes. Take a few deep breaths, and center yourself.


--Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

(CLICK IT! You'll be glad you did!)

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Rose Parade

In case you missed this: a float depicting GWB being spanked by the Statue of Liberty in yesterday's Rose Monday parade in Mainz, Germany. (It's about time somebody did).

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Sunday Post: A Welsh Church in the Northwest

Ein Tad yn y nefoedd,
sancteiddier dy enw,
deled dy deyrnas,
gwneler dy ewyllys,
ar y ddaear fel yn y nef.
Dyro inni heddiw ein bara beunyddiol;
a maddau inni ein troseddau,
fel yr ym ni wedi maddau
i'r rhai a droseddodd yn ein herbyn;
a phaid a'n dwyn i brawf,
ond gwared ni rhag y r un drwg.

Oherwydd eiddot ti yw'r deyrnas
a'r gallu a'r gogoniant
am byth. Amen.

(The Lord's Prayer)

Thursday, February 15, 2007

PT: February Thaw

The sky is grey everywhere except toward the north. There the winter sun breaks like a wound, red as pyrocantha that grow wild beside the gate. Firethorns, we like to call them. The south wind blows warm for stripped February, starlings come and go, pushed leaflike up and down the steep sky--blustering black Furies. The raucous birds (drunk with berries) fill our Chinese Elm, its branches black and bare as upturned roots. We lean our bicycles, watch the sky clear, and dry ourselves of rain, kick off our shoes, forgiving the wet, the water, perfumed droplets, scattered pearls that gleam on hands and smiles like deep rose gems.

(Prose poetry)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


To all the friends who live in my computer:

To love is to admire with the heart,
and to admire is to love with the mind.

-T Gautier

I love and admire you all!


Sunday, February 11, 2007

Grandma and Grandson

Good News and Bad News

So. There's good news and bad news. The good news is that it's good to be back home again, after three weeks in the Northwest visiting my son and his beautiful wife, and their baby! I learned how to say 'good morning' in Welsh (bor da!), spent some part of every day rocking the baby, or singing (he sings a high soprano--I think he can hit high C!), or blowing spit bubbles together. My son is a great dad, my daughter-in-law is a fantastic mom. We are looking forward to next week, when the baby can begin eating VEGETABLES. His mom bought a food processor so she can mash up vegetables from the family dinner: brussel sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower! Yum! I wish I could be there to witness the first bite. Speaking of things yummy, we went out for pizza a couple of times and had roasted vegetables on it--red pepper, eggplant, and garlic buds. It was soooo good! We attended a little Welsh church where much of the singing (a lot of singing!) is done in Welsh, and they are learning the language, too. Little by little. Soon they'll be able to speak in a language we can't understand, like two of my other sons and their wives, who speak Japanese and Tagalog. And, just before we left, the cat began to get friendlier.

Now for the bad news. Last week I (and a lot of other people) were forced to make the big SWITCH to *New* Blogger. Since then, most of my old commenters who had names before have now become ANONYMOUS, and I have not been able to leave comments on many of your sites. It says 'incorrect password.' Anyway, until I can get the bugs worked out, know that I am trying! I love the new Poetry THursday place, and have nothing but applause for the girls!

Second bad news: somebody stole my credit card number and used it (in LOUISIANA!) so I've had a lot of crappy stuff to deal with. The good news here is that my account was not rich enough to accomodate all their charges, and the only things that went through were a couple of gas station fill-ups. Still. Why can't people just be nice, and honest? Then my husband discovered his credit card had expired the day before he arrived.... so our pockets were pretty shallow all the time we were gone. Empty when we came home. But the dogs are really really happy to see us. Our house has not burned down, and the bird and the goldfish are still alive!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

PT: Change


Adrienne Rich

Open the book of tales you knew by heart,
begin driving the old roads again,
repeating the old sentences, which have changed
minutely from the wordings you remembered.

From here on instinct is uncompromised and clear:
the tales come crowding like the Kalevala
longing to burst from the tongue. Under the trees
of the backroad you rumor the dark
with houses, sheds, the long barn
moored like a barge on the hillside.
Chapter and verse. A mailbox. A dooryard.
A drink of springwater from the kitchen tap.
An old bed, old wallpaper. Falling to sleep like a child
in the heart of the story.

Reopen the book ...

I have watched
films from a Pathe camera, a picnic
in sepia. I have seen my mother
tossing an acorn into the air;
my grandfather, alone in the heart of his family;
my father, young, dark, theatrical;
myself, a six-month child.
Watching the dead we see them living
their moments, they were at play, nobody thought
they would be watched so...

Such details get bunched, packed, stored
in these cellar-holes of memory
so little is needed
to call on the power, though you can't name its name:
It has its ways of coming back:
a truck going into gear on the crown of the road
the white-throat sparrow's notes
the moon in her fullness standing
right over the concrete steps the way
she stood the night they landed there.
From here
nothing has changed, and everything.

The scratched and treasured photograph Richard showed me
taken in '29, the year I was born:
it's the same road I saw
strewn with the Perseids one August night,
looking older, steeper than now
and rougher, yet I knew it. Time's
power, the only just power--would you
give it away?

(These are excerpts from a much longer poem. Of "Living Memory," Rich writes: "I hope that the poem speaks for itself." It speaks to me, of change--how in photographs, in memory, "nothing has changed, and everything." The whole poem is too long to post--look it up!)

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Super Bowl Picks

Today's the day! Who's your pick? I don't really care. Today is good for the chips and dips, for the crackers and cheese, for the clam chowder, as far as I am concerned. For the million dollar commercials. I would rather watch the commercials than the football, truth be told. Superbowl Sunday has become a national holiday somewhat akin to, say, the 4th of July, or Labor Day. Me, I'm looking forward to the SNACKS, like my grandson! So, pass the chips, please....
(As if I am not fat enough already.)