Category Archives: Me and my shadow

A query to viewers

There is no science in determining what to write and how to write it.  There are some topics I’ve noticed people are drawn to more but I can’t write about them exclusively.  It is also true that I don’t want to write about the same topics over and again. Even if they draw viewers.  It wouldn’t be authentic or real.  I’d simply be pandering to the largest numbers.

On the other hand, I don’t want to waste viewers’ time by posting things that don’t appeal to them.  I just wish I knew what the magic formula is.

I have to admit, some of my greatest views have been poems written 20 or 40 years ago.  (Yes, I am an old relic.)  It is disheartening as I’d like to think I have grown as a writer in the years since.

But I can see my style has definitely changed over the years.  I don’t waste time on melodrama now.  Flowery prose doesn’t excite me.  I’m more to the point.  I cut to the chase with what I have to say.

Some of the pieces I’m proudest of don’t attract any views, like “The Ravages of a Man”, a short story I’ve written over a number of years.  Meanwhile, love poems seem to find an audience.  Trouble is, I’m not in love and haven’t been in many years.  And my rants, those I’d be better off not writing, no one wants to hear about them.

I would welcome feedback about what you like and what interests you.  Not just in my writing but on the world’s stage.  I need new ideas to percolate on.  I want to contribute meaningful work.  I know my book has meaning but I don’t print it here.  That you might enjoy.

So please, take a moment to let me know your thoughts. I need to stretch my wings a bit and the interchange between you and I would be welcome.

Walls

Walls – safe, predictable walls

Not meant for scaling

Or maneuvering around

Not even meant for

Sitting on a sunny day

 

Walls have a purpose

You stay there

I lick my wounds here

Thou shalt not

Echoing in my cries

 

I never realized

How intrinsic a part

Of me walls are

Bet you were surprised

To see them

 

How can I conduct

A relationship from

My ivory tower

If walls come tumbling

And I stand unguarded

 

It may be that walls

Were not meant to define

But to take a breather behind

Perhaps – but I am naked

Without wall comfort

Don’t try to shatter my walls

Or you may find them

Shattering me.

Our Sixties

Our Sixties are

the time of

self-acceptance

when our faces

shift from middle

age to the planes

and lines of our

elder path

Except for those

bicycle enthusiasts

our bodies sag

with the weight

of a life lived hard

We know ourselves

and do not hold

our heads in shame

This is the time

of release from

obsessive worries –

a time when we

set ourselves free

A Wrinkle

A wrinkle
slit depression in my skin
lying slightly off plum
so I find myself mirror hopping
seeking whether it will fall
hanging down like a drunken sailor
whose feet are mired in netting,
or extend out as crow’s feet.
Deep sighs abound
for I’d rather have
the illusion of something
created by laughter
than the droop of a line
dragged down by depression.
I suppose it is inevitable
in its coming
I am aging . . .
my body clearly shows it,
gravity worked its travesty
But I can forget my body
in my mind’s eye
so quick to forgive and forget
it does not fit the mind’s image
But in a mirror capture
of my reflection, there is
no hiding from the inevitable
so that slight depression
is acknowledgment no amount
of glitter will ever fool others
into believing this old hag
ain’t gonna be kickin’ those heels
in any young girl’s dance

Purging the Soul

Only now can she say
her soul has been purged
scraped raw, exorcizing
that which is best left behind

She has slumbered long
passing through months
followed by years
with the faintest of life-giving energy

Perhaps the past held its  merits
but those were not honored
and in the deepest, darkest night
merged with dreams as fools fodder

Awakening comes with acknowledgment
those omissions raucously colliding
with acts of substance

How does she feel anything less
than complete and utter shame?
her days are more numbered
than most and having less

She sees her squandered actions
Her thefts of objects, honor and time
so trivial, yet from desecration
comes her only hope of renewal

Let it come . . .

Crone Status

I no longer look for Mr. Right,
can’t envision him in my space
can’t see myself naked under the light,
not the vision to behold
I care to share.

The man I might want
has nothing to do with this reality,
wouldn’t be attracted
to this hag worn body
ragged at the seams
creaking joints making
a cacophony of noise

Looking back –
I skated the edge
of marginalization
for more years
then I care to admit.
Looked at life darkly
groveled, debased myself,
making self-pity an art form

But now I am willing to shoulder
crone status and its implications.
No young God will warm my bed
I take comfort in its space
in wearing old, worn bedclothes
with no one looking askance at me

My body can make all the noises
a symphony makes
sore bones moaning
arthritis crackling.
Cat curled against my back
on inky dark, windswept nights.

The Moment in Change

Pen poised in mid-air,
with mind musing upon
the course of destiny,
vaguely wandering in
floating traipses
shooting off into future dreams
forgetting the moment
given in tender love
for cautious care.

So quickly do I flee
from the pressures of time
into a world of imaginary dreams,
mystical illusions and cryptic
messages – forgetting that
only through a full living
does the journey seem brighter
and the path clearer . . .

When caught between
past and future
I stand in terror,
eyes fearfully turning first
one way then another
but never straight ahead –
fogs swirl in clouded images
through the mind
leaving behind a tension
of confusion.

Today is only like any other . . .
the past is all that is seen,
the future lies in a heavy
cloak, blocking out fresh air.

But the moment – if relished
for itself – treasured among all
others for it’s radiance, its life –
is a gift of the gods
given to the weary
to instill hope and faith
that other moments such as these
are there for the taking
and just as freely given

 

Vast Reaches

The time has come
to search beyond fears
and trepidations of
long instilled torments
and reach for pinnacles,
scary but alluring,
rather than remaining
sequestered behind walls
built to protect,
to put the soldier,
always holding the fort,
maintaining structure
and security to rest
to experience peaks and valleys,
of knowledge and understanding,
loving and letting in,
sharing and fighting . . .

It is a time
for new beginnings,
an exploration of the sense,
questing for gratification,
in opening oneself up
to the frailties and strengths
never before explored.

The time has come
to love, to like, to play
… to be and be with,
to be at home
within the vast reaches
inside myself

The volume of a voice

Sometimes I feel like a voice in the wilderness – not connecting or being heard. I’m not a screamer by nature so it’s more like “ah, hello, is anyone out there? can you hear me?” in soft whispers. I want to connect but I’m too often the scratching noise at the end of an old phonograph album. White noise with a mild irritation perhaps, but something that needs to be changed.

I wonder what to write about. What matters to others? Do I have something to say more than trite, banal quips? I fancy myself a writer . . . oh, I know I’ll never be Proust or Dumas. Not even Berry or Silva, or even some self-published, harried someone rushing from libraries to bookstores to get their agreement to let me read my writings or display my book. {mostly because I can’t afford it and maybe not have the guts – those copies would be gathering dust in boxes in my apartment} I’m more like a church mouse hiding in the organ pipes, head clanging away when the songs are played. I hide.

Today I mentioned to someone that I have maybe 40 or 50 followers – wait for it – 74!!! Okay, I know that’s not a lot by a lot of standards but considering not one or my friends or family read my site, it’s not bad. I worry about that. I write about some deeply personal things and have come under the forbidding glare of a relative’s eye when they read a paper draft of something or other.

So I’m not sure how to grow my site by conventional methods. Do I start a new Facebook page and link it? One I don’t give my family address to? And how does Twitter work? Perhaps that can stay out of the family focus.

I publish in a couple of newsletters, one being my church. Poem after poem went into it for a while and my sister never commented on them, even when reading it while sitting right next to me. When I asked her why she said, “What do you want me to say? I don’t go in for that kind of thing”. My kids don’t like my stuff either. And the worst part is, I let their comments and non-comments affect me. Shut me down a little more.

So please – be the voice who responds to my whisper. Give me your thoughts about growing my site while remaining anonymous to those near to me while remaining completely accessible to those far from me. Be honest with your feed back. Feel free to shout your answers, or whisper, I’ll be listening.

A Teddy’s Story

Once there was a little brown bear,
given by a little girl’s mother
who had never had a bear
or any other toy in her childhood.

Teddy (not imaginative, just precise)
was precious beyond all else.
From babyhood to almost adulthood
Teddy slept with the girl every night.
He knew every secret, the deepest,
darkest, most remote,
close to the surface or
tucked so deep within, the girl
couldn’t even know them for herself.

His fur had been pulled in places
chewed on as the girl ruminated,
like a boy in the country
might chew on a straw.
She’d tried the replace the fur
with green thread and stitches
close to where Teddy’s heart was.

As she got older, she knew
she’d sleep with him
until a man replaced his spot,
and worried about that comfort
being gone but would
never share all her feelings,
and certainly not all her secrets.

Then came the time her family moved
and all the girl’s toys, books, linens,
memorabilia from high school,
was gone, fallen from a moving van
into the mover’s hands
for his little girl.

But Teddy, he was so worn –
how would anyone else ever know
his life, his history,
how he kept the little girl
glued together in times of trouble,
sorrow and joy? Where did he go?
She became so upset
just thinking about it.
of all she lost
he was what mattered most.
Thinking he was in a landfill somewhere
tore her heart.

All these many years later,
she still has distant remembrances,
wishing he was still here
to listen to the stories,
hear the secrets, and
be the best friend she’d ever had.