June 5, 2013

After a crazy month of packing, stressing, and cleaning (my aching back and neck and swollen knees stretched to their limits), I’ve finally moved.  A Boston poet on the South Shore!  Culture shock, but it’s very pretty and reasonably quiet here.  I miss the house where I rented a room for two and a half years – a real home that kept me together after the loss of my mother in September 2010, despite the cast of yahoo neighbors.  And I will sorely miss seeing my brother on the way to the Cambridge public library.

But it is good to be forced to make a change every now and again.  I’m still hoping to break the halfway mark on the Moby-inspired poetry collection.  Maybe I’ll get some chapters added to the second novella also.  One never knows what summer will bring.  All my brain likes to do in warm weather is write love poems.

I made a pot of chili last night – with ground beef and pork sausage instead of ground turkey – O, sin!  Looking forward to day-old chili for dinner.  This is the first place I’ve lived in that has CA; it’s always 70 degrees.  Good thing the grocery store is 15 minutes away walking so I’ll get exercise instead of hopping the bus to the nearest market.  It’s so cool in here I could bake a pie for the 4th of July.  Off to google red, white, and blue pie.   “One never knows…do one?”

 

 

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Blast Ye, Moby-Dick

EmotiBookworm

Having lost 20/50 typed drafts of my MobyDick poetry manuscript, I finally forced myself to sit down to begin re-typing them at 8__am.  I had two pots of coffee and  a couple of pieces of baklava to ward off taking a break til lunch.

Suddenly ravenous after finishing maybe 12 poems, I looked up to see that it was 5pm.  It’s crazy, but it’s also good.  I haven’t been that focused on any of my individual writing projects in a very long time.  Eight more to go, then maybe I can finally get back to work on the series…if I don’t keel over from protein deprivation first.

Writing My Fingers Off!!!

 

I’m reading Moby-Dick and continuing the poetic synopsis while reading Steven Tyler’s latest autobiography and writing a review on Goodreads (link below); and I’m editing the Extra MoJo! anthology-to-be as well as subbing some of the zillion poems I’ve written so far this year.  Whew!  Let’s see how much more I can write before the heat kicks in.

http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/339386257

Prince illustration

Missing Winks (memoir)

All I want to do in February is sleep.  I’d always assumed this was due to the snowy, cold weather.  The cold outside makes settling into soft white socks, heart-printed thermal underwear, and a plush robe a moment of sheer sanctuary.  Armed with a cup of tea, shortbread cookies, and a serious book, I’m a literary woman warrior taking a stand against hostile elements.  There’s also a bit of “back home” nostalgia stirred in to this fantasy.  “Back home in New Hampshire we had to get out of bed in the dark to start a fire. …and at night we’d make a big Dutch ovenful of beef stew and dip biscuits in it.”  I have never lived outside of Massachusetts.  My parents met in Boston in the late 1940s, settled here after marrying.  Yet I was so used to them–having grown up on opposite sides of New Hampshire–refering to that state as “back home” that part of me grew up longing for the deep, dark woods, a creek, or a barn full of chickens.  Being comforted by the indoors is combined with respect for the outdoors and with a love of those mighty winters that give bookish homebodies an excuse to fall asleep reading in an emotional and physical retreat.  Maybe if I close the blinds and drapes I can pretend a blizzard roars without.  I’ll drop marshmallows into liquid chocolate and finally doze off.

Poetic Halloween

Here I am at Stone Soup’s Halloween eve poetry reading.

“Clara” from the Nutcracker

(and very nice total stranger

 who hopefully doesn’t mind being in this photo)

 

Clara dressed up as a demon because Mignon sang the Annie Lennox lyrics "I used to have demons" in her spooky Halloween poem.

Photos by Stone Soup Poetry host Chad Parenteau

Last Featured Reading of “The Woods Have Words”

It’s been almost three years of fun since my first book of poems was published.  15 features at a variety of MA venues later, it’s time to let the old order changeth.   This is the final reading/signing of the book (which will be on sale for $10 cash vs. the usual $15).   Stay tuned for publication news on volumes two and three of the poetic trilogy.

Saturday, September 17, 2011, 2-5pm, Brockton Public Library.  FREE 

Commuter rail/bus accessibility.  Check the site for directions and parking info.   Bring a poem for the open mic!

http://gbspa.homestead.com/Calendar.html

Finished for the Summer!

Finally done with all the creative work I needed to do this summer.  Two months of Friday and Saturday work binges, but now I get to relax for August.   Good timing.   Scared to think how hot August could get.   Can’t wait for Autumn!

Now all there is to do is decide whether to risk screwing up the first Hidden Charm Press book by doing the whole thing myself since I won’t have any dinero to pay experts any time soon.  I’m so excited to get to the second book that I finished its mss. ahead of schedule.   The Extra MoJo! anthology (The Best of MoJo! Issues 1-10) will be around 100 pages when it’s done.   It makes the two+ years since I started the online journal feel so incredibly rewarding.

NaPoMo: Week Three

NaPoMo 2011: 15-21

15 Deadline 

This is the day set to stop calculating,
to stop saving for something special.
He’ll never be enough, just a tax
on what’s left of my emotional budget.

16 What Longing Means

Sufre mas el que espera siempre
que aquel que nunca espero a nadie?

[Does he who always waits suffer more
than he who never waits for anyone?]
Pablo Neruda

When we were twenty-five a friend snorted
at the notion of deep love.  She said that if
her fiancé died, maybe mowed down by a car,

in ten years she’d be sad, but not devastated.
“As long as the mortgage is up-to-date…oh,
and my two children are well-fed, of course,

I’ll go on, be fine.”  She had never been madly
in love.  I sighed, said I envied her.  Then words
escaped me: And I feel very, very sorry for you.

17  In the Act

He came in like a monsoon, whining buckets about some chick.

It’s always the same.  She done broke my heart sniffle-sniff,

and now she’s after my money.  Sure, sure, he’d had his share

of tarted-up dames on the side.  That was different, though.

When a woman cheats, it actually means something.  True.

It probably means this whiner adds nothing to the sheets 

but a lotta sweat.  The guy should carry a mop with him.

But I took his money, retained to shoot cheap photographs

of his wife’s cheap affair.  But, the “other man.”  He was

something special.  So I took him instead.  Left those two

cheaters with a full refund and their bigass house in Weston.

18  Not So Fast

I barely budged from the couch, per usual.

Watched half of Massachusetts descend

on Kenmore and Copley Square.  Saw 

the shot heard round the world refired 

on the six o’clock news.  So hard to turn

pages of the free magazines picked up

from various spots all week to prep

for the Monday holiday.  Carbing up on

canned roast beef hash, I flip to an ad

for running shoes or Gatorade or….

Yay, Japan!!!  Nap time.  Again.  

19  The Rest

 

Oh, the rest of them, lying under sod,

their work all done now.  The sweetness

of resting under their laurels. Tourists walk

over the mossy mouths of them, bones

legendary, some cryptic.  And it’s what

we all want on some level.  Just want

each time to finally get the writing right,

to leave a mark that warrants having

one’s name inked next to a tiny dot

on that map.  For one well-read girl

to become excited on a dreary field trip

for once:  Really, Teacher?!  She’s

buried here?  Oh, where?  She’ll march,

practically run, to the other side

of Mary’s columned gazebo, to where

I’ve left my permanent marker.  There

she’ll sit, legs pressed to her chest,

shaggy-edged, raggedy-paged, 

marked-up book of poems propped

on her knees.  She’ll smile, that very same 

odd smile I had first time my fingers 

traced “Longfellow.” And knowing

that she’s there, I’ll deliberately send 

a shiver through the page.  Just for her. 

Because she had the decency to care.

[“Before I Sleep” prompt]

20 Ran Into Tim in the Square

When I ran into Tim
in the Square, he said,
“Five bucks for a sandwich
over there!”  Really needing
some lunch and a poem,
I bought one, got one free,
then bounced home.

21 Wedding Bells

We were always better in the dark,
whether so heated by fierce debate
that we didn’t bother getting up
to turn on post-dusk artificial lights
or warmed through by the taste
of each other’s steaming tongue-tips.
Now we suffer congregate afternoons
of backyard barbecues with his oh-so
dull boss, my ever-so witty colleague.
Then there’s a ringing in our ears,
all other sounds moot as lips still move
in the fading sun.  All we hear is
a promise, a call that links our arms
in the crowd until one heartbeat
drowns out the sun, drives home
the crowd, and we begin once again
to honeymoon under the stars.

[Prompt: Illumination]