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catch and release
You see it was so early that I forgot to bring the cash and if you and Madge had only gotten the getaway car we would have been in a much better position to rob that bank. But here we were, letís say, caught with our pants down, ya, that's it, maybe we are just to lame to figure this out, maybe I am just going to toss it all away and catch a bus to Hollywood. Ya, Hollywood, hang out on Sunset strip, catch some rays. Who the hell cares, life's too short, ya too short. Billy Jo
Only a ladybug could tell you what it feels like to fly like a speck of dust, from plant to plant, oh so free. Only a ladybug could tell you about the smell of the grass so deep inside, hey wait a minute, you there, you big ass boot, what the hell, DO NOT STEP ON ME! What, don't you ever look where you're going! Damn, the help here is so bad, can't count on the gardener, he shows up here and there, never on the same day, it is sooooooo frustrating. Never know whets going on. Only a ladybug...
It was summer time in LA. Warm-not too hot. Living on the west side was best, cool ocean breezes. I was seven and the new in-ground pool was finished. I was so excited, that crispy aqua blue water was so inviting. The pool was a long rectangle. I remember getting out of the pool, lying down on the warm cement. And we can't forget playing Macro Polo! Over and over. Eating tootsie roll pops, doing somersaults front and back in the water. Trying to see if I could swim, holding my breath for the length of the pool.
I remember the first time I saw the big pink elephant at the Farmers Market. The Farmers Market in LA, itís been there forever, right next to the La Bara Tar Pits. Oh, I went to Jewish Day Camp right there at the park, right next to the tar pits. It's all still there. I hardly every go back now, my kids aren't there, moms with me, my sister is in Europe most the time. Oh don't let me forget, the big pink elephant cake! Thatís what I was remembering. Hum...Summer and the memories just keep flowing
Watching carefully I grab the box of time. I thought no one was watching, but I think I was mistaken. Hey you, HEY YOU! Get back here, you can't do that, put that box down, RIGHT NOW! I am running and running and running faster and faster, what the hell, this is killing me the box is getting heavier and heavier, if I can just make it around that corner, I might be out of sight, faster and faster, I feel like I am in slow motion soooooo veryyyyyyyy veryyyyyyyyy slowwwwwww, and suddenly I drop the box, and now what?
oh, wait listen to me she said. I stopped her this time, she always has a...listen to me. Tired of the story, That story filled with , you see, and I was going to , don't know why i didn't. I need this like a hole in the head, how did that phrase start. the hell with the hole in my head. I just want to swing ever so gently and relax my shoulders , sing a little tune, smell the flowers, sip a cool drink. Maybe take a bike ride without a helmet, feel the wind in my hair so lightly.
dear wonder woman, please reply. you are needed right now. . You are larger then the overgrown tomato in the garden. You are taller then the ladder on the side of the house. I am brighter then the headlight on the pick-up truck. I am stronger then the black coffee from the truck driver stop. She is powerful like the thunder bolt that just rocked the sky. She is responsible for the shaking of the earth. You can find her along side the wave beating the sand. You can see her on late night tv. Bring her home right now.
Ice cream, candy, the Farmers Market on a summer day, Jewish day camp, swimming in the pool, bbq on a summer night, a game of hide and seek, long summer days, memories as a kid, 50 years ago. wow, that's a while ago. memories, overnight camp in the Trinity Mountains, swimming in the Hayfork river, so cold so very cold. memories roller skating around the pool, thank god we never fell in. memeories songs around the camp fire, playing the guitar, the smell of pine trees, hop scotch, double dutch jump rope. memories as i sit here tonight alone, memories.
Enter words, enter here. write, write , write. OK ...I get it. Dreams change, thoughts shift, memories stick. A dozen cookies, a pint of ice cream. Chatter and whispers hammering down the pipe. Can you catch the pop, pop, pop. In perfect harmony, the rocking out at the end of the tunnel, tricks that entertain you and flash it out one more time. Melt that cheese one more ... but tomorrow at ten there will be no weigh-in, stand at attention and I will come and get you, folks on the street. Not my boyfriend and he will be sorry, yEaCk.
Hot August night and the corkscrew on the table was like a flamenco dancer on fast forward. Is that a visual or what??? I thought so, which was the reason I decided to stay at the party. I'm not a drinker, so as the party started to wind-up I stood to watch, snoop, spy, use my expert detective skills to tear apart the layers, pick them apart one by one. Get my nails underneath, maybe a little dirty, pull out the underlying goop. When people are drunk there veil is soooo thin. They have no idea. Remember that. really
I am a writer. I can't spell, never could. I am a writer, I can't type never have been able to. I am a writer, I write grants and foundations give money to my amazing program for underserved students. I am a writer; I always need a proof reader. They, Their, There. I write thank you notes with few words because I am embarrassed of my spelling. Spell check can't identify some of my words. And I am a successful grant writer. I am a reader and a writer, love to write poems and I can't ssssssspelelel worth a damn.
Kitchen table, solid wood, chrome and formica, steel legs and glass. I sit alone savoring the stillness, the quietness of the morning. Outside down the street someone is putting on a new roof. A house where I think someone died, I guess. No longer the little rap-pie dogs bark when I walk by. Someone cleaned up the yard , a for sale sale appeared. Not sure what happened , but now a new roof. Keeping the rain out, the heat in. Kitchen table , farmers market down the street. Guess I should get dressed, put shoes on, get my bags. Kitchen table.
More or less. Strongly enough there is some guy in the office from some foundation I have never heard of and does not have a web site yet and wants to connect with local community companies that serve the underserved. So they are talking about all the shows we do and don't forget the outreach we do! Hey ME ME ME! the outreach, the outreach, the outreach. They want to know how we serve the underserved; here they go leaving the most important work that funders want to know ..free free free free programs, they finally let me talk.WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
She was sitting at the kitchen table, sun was not out yet. Maybe time for her to put the coffee on. Or not...what was that crossing her mind right before she woke. Something that was too close up, like enlarged, face up, face down. A dream that happened right before waking. Yeach, ok. draft under the table even if it was summer. Still air, smell of the damp lawn. The stillness kept creeping up and down her legs. A couple dirty dishes on the counter. Only if she could remember what love looked like. That was the close up.
Sharing ideas at the kitchen table was something I always did with my nana. That is not a true statement. I can't really remember a conversation I had with my nana. She was an Austrian Jew. I never heard her stories. She lived on the east coast till I was in my late teens. She would visit when I was a kid. I remember she would bake these great little cookies. I remember the smell. I remember the gray house on Colby Ave. I remember her face and clothing. But I can't remember any conversations I had with her.
The comings and goings of the folks that sat at the kitchen table all those years in Lynn and Joanís house. It was one of those Formica chrome tables. Everything in the house was an antique from somewhere because the "old" had stories in them, besides money was tight. We were in college, or just out. The kitchen ran the back of the house, windows aligned allowing a great view of the back yard. Large garden, wooden lawn chairs and, I think, a wooden picnic table. Folks coming and going. Old stories told, memories still floating in my head.
The Brazilian rosewood table. A showroom piece, bought for a discount in New York. It was his first marriage. I didnít know him then, but she did. And where is she now? They moved to California way back when. She had lupus and then a stroke. They stayed together, ate at the Brazilian rosewood table. He couldnít take it anymore, I never judged. I came along, he feared my kids would destroy the finish on the table. They never did. But I was finished. What he hid was too big. Alone in the garage, the Brazilian rosewood table.
We make a joke of it. The illicit affair. The illicit, the forbidden, the illegal, the unlawful, the dishonest, the prohibited Öaffair. What a word, ILLICIT! Not affair. Affair seems, well, like a movie. An Affair to Remember. I hear a song, a tune, a breath. We all make of joke of it. She had one, we want one too. Or maybe we have each had one, but we keep our tongues from telling. Good for her. It sits heavy in our lightness. We have fun with it, tell stories around the coffee pot. Can she hear us? Maybe, yes?
Some of these, yes, are true tales that I write. And some completely made up, make believe, just an illusion. And some are woven strands of fact and fiction. Woven strands of heavy twine, some of pure cotton so soft you want to rub it on your cheek. Some of pure silk with perhaps a coffee stain, a piece of burlap so rough I want to clean my cast iron pan with it. Some of brilliant colored cloth that makes you want to dance, and some of ductile velvet that a queen would wear. Oh yes, some might be true.
You can't write ahead. One day at a time. You can't write ahead. What if I start running really fast? Could I write ahead? No, You can't write ahead. It's too hot any way. I don't want to write ahead. I just going to sit here and write, right now. Write in the warm evening air. Just sit. I really would like a piece of fresh peach pie with a really crisp crust. Thatís not going to happen either. No pie and NO, You can't write ahead. Ohhh I feel a breeze. I will just sit and write, right now.
She said it was only because she didn't want anyone to know. So many years of fossilized silence. But there she was with a microphone in her hand. "I don't want anyone to know this...but I trust each and every one of you... and" And then it happened in a second, she passes out, right there. Within 10 minutes the EMT's showed up, hooking her up to a machine, wheeling her down the hallway, down the stairs and, surgery was decided, she laid still, all hooked up, and after surgery that night she passed through the veil, circling, gone.
I don't know , but when my mom came to live with me the whole second half of my life raced by and I can't seem to catch it to tell it to slow down. All of a sudden I feel so aware that this is the last quarter of my life and part of it might just end up like my moms', short term memorie gone, repeat, repeat, repeat. Her words hit me with a lonelness that sinks deep, oh so deep in my bones. An ache so paralizing no one knows I'm there of even here for that matter.
If only the kitchen table could talk. I have an image. ItĎs like a cartoon, the table has a big mouth and itís telling stories. Maybe itís the table from the set of that series ĎSix Feet UnderĒ. I will have to look closer the next time I watch it. Wow, what a strange series. Maybe itís a table with a large Lazy Susan spinning so fast the food starts spinning out. Thatís a cartoon for ya! Maybe itís the kitchen table from the White House. So much to say , now close your ears!
I would dance on the lawn all night long on a summer night if he would come along. If he would, I could, dance all night long, on the soft green lawn, on a cool summer night if he would come along. On a cool summer night, I would dance all night long, bare feet on the soft green lawn if he would come along. If he would come along, I would dance all night long on that soft green lawn on a cool summer night. I could, if he would, dance all night long on this cool summer night.
I am the ripple in the river so near, I am the salmon trying to find home once again, I am the horse with a loud nay, I am the cave too deep to find the end, I am the firefly on the dogs nose, I am the shawl around your cold shoulders, I am the star too bright to be missed, I am the breath you feel in the cold, I am the thunder shaking your boots, I am the first rain drop you smell when it hits the pavement, I am the sand storm when you hit Kansas
The stealer. She will steal your voice, she will steal your sigh, and then you are shocked when you hear her words. They sound false and uncomfortable as they spill out of her mouth. You cringe, you scrunch your face, those are my words, but she is not me. Who am I yuk, do I sound like that, that"s not me as my mind keeps spinning, But I am me and she is WHO, who is that stealer, I thought she was my friend, ah she is your friend, she is your shadow, and she is watching and stealing.
It was back in time when I was dancing with the devil. I had taken a train ride, just me. I think I was in the club car because the seats in coach were too tight. It was there that I met a man, Native American decent. We talked. Not sure about the exact conversation. Think about youth, the arts etc, etc. But what I am remembering today is that at the end we said good-bye and when I asked him his name he said, Truth, as he walked off the train. Strangley,that's what I am remembering today.
I love shadows or is it that I love light. Like a painting in motion everything becomes the canvas. It costs nothing. Right here, right now on the sofa pillows, on the arm of the chair. What a treat, what a delight. The undersides of the leaves are illuminated on the plant by the window. I am in my own museum. Free of charge. Patterns dance on the wall. Changing as the sun lowers herself in the sky. I imagine someone on a tight rope lowering the strings. Slowly and carefully to remove the light from the sky. Very carefully.
From here I see sunlight dancing through the trees as the wind plays shadows across the window. From here I feel the breeze touching oh so lightly the hair on my arm as the sun hangs low in the sky. From here I touch the words that I write as the near silence hangs in the room. From nowhere I dream of that which I see, and that which I feel, that which I touch and I ask that you walk to my right side as I listen carfully to where I have been and to where I will go.
I was waiting for my doctor appointment. A mom and grandma wheel in a young boy, so quite, not a peep. The mother and grandmother speak very little English. The gal behind the counter comes around to help. I cannot see but I can hear that he has done something to his elbow. He is still very quite. A male nurse helps, he arranges the boy's elbow giving it some support and ice. He talks softly to the boy asking how he hurt his elbow. I gaze at the mother. She wipes her tears with the collar of her shirt.
Old friends, 40 some years. Wonderful to see them, sad to see them leave. Heart felt. Memeories, folks recalled from our past, names not remembered for years. We laughed, we talked. A closeness that time could not separate. I didn't want it to end, each of our lives settled in different cities. I can visit them now that we are reconnected. It's important. Yesterday we were roommates in college. Today 40 years later, no longer college students, but closer as friends. We sat, the 3 of us on the sofa, how I wish they didn't have to go so soon.
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