culture · Family · Humour · life · women's issues · writing

Looks Matter

Like Mary Quant
sister had the look –

groomed in etiquette,
poise and fine dining

while my boyish antics
merited mixology prep

one destined for the catwalk
the other a life of servitude

She was swank,
I was bistro.

(Image from personal collection)

aging · creativity · Humour · life · poetry · writing

Re-Purposing The Garage

It’s complicated, really, but so much
is defined by the presence of a garage.

Here is a stand-alone, connected by
a breezeway, single-car with storage;

could have been so much more –
had planned for it, but life changes.

Once had an oversized garage – direct
access, housed two vehicles, custom

built – but the cars are gone now, and
the single stands vacant, like my mind.

Except, the other day, I swore I glimpsed
an animal there, perched on the shelving

fierce, cat-like eyes caught in the dim
light of an open doorway – a tigress,

body crouched – I backed away, but
not before claws pierced my imagination

tended to the bleeding, chastising my
foolishness – of course, she isn’t real –

I lost my feminine prowess long ago,
am more of a groundhog now – slow

moving, podgy, sniffing the air for hints
of change, burrowing in the face of trouble.

A family lived here once: a tightly knit
portrait of three, lulled by the protection

offered – no storms to weather –
until the husband left, daughter

in tow; ducked beneath closing
of the automated door –

me, trapped beneath layers of regret
choking on their fumes, homeless.

Would ignore her, except for
those grasping, white-knuckled

fingers pleading for rescue; would
shoulder her, but shudder to host such

destruction within my walls,
already robbed of equilibrium

this state of heightened vigilance
a cause for neglecting self – have

humoured one too many advantage-
taker, cannot trust my own instincts

am disillusioned, no longer content
with inconsistencies, need to

confront the condition of my garage,
clean out the accumulation of stored

nonessentials – maybe hold a sale –
whitewash the interior and buy a car.

(Reena’s Exploration challenge this week is the long and short of it.  The above poem is the long.  The short follows.)

If life is defined by a garage,
then mine is single, attached,
empty and needing work.

(The original version of this poem was published in August 2016.  It has been reworked for this edition.)

disability · health · Humour · life · ME/ CFS · poetry · writing

Chronic Companion

She sits with me at breakfast,
follows me to the park,
hovers on the drive home,
celebrates when I lie down,
snuggles in with warming pad,
and moans…

Not a companion
I would have chosen,
preferred the active,
athletic life, and yet

She complains with me
in the afternoon, invites
excuses during dinner,
grounds me in the evenings
and tosses me at bedtime

Not a companion
I would have chosen,
but at least I’ll grant her this –
she’s chronically devoted.



blogging · creativity · Humour · poetry · writing

Utterly Redonculous

Looking for a rock at present,
preferably a boulder,
might dig myself a cave
and await resurrection

sacrilegious, I know,
but the tasks are overwhelming
and the words – just too much!

I mean, eleutheromania?
The mere utterance enough
to make me run for cover

and now I am to believe
that pulchritrudinous
equates with utter beauty –

oh my raspy voice
stumbles over the words
as brain loudly protests.

Too much, I say –
will have to save creativity
for another day

I’ll be under
that rock.

(Prompts today elicited irreverence:  Reena’s Exploration challenge – see for yourself; and Ragtag Community’s unusual word; slightly tamed by Fandango’s “raspy“. )

adversity · change · ME/ CFS · poetry · writing

Ride Along With Me 2

Passenger, I am –
delegated to back seat –
input seldom asked for,
even less appreciated.

I ride along.

Passenger, I am –
at best can only speculate
about direction – limited
sight lines here in the back.

I am not driving.

Had a driver once,
motivated and self-assured –
could sit back and relax –
until his mistress climbed in.

Who invited her?

Driver #2 is handsome,
but lacks directions, so
no one is paying attention.

Others ride along too.

There’s a high school dropout,
who likes to pick his parents pockets,
and get boozed up on Friday nights.

How did he get here?

Ride along, if you wish, but be warned –
this vehicle is outdated, and likely unsafe –
we’ll just have to squish together.

They don’t make ‘em like this anymore.

Oh yeah, my crazy sister is aboard too,
Or maybe it is me, ‘cause I swear
I saw the ghost of another –
bent on haunting me along the way.

Probably a good thing I’m not driving.

Night is falling, and we stop for gas,
and the neon lights remind me –
if I’ m going to make a break,
it’d best be now.

Or, I could find a new driver.

What I put God at the wheel?
What if I said: God, give me direction?
Would I have to sit up straighter and pay attention?
Would the adulteress and the sloth have to leave?

Would my vehicle become a golden chariot,
powered by horses with wings of white?
And would we fly above the obstacles,
straight to the Promised Land?

Fantasy, unfortunately –
for now, I’ll remain back here,
until life restores vitality,
and my head is clear again.

Then I’ll park this old vehicle.

And get a new model with GPS.

(I’m revisiting old posts, editing, and re-introducing some of them.  Ride Along With Me  was written in November of 2014, six months after being bedridden with ME.  It was inspired by a dream, and understandably, represents a woman who has lost everything, trying to make sense of life.  I thought it is actually quite fun, and may have a wider application, so I resubmit it here.)