April 9, 2011

Over Here

Three old friends; old poets with fresh voices and perspectives.

Yesterday and Today
Himself: Has managed to finish his paperwork four out of five days before he got home. This takes big thinking on the part of those doing the scheduling for his company.

Herself: Looking forward to a morning with the Geezer and an afternoon quilting as the skies send sprinkles down around us. Dinner out with the Feasters this evening.

My friend George doesn’t sleep well. Often when she cannot get to sleep, she sits at her kitchen table and writes poems. She crafts marvelously gentle pieces that are powerful in a unique way that amazes me. Perhaps that first line lulls you into thinking it will be a soft piece. Dated. Flowers and birds and sweet things are always a starting point for George. Then she hits you over the head with a quiet reality, and the reality becomes yours.

That’s a really good piece.

Another friend, Marion, also wrote finely wrought words. Her’s weren’t always gentle. Often she hit you upside the head. The first few times I heard this powerful voice calling out from the frame of a tiny, white haired lady, I was drawn in like a moth to a flame. Unexpected. Kapow. A kindred spirit.

Some poets, like George, write their words on the back of envelopes or statements from their brokerage firms. I always like to check the back of a sheet from George just to see what I am getting now. George doesn’t have a computer and has no desire to learn how to use one. She works on an old word processor that sometimes works and other times doesn’t but is always a trial to her.

In the years I knew Marion, she went through three computers learning not only the new programs but learning how to salvage all her writings saved on the old computers. Remember, early Microsoft wasn’t always compatible with other Microsoft’s. I cheered her on, and her son and the Geezer would keep her going. The last few years, as she crafted her book, computers and editors were of equal trials to her soul. It was always amusing to see what old poem was on the back of the new one….then save both.

There is another woman poet I know but not well, who was the best of us all. A brain injury left her able to edit but not compose new work. She doesn’t come out much anymore, and I don’t venture her way because of the cat hair that lurks in every corner of her home. I miss her crisp lyricism. I value her opinions still. I grew as a writer because of her presence in my life, because of all these women in my life.

I’m smaller because I’ve moved over here instead of over there.


  1. Poetry seems to be the rage on the Internet these days. Don't see why. I guess I just prefer prose.

  2. I understand your poet friend's reluctance to learn computers and stuff. However, my class at the U last week (on brain changes and aging successfully) the neuroscientist lecturing responded to my question about how computers were affecting our memories because we no longer have any need to remember things--we just google it when we need the answer. Her response is that we need to keep making the little nerves descending from our brains like tiny fingers reaching to each other to keep connections keep working, and the constant learning and adjusting we need to make to new gadgetry is actually good for us. So I'm rethinking my fear--hate--of trying new apps and programs. And I finally learned how to download library books to my eBook. I'm feeding those little suckers (my brain fingers) as much as I can to keep them healthy. On the other hand, writing poetry probably goes a long way to keeping the brain healthy, too. Kudos to all of you!

  3. Your very last line says it all and it is poetry.

  4. Thank you for sharing all the lessons you have learned and the gifts you have.

  5. I keep my poems on my PC but I like to write them out in longhand first. Something about writing that engages my right brain I think. Lots of poetry is very prosey (if that's a word). I was cleaning out some boxes and found poetry written by my grandmother, how lovely.

  6. Poetry never came easy with me. I could never find the right, perfect words. I admire you all who have that gift.

  7. I like your poems; they speak to me. But there are so many others I don't understand I tend to give up in frustration and say I don't like poetry.

  8. Interesting that your posts read like wonderfully crafted poetry. What a treasure trove these women are!

  9. I believe that you are more than you think. And by learning you have opened your heart to touch farther than you know. From somewhere in the midst of cleaning my office I found a quote magnet - "life expands or contracts in proportion to one's courage. anias nin."




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