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Posts Tagged ‘winter’

password

I could tell you my password

I could whisper it in your ear

in what manner would you use it, what threshold would you cross?

I would not like to see the new film, the one that is sublime and exquisite

my bones used to spiral within me, exquisite and sublime

born perfect

bones perfect

password protected

crossing into the next threshold which has its own rules of perfection, laws by which I cannot abide

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

greetings, if I have any readers left

just playing around with words right now

it’s been so long

nothing doing but snow again in Western Mass

how’s by you?

 

 

 

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New Year’s is coming. I tried to write about being curled in the dark at the Solstice, but I left the post hanging in my draft file.

It’s raining, pouring. Now it rains in December, November, October. No doubt it will rain in January. There are lots of nights when the temps drop into the teens and single digits; and yes, there are snowstorms and cancellations and hazardous driving conditions. I’m curled in my cold house, layers of clothing as if I lived in a stone castle. When did I start to dress like an old person?

This should all be snow. I hate this rain every year now. We all know it’s wrong, at least those of us who grew up in the 60s and 70s and remember a snowy winter and never saw rain from October ’til April.

Some of the curling inward this year is because I am still struggling with injury—sprains, strains, arthritis; an unknown and un-diagnosible protrusion on my L clavicle. I can’t move as well as I’d like so I curl up. I am not depressed though. I am cheerful and well-rested for the most part.

I’ve thought of writing a post chronicling all the cool things I was privileged to do this year and maybe I still will. The music, the dances, the museums. I am surrounded by art and culture and I get to go to the ocean a fair bit.

I am also thinking I will do a post about resolutions.

Here’s a Calder from the Cleveland Museum of Art which we visited on a rare Thanksgiving jaunt to Ohio.

Once when we were in New York, the kids were still very young, we saw a Calder in one of the rooms at whichever museum (MOMA? MMA?) and we blew on it. You are not allowed to make the Calder move by blowing on it and we were chided by the museum attendant. It was the definition of irony.

Such whimsy and fun:

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blogger’s block

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I saw 2 male cardinals in the back yard this morning, such bright red. What else is bright red around here? Not much, not that particular red.

It seemed unusual, one male cardinal chasing the other in flight.

I have had some health challenges of late and maybe that is why I haven’t been writing here. Pain and exhaustion. Pain and questions. Boring boring health problems when all I want is to do as I please at all times that I please.

I am not writing poetry much more or less than any other time, I suppose, but I am working on a manuscript for submission. I get into a great space when I am working on it, a little vague when I’m not.

I know it’s a risk to lose readers when I don’t post regularly and it pulls at me.

My cat, she is crazy. Maybe the most bizarre and hard-to-love cat we’ve ever had. Just now? She had her front paws around the leg of the kitchen table, right next to my feet. Like she was in love with the table leg, hugging it.

The other morning, she climbed partway up the wall between the kitchen and basement landing. I had never seen that before. She jumped and clung pretty high up, I’d say about 4 feet and her body lingered there for at least a few seconds. That’s a long time when you are trying to defy gravity on a vertical surface with no footholds.

The cat is stir crazy, crazy for spring. Me, I want the snow we were promised on Saturday, the snow that never came. I am not ready for spring. I am glad for the snow and cold we’ve gotten even if I DO NOT LIKE the overcast skies day after day. I could do with more snow.

I think about the ocean a lot. I miss it. A winter ocean; a summer ocean; a tropical ocean; Ipswich, Cape Cod, my great loves. Even though I love the winter when it’s sunny and cold and when we get a lot of snow, I always love the ocean.

We were in Rockport, Mass last weekend, right on the ocean, but it was already nighttime and dark out and we could not see it. By morning, we got caught in a massive blizzard and had to hightail it west so we would not get stranded on Cape Ann.

I am the only one in the family who consistently loves the cat. She is a pain in the ass, always attacking humans when she wants to be fed. But she knows. She knows I’m the one who feeds her. So she hangs around me.

I saw the cardinals and I hope the cat will not get one come spring. This cat has never brought me a bird. Only mice and chipmunks. She is a keen attacker of human flesh (exposed feet, tender thighs) but maybe not a great hunter.

This you know.

(here is the link to this image: http://www.centralpark.com/usr/media/contest/winners-winter-2009/large.2nd.place.3.jpg)

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Happy 79th Birthday to my mom!

As her memory goes, I wonder what I am responsible for. Am I the holder and keeper of her memories and secrets? When can I tell them? What does my brother know? What does she remember? Is what I know true?

I do wish my mother happiness, but it seems an elusive wish. She says she has always been lucky, lucky to have come to the United States and to have found the life she did. But her childhood tells a story, not of luck, but of trauma. I wonder how this fits into her definition of luck; but I will never ask her.

I titled this selfish because I am not using my post today only for a birthday wish for my mother. I don’t really think I’m selfish, because it’s my blog and I want to use it just for that—for myself. But I do feel guilty a tiny bit. I think being a mother, a daughter, a wife, means I always have a tiny lingering guilt. I am sure not all women are like this. I wish I could shake it, but apparently I am not yet evolved to that point. Perhaps this could be my Christmas wish for myself or my New Year’s resolution.

I have snippets of writing lately, nothing coming out whole cloth like I used to have. I know, honestly, most of that needed heavy editing anyway.

What do I wish for? Better poems, more poems, dream poems, publishable poems, poems that will make you swoon, will make you weep, make you laugh, make you buy my books (what books, twinkly? oh, right), fruit poems, frozen bud poems, bloody blue poems, pink poems, feather poems, leaf-and-snow poems, mom poems, wife poems, marriage poems, sex poems, fuck poems, love poems, fucking poems, magical poems, clear poems, anatomical parts poems, important poems, a-political poems, no-more-guns poems, deep poems, no-murky-bits poems. Enough! This kind of thinking is so anti-Alexander Technique that I can hardly continue to allow myself its luxurious indulgence.

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Here are 2 recent poem snippets:

(SNIPPET ONE)

When Shall I Be Delivered

I begged for more from the world

It started inside
a pinprick
where I was once attached

You have not delivered me

With each bout
of bleeding
my density increases
alongside my insatiable hunger

My marrow
pumping erythrocytes
for every drop
that falls

Not much
they always say
a few tablespoons

If men bled
they would find
a more poetic measure
than cups and spoons
(a woman’s place is in the kitchen)

But I know the feeling
of the soldier
draining into the muddy earth
the sand with its greed
taking more than its share
pints and quarts and gallons for drenching

I am ready for the firing squad
or operating theater

I am ready for my uterus
to be yanked out by
its mooring ligaments

No scars
only
a virginal torso
left

I didn’t need you any more
anyway

But thanks
for the ride

(SNIPPET 2)

December 17

My mother is a husk
a Christmas walnut
cracked open

The meat of her
gone

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Before you think I don’t wish us all well for the new year,

★ ★ ★ Happy New Year!!! ★ ★ ★

Also, in case you think I’m in some sort of seasonal crappy state, like last year at this time, here is a dashing couple to put those fears to rest:

I have been uninspired of late. Should I stop blogging (for now)? Was this just an enjoyable one-year experiment? Do I really want to continue Music Monday on a regular basis? What about posting poetry? Will I continue to participate in Poetry Jam? Do I have anything that needs to be said or is it just more ether? Should I continue to link [some of] my blog posts to Facebook?

I am not one for resolutions per se. Two years ago I started taking regular yoga classes. This had been something I’d desired for YEARS. I have done a little bit of yoga my whole life and finally, in December of 2008, I knew I could commit to regular classes. Last year, I decided to start this blog. I didn’t make a resolution; I was simply ready. I do like the idea of a new start, but I don’t like to box myself in. As an alcoholic, rigidity tends to make me rebel; I try not to set myself up for failure (as if I can always see where I’m going–wouldn’t that be nice). Rather, I like to give myself the best chance of success. That can be tricky to discern, but I do okay.

I am already making some of the changes I want for 2012. Nothing difficult or life-altering, just small things that need attending to and to which I can attend because my children need it, our finances need it, I need it, my house needs it, &c. (HA! The first time I’ve used an ampersand with a c on the end on my blog, maybe even the first ampersand on my blog. I promise not to do it again for at least a day).

For today, a video of Tim Eriksen from a couple of years back. If you read the notes below the video on youtube, he gives a little background on the song. It is one of my favorite Sacred Harp songs, one which I can actually lead (not always so easy with more complex songs). I do love the sound of the bajo sexto, but could do without the spinning around of the camera. Still, I hope you enjoy this. It was either this or my kids and I were going to sing Sacred Harp #162 for you via the Mac. But the light is SO bad in my kitchen and my face so sunken. I wouldn’t have chatted, though, only the song. Maybe next year….

Obviously, it was a lot colder a year ago this time of year, though it’s predicted to go into the single digits overnight this week, lots of low 20s and wind in the day.

Today, I was driving down my little street and the wind was whipping the leaves around. It seemed to be snowing broken leaves, but then, I saw real snow. The snow lifted up from the ground, I swear it wasn’t falling. It lasted all of 2 minutes.

No matter what happens, I’ve been happy to blog. Now I wait for snow and the return of the light which is happening some days. Other times, it seems so strangely overcast and blustery that I can’t tell what season I’m in, where I live, when the days will change.

Look, I can tell that you are not convinced about my well-wishes. Time for another New Year’s photo to let you know I’m serious:

If they can do it, why can’t I? I could immerse myself in non-alcoholic bubbly, right?

Best to you and yours, with love and kisses,

♡ twinkly

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I have been to Prague once, in December of 2008. Paul had a conference, not a mandatory thing, but we decided, due to decades of stories of Prague’s beauty, to seize the opportunity and go. The kids seemed old enough to leave for a week with my mother; it wasn’t Winter Break yet, the kids would be occupied, my mother would still have the middle of the day to herself.

Indeed, as much as me and jet lag don’t get along, the city proved to be worth dragging my ass a ways ’round the globe for.

Although Christmas Markets in Europe tend to be in Germanic countries, Prague, with its proximity and on-going trade with Germany, also has a one in its huge town square. I have mixed feelings about angels and for the most part find the concept to be overly saccharine and alternately creepy. But this one was truly enchanting. I use it as my Facebook photo sometimes around the holidays:

I went to a Christmas Market in Germany once, a small one, near where my cousins and aunt live in the Rhine Valley. It gave me the creeps. When I think of the Glühwein and the pretty decorations, the lights, singing, and trees, I think of my drunken grandfather, of rape, and of the Nazis. Friends sing the praises of the German advent season, but I want to scream. I am not trying for this, but growing up with a German mother who herself grew up in Nazi Germany, and having had an aunt who was a survivor of Auschwitz, I come by it honestly.

Prague, however, was different. Because I was not in the country or culture of my mother’s birth, I was able to “take what I liked and leave the rest.”

Certainly, our favorite thing was trdlo or trdelnik (from the treadle onto which they were traditionally rolled). We spent every next 3 or 4 bucks on one every time we got more money. They are ridiculously delicious, piping hot and smoky, rolled in ground nuts, cinnamon, and sugar:

Not all of the booths had live coals; some of the trdlo (we affectionately referred to them as “turd-lo,” because who puts t-r-d in a row without a vowel? Damn Slavic languages!) were cooked over electric coils. They were all the same damn delectable though.

Here are some more photos from our visit to Prague in 2008. If you have a chance to go, do. Everywhere you look is beauty.

There are 4 quarters in Prague, if memory serves. The following photos are from the Castle Quarter and the Old Quarter:

details, baby, details:

who doesn’t succumb to the temptation of a little golden serpent once in a while?

wealth:

wealth, in detail:

Crazy Euro-Christmas shit, in case you think Americans are the only ones with a tacky sense of the season. This was outside the huge castle on the big hill overlooking the whole of Prague, an entire straw nativity scene. Dig Mary’s crazy straw boobs:

No no no, my pets, the beauty doesn’t end there:

The penitent are all over Prague. I never saw a woman doing this, but plenty of men, real ones, not the cast-in-bronze kind:

A blind accordion player on the Charles Bridge

Crazy medieval Death, right on the wall of a church, where Death should be:

Prague is not averse to modern cool. Dig Frank Gehry’s Ginger and Fred:

And the last beauty of Prague? Yours truly, complete with ugly green down coat, on one of the bridges spanning the Vltava (again with the Slavic consonants!):

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Remember Twofer Tuesdays on FM radio when you were in high school? This is like that, only just another (real) song for Music Monday (as opposed to the spoof song from earlier).

This is a song I’ve looked for for a long time on the internet to no avail.

My lovely daughters taught this to me; they learned it at their school over the years and I fell in love with it all along. It’s a beautiful song about autumn turning to winter. I’m just getting it in under the wire here (well, I guess we have a couple more weeks until the official start of winter and who knows how long we’ll wait for snow down here in the Valley).

Now before I go embarrassing myself without effacement, I am not planning on doing these solo singing videos too often. I love to sing and I know a little bit about it, due to being an Alexander Technique teacher and all, but I’m no paragon or virtuoso or anything of the sort. I don’t relish the way the videos look either. I think it’s goofy to sit in front of my computer and sing. However, no longer being a virgin at it, it was a bit easier this time. Also, as I understand it, a few people think I’m actually brave for doing this and I’ve got a reputation to maintain.

The chorus should absolutely be sung in a round, but my younger daughter is away on a class trip and my older didn’t want to be seen on a video. They both sound really good singing along with me. Maybe another time.

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