January 2019 has come and has nearly gone. And I find myself still working on my thank you notes.
And so on a cold and gray Sunday I am sitting beside the fire completing the important task of penning my remaining thank you notes.
I wish that this one to you, blog subscribers, was written in pen on fine stationary, tucked into an envelope with a wax seal and a stamp. But in fact, I am arriving in your inbox or in your WordPress reader or somehow on your device or laptop or desktop.
Thank you. Thank you for subscribing, and reading, and following along on this journey.
Thank you for a little of your time and a bit of space in your inbox and in your day.
My podcast, Peabiddies Podcast(available on your favorite podcast listening platform – 12 total) and my newsletter have joined hands to produce a new revised email subscriber letter. Peabiddies Notebook: Pursue the Art of Noticing will slip quietly into your inbox every Wednesday.
I hope you’ll join me. This free letter will contain show notes from the podcast, news about upcoming guests, access to free download-ables and printables, as well as a forth coming e-book of poetry. Occasionally I will provide book recommendations, quotes from favorite authors and poets, and links to good stuff around the web.
New and current subscribers can choose to be enter their name into a giveaway, (coming soon), to receive a copy of the Peabiddies Notebook journal. Giveaway announcements will be made here, on Instagram and in the weekly subscriber letter. So sign up to keep up to date on all things Peabiddies.
So thank you again for your presence here. I will look forward to seeing you inside the letter format and elsewhere.
It might just be the tortoise in me. That preference to move slowly—to process slowly, to act and re-act at the pace of sub-normal. January appears to be trying her best to leave me in the dust. She is plowing ahead and building up steam, finding steam in the gray matter she makes her hallmark. Her trademark color of sky and air. Moving forward with the confidence of a triathlete on steroids. While I haven’t chosen my 2019 leather day-planner calendar thing yet. (Decision fatigue has followed me into the new year.) She delights in clean slates and fresh starts and new beginnings which she parades in front of me like a braggadocios half marathoner with a proclamation sticker adhered boldly and proudly on her mini-van bumper.
And. yet for all of this January this and January that — I have grown to love her. And for the first time in my nearly 60 years I am begging her to stay, to linger here awhile.
I find her enthusiasm contagious. Let’s go she says, into the fog of the unknown. Let’s run, she says, it’s all downhill from here. Let’s start again, she promises, she flirts, she calls me to the land of new mercies.
And then she leaves.
She disappears into the month that ends with a thump on the 28th day. She leaves me alone just as I believe I may have found my stride. She disappears into the fog of snow and ice, a thaw and even a hint of spring. It’s as if she finds the whole month a game of hide and seek. Of go and stop.
But she is my muse. I find her inspiring and a companion on the days that darken in a snap. I find her filled with promise that is usually attributed to springtime.
But whether or not I am ready to say goodbye, like many things I have grown to love, slowly, over time, on the back end of the curve — I must say goodbye to January in a matter of days.
Yet I will fold her promises of new beginnings, press them into my flesh. I will hold her contagious enthusiasm for the blank page which says “what if,” written in January’s magic disappearing ink.
And I will say, not “goodbye” but “see you soon.”
Because though I have not allowed her to be the pace setter she has tried to be, I have learned to make my way. Like a January storm that muffles the world, she has both quieted me and energized me. She has brought me the gift of a new day again and again.
And she has mercifully shown me that the way to go is forward, always, into the fog of uncertainty. Into the haze of gray waiting for the clouds to pass. Into the day after and the day after that—with a January hopefulness that is nestled into the crunchy crust of frozen ground and muted skies.
Because just as I will not say goodbye to January, January will not speak goodbye to me. And we will silently go into the month that says, 28 days is enough for anyone who learns to love a day well. ++++++++++++++
Join me each week for new posts here—both poetry and prose. Sign up to receive new posts in your inbox. (I’m fairly quiet in a January sort of way, I try not to bang around and make a lot of noise when I slip into your inbox with my words.
There are a million ways to remember Each one goes to war with forgetting How does the slow fading begin of the music you sang Forte Dolce Anthems of your life Each decade had its own When I remember I raise my fist Defiant In the face of fear of losing Knuckles dressed for battle A memory A shadow-dance The ones you made with your life The ones you made with your body Each season had its own I watched every move, every step, each glance And sigh My sigh echoes yours You gave me more of you than I remember Some days I am you here
Mystery stared back from those deep set eyes The ones that would soon know How difficult it can be to remember
There are a million ways to remember Today I swear I’m remembering each sacred part of you Every season has its season Mine is one of remembering
Can be read Stand with me In the shadows In the light Perhaps we’ve forgotten how to be an open book I wouldn’t speak for you Because I can’t
Once when I was young I fingered the rivers on my mother’s skin, stretched taut Followed the blue pathways on a thirty something’s hand Felt her age pulsing in her coursing veins I read age like the blind read a page My eyes partnered with my child-hands Teamed up to untangle her mysteries Heard her body tell the story of a half-life Plus some
As we sat on a pew that was ours for an hour on Sunday Nine/tenth’s of the law And all
In the pews of Methodism, souls lined up to hear Truth be told I could not hear hers Buried deep within her soul
Mink eyes on the face of a fashionable wrap Thrown over the shoulders of a worshipper Stared back at me Two pews up and to the left I thought of his sacrifice for status and beauty (The things of nightmares when you are ten) And I think of that still Her sacrifices too Draped in death
I found the mink eyes Meet my hazel eyes Frozen Motionless Dipped in death I looked elsewhere and then I looked back
Lips were red Injection-less Skin was powdered and rouged Nineteen sixty something And hairspray lingered in the air
Life lines Seek a safe place to preach the stories they have lived
Stand still at the lectern of life
And speak Face the music
Face it I cannot speak for you
Once, when I was young The stories could be read
By looking there Buried deep within the soul Clues lined up, from chin, to cheek to brow To help untangle The mystery of life lived Well I cannot speak for you
I long to read you as a book
Open To tell the stories that should be read In the lines on a face
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