Wrestling With Poetry


Wrestling With Poetry

I struggled to take the pen from the poem. I knew she had some things to say
But I did too
So we went back and forth, battle of the wills
I tried to explain
In my calmest voice, that it was imperative that I get this on paper
I did not shout, no bold was used, only italics
Calmly I told her, you know the drill
If I do not get these words about the metaphor of the garden and my aging
Or the simile about raising my chickens and parenting, well it will all go up in a metaphorical puff of smoke

The poem made her point, no rhyming or argumentative couplets were pulled from her back pocket
She simply stated that her verse was siting on the tip of her tongue
And no doubt it would be lost, buried in the graveyard of unprinted poems if she were not allowed to proceed
With the impending poem that was percolating on her parched lips
(I will admit she was a bit dramatic, but she remained a lady, throughout the discourse)

I considered pulling rank
But it was unclear to me
Who in fact was higher up the food chain

I pondered pulling the plug, which would have been cruel and would have involved
Electrical cords
(The one with the hands has the advantage in a duel such as this)

And then I thought about raising the white flag
Playing the martyr and playing dead

Wrestling with poetry is not for the faint of heart
And I have been down this road before

The problem with bullying your muse
Is well
You both end up bruised and bloodied
And poems with black eyes do not wear the badge of battle well

And no poems see the light of day
Which sort of defeats the point of wrestling with poetry in the first place

But for the record, since I have the fingers on the keyboard
My poem about the garden would have been perfectly delicious

And hers about wrestling with poetry
Well I let her win
This time

Why, Poetry?


Why, Poetry

This is not a poetic lamentation or woe is me diatribe
It is a soul itching, head scratching
Wondering the way wordsmith’s do, about the call to words, ya’ll

It is more or less why, poetry or why poetry
Splitting hairs and splicing sentences around, throwing comma’s about
Like confetti on Fifth Avenue after the parade

And you really do wonder, until you hear the rallying cry for more
Hashtag’s come across your screen about the healing
A word was a balm
A sigh of knowing escapes your lips

You want to give a party
Celebrate the genre, kick up your heels and dance
Write the book in poetic prose
Kick the naysayers to the curb
Have you seen the poetry section in Barnes and Noble lately
Counter point
That will rub salt in your, my wound
Think about starting a Kick Starter Campaign

And the world went blooming mad
Spun crazy wild,
And you got really mad
Frozen in fear, but for awhile
You heard people say press on with the passion
Bring on the light
Light up the dark
And all you could do was tap and write and write and tap and pray that beauty was birthed
And that the blasted book that haunts you by day
And by night
And by the way have I told you lately about that dream
You seem to be the first that should know

Why, poetry?
Brilliant choice for everyone but me
Now I am whining about my passion, my love

My poetry
If only for the hastag healing
I will continue to tap away and pray

Oh poetry, you are my cello
And my bass, my blessed curse
My gospel choir and my palette and paints
My novel and my charity
Muse come sit beside me, be the music my fingers long to hear

Poetry, my love
Make me worthy
Of you


No More Happily Ever After’s


Welcome to Day Nine.




No More Happily Ever After’s

And they lived happily ever after
Wait, what?

All those precious years spent
The clock tick tock
Tick, ticking
Wishing and waiting for
The grand grande finale
Life put on hold while things become bigger,
And better and bester and bestest
All those fair tale endings
Their endings so perfect
The slippers and princesses and knight’s
In their bright shiny armour
I sort of like things just the way
That they are

Even if sometimes
They seem dull, dim and plain

Maybe it all was a crock of baloney
Maybe Hans Christian Anderson or ole Walt
Yeah, Disney
Or dear  Mother Goose
Or whoever dared write it
Should have sat up and noticed
All the wild and the wooley, the winsome
The wonderful spilling out on the now
Like paint from a bucket tipped from the sky
Because I spy
With my little pair of hazel green eyes
The craziest most wonderful things in
A day
There are white standard poodles
Seated in cars
Through busy intersections
Sitting up straight as a board in the passenger seats
In open convertible cars
It struck mommy as silly
And tickled her funny bone
As we drove all the way home

You can’t make this stuff up
Dear for Pete and
For heaven’s sake
A capuchin monkey’s having lunch
Out on the Parkway
With his owner
Seated out on the deck

The scandalous, humorous right here right now
Stop and wake up
In the middle of this one crazy life
The what’s happening this minute
While we’re off in a fog
Dreaming of perfect
And all the incredulous make-believe
After’s are not after
No, they are what’s just right here

In the mannered South where I was raised
To be oh so polite
Never abrupt, rude or
God-forbid loud
Or question my elders
I would just let it lie or lay or

But the theology of the whole notion
Is just a little too off
And the cost well the cost
Is much too high to pay
You pay with your life
If you don’t enjoy this one glorious day

I’ll take my happily’s
Now, at lunch
By the deafening train track
With red bugs and yellow jackets
And Dementia, seated to my right
And all the uncertain rest
Of it

I’ll take my happily’s
In the comings and goings
And the dull inbetweens
The murky uncertainties and the worry and pain
The cancer, the divorce, the loss and the rest

I’ll look for the happily ever’s
All over the place

For me the ending of today’s well-lived story
Comes in the miraculous the beautiful
Found in
One very flamboyant
Fall tree

That caused me to slam on the brakes of the car
And stop at the urging of mother
On the side of a steep mountain hill
Stop in the middle of one thin hilly road
Stop dead in our tracks

And capture this moment
With one very long stare

The epitome of Joy
On a plain old Thursday
We sat and we drooled and we sighed
Just look at this

Our happily’s some days
Come in the form
Of tree’s whose leaves
Look like candied corn
Covered in
Technicolored leaves
Displayed against a canvas,
Azure blue sky
Pointing us heavenward
And reminding us

Look to the trees with their magnificent Glory
And leave the happily ever after’s
To those old
Children’s stories






Laughter, The Joy of Giddy

Today is Day 6 in the Series, Postcards From Me (#write31days).


To catch up and read the series in its entirety click here or go to the link at the top of my homepage. Welcome. You bring Joy. This challenge and journey are better with sojourners along for the ride.


laughing sister

My poetry asked for a three day weekend. I said since you work so hard…. you deserve it. Take a little vacay. Just please come back tomorrow. Because I am doing this series and you are a big part of it. Don’t leave me hanging. Don’t abandon a girl in her time of need. So that leaves me with prose. Prose today again. Tomorrow poetry. Or a hybrid blend. I love surprises and hope you do too. Come back tomorrow, won’t you and journey through this October series with me.

Subscribe & walk through the entire 31 day series. Just like laughter, it is free. And follow along on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google plus and Facebook. The cruise director in the right sidebar should direct you where to go.


I am beginning to think that if I have one small regret, it would be I should have laughed more. So I am making up for lost laughter. And the timing is good. Very good. Because I do not know how we would wage these little mini battles with Dementia if it were not for laughter. It is saving us. A lifesaver for our souls. A healing gift from The Creator. Lord have mercy, laughter is good for the places touched by pain.

She throws the door open and waves the bag of dog bones, thrilled at the photograph of the dog on the front. It looks like one of hers and that delights her, turns her inside out with joy. Laughing and smiling and finding joy in a micro-moment. Like the packaging of dog treats.

Joy and laughter are a balm to this family battling Dementia.

Laughter bales the water out of our sinking boat. Buoys us. Anchors us to safety. And elevates our spirits.

We sit in front of a blazing fire. Warmed by each other, the routine of a daily reading from some of our favorite writers. And the cackling wood and flame. Now is the time to start the day well. Now is the time to begin rooted in The Word and in quiet reflection.

We read the words of Anne Lamott, along with Brennan Manning, Oswald Chambers and more. But it is Anne who turns up the fire in our belly’s with hardy belly laughs. The room is turned on its head. We are overtaken by side-splitting cackles. Though laughter is contagious, repeating the phrases which sent us into an hysterical tailspin, well something may get lost in the translation. So I won’t.

But you know the ways your funny bone gets tickled. And how the slightest of nuanced phrases and simple word choices can bring levity to the dark moments. For, indeed, we were discussing some heavy topics, when laughter entered our hearts. Like sickness and pain and divorce. It is not that they are funny. No. It is that the soul balm of laughter and a playfulness in the midst of pain brought a lightness which we needed. Cried out for. Thirsted for.

May laughter and silliness, play and light- heartedness seep into your day. Soothe the hurt. And be a balm to the aches and pains of your heart.

Thank you for joining me for Day Six. You are a treasure.






Joining Laura Boggess at The Wellspring

I am enjoying Laura’s New Book, Playdates With God, available on Amazon. Every page I’ve read has touched me and left me with a sweetness. It is simply a beautiful, delightful read. I hope to do a giveaway before the end of October of the book. Stay tuned for more on this.