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san francisco [Jul. 19th, 2007|09:59 pm]
robin_rule
Right now I'm in the basement of a house in the sunset district that was a speak-easy in the thirties and when the tenants moved in, they found photos down here of the people who sat around of an evening drinking bathtub bourbon. They bought it with contents and it's an incredible place, gorgeous furniture from 'back then'. Everyone's asleep but me and I've left a window open so that the distant smell of ocean can drift in.

I've had my first real bath in maybe five years. I don't count those dinky puddles in motel sixes along I5. This one is deep and wide and if it weren't late, I could have unbraided the hair and washed it under this swan-neck faucet. I plan to do that in the morning when there's sun and time for the hair to dry. I've noticed I've started referring to my hair , as The Hair. Like it's either a separate entity or a biblical story. Rachel. Deborah. Esther. Rebekkah. Leah. Miriam. Tabitha. Priscilla. No wonder Paul told us to cover it in Fellowship. It IS distracting. It's beautiful, it's glorifying. I usually cover mine at church, but a Poetry Reading is another kind of church-is glorifying the gifts He gave me. San Francisco is abundant with churches. Catholic, four square, evangelical, storefront. This Sunday, I'll probably be going to a Chinese protestent because it's around the corner. And I will probably not understand a word of it and I'll probably understand every word of it. Tomorrow night we read, morning-day we plan to play. I want to go to bead stores and paper stores. I mean, we don't have any money really, but I love to see what's out there.

I brought a buncha long and short raven feathers down. Sometimes in Willits, I stick them in my one-over-the-under-in-the-back braids at odd angles and it's my power holder. It's my play. These feathers are my poem-holders, each feather carrying the words of the poem I'm going to read in my twenty minute set. I walked in the door with a briefcase of poems and a long vase of feathers and one of the tenants' boys, seven year old Ty, exclaims. He also collects feathers and shows me his raven feathers, which he calls crow feathers. I have to tell him, we have raven here, they're a bigger bird and he likes that. I promise to mail him some more, plus some peacock and a flamingo feather. I had a friend whose ex worked at the San Diego zoo twenty or so years ago and she gave me some of the feathers he would clean out of the ponds and aviaries. I have a parrot feather which is bright blue on one side and bright yellow on the other. The flamingo's pink is shameless. It's like a ju-ju dress at Mardi Gras in the old N'Orleans day. This child was dancing with feathers to the music inside his head. I fell in love.
After we read we'll both get checks for $100 and hopefully we'll sell books too. That's what I reallly want and then go buy beads and paper. With money I've earned with my tools. My voice. My mind. My hands.
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Kathleen Handley & The Blue Jay [Jul. 14th, 2007|09:30 am]
robin_rule
I don't sleep much since I was 15. Last night was no exception, except maybe worse. As if I was sitting watch over a dying person. And I was.

One of the most important women in my life battled losing her sight for the last ten years, and then lung cancer. This woman wasn't a smoker, hadn't been in something like twenty years, but in the end there's no blame really I believe since the Industrial Age revved up its tiny motors that got increasingly bigger and bigger. In fact I think I read somewhere that every seven years our lungs regenerize themselves. So I blame most cancers on the IA. I don't mind growing my own food and carding my own wool, (alright's its been since high school and 4 H) but i can do it and throw the cars away, i say. if i die, i die, the planet will be clean. sigh..

I met Kathleen at a bible study group at her house. She couldn't see but shadows, and the house was always immaculate. I asked her if she had a maid and she laughed and laughed. In fact, Kathleen's main form of communication was laughing. She was filled with more joy than any person I have ever met in my life. It was her genuine everyday experience.

I remember once I had a short machine-gun tirade about my anger toward my mother and she interrupted me and asked me to say the Lord's Prayer outloud and there it was, right smack in the middle of it, "...forgive me my sins as I forgive those who sin against me..." I did not want to hear that. I was cuddling my anger the way some peole cuddle their self-righteousness. But I couldn't forget her words. I asked her if she had had a good childhood and she said "No", and in fact when her mother was dying, she and her sister went to help their mother die out of a sense of duty rather than love,but they had forgiven their mother all her hell-on-earth behavior. And in that story, she made me realize I too should to that as well. I think. i keep trying. i don'tthink i have yet.

So that was just the other day and this evening, I hear the two Jakes, as we call our two scrub jays, screeching and squacking as if they were dying or they had bet heavy at the races and lost. I went out into the lane under the cork oak trees and there on the ground is an almost ready to, if not-already-to-leave the nest, young blue jay and a cat has stripped its tail feathers off, so while not exactly injured, it has no ballast. So I pick him/her up and cuddle the bird in my tshirt and go into the caboose where i have the "bird -healing kit". I have pipettes that i let them drink from and lucky for my little patient, we had chicken, which is quite similar to potato bugs i understand. i am quite sure i heard Jake One say H-mm tastes just like potato bugs when i threw him a bite the other day. So here we are having chicken AGAIN and the youngster's still in a bit of shock and only interested in water. i put some seed in the cage and i have a huge nest collection, so i choose a scrub jay nest and put him/her in it inside a plastic cat carrier box with screen door, (the irony is NOT lost on me) for aeration,(SP) so I think he ought to make it til morning. We have a woman in town who really knows birds and she, i hope, will raise it til its tail feathers grow back.

So, this is the planet. Death one day, and a close call the next, but still gloriously alive. The wheel continues to turn, to grind its way into entropy ,if you will, and i can only stand in awe and love what i see around me that is good and hate that which is pain-inducing and hateful. It may not be a very intelligent or sensible way to live, but i am a passionate woman who hates injustice and loves birds to fly and women to laugh. Goodbye Kathleen, hello you little bird.
God Bless you both. Amen
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Poker [Jul. 10th, 2007|10:18 pm]
robin_rule
[Current Location |almost under the stars]
[music |crickets]

When I was in my mid -wenties and married to the judge of this small town, he played poker every few months with a group of guys I called the City Fathers. They were carpenters, electricians, pot-growers, lawyers, firewood cutters, you get the picture...
Well, one night, K. was down by a good bit and was getting desperate. He refused to bet the house (14 room Victorian on 3/4 of an acre right in town), he refused to bet the 20 foot mahogony double dingy salmon boat, so he bet his wife. The picture i use as my default pic is about the time area. Come on, I was a babe. Well, He "lost" me to John M. who graciously told K. that I could continue to live with him and raise our children. It was always a funny joke, it would surface every few years at a game and everyone laughed,including me. I had known John M. since I was a teen, so there ya go. He had a dog named Charlie who sat in the front seat of his truck when he went to build a house or put counters in someone's kitchen and he'd leave his lunch, like a hamburger or a roast beef sandwich right on the truck seat next to Charlie and she wouldn't eat it. She really was one of those special dogs in the world. She died a few years ago at an old and happy age.

Tonight I was walking Main Street in the dark, working on my long poem in my head when I ran into Tom and Sara who said, "Hey John M. is in town; he's at the pub right now." Needless to say, I ran like the dickons and walked in a bit breathless. He was sitting with L. and shootin' the shit. He saw me and exclaimed, :"I don't believe it!" Now, L. is a relatively new comer to our town so he didn't know this quirky piece of history and i thought I'd blow his mind, so I put my arms akimbo and said, "Wha? you don't recognize yr own ex wife?" and we both laughed and fell into a big old hug. He said, I have never seen you this radiant, this beautiful, what's up?"
I reminded him, "You signed the papers, you signed me off to marry Daniel, Does it look like I married the wrong guy?" But also I was so puzzled. I said, "John, I'm taking medication, I'm chunky, I have seven inches of silverware colored hair; i'm 52, what do yo see?" And he proceeded to love me with words like only an old friend can do. It was a real boost to my, is "ego" the right word, or is "self-esteem" more accurate? what ever it is, I was made new and feel good now even though he's long gone, driving back to santa rosa to his wonderful wife who I adore. these moments are to be treasured I have come to discover...I'm a lucky rabbit's foot!
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Mortification w/out the cat o' nine tails [Jul. 10th, 2007|04:16 pm]
robin_rule
[Current Location |Under the maple Tree, the plug in the window]
[mood |giddygiddy]
[music |birds, oh glorious birds!]

PREFACE:

The other night I was interested in doing two pieces of sleuthing in this Ghost Train Diary, one being about who reads me here in The Land O'Live Journal and I counted ya all and there's not a whole hell of a lot of you "that I know about", but enough to feel like I have an audience, but I really wanted to find the rest of the story chapters of "The Diary of the Magpie Woman" which is what I call that great long chapter-a-night Dickonian series I wrote in 2005, and while finding them all to edit and mebbe make something of, I also discovered I had over a hundred entries (which isn't alot when I looked at some other Inkslingers) in this convoluted thang called Live Journal, called the Ghost Train, called my diary, which is just a chicken-shit way of saying what I really felt when I put it online which was The Holy Ghost Train, but never mind my lack of courage back then or large amounts of stupidity, I found, thanks to Leafy, that I could tell my story, I could talk and not have to duck lest i get smacked, slapped, belted across the face by an adult called Mother or step-father, or any other relationship a child might have thrust upon them. I could write poems, complain, wonder at the joy of stray cats, holding hummingbirds, nursing acorn woodpeckers, loving my sons, loving the world, and a buncha you that are in it, holding peace vigils, whining about high bills, etc etc.

And I have written I noticed these last nights at least four great big huge heart-naked essays about telling the truth, because this was the place I could do so. Now, the stupid part comes in by the using of my own name, but I tried in the beginning when leafy set me up to have a false name like most of you, let me amend that, not false, but secret poetic name, because it's not my place to call you false or not and shame-on-me. I wanted, oh how I wanted to be , "Jane Red Shoes" or "Redbud Jane" cuz redbud is a basket-weaving material and it grows right here on our Tomki River as well as back in the Carolinas where my family lived happily before they were forced to march in that damned Trail of Tears and the Cherokee in me sings for it, and "JANE" is one of my favorite girl names; but I just couldn't write true and clear and real, so I had to gulp, take a leap and scribble right out here for the whole world to see, (as if they were lookin') Robin Rule, little knowing people could google my name because I DO have a bit o' fame and well, I most recently WAS googled by two of the people I admire the most in the world.

A woman who shall be called Tea, cuz that's what her loved ones call her and she's a national letterpress typesetter who is gonna make that tryptych I mentioned a week or so ago with a poem of mine, Dan's and one of her own and sells them to universities for hundreds of dollars, AND THEN, googled by this semi-elderly gentleman (How's that for half a description, Harry?!) who i thought I might get to know in the more regular old-fashioned way, like he walks by my caboose with a friend and I show him my garden and then I bring him some cuttings of stuff for his garden and then we'll have tea (but I had that molar out) and I have sort of known him for a year or two, as his daughter used to be my boss when I taught at a different school and his daughter and I share the same birthday and she's a long slim cool drink o' water and beautiful and dignified like an elven queen, and man, I wish I were like her, but I'm not. I'm the rough-n-tumble gypsy girl whose hair is always gonna be mussed up (I'm always gonna be like Marie in Twelve Night) and my skirt, like Jo March's, will always have stickers on it or a burn or a teastain, honestly ya can't take me anywhere... anyway, this is all just a preface of finding out about Harry finding out about me
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

So, today's been one of those hot muggy days which looks like it wants to rain, but it probably won't and I'm watering the garden, because if you water, it surely will rain and I see that my English lavender has finally begun to bloom and I have to start cutting it back. I cut Raingirl a huge swarth, which I do every year and mail, and I like to put some in Dan's sweater suitcase against the moths. You see, when we first moved into the caboose, there were no shelves and Dan, being an absolute stone shelf builder, made shelves in the bedroom that looked just like luggage shelves in a train room. Come on, you've seen a movie or two where you walk down the long train corridor and there's doors and a tiny window with curtains on the inside and ya open the door and there's two bench seats and shelves above them where ya put yr hat box (yes, i have hatboxes) and yr luggage...well, dan built some shelves like that and I bought old fat suitcases from the forties (and wish I had more) to put my clothes in. Boy, how I digress.

Well, there's still lavendar, so I think Harry will want some of this, because he is one of the most elegant men I have ever seen. And Dan agrees, as he had to take my hand-written note to him when I had to stand him up for our afternoon tea the day of the molar extraction . He came back and said, "He twinkles." I said, "Yes, I know. That means something, Dan". Harry also dresses in the most beautiful silk feeling white dress shirts that are soft at the sleeve and the back with the most delicious looking chambray trousers or just really old soft blue jeans. I do not exam too closely when I am shy. But it's definately his eyes that knock one into a modality of kindness and truth. I don't believe I could tell a lie in front of that man if my life depended on it. At any rate, he was counseling a couple (oops! and I knew them, which could be embarrassing I guess. I hope not.)and I didn't get to stay as I had hoped. I said I brought you some lavander for yr sweater box against moths and a book of my poetry and one of my hand-made books which I have to mail to Raingirl (he'll be careful raingirl I just know it) in order for you to get to know me better. And he twinkles, tells me he's googled me. Now, my name comes up a kinda buncha times if you look long enough, (through all those round robins. gak!)And the first thing that comes up in my mind is: My BLOG! and he says, yes, he's been reading my blog. oh my oh my oh my. This is the beginning of all those essays about telling the truth. It's now time to put my money where my mouth is and accept myself as that rough-and-tumble gypsy girl that someone might be interested in reading. Or NOT. Harry might decide I'm too rough for his taste. I DO have excellent tea party manners. Leafy can attest. But since my father died (and i DO NOT look at Harry like a father, though I sure as heaven wish he WERE my father),and since Dan's father died I haven't enjoyed an older man in my life and I DO like an older man in my life. I am quite sure it IS because of growing up with no father and Fathers seem like foreign Heads of State or a ride on the Orient Express. But I like to talk and I like to listen to interesting people. I never went to college, and I like to learn and this man is definately a learned soul.

This man has been a fighter pilot, a Prespytarian (sp) nnnnnnn minister, a councilor (still), from the looks of his garden and parlor, Buddhist, he likes poetry and several other things he told me and I forgot. I want to talk to the minister and the gardener, but I am curious about all of him. He is courtly, lives in the house I have secretly always wanted to own in this small town (it has beautiful grounds) and I haven't even seen the whole of the inside. But when our dog The Duchess was alive and well, Dan and I would walk these streets and play, "what's yr favorite house".

So, we talk a little bit longer and i keep trying ti leave, because i know a therapy hour is fifty minutes and I don't want to be rude, but he's casual, puts his arm around me and i put my arm around him and (that's when I felt that shirt, oh that is a grand shirt)he just keeps talking putting everyone at ease and then I 'escape' because of the couple. So now I have his phone number and I'm to call and come for tea, but I'm so shy and I got home and there was a message from the furniture store about moving our bed in, which we have paid alot on, and hopefully get the check from the woman who bought my $1,000 book to finish paying for the bed, and then, maybe I can have time and even invite Harry over for tea. What a day.
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Frenchie, ze Tuxedo Cat [Jul. 9th, 2007|02:30 am]
robin_rule
[Current Location |the Alley]
[music |the cat came back the very next day]

A month ago, I had some money so i bought at a chain supermarket which shall remain unnamed, an inexpensive dosage packet of ear mite medicine which i saw by chance. i thought wothehell, lets see if THIS is the poor blacknwhite cat's problem and ya know, i was only able to give four out of six doses before Frenchie decided he had about enough of that stinging stuff, but i think it's worked and i only feel bad i didn't try it two years ago. i just didn't know. i heard ear mite medication was mucho ducats and i left it at that, trying herbal things instead, which were useless.

He appears healed and doing pretty good. Except this loss of trust which IS getting slowly better. he doesn't let me pet him as long, but maybe i was scratching an itchy place and that's why. BUT, maybe i was justhurtinghim as i was healing him and he's comin' around slowly. it's a small victory, but a good one.
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(no subject) [Jul. 7th, 2007|01:47 am]
robin_rule
it's been a hellish over a hundred degrees in my part of the country and i don't care if yr part of the country is suffering as well, i live 17 miles from the ocean (as the raven flies) and there OUGHT to be a effin' ocean breeze. but there is not,because there is a huge mountain range in the way. of course i care, i just had to throw a little temper tantrum...

i have need of a secretary, a maid and a gardener. and no i have no payroll and no "place to crash". i, who have prided herself on her poverty, (because it's always been to help someone else) is feeling a tad needy, and tomorrow we give the poetry marathon for the Vets for Peace, so I have to get my little Dorothy Day attitude out front and center. we got the best Bingo! prizes organized. we color-copied lurid paperback book covers (except for one truly beauty Saint Bernardette) and i will look around for other worthy prizes in the a.m.

this was my goal in high school: to be a dorothy day kinda figure when i reached fifty, so here i am wallowing in "it's too hard", it's too hot" and not doing a damn bit of social work for anyone right now, but i will soon, like tomorrow. i will rip myself out of this pity suit and put on the nun suit, or the Wild Girl Scarf or The Able to stay up hours reading poetry and listening to poetry, both good and bad suit or Charity is a Love Girl Frock; because i like the way it fits. its only at night, when everyone is asleep and i am rocking in pain, that i cry out, Jeepers, who do i think i am trying to make someone's live better? i am nobody and maybe that's the way it's supposed to go. i'm going to bed now. i wish i drank or smoked pot or something fun and exciting. i hardly even eat ice cream. oh well. tomorrow i have to be all brash and coax money outa people because Charity/agape is a long pearly robe with many pockets that people can dip into when they need.
i wanna wear the robe and make someone happy. i do. i do.
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computer [Jun. 23rd, 2007|02:16 am]
robin_rule
no doubt if you've read anything in here for the last odd months, you will have known my computer was in the boneyard. well, thanks to a friend of my oldest, for 80 ducats, my computer has two new harddrives and works like a charm. (one of the hard drives is simply a back up. i mean for 30$, why not since i had it.) i am working again on one of two long poems that some of you gave me good feedback about. and i think i am going to try and do something with that long urban faery kind of serial story i was writing a chapter a night a year or so ago that people really liked.

But my best news is that the College museum is doing a rather odd project and i've been invited to participate.
The woman who has organized it has , (like me) collected anonymous old photos for years and she is allowing certain writers and artists (and i'm one of them!!) to use several and 1.) write a story about it and 2.) make a
3-d construction using the photos and my own words. well, i've been doing this for years and selling them. so i am very excited to be doing this for a museum. i found four photos from the forties of a sailor, a mad woman, a nine year old girl and a two year old boy and they are ALL BLURRY. the story is coming into my head. my story with changes. i can't help but cull from me who i know best. i am happiest when i am working.

also my mentor, larry beckett called me today and we talked poetry for a good long while. (he doesn't know he's my mentor, he thinks i'm his publisher. i am i am!)
and dan and i went to the annual solstice reading at coloredhorse studios tonight and had a gorgeous time.
now, if i had a housekeeper to help me get this place ready to paint, my life would be perfect, has anyone of you, ever felt like yr life was perfect? this is a gift, a lovely lively gift!
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(no subject) [Jun. 18th, 2007|10:30 pm]
robin_rule
[Current Location |the back garden]
[music |birds in fruit trees, sprinklers whirring on sidewalks]

Once Upon A Marriage

Though the day was hot, blazing-through-the-circus-hoop hot, the evening carried a breeze from the western sea and the salt air turned everyone's sweat to a thin sheen on their arms and shoulders that now begged for a scarf, a sweater, anything to protect the freckles from the chill. Dan and I walked to my sons' house, their childhood house where I raised them, where their father lives upstairs in an in-law flat and when he's not taking antabuse, he drinks. It was so depressing to go over expectant of fun cherry-picking and find the ex at the door pretending he still had a cold, but I could tell he was drunk. We went out back to the now massive cherry trees we had planted before the youngest child was born, and subdued, started picking the dark little circles of sweetness by ourselves. Finally a small black cat joined us, stretching his frame against the dark limbs and scratching the bark with his noisey claws.

My youngest has been depressed for the last few days and I couldn't figure out why. Now I know. He hates it when his father drinks and is scared because his father has diabetes and has to give himself shots and alcohol is so dangerous with diabetes. I looked around the massive backyard and saw how so much of my landscaping had been obliterated by tall grass, overgrown rambler roses, mint, trees taken down because they had been forgotten to be watered and pruned. The only thing good was a lawn my son had put in last year. He had a futon, a candle and a tin of sugar cookies lying under the shade of one of the cherry trees. I could imagine him watching the stars through the dark leaves as he waited for sleep to overtake his imagination.

The tree was so laden with fruit, it's lower branches touched the earth and I never-minded the ladders. I just reached over and picked six, seven cherries at a time into my satchel. We filled five satchels before we remembered we had to carry them across Main Street (hiway 101) and down several blocks to the caboose. We still had to make a simple syrup and pit and crush the fruit and stir it into the sugary goo and pour it, boiling, into hot clean jars. We had been filled with so much joy, and now, felt chastened, sad, reflective, and not even for the ex anymore, but for the grown sons. Before crossing the highway, we stopped in the music store where my oldest son's fiancee works, the shop that has a slot machine and lets you place a token in and if you pull three cherries, you win a free movie rental. I slid a handful of cherries on the counter and said, "Free film", she popped one in her mouth and grinned.

There are so many broken people in my life; it's so sad to watch them live out the rest of their allotted breaths, heartbeats. It makes me so angry to see the younger ones who are decent hard-working kids have to
watch this too. I'm a writer, I can distance myself. What is their armor? My son went to art school.
He makes masks out of all sorts of materials. Now I know why.
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(no subject) [Jun. 14th, 2007|11:48 pm]
robin_rule
THE REAL GHOSTS


In looking back at my childhood and now questioning that which I couldn't then, didn't know how to, didn't know it was even to be questioned (!), I see now what my father was, how he preceived himself, against the way I preceived him. I couldn't get past the reality that I had been traded in for a bottle, that a 'beloved-child' had actually been traded for unlimited (until death) secretly stashed and drunk from larger and larger bottles of vodka. I thought that was the worst crime but he, being older, being inside his own skin, his own guilt, knew what the real crime was.

Like in the fairy tales where the weak father is convinced by the secretly cruel step mother to lead his children out into the wild forest and abandon them, so that her own children might reap the benefits of what food, what warmth there remained, I now realize the crime he was gulty of was leaving his children in the forest fraught with wild beasts (cruel, abusive step-fathers, mentally unstable biological mother)while he ran from that which he could not fight against and that was her essential evilness. He was weak, made that way by his mother, who was a cohert in the style we were raised in by our mother. HIS mother was the teacher on how to finesse our 'bad seed anyway', common, nearly white trash mother's inabilities to raise us . My mother's mother was not this common white trash female to be condemned, disgusted with, she was a naif. She was a good Christian woman who sought to save her children in the Depression of the Thirties in America by putting the youngest two in a Home for Children so they could at least eat and have warmth in the winter. It was a school and the children learned just as if it were a boarding school for the young of the more well-to-do,though of course the food was plain fare. I often wonder if They felt abandoned the way I felt abandoned even though she visited them all the time after work , after caring for her elderly mother with her elderly sister who also worked. Is this another abandonment issue I never saw before? I asked her elder sister and she replied, "No, yr mother was always the way she is", no matter what she received or didn't receive". What a disappointment.

My father's real crime was abandoning us to the cruelity of her and the small parade of evil step-fathers. That's why he drank. It wasn't until his death that I grokked that. When on my last visit with him, he asked why I had stopped calling, I told him it was an experiment to see if he would call ME. He didn't. I would have to run into him in a parking lot and confront him. He was always wary. Now I know it was he feared the accusation of abandonement, and he kept receiving the sentence of 'drunkard". How little I was able to see the situation in my hunger for a father to love me, caress me, tell me I was a good girl. It was almost as if he couldn't feel the rightness, to give me that. I now know he was afraid of my love, because it was so unconditional, except the drinking. I allowed him to live with my now ex husband and my family, but my ex, also an alcoholic, encouraged him after a long hiatus (FIFTEEN YEARS)of not drinking to "try this 25 year old bottle of a bordeaux or some such good stuff" to entice him into joining him as drinking buddy and thereby lessening his own guilt. Instead he merely created two closet drinkers and my heart finally altogether hardened like it had done in late teenhood when I saw that there was no breaking through into the real person who could be forgiven his neglect simply by being there now and not lost in great lassoo of self-trickery, like an inept Houdini.

All the men of his generation are dead now. All my uncles. A number of cousins from drink. It is only the women who have survived, fighting their own demons,but damn it,we are fighting. Our ovaries have become our testicles, as my first ex husband told me when I turned 19 on the String and sanded and stained a whole redwood floor because he forgot to get me a present, forgot to say fucking HAPPY BIRTHDAY and so worked my anger out by doing the floor and then taking the '57 chevy hood sledge into the woods and filling it with firewood from the forest floor.

It took me three marriages to get it right, to be equal, to accept loss forever if he were to leave me, or cast me out most discourtiously; and now, I would ache in my aloness but I believe I might be able to live without a man if it came to that, which I pray nightly it does not. There comes a time when a woman says I've had enough, it's time to change this pattern, this jigsaw of life into something I've never seen before, except in novels and yearned for all these long years. I think I am finally arriving, soon it'll be time to collect what little baggage I have collected from those novels and poetry and walk solidly into the fifty-second year of my life. I could have gathered my wisdom from loving parents. I will never know what that feels like. But my children do and for that I am grateful, simply, almost exhausted with the work of it, the attention it takes, grateful. And I think my children, now grown, know this too.
**********************
After I posted this and saw the date, I was struck by the laughable irony: if my parents had stayed married, today would have been their 54th wedding anniversary; talk about the collective unconscious...
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Getting Ready to Turn 52 [Jun. 14th, 2007|10:30 pm]
robin_rule
I was replying to an email to kathleen winters (magicfirefly) and decided i liked what i was writing. i haven't been writing lately and if it's a letter to someone that inspires me these days. i'll take it.thanks kathleen. *******************

I find now that i am almost fifty-two, that I am wishing I had had a daughter, I suppose instead of just all those boys. (I only had two sons, but they brought home with them starting in pre-school a dozen boys apiece over the years and still there are grown men in this small town who brag of having a toothbrush at "mimi's". (what my sons called me instead of mama.) I raised a town of boys and ironically fostered a dozen girls over the years, the last being the one who blossomed into a woman friendship, for which I am gratefully surprised and pleased.

I am enjoying the silver hairs which I thought I would not and discovering, like Jo March, I am a happy old woman. I cannot believe that who I wanted to grow up and be, I have become. There not many women who can say that, I fear. I suspect Kathleen is another one who is realizing her dream as a writer. I, on the other hand, have not had the writer part of my youthful dreams come out the way I intended, though I was just honored greatly at a college reading and lit-fest and have a reading coming up in S.F. in July. It's not the high note I wished for nor the acclaim I thought I wanted. It's quieter. I have found I have written alot of my poems in the faces of those grown children and suddenly, that's good enough for me. Of course, I hope I always write and publish, but it doesn't have the neediness attached to it I always felt. God bless you Louisa May Alcott for giving me a role model.
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