My Love and I

Wine me this evening.
Let us sit together
sipping and listening.
No words needed.
Waves roll in, roll out.
No other sound.
Love can be silent.

Side by side many years.
Children raised, married,
parenting their own.
We have time to reflect
on what was,
what is,
and what is yet to come.

The years ahead,
far less than those behind.
And yet we smile,
sit together,
sipping and listening.

Photo taken this week in Provincetown, at the tip of Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

Attitude is a Choice

Sum days her mirror reflects the years.
Grooves etched beside eyes,
crevices left from emotional stress.
Blue veined highwayed hands tattle,
leaving behind tremor shaken script.
But open-toed shoes reveal her true self.
Shining sterling peace-sign toe ring,
defiant purple glitter-polish on her nails.

Quadrille written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today De is hosting and asks us to use the word “groove” or a form of the word, in our Quadrille (a poem of exactly 44 words, sans title). Image from Pixabay.com

Oh Glorious Day

This Iowa field, this Iowa day.
I stand in the midst of flowers
green grasses waving,
sun’s warmth soaking my skin.
Double hollyhocks stand tall.
Gaillardia faces blush,
edged in sherbet yellow ruffles.
Ethereal clouds float lazily,
cotton ball fluffs
like white misshapen dots
on seersucker blue sky.
Newly painted barn gleams
surrounded by emerald shrubs,
trees and hills.
Ah yes, Iowa,
you are indeed the heartland,
loved by so many.

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for global poets. It’s OLN (Open Link Night) and Mish is hosting.
We’ve not lived in Iowa since 1997, but oh the glorious memories we have of our days there. From teaching in a small rural high school, to owning our first home on 30 acres of land, to raising our children in a University town and earning my PhD there. Iowa is known as the Heartland – we surely found it that.

Photo is from Nancy Mast who often posts Iowa farm photos.

The Gathering

Love and laughter abound
from youngest to oldest, three generations.
Memories shared, stories told, memories made.
The circle of love goes around and round . . .
. . . we are blessed to still be aboard.
Thankful for every day.

Traditional cousins’ bench shot. In the top one, youngest is 2 and on the bottom, she’s almost 10!
Fifty-one years…..thankful for every day.
Hail hail, the gang’s all here….
Our much loved children and grandchildren.

All photos from last weekend….and what a joyful time we had at a marvelous VRBO farmhouse in Virginia!

Sweet Apples

Three apple trees.
Due date approaching.
Branches loaded with fruit,
over-ripe ones on ground
sickly sweet with buzzing bees.
Fresh picked apples brought inside,
peeled carefully, cut in halves,
sliced after cores are tossed.
Seasoned with cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg
they’re left to sit, making their own juice.
I move the rolling pin over the dough,
stretching it carefully into shape, leaning in
as close to counter as my swollen belly allows.
And then I feel it. Shirt lifted, I look…..
our soon-to-be little one is rolling too.
Crusts placed gingerly in aluminum pie pans
spicy scented apple mixture poured into tins.
Butter pads scattered on top, then top crust placed.
Crimping dough I smile, remembering.
Yesterday I folded sweet little undershirts,
cloth diapers, and placed them just so
on shelf in second-hand bassinette.
Pies made, into the freezer they go.
All the preparations done, we wait.
Iowa’s winter won’t seem so harsh this year.
We’ll have that heavenly apple aroma
as one of our pies bake,
and we’ll be holding a tiny baby boy or girl
ever so closely in our arms.

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today Kim asks us to consider fruit….pick a fruit…..what does it remind us of. What is it like? Describe it.
Immediately our apple trees came to mind from when we lived in rural Iowa. And then memories came flooding back. These were the days when we went to the dr. to find out if we were pregnant. And the only gender reveal was when the baby was born. Our daughter was born after I’d frozen our apple pies for the winter – she’s now 46!

Lesson in Timing

Diapers, bedtime stories,
Christmas stockings.
Driving them to lessons,
reading report cards.
Wound up like a top
I whizzed through the arcane.
Now in my golden years
I think back and realize.
I should have paid more mind.
The arcane was indeed
the miraculous.

Written for Quadrille Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets around the globe. Today I’m hosting and ask people to include the word “wound” or a form of the word in a poem of exactly 44 words, sans title. Notice that “wound” is a homograph. There are two pronunciations and each has a different meaning: He suffered a wound in battle. VS She is wound up like a top. Folks are free to use either pronunciation/meaning or both! If using both, their poem must still consist of exactly 44 words, not including the title.

Photos are of our children who are now 45 and 46! And yes that’s me, about forty years ago!

Bridges

She crossed a bridge with the utmost faith
knowing her husband, gone so long,
and her Lord would be on the other side.
We who wait in this waystation
bid her farewell and rest
and we move on as we must.

Sometimes a bridge is like a catapult,
a sudden bolt from here to there.
Others seem miles long
as we cross treacherous waters,
painful steps, unsure of where they lead,
straining to make the span longer still.

I stand outside tonight,
staring at the stars above our universe.
I wonder and I hope.
Peace and unconditional love
must surely have met you
as you knew it would,
when you crossed over to the other side.

Written for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today, Merril talks about bridges and asks us to either write a poem in a particular form, or to somehow write about bridges. This poem is dedicated to my sister-in-law Starr. We lost her on April 10th. She and I were planning on my visiting in July….it was not to be. I shall miss her. I do miss her.

nee Gruenwald

Adopted tradition,
forest bathing.
Greening in serenity
she lives her name.

Dedicated to my dear friend Kenji Kojima and written for Day 14 at NaPoWriMo where we are prompted to write a poem that delves into the meaning of either our first or last name. In German, my maiden name Gruenwald means green forest.

Japanese culture includes the practice of forest bathing, shinrin-yoku (shrinrin means forest and yoku means bath). I have always felt at peace walking in the midst of trees.

Photo taken during our time in Ireland.

Between Here and There

What, cruel fate?
When body ages naturally,
stooped and frail but moving still,
enjoying time with family and friends,
you dare to strike unexpectedly?

You send blood careening to skull
where corpuscles wreak havoc,
inflict destruction without mercy.
Life gasps bereft of speech, bereft of steps.
Minimal movement left, only on left side.

Now dear Starr, comes time to leave,
the good life lived.
Sustained by faith,
your one love gone far too soon,
waits impatiently beyond.

Ascend into the universe,
soar upon angel’s wings.
Painful our goodbyes
though we understand your need,
your exhaustion, your readiness.

Your body upon its own journey,
earthly path to far past stars.
We hold your hand, not to tether you.
Rather to show our love, provide comfort,
an assuring touch in this transition time.

And when you are gone from here, 
body spent, spirit uplifted, 
you will be here with us
and simultaneously there.
Forever imprinted upon our heart.

This is dedicated to my sister-in-law Starr and her family. Starr, eighty-three, entered hospice this past weekend. She has five children, eleven grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren. She lost her husband, my wonderful brother, to a massive heart attack when he was only fifty-one. We shall all miss her terribly.

Written for dVerse where today Grace hosts with a prompt entitled “The Body and Poetry.”

Also included in NaPoWriMo Day 8 – National Poetry Writing Month – where the challenge is to write a poem every day in April.