With Aplogies to Mark Twain

“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”
Mark Twain, aka Samuel Clemens

Welcome to the Ball and Socket,
newest hip joint in town.
Formerly Mark Twain’s Pub,
still catering to the hale and hearty.

Specialty drinks have disappeared,
Huck Finns and Tom Sawyers gone.
But never you worry and never you mind,
what matters most, is easy to find.

Old Sam leans on the bar,
pours drinks and sloshes the foam.
Jaws and listens and nips a few too,
just like the place, he’s as good as new.

Written for Napowrimo, day 13, where the prompt is to turn a famous saying upside down and have fun with it. I’ve had a bit of fun with Mark Twain’s quotation, cited at the beginning of the post.

Character Study

As a youngster,
she loved playing outside,
building dirt castles with lollypop flags.
Grade school entrepreneur,
her lemonade stands featured mud pies,
hand crimped with sand frosting on top.
Today, a sweet toothed geologist,
she loves layer cakes, marzipan sculptures
and all rock candy.

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Quadrille (44 words exactly, sans title) written for dVerse, where today we’re asked to include the word “zip.”  You’ll find it stirred into the marzipan! Also posted for Napowrimo, Day 9: prompt to write about the large and the small….stretching it here….from dirt and sand granules to geologist?

Summer Treat

Fat slabs of bacon
slapped on the griddle
sizzled and curled.
That frying pan sings its song,
flame burning
grease bubbling
never spatter-free.

Stack ‘em high
with a few tomatoes,
mayo-slathered
between some greens.
Mama says,
Make it healthy,
serve on whole wheat bread.

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A second quadrille (poem of exactly 44 words, sans title) for dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Victoria asks us to use the word “burn” or a form of the word. Thought I’d add a humorous one to the mix today. For a more sensuously burning take, go to my first post Tryst.

Single in the City

Perfectly happy
in her narrow galley kitchen,
she planed to outgrow it.
The oversized refrigerator
became her gallery of sorts.
Photos of him taped to the door,
ultimately yanked off in anger
before the catsup was even gone.
New boys appeared and disappeared,
friends she planned to feed into lovers.
Time emptied the tape dispenser.
No boys, just gummy residue.
So she walked in the rain one day
going store to store, on a magnet spree.
Colorful dots. Hearts. Fanciful sayings.
Two bright rainbows.
And one empty royal blue photo frame
she stuck on the far-right upper corner
of the freezer door.
She was, after all, an optimist
through and through.

 

I’m hosting dVerse today, the virtual pub for poets. It’s Tuesday Poetics and I’m asking folks to walk into their kitchen and peruse their refrigerator! Look inside. Look at the outside. What do you see that strikes your imagination that can be a jumping off point for a poem! Describe an object or use it somehow in a poem. Our refrigerator doors have always been a “gallery” of sorts with magnets and photos and sayings. So, looking at ours, I made up a young woman who uses her refrigerator door in somewhat the same way.
Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time.  Come visit and chill out with us today!

Ms. Ima Character

She chose a lucky-charmed life,
chocolate chip tolls
in the gluten-free lane.

Driveway décor, night-time too,
rainbow arrow from street to door.
Somewhere-over-the  always nearby.

Merry she is, poppin’ about,
never in knots, no-sayer not.
Upside-up, never down-side down.

Lover of music, coda in place
3/4 time is far too slow.
Give her 6/8 and she rushes the gait.

Zingin’ along on her hubby’s zither
strummin’ those dum do-diddley-dos.
She rocks-a-hill billy rockin’ toon
never the deja-vu blues.

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Paul hosts dVerse today, the cyber pub for poets. He’s asking us to mix up our language a bit….forget the grammarian rules. So, read the title aloud. This poem is about Ms. Ima, as in I’m A. And her last name is Character 🙂  I really had fun with this one. How many of the allusions can you catch here? Toll-House chocolate chips, a cereal choice, a famous Julie Andrews movie and a famous Judy Garland song, a number of musical references RE music notation, and a country musical instrument. And yep, that’s me in the photo. A number of years ago goofing around with my grand kids. So I guess you could say, I’m a character too!

Primal Desire

Desperate emerald envy.
Brownish grey chameleon
scampers across dirt path,
seeks scintillating shrubbery.
Ah . . . relief,
greening on a leaf.

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I’m hosting dVerse today, the virtual pub for poets. It’s Tuesday’s Poetics and I’m asking folks to write a poem that includes their birthstone. For example, if you’re born in May, your poem must include the word emerald; January birthdays, garnet; April folks, diamond; etc.  Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come on over!

What’s in a Name?

Lillian Mae Gruenwald. My full name before marriage. Lillian after my maternal grandmother, and by happenstance, my father’s twin sister. Mae after a beloved great-aunt. I hated it. The name; not my relatives. Cousins called me Lilly Mae or Little Mae. To everyone else I was Lillian.

In high school I was the skinny girl on the cheerleader squad. The only one chosen because of acrobatic abilities. I was also the only girl on the debate team. I dared to carry long metal boxes of index cards filled with researched “evidence.” I argued aggressively with boys, at tournaments all over the state of Illinois. To me, Lillian Gruenwald was a never-would-vote-for-homecoming-queen kind of name. And I was right. At homecoming, I was left leading the crowd in cheers for our Bulldogs while the Gail Shorts and Kay Savels left to change clothes. I watched as they sedately rode around the field at half-time, draped over new-model convertibles, donated for the occasion by the local Oldsmobile dealer.

So when my folks readied to leave me at college on that fateful day in early Autumn 1965, a crisp, cool, fresh day, I fidgeted. I willed them to leave before anyone came up to greet us. They finally did, after dutifully giving their Lillian lots of parental advice and enough hugs to smother me. I stood on the curb by the dorm, finally alone. Poised for a new life. On the brink of a new beginning. And then some newbie freshmen came up to greet me. I don’t remember who they were. Or how many there were. But I distinctly remember grinning, holding out my hand to shake their hands, and saying confidently, “Hi, I’m Lill.

sugar maple tree
dwarfed in surrounding green leaves
claims fall glory with crimson red

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Toni is hosting Haibun Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. The theme today is KOMOREEI…a Japanese terms that literally means the light filtered between leaves, usually occurring in spring and fall…that in-between season. We’re asked to write about something that has occurred in between seasons.  Haibun: 2 or 3 tightly written paragraphs of prose, not fiction; followed by a haiku. In true Japanese form, the haiku is not beholden to the syllabic count, rather must be about nature and include a “season” word. Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Photo in Boston’s Public Garden, Fall 2016. PS:  I’m happy being called Lill or Lillian these days….with age comes a knowledge that we are who we are, regardless of the name.