Green and Shadowed

3F56849C-9C92-41CF-8CEE-6FBCE43FD7A1

Monday Morning Musings:

 

“And having, on the other hand,

A flowery, green, bird-singing land.”

–William Henry Davies, “In May”

 

The world grows green and greener

(as many grow mean and meaner),

and baby geese in their downy coats

waddle on the shore, as an older one floats

49F5FA9A-C364-4D8F-93A7-1C14C37E6D90

down the river, like my dreams

(or so it seems).

Life has changed, and though adorned

in May’s flowery embrace, we’re warned

44FAC740-7F60-4C61-B9D0-AA318191F4E3

 

of its fragility, shadows with fertility,

reminders that life is fraught, though there may be tranquility–

death comes to all–the lesser and the mighty fall–

and the world turns upside-down, through the wormhole

 

we go into another place,

embrace darkness, or find grace

in doing what is good and right

find the cracks that let in light–

E3074B1E-5DC3-4108-8FA8-349CE93E8D69

I looked down a found a bit of magic.

 

and though I see shadows, I walk on

listening for birdsong, watching for dawn.

 

 

I don’t go anywhere anymore, except for walks, where I get a dose of the natural world to counteract the anxiety, fear, and the news of the crazies and the supporters of the horror in the White House. I have to remind of all the good people—my family and friends—and you readers, of course.  I decided to go into the reopened park this morning, but I won’t do that again. There were too many people even at 7:30 AM to make it comfortable for me.  I put on a mask (no one else was wearing one), and then it was difficult to walk quickly and breathe. I left and continued my walk down streets where no one was around, so I could walk without a mask. WP won’t let me upload my masked face photo.

 

No movies this week, we’re binging Star Trek: Discovery.  It’s good to see Star Fleet heroes and people with morals. And I also started watching The Good Fight. I’m reminded how I like all the shows Michelle King and Robert King create: The Good Wife, Brain Dead, Evil—good actors and stories with a touch of quirkiness. Their shows always have wonderful supporting actors, too.

 

14C415EF-3FC5-44D9-9E87-00BA0C110CBA

Shadows and reflections.  Thank goodness for this little guy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To See the Stars Behind the Sun

IMG_7136

Monday Morning Musings:

 

“To see the stars behind the sun. . .

Somewhen a boy is counting stars.

Somewhen a man is photographing light.

Somewhen his finger strokes the stubble on another’s cheek,

and for a moment everything is relative.”

From Neil Gaiman, “In Transit (for Arthur Eddington)”

 

Some of you know the news already that my mother died early Saturday morning, but this is my official WordPress announcement.

She had been in a nursing home, and she died of Covid 19-related complications. Yes, this is real, and I can’t tell you how angry I am at the people who are not taking this seriously, including the horror in the White House or his enablers. Given the current circumstances, we were unable to be with her, and we do not when we will have any type of memorial service for her.

Friday I went into a flurry of comfort cooking and baking. We visited with our daughters virtually, as we’ve been doing recently on Friday nights.

That night, I dreamt several times of people waving goodbye. Each time, I woke up after the dream with the image lingering in my head. Then early in the morning, my sister called with the news. For a long time, my sisters and I have called each other, saying quickly, “No one has died.” She told me this time it wasn’t one of those calls because my mom had died.

 

My parents were married to and divorced from each other twice, but he was the love of her life, and I think she was of his, too. Towards her end, she remembered only the good times, and she thought my father lived in the same nursing home. He’s been dead for over twenty years.

 

On Sunday morning, I went for a long walk. At the river, I cried, threw a stone into the water, and said goodbye to my mother, as I watched the ripples on the surface and watched the river flow.

132E4BF5-B7E0-4C28-B6D2-FC06ECA2ACA5

Delaware River, West Deptford, NJ April 2020

 

Two stars in orbit—

causing time and space to shift

 

in tumbling waves

the universe ripples,

 

stops, frozen–

 

a moment caught,

a family vacation,

you laughing,

heels kicking in the air

as you fling yourself across a motel bed

young and beautiful

 

somewhere

 

learning a new dance with a girlfriend,

or meeting a young man at a party–

he runs after you

to get your phone number

traveling in the wrong direction–

or the right one

 

to somewhere

 

you see the stars behind the sun.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

I Am Not Ready: NaPoWriMo2020, Day 8

 

IMG_5273

 

I am not ready for anything to happen,

I never am—

 

but I am not a bird or tree

with naked branches covered

now in tender yellow-green, newborn

reaching skyward,

like toddlers wanting to be held—

 

but we stand back,

admire from a distance

the wispy clouds

caught by unseen winds, drifting —

 

I am drifting–

not ready, I’m not, never am,

but look—

that blue, that white, that yellow and green,

dancing on a robin’s song.

 

I am not ready,

anything can happen.

It can, it has, it does–

but look again,

the pink moon rises,

and soon will come the dawn.

IMG_6254

Pink Moon, 2020

The NaPoWriMo prompt for Day 8 is to use a line from a poetry bot. I used a line from the Sylvia Plath Twitter Bot. The line, the first line of my poem, actually comes from her poem “Three Women.” My poem has nothing to do with her poem—I simply used the line.

I apologize for being so behind in reading. So many prompts, and so much poetry–which is a good thing! Tonight is the start of Passover, and we had a family emergency this afternoon (everyone is OK).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Gleam in the Gloom: NaPoWriMo2020, Day 7

1CE3B973-0C39-4D5E-A5D2-39CD1CFB8FED

 

I walk down streets marked No Outlet

wondering if I could find a way, to flit

or flee, like Alice underground

 

but I’m afraid of falling, rolling

into a hungry black hole,

consumer of light—and all–

 

though light beams through night

and clouds and cracks, the sight

we see glimmers from the past–

 

no less wondrous if unseen–

the black hole, or a tree, I mean

here, the flowers bloom,

 

and birds sing

in their secret language of spring,

of greening feathered flight,

 

and the sun flirts with treetops,

but no one kisses on Main Street, that’s stopped,

and there’s no rock and rolling,

 

as masked like bandit queens and kings

in solitary kingdoms, with empty swings–

the children inside–

 

we walk steadfast apart

with trembling hearts

still able to feel

 

steel yourself, no stumbling into a hole,

so, we comfort and console

as the birds sing and flowers bloom

 

and we sit in our rooms

connected with Zoom—

finding there’s an outlet after all,

 

a gleam through the gloom.

 

I’ve combined two prompts. The NaPoWriMo Day 7 prompt asked us to write a poem based on a news story. I wrote about “the hungry black hole.” At dVerse, Björn asked us “to take inspiration from the words like plague, pestilence, and pandemic, and write a poem to console us in this time of the Corona.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Light Rekindled

B4F6CDA9-AE02-4D24-86BB-9C974B1CA0AB

The Upside-Down World: An overflow drainage pond is beautiful reflected. Merril D. Smith, March 2020

Monday Morning Musings:

“I borrowed his brightness and used it to see my way, and then gradually, from the habit of looking at the world as he illuminated it, the light in my own mind rekindled.”

–Geraldine Brooks, Year of Wonders

 

I walk, alone

no human voices, only birdsong.

Vultures soar above me,

social, silent creatures

gracefully catching the currents

 

 

IMG_4629 2

 

sniffing the air

for death on the ground,

unnoticed by us–

like those who scavenge and clean

under-appreciated, like those who serve.

 

Life blooms all around me

yellow, pink, white

petals bright against the sky

where a mockingbird perches

to sing for hours in looping trills

 

a song of love, longing, and hope

of attracting his mate,

or fending off others.

Whatever the intent,

his message makes me smile.

 

We celebrate Shabbat,

a virtual dinner with our daughters.

We light the candles, sip our wine,

cut the challah

share our lives and love through a screen,

D84B4E28-5A1A-4EDB-B3F2-FEDBDDCC1614

Virtual Shabbat Dinner

 

agreeing that we should do this again

agreeing that we are all connecting

in new ways—

I tell them I called a friend,

I remind myself to call others.

 

The sun shines

through the raindrops

a brief reminder

it is there, like a memory

it is always there

 

in a puddle

reflected

or in the sky

hidden by clouds

or by a turn of the axis–

E7D4BE70-B4C9-42B0-9F87-C1A9546638B0

Sun shower–Upside-down World in a puddle Merril D. Smith, March 2020

 

even in the upside-down world

light is a constant,

if unseen

like light within a black hole

trapped

 

like a thought in a confused mind–

my mom says she’s honeymooning

with my dead father,

remembering not the anger, but love rekindled—

a bit of light in the darkness.

 

The week began with sunshine

ends with clouds and rain–

spring is a tease of

warm days and cool breeze,

but the light lingers longer

 

even while the shadows play.

 

IMG_5154

 

No movies this week, but we finished Season 3 of Babylon Berlin. It’s so good. Now we have to wait for Season 4.  I’m seeing new things in my neighborhood as I walk through it.

And we celebrated #openlocalwine night on Saturday. Doing our small part. 😀