Sylvia took us unaware with her violet eyes and rainbow hair, was she human or sprite—perhaps a spirit of the light, or the embodiment of flowers of all seasons, of all hours. Once, I saw her twice in a blue moon, twice, I saw her floating n o o l l a b a like her laughter drifted down from the sky, lighting it, like a star somehow--yet how and why? Consider the source—the whispers and sighs of flowers, of poets, the artist’s eyes. I’m hosting dVerse tonight. There is some much awfulness and horror in the world, so I decided on a bit of whimsy. For my prompt, I've asked poets to use one or more of the garden rose names I have selected in their poems. I chose Sylvia and Twice in a Blue Moon. My mom’s name was Sylvia. She did not have violet eyes or rainbow hair. She did have an unforgettable laugh. And she was an artist who often painted flowers.
In Paris, we walked–through Montmartre, perhaps–
where people carried baguettes under their arms,
like my mother’s purse. Look, my parents said,
there, the Seine, the Mona Lisa, the Eiffel Tower—
and they glanced through guidebooks and at maps
for lost love, and Paris’s hidden charms
rekindled their passion for only a moment instead.
As the bells tolled the new year, the passing hours
my older sister read, and fed us scraps–
the story of the Danish prince; no harm
in telling this story of ghosts, the dead
return, my mom still sits amongst the flowers.
For dVerse, an attempt at Rimas Dissolutas.
Shadows wind through the spring green,
recalling winter, they carry the scent of blood
and despair driven by lies, the play of elaborate schemes,
and delirious dreams and desire blown into the after time,
and I ache,
wishing, wondering if I see light,
honeyed rays through verdant trees,
the pink-petaled spray of hope—
full of ever and always,
somewhere my mother is in a garden
or gazing at an azure sea,
she takes her brush,
erases the storms, the grey-clouded earth,
paints bright color on her canvas,
and I wake to birdsong and feathered-wishes
diamond bright in the still dark sky.
The Magnetic Poetry Oracle knows everything. The political situation here in the U.S. is quite troubling; Mother’s Day is tomorrow, and it’s spring. We collaborated on this poem.
My poem, “Small Bites,” is up in the most recent issue of Anti-Heroin Chic. My thanks to EIC James Diaz for accepting this poem, and for his consistently beautiful journal. The first anniversary of my mom’s death is in a little over a week. She died from Covid. Please get vaccinated when you can and continue to wear a mask.
You can read my poem here.
I’m linking this to dVerse, Open Link Night.
Listen to heart-songs–
the breath of eternity,
as ocean-kissed air dances
with brilliant sparkle-light,
and white-cat clouds pounce
at the blue-blanketed sky, wondering
ghosts hide in the shadows,
perhaps they linger to tell their secrets–
imprisoned between before and after,
in the fever-blush of morning sky,
and silent-laugh in the night—
at your smile from the window.
A late message from the Oracle today. We’ve had blue sky and sparkling water the last couple of days. As I was getting ready to post this, I looked up and saw this painting of my mom’s. It doesn’t have a title or date that I know of, but it seemed to fit.
Monday Morning Musings:
“History says don’t hope
On this side of the grave.
But then, once in a lifetime
The longed for tidal wave
Of justice can rise up
And hope and history rhyme.”
–Seamus Heaney, “Doubletake”, The Cure of Troy
Lines quoted by Joe Biden at DNC 2020
My mother would be ninety-eight today–
we’d hug and kiss, and smile in the way
you do with people you love–when we could and did,
we never thought it all would end, we’d bid
farewell to normal hopes, and sail into tomorrow
on boats barely afloat, fueled by sorrow
and a bit of hate. Yes, for the dissembler and enablers
who’ve made the situation worse. The world’s more unstable,
increasing so every day. And yet they play with clichéd lines–
heavy-handed, rabble-rousing—creating conspiracies, signs
of the time and getting worse. The storms come, the fires burn
still the seasons, turn, turn, turn—
I walk and think of flowers, our year of sitting amidst blooms,
the garden a refuge of sort from boredom, doom, the rooms
that confined you—and us–as we kept you company,
week after week, watching for changes, hungrily
asking you to remember the past, but wanting you to see
what you could of now, of me,
and we ached, all of us,
and we’d discuss
each change, each day, the words you’d say
of imaginary pets and our dead father, weigh
hope, laughter, grief in equal measure
and still remember and treasure—
a gift you’ve given me, to lift my face to the sun
to see that there are many, not just one
way to see color, beauty, light
the way it changes on the water and fades slowly into night
where perhaps I’ll hear a mockingbird sing farewell–
a lullaby rather than a knell–
a song of love, of peace, of rising up–it’s time,
it’s time, that hope and history rhyme.
As some of you know, my mother died in April from Covid-related complications. Today she’d be ninety-eight. We couldn’t be with her when she died, and we haven’t really had a memorial. Tonight my husband, daughters, their spouses, and I will have a virtual dinner get together. I baked my and her favorite cookies over the weekend, and I’m baking a cake today.
On Thursday, my husband and I had a date night at a winery. We bought tickets a month before, but we were fortunate that the humidity was gone that day, and it was beautiful.
My mother sings in dreams,
not of death, but light
holding promises of if–
soar, she cries,
why whisper what you want
when your words can fly,
for you, I wake,
as the robins rouse the sun
to blossom in apricot splendor.
Their voices carry on the wind–
a song that makes the flowers dance,
and I watch, at peace
~in this moment~
the world searches
sending out wishes on stars
with a laugh,
time sings through a thousand rivers,
not of never, but of always.
I tried several sets of tiles, and the Oracle kept giving me the same words. I hope I interpreted her message correctly. A Puente is technically two stanzas connected by a bridge stanza, but the Oracle had more to say, so this is a double Puente.