Oddments

In search of story


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Connections: August 13.17

My family’s in the garden

the past grows ever green

my mom is in the phlox

most surely, though unseen

her dad in the tomatoes

my green-thumbed Grandpa Mauck

son of North Carolina

whose hills rolled in his talk

Grandma O’Hern in moss roses

her summer’s tried-and-true

her son, my dad, in marigold

(the only flower he knew!)

the dill for an unknown

its air a bit of mystery

but I know it figures somewhere

in my leafy family history

I don’t come (as they say) from money

I come more from dirt

so it’s good to feel them back

in horticultural concert.

 

 

 

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Connections: August 8.17

 My grandma’s tub had feet

and Olympic-pool-sized feeling

her toilet had a chain

that hung down from the ceiling.

More, the bathroom window

was tall and opened wide

so fresh air and scent of train

could cleanse the room inside.

Now I have this footless

peculiarity

someone mean invented

to taunt and bully me.

It can’t be cleaned without

risking tendinitis

when I fold to fit its contours

it gives me rigor mortis.

It’s called a garden tub

a pity and a shame

someone ought to sue

for slandering garden’s name.

The window can’t be opened

the toilet’s in a box

so I reach way back in memory

where my grandma’s bathroom rocks.

 

 

 

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Connections: July 11.17

When July comes out to play,

bouncing on trampoline leaf,

climbing monkey bar stems,

sliding down the smooth

shiny pepper,

cartwheeling,

hopscotching,

hide-and-seeking in

herb tunnels,

and no one knows

how green the world can be

until the hot light leap-frogs

over itself

and we wish we could snatch it

this limpid summer air

but

unpossessable

it mocks

catch me if you can!

like childhood,

then does the garden dapple

make us stop

to fetch a memory.

 

 

 

 

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Connections: June 27.17

The library was a bike ride away

back in the day

bumping up

oof

and down

ow

the curbs

back in the day

my kingdom for a basket!

handlebars and books

precarious one-girl circus

back in the day

a tiny place, that library

in a big summer

and the books whispered

take me for a ride on your bike

to that cushy old blanketed couch

in  your cool damp basement

and don’t forget

what this was like

back in the day.

 

 

 

 

Thanks again to the S.W. Berg Photo Archives.

And thanks also to the Poquoson Library, Virginia, and all libraries!

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Connections: May 29.17

While Jean served in the Marines (yesterday’s post),

Edna, my other aunt, served in the WAVES.

She also kept a scrapbook.

On the left, the lyrics to “The Navy’s Got a Job For Me.”

On the right, a booklet of songs, dedicated (no kidding!) on the day I came into the world.

Thus do families keep the reasons for Memorial Day.

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