Oddments

In search of story


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March 27.21: Coping

Hope is the thing with feathers,

according to the poet;

this wind-coiffed matted stalwart

is adamant to show it.

Waterlogged, bedraggled,

moroser by the hour,

he watches plashy pond,

indomitable and dour.

But persevering, patient,

resolute in attitude,

it isn’t raining rain, he says,

it’s raining fortitude.

I salute unpretty Hope,

my admiration bestirred:

it may be the thing with feathers,

but it’s surely a tough old bird.

 

With thanks to Emily Dickinson.

And to the purists I make no apologies for “moroser.”

It’s a poem. Ergo, poetic license.

 


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Connections: September 1.17

 

I took my own advice. Except instead of seeking out a shady park to watch kids, I went to my granddaughter’s junior-high tennis match.

I sat with her and her team. Granny on the bleachers! I got to tell them about how, back in the day, my friend Connie and I devised our own scoring system: the more bounces, the more points. (It worked for us.) That was their first look of wonder. Like at a museum.

I was overwhelmed by energy, smartphones, sketchbooks, never-ending chatter, good spirits, water bottles, and a desperate search for quarters for popcorn. And by the saintliness of good coaches.

I learned I can confound at least eight junior-high kids at one time by pronouncing it “Annie May” instead of “Anna May.” (“Yes, I know what anime is!” Grandma growled. “But who is Anna May?”) That was their second look of wonder.

I got to use one of my best retorts before an audience: “Well, YOU don’t know what pop-it beads were!” That gets her every time. Their third look of wonder.

In one of my former lives, I taught junior high, and, sitting there amid the cacophony and hormonal mayhem, I was reminded of why I loved that age. They are full of life and imagination and hilarity.

I don’t think my look was one of wonder but rather of gratitude.

There is hope. Lots of it.

 

Connections


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Connections: September 1

getPart (3)Hope is the thing with feathers

wrote the Amherst bard

Mama and Papa Dove concur

it isn’t some canard —

turning the page

isn’t just for spring

sometimes fall

is for beginning.

One year ago, I started Connections as a sort of experiment, partly because of the challenge from my writing mate Tamara and partly from the way my friend Donna uses the word “connection.” Tamara had prodded me to try poetry and photography. At the same time, I was becoming conscious of how Donna used “connect” — I think she herself was unaware of her pattern of reaching out, but “connect” was clear evidence. And thus did two excellent friends shape this experiment.

Then Donna’s husband, Bill, jumped in with photographs. If you have read any of my ancient blog posts, you know that Bill and Donna and I have been friends since high school.  Would we have foretold 50+ years ago that we’d have mixed our imaginations in a blog? Well, maybe.

The experiment has turned into habit. Not because it’s been easy but because it’s been good for me.

I have met my goal of doing this for a year and now I can’t quit. However, I learn from the doves. Some change is in order. As you know, dear reader, I love the fall and look forward to the inwardness of winter. Maybe some prose from time to time? As it says above, “in search of story.” Always.

 

Once again, thanks to the S.W. Berg Photo Archives.

And to Donna and to Tamara.  And to those of you who visit and have connected.