Saturday, July 31, 2010

Project 365 – Week Thirty-One

Sunday, July 25th
On Sunday Dr. M & I went on the ramble that inspired this poem. As I mentioned in that post I'll write (or coerce Dr. M to write) about the events that took place in Mechanicsburg before the Civil War. For now I'll just share a couple of more pictures from that day. This is a store downtown. I found the name quite hilarious for some reason, so I had to share.

Dr. M & I were trying to figure out what need a lazy man had of a place to rest – seems redundant, doesn't it?

Monday, July 26th
On Monday some people came & dug a hole in our yard. I think it had something to do with our gas valve & those OK "signs" from last week.

Tuesday, July 27th
On Tuesday Dr. M captured this beautiful butterfly.

And then we actually had a cardinal sighting!

Wednesday, July 28th
On Wednesday I got a picture of this bathing beauty – Martha Goose in her summer bikini.

And then Dr. M went out in the evening & saw this little frog – you probably can't tell from the picture but it's just a baby – too cute!

Thursday, July 29th
On Thursday I got a picture of the Topsy Turvy tomato plant in all its glory – it's out of control! And the tomatoes it produces have been great.

I don't know why I'm so fascinated by the life cycle of the daisy. This is one toward the end of the cycle. I find a strange beauty in it for some reason.

Friday, July 30th

On Friday we drove down to NC. We took a number of pictures on the way down & then a ton at Daddy's house. I had a hard time deciding which ones to use! Here is a picture of my dad - yet another Watering Man.

And here is one of their night blooming flowers - I think it looks pretty interesting all drawn up like this.

Saturday, July 31st

Today we went to visit Dr. M's mom in the nursing home. It's his parents' anniversary - we think they're 57th. We had a nice visit.

And here is another flower shot from Daddy & Amy's yard - the clemetis climbing on his carport.

Go here to see the blogs of all the other Project 365 participants.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Farewell and an Explanation

Does that sound ominous enough? Sheesh! Once again I find myself writing a post after 100 days of poetry. Oh I exaggerate. Just a bit. But does the poem that wasn't part of a meme count? I guess it does - sorry!

Well, you'll be safe from poetry & other assorted memes for a few days at least - Dr. M & I are headed to NC on Friday to visit the family (it's his parents' wedding anniversary). We're coming back next Tuesday. I may or may not post while we're gone - depends on how rude I think I can get away with being. Heh. Ooh – maybe I'll get Daddy to write the Wordzzle!

Senior Picture

I wanted to talk a little bit about the poem from yesterday. When I was a senior in college I took a January mini course which involved a trip to the Over-the-Rhine area of Cincinnati (little did I know then that I would be working in Cincinnati 11 years later). We were visiting the "inner city" and helping with various projects - cleaning out apartments, working in soup kitchens, and helping with the Free Store Food Bank. I kept a journal as part of the class & mostly wrote poems. Yesterday's poem was about my experience of working intake at the Free Store. One of the workers was telling a mother to make her baby shut up. My 21 year old idealistic self was aghast.

So I just wrote what I was feeling.

Some of the other poems from that journal may show up elsewhere on the interwebs in the next few days. I'll definitely point you in the right direction if they do. I think that personally I'm done with them for now. I ache for that girl's naïve belief that she could fix the world & that the world wanted to be fixed. I didn't really turn into a real bleeding heart liberal until much later. But in January, in Over-the-Rhine, the seed was planted.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

One Shot Wednesday – Thursday at the Free Store

Thursday at the Free Store
Over-the-Rhine, Cincinnati

"Shut that baby up!"
And the child cries on.
Mary Justevich sings
her raucous song of life
& the child cries.
"The next time you come,
you leave that baby at home."
And in the wounded eyes
of the mother, I see
her cry:

     There's no one there
                 no one there
                         no one.

January 9, 1986

This poem is part of One Stop Poetry's One Shot Wednesday poetry gathering, where all poets are welcome to share. Make the rounds – it will no doubt be fascinating!

Monday, July 26, 2010

A Sunday Ramble With Melancholy Consequences

Dr. M & I explored the town of Mechanicsburg on Sunday afternoon. He was working on an Underground Railroad project for his university – taking drive-by pictures of significant sites. There was an important and compelling event that happened in Mechanicsburg in 1857, but I think I'll tell that story another day (or better yet, have Dr. M write a guest post!).

While we were driving around we stopped by Maple Grove Cemetery. It has been in use for a very long time. There were lots of graves from the 19th century, including graves of black soldiers from the civil war. I don't know the age of the marker below, but it was probably sometime in the 1800s. For reasons unknown to me, I needed its picture - the story in this stone just pulls at me.

Click on the picture if you aren't able to read the marker

Willie Died in the Morning

Willie died in the morning
Tiny loved not here
For long

I don't know when
I don't know why
But I know gone

Willie died in the morning
and his stone breaks
my heart

Magpie #24

That dream – if I stay quite still
Just another while
Can I conjure it at will
Or is it lost to that file

Of things that reappear
Like snatches of old songs
With all those nightmare fears
That linger twice as long

As that phantom lover's kiss?
I feel it drift away
Ephemeral as mist,
Fleeting as my wedding day.

One lovely afternoon
Out of almost twenty years.
One shuttle pass on the loom
Weaving our joy and tears.

You lie by my side
In your own dream world
Perhaps I'll let my dreams bide
And steal one of yours.

To participate in Magpie Tales, or to read other entries (you won't be sorry!), just click here.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Poetry Bus - Land of Confusion

Today's poetry bus is being driven by the fabulous Niamh – or rather, apparently, her dog (who needs a walker, by the way – any takers?). She asked us to write about CONFUSION. And while I have been confused many times in my life, I know that my college years were particularly fraught with "what in the world is going on!" thoughts. I was a romantic late bloomer & had all those teen angst things happening at the same time I was trying to learn about Corporate Finance and Cost Accounting. An odd time in my life to say the least.

Not that I remember whether or not this poem was about romance. It could have been about my college roommate (KJ do you remember if I was upset with you in February of 1986?). It's interesting reading all these very emotional poems from an over 25 year distance – who knows what was really going on then? Anyway, enough blather – here you go!


Excuse me while
I withdraw
in confusion.
I seem to have made
a small error
in judgment.
I thought I knew you.
I thought I knew me.

Where the rain
hits the window
my view
is distorted.
Vibrant colors
The world is
washed deep.
I am washed

February 4, 1986

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Weekly Wordzzle - The Meh Edition

I almost didn't participate in the Wordzzle this week – I was VERY unhappy with my effort for the 10-word challenge. But since I suffered writing it I decided to make you suffer too. Heh. Besides it's poking fun at a good friend (it's not a true story, but it could happen. Really!).

Words for the mini challenge: plastic, forgotten, make-shift, happy days, infant

Oh those not
forgotten days
Happy days of
Infant enthusiasm
Wide open world
Wide open wide open
And now, I am in a
Plastic frame of mind
Fluid and make-shift
Wondering when that
Wide open world
Closed its doors
Closed those
wide open

Words for the 10-word challenge are: super duper, think first and act later, jump rope, soap opera, delivery, barbeque, jewelry, on sale, justification, figure of speech

The Bug was singing along to the oldies station, "Super duper, lights are gonna find me…" Or was it super trouper? She had never really been sure. Half remembered arguments about song lyrics danced in her head. She had long since decided that it didn't matter – did "revved up like a deuce" make any more sense than "wrapped up like a douche?" What the heck was The Boss talking about anyway? Humph.

She was still contemplating the mysteries of the Heard Word when the doorbell rang, causing her to jump up in startled surprise. She wasn't expecting a delivery – the jewelry she had ordered (on sale!) off of Home Shopping Network wouldn't be here until next week.

Realizing it was just her best friend Kim, she opened the door saying "You scared me nearly to death!" She said "I must have! You look terrible!"

"Well, gee thanks," said the Bug ruefully, "it was just a figure of speech for heaven's sake!"

Pleasantries over, they started talking about this and that. Kim mentioned a new workout she had heard about at their local Y – Jump Rope to the Music of Mozart. It sounded a lot more interesting than watching a soap opera from the treadmill. Then they discussed the new barbeque restaurant in town & wondered if the proprietor would frown if they brought their own sauce in. There just was no justification for not having Carolina barbeque sauce as one of the choices!

Then, finally, Kim started talking about why she had come over. "I saw a show about how we should all act first and think later and I just had to run right over to see what you thought about it!"

The Bug just started laughing. "Kim, I saw that show too – it was saying that you should think first and act later! I guess you don't have that concept down just yet, do you?"

Kim started howling with laughter. She chortled, "Wait till I tell Nathan about my latest blonde moment!"

Please go to Raven's blog to read the other Wordzzle participants. And join in – it can be addictive!

Project 365 – Week Thirty

 Sunday, July 18th
On Sunday Dr. M & I went to our church picnic. It was held at the home of a couple from the church. We had such a great time! It was so relaxing. Some folks fished & others played scrabble, but Dr. M & I just relaxed and talked to people. After he grilled our chicken - & burgers & brats & mets for some of the others.

Monday, July 19th
It's time for the Tax Time Pig again! Except that today s/he's the Karate Pig.

 Tuesday, July 20th
On Tuesday Dr. M got some pictures of hummingbirds enjoying our yard.

Wednesday, July 21st
On Wednesday I took a picture of our newest wildflower – it's going to be fairly spectacular once all its buds bloom.

And I took a picture of myself in my new reading glasses. You can read all about that trauma here.

Thursday, July 22nd
On Thursday I took some pictures of our garden, & the Watering Man. He seems to enjoy his work, doesn't he?

I was glad to see that The Bug household is twice ok! I think this has to do with our natural gas valve, but maybe they just really like us!

Friday, July 23rd
Yesterday I took another picture of the Watering Man in action. And I received a lovely surprise – but those pictures are for tomorrow.

Saturday, July 24th
Today I took some pictures of an extra special gift I received in the mail yesterday from my friend Kim. She's a quilter & she made two bags to send to far-off friends. I was so honored to be one of the recipients.

I especially like the Rumi quote she put on the outside pocket. You can see it on the detail picture, but just in case, here are the words:

You Are as You Are

You do not resemble anyone.
You are not the bride or the groom.

You do not fit in a house with anyone.
You have left the closed-in corner
where you lived. Domestic animals
get ridden to work. Not you.

You are as you are,
an indescribable message
on the air.

Go here to see the blogs of all the other Project 365 participants.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Making a Spectacle of Myself

I forgot my audio book this morning, so on my way to work I found myself talking to other drivers again. I told the 18-Wheeler behind me that it was my “bounden duty” to slow him down. We were both going 5 miles over the speed limit at the time. My friends and family will be amused by this story because I have a lead foot, but we were on a two-lane road – he did not need to be going faster than 60 MPH! As far as my gas pedal is concerned my foot IS made of lead. Snow, fog, rain – these do not slow me down (unless I’m behind some craven creature who wants to be “safe”). I’m not crazy – I do take the road condition and speed limit into consideration. Somewhat. Really.

Anyway, this post isn’t about my driving (in)abilities. I just decided to pop on here right quick & show off my new readers. I’m no Velma, but I think they’re kind of cute.

Please note – I took this picture myself last night & apparently I have short arms. So, yes, I realize my nostrils are the size of moon craters. And I realize that I took the picture at the end of the day when any semblance of makeup had long since disappeared. One eye does have the remnants of some green liner. And boy do I need to get cozy with a pair of tweezers! But, obviously I don’t care since I’m sharing the picture anyway. Look at the glasses people – not the face!

P.S. I didn't get a haircut - it's just pulled back. Does that answer all your questions?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

One Shot Wednesday - School Lessons

School Lessons

That brash New Girl.
I let her see my paper.
She copied all those
100% correct answers.
And then…
She cracked, confessed
and threw me under the bus
(not that we knew what that was then).
Protecting her, my 6th grade self said,
"No ma'am I didn't cheat,"
and made a Zero.
So now I hoard my knowledge
like my mother did with
her minutes of my time.

This poem is part of One Stop Poetry's One Shot Wednesday poetry gathering, where all poets are welcome to share. Make the rounds – it will no doubt be fascinating!

Rest in Peace Barry

April 3, 1943 to July 20, 2010

His wit, his compassion, his love for Linda and Lindsay, his way of taking an ordinary day and making it an adventure - these drew me in and made me want to stay awhile. I may never have met him in real life, but I will miss him tremendously.

Rest in peace Barry.

Rest in peace.

Let light perpetual shine upon Barry. May his soul and the souls of all the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

Monday, July 19, 2010



  1. A vague feeling of bodily discomfort, as at the beginning of an illness.
  2. A general sense of depression or unease.
Yep, that's it. I know I'm a hypochondriac, but I'm pretty sure that malaise describes my condition perfectly. I can think of several causes for this current bout of the blahs – some of which meet both definitions.
  1. I've lost my house key again. Shh – don't tell Dr. M. I thought I had fixed the problem with my key ring structure, but apparently not. Sigh. Hopefully it's at work like it was the last time I lost it. UPDATE: My key WAS at the office - someone found it in the parking lot. I've attached it to the car key so that shouldn't happen again.
  2. I did not do well on my PYMWYMI challenge (pimwimmy!) today. I know – it's just one day, get back on the horse, or the wagon, or with the program, yada yada yada. I think my problem is that I'm missing the point of Amy's challenge – I am supposed to be grateful that I can do these healthy things and help other people. I'm missing the gratefulness portion of the program.
  3. I ordered my first pair of reading glasses on Friday. I discussed that to death here. But I'm actually kind of excited because when I was a kid I would pick out what I thought were cute glasses (it was the 70s people – I worked with what I had) but then they put the coke bottles in & the cuteness disappeared. These lenses shouldn't be as thick should they? I'm hoping… I will certainly post a picture of me reading something in my new glasses.
  4. My Magpie poem from Sunday apparently had depths that were too murky for most folks. I was writing about the American Indian addiction to alcohol, as well as my addiction to chocolate. I do tend to expect people to jump into my brain when they read my poems. Yeah, that sounds scary to me too!
  5. And last, but not least, I have to go to the dentist tomorrow. I gots a cavity. Yes, I revert to 4 years old when I have to get a filling. I'm not sure I've ever not had a traumatic experience getting a cavity filled – and I have LOTS of metal in my mouth so I have lots of experience with the trauma. I floss. I brush. What is the deal here? Anyway, that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach is me trying not to hyperventilate. I don't have such a phobia that I don't go to my twice yearly exams, but it's a near thing. I'm doing this for YOU Daddy – hope you appreciate it! Heh. Well, & there's that small matter of it hurting when I eat. Hey – maybe this is the answer to Pymwymi! UPDATE: I'm back from the dentist. He had to give me THREE shots before I was sufficiently numb (finding out you're not numb when he starts drilling is NO FUN). But it's done now.
I'm pretty sure that all will be well in about 24 hours. But if you guys could send soothing vibes at around 12:30 tomorrow I would appreciate it.

I'm pretty sure I'm 3, not 4, in this picture, but I think it's exactly how I feel about having a cavity. Heh.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Magpie Tales #23

Fire water filled that hole
in their hearts
the way chocolate
ignites mine.

Did they drink
to forget that
pale rape
of Eden?

Do I savor
this dark manna
to forget that
I am not here?

What can extinguish
the demons in the water
and the chocolate?
Pull the pin and see.

To participate in Magpie Tales, or to read other entries (you won't be sorry!), just click here.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Project 365 – Week Twenty-Nine

Before we get to the pictures I'd like to say HAPPY ANNIVERSARY to Daddy & Amy! I think they're still at the beach, so I'm kind of feeling a little jealous right now, but I hope they're celebrating in style.

Sunday, July 11th
On Sunday I went over to our neighbor's yard before church so I could catch the cypress vine with its blossoms open (they close up around midday & don't open again until the next morning). K has trained it up around one of his hummingbird feeders. It's like a Christmas tree in July!

Monday, July 12th
On Monday Dr. M took a picture of a cloud formation that intrigued him. I love the cornfield against the sky with the clouds.

Tuesday, July 13th
On Tuesday Dr. M was roaming around the neighbor's yard again (they had been gone & he had been watering their plants). He took some pictures of their flowers.

And he caught a couple of hummingbirds at one of their feeders. They had a fight (which of course he couldn't catch because they are too fast). Then the green one came back to claim the feeder again. I think they have at least three different feeders, but they seem to like this particular one - & apparently hummingbirds don't understand "share" LOL

Wednesday, July 14th
On Wednesday Dr. M saw another deer. I love how it looks like the deer & the squirrel are talking to each other. "Are you lookin' at me?"

And then he stopped to get a picture of this corner in our town – it makes me smile every time I drive past it.

Thursday, July 15th
On Thursday Dr. M took saw this plane in the sky. I like the picture because isn't the sky just gorgeous? Dr. M of course liked the plane – a Civil Air Patrol plane.

When I got home from work I went over to the neighbor's house & took a picture of some of their hen & chickens – I think these plants are so fascinating!

Friday, July 16th
Dr. M got a picture of a grasshopper on one of our squash leaves. We're a little concerned about the mold on the squash & cucumber plants – the watering man is trying to leave them alone to dry out.

Here is what our regular tomatoes look like right now.

Saturday, July 17th
Today Dr. M wandered around just taking random pictures from our yard. There's one of the grape tomatoes (some of them are looking pinkish), the regular tomato plants, a customer at the bird bath, a volunteer flower in our front bed (possibly from the wildflower seed packet – just a late bloomer?), another squash leaf visitor, and another cypress vine flower.

Go here to see the blogs of all the other Project 365 participants.

2024 Project 365 – Week Twenty-three

As I had hoped, this week was a bit less chaotic – I worked a lot of hours, but they were orderly and I made headway on some of the tasks on...