Monday, May 25, 2015

Scent memory

I love the fine fragrance of lilacs and lily of the valley
Roses' olfactory charms famously abound.
But for me, there is no scent sweeter
Than the tang that wafts on the breeze over a salt marsh
On a soft and summery morning.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Forgiveness

Been thinking a lot about forgiveness these days. "Tis the season for me, Mother's Day, my mom's birthday, my parents' anniversary, Father's Day, my dad's birthday, all pile up.  These are all harder now, with both of them gone.  No house to go to.  No calls to make.  So I've been thinking about forgiveness.  Mostly for myself.

Other people are easy to forgive.  My parents weren't perfect, but they tried.  Most of their parenting mistakes were mistakes of love, holding too tight, pushing too hard for their point of view.  Knowing they were right and wanting to protect me from my own stupidity.  Those sorts of things are easy to forgive, all you need is time and distance.

Forgiving oneself is harder.  Especially forgiving oneself of the casual cruelty of being a child.  The number of times I rolled my eyes and gritted my teeth over family visits.  (Because I didn't know how few I'd get.)  The amount of energy I expended on stupid arguments, really truly stupid arguments.  The pain I caused by my lack of attention.  Remembering those moments is what keeps me up at night.

Or did.  These days, I'm trying to go easier on myself.  Trying to forgive myself for having been a child, with all the attendant childishness and selfishness.  And most of the time I find, I can.  I can allow myself the same breaks and understanding I give my parents and my kids.

I think this is what happens when you grow up.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

False Spring

This weather, this false spring always sets off my wanderlust.

All I want to do is to climb on the back of a motorcycle and drive south until we find a cowboy bar where I can dance and do body shots off his neck.

But we don't have a motorcycle, or any tequila most likely.

We have salt and I might be able to scare up a salvageable lemon from the bottom of the fruit drawer, but there is really no point without the tequila.

This weather, this false spring always sets off my wanderlust.

The cowboy bar me still feels so much more authentic than the grown-up face I wear around my suburban town.  Fifty-one, but in my head I’m half that.

May as well blame the weather.  

It will be warm soon and the need to run away will dissipate.

But this weather, this false spring always sets off my wanderlust.


Friday, February 27, 2015

Other people's dreams are boring

Yes I know there is nothing more deadly dull than listening to someone tell you about the dream they had last night, but I think this one was really funny, so bear with me.   Or don't - go read some important blog, mine is about silly nonsense.

Last night I dreamt I was with a bunch of friends at some sort of large party when suddenly we came upon a sign adverting upcoming events at the venue we were at.  One of the upcoming events was Victoria Jackson Sings.  I took a large Sharpie and wrote NO! across the whole thing, even though all my friends said there were cameras around and I would get in trouble.  I felt very brave.  Then suddenly (as dreams do) we were in chairs around a large circle, just hanging out and the friends were complimenting me on my bravery, and I said "Oh you guys are the best!"  and then I heard, "No, love, you are." and turned around to see who was talking and it was KEITH FUCKING RICHARDS!!!!!! and I answered, (and I quote) "Gak."  like Bill the Cat.  Not a single word would come out.  He just smiled, as he is probably used to this sort of reaction, as he is Keith Fucking Richards.  And for the remainder of the dream,  I continued to only be able to make sounds, "gak, splurge, bah" and the like. Christie was seated directly to his right, and could only look at me and shake her head. I was simultaneously happy Keith thought I was cool and sad I could not tell him so. The end.

And that is my silly nonsense for the day.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Brian Williams, Bill O'Reilly and the rest of us

OK, so the latest wrinkle in the Brian Williams made up shit about being shot at in war zones "scandal"  is that while expressing outrage that anyone could do such a thing, it was brought to Bill O'Reilly's attention that he's done the same thing.  (Iraq Falklands, potato, potato)  Spoiler alert - Bill was not pleased.  But the real spoiler alert here is - people lie.

People lie all the time.  About things big and small.  Usually to put themselves in a better or at least a more interesting light.  Sometimes to make other people feel better.  Does it matter if the giant guy at the coffee shop doesn't really give Betty in accounting a free coffee once a week because he thinks she's cute?  Does it matter if the guy who backed down from a confrontation with David at the bar when no one else was around to see it wasn't really a Marine?  Does it matter if Jan doesn't really like your new hairdo? No, no, and no.  And it doesn't matter to me that famous people make self-aggrandizing stuff up either.  Now if they are making stuff up and saying it is actual news, that's another matter, but making up stuff about their lives?  Meh - I don't care.

What I do care very much about though is that these stories stay at the top of my feed, and at the top of everyone's mind, because my novel is all about the truths and lie we tell others and ourselves, and I want people to stay interested.  And that, my friends, is no lie.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

and occasionally, a poem

Tree Service
Lonely park bench
sits.
Silently missing
his recently cut down
friend.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Things I Did Today to Put Off Writing

Last week I started a new class at Sarah Lawrence.  I got into the Advanced Novel Writing Workshop at the Writing Institute at Sadie Lou (yay! go me!) and as such I once again have homework.  

Here is the list of things I did today to avoid doing it:

  1.  Three loads of laundry (not exactly fair because the laundry needed to be done)
  2.  One trip to the grocery store (didn't have to be done today, but had to be done)
  3.  Applied for a new A & P card at the grocery store (in my defense, I've been putting this off for months)
  4.  Cleaned out the crafts cabinet (needed index cards for my homework)
  5.  Tested all my pens to see which ones worked (needed to be done sometime)
  6.  Organized the apps on my phone (yeah, I've got nothing)
  7.  Checked facebook a zillion times to see what everyone else was doing (go Pats!)
  8.  Blogged a list

One of my assignments is to sit down and write about my main character's greatest childhood fear.  Piece of cake.  That one I could do with my eyes closed.  But, the other assignment is to begin a "reverse outline."  Writing down a synopsis of the action in each chapter and which characters appear.  Did I mention I'd rather gnaw off my own arm?  Class isn't until Thursday at 6:30.  I might have to go back to the crafts cabinet to make a chart so I know how many of the eight ounce glasses of water I'm supposed to be drinking a day I actually manage to drink before I can sit down to it. (9 is my lucky number)