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Monthly Archives: September 2019

Always behind her, friendzoned. Damned alphabet.

(A Six-Word Memoir for one of their monthly contests entitled “Really Good / Really Bad Love Stories”.)

Perhaps the Principal was simply anal: every teacher at my high school arranged their students alphabetically . . . as if to break my heart.

For four years I sat behind the same girl, our last names spelled close enough to ward off any interesting interlopers. I got to know her voice, her laughter, her odd quirks, her moods, her smile that got prettier every year. She enjoyed my attentions, laughed at my guarded hints, even teased me about it; but despite how well we got along, her head would only turn for the boys in class. Our last names kept us in close proximity class after class, despite my need to move on to allay the pressure in my chest. Year after year I watched boys come and go, hurting her the way I never would, watching her not learn from their mistakes. By graduation, even my mother knew her name, shocked when I pointed her out. I always seemed too shy to aim so high.

That day the pain subsided and life went on as if nothing had ever happened. Then, many years later, we fell across each other online. She’d married badly and was unhappily stuck. She was just as pretty as I remembered her and I said so. She teased me like old times, and for a moment I wondered if she might have had second thoughts about us…

Broken hearts can haunt us forever.

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2019 in Blog, Memoir

 

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A Long Wide Stretch of Calm

No, this is not a Six-Word Memoir, but a celebration of my awesomely talented friend, Melanie Green, who just published another collection of her gorgeous poetry.

Through daily life challenges that might feel like a battle for many of us, Melanie has somehow found an overflowing of peace, cheerfulness and a sense of gentleness that she generously shares with everyone around her. Her poems are a lovely contemplative journey, a respite from the stress of the world, an invitation to enjoy the peace waiting for you beneath the surface.

In A Long, Wide Stretch of Calm, Melanie Green establishes herself as an astute observer and reverent appreciator of worlds within and without. With the ease/ of non-striving (“Revelatory”), she explores the momentarily unshackled/ now (“An Unconfined Astronomy”) of birds, flowers, trees, lakes, galaxies, and a human body that can overdo into illness/ and fatigue (“Blessing for Self-Kindness”).

Haiku-like in their intensity of language, Zen-like in their meditative quality, these lyrical poems invite us to pause, catch our breaths, and marvel at a poet who invites us to Feel/ the psalm/ of lingering/ calm/ in afternoon’s/ echo of light (“The Luster of Silence”).

—Carolyn Martin, author of The Way a Woman Knows
and A Penchant for Masquerades

I heartily invite and recommend her poetry to everyone. If you enjoy it enough to want more, I invite you to get in touch or comment here, for there may just be copies of her previously published books available.

 
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Posted by on September 8, 2019 in Poetry, Review

 

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Mom waitressing. Kids home alone. Whatever.

(A Six-Word Memoir for their monthly contest entitled “Old-School Nostalgia in just Six Words”.)

Growing up in the 70s, with a recently-divorced mom trying to fend for four pre-teen kids (and adopted stray cats), we would come home from school, or not, and have the house to ourselves. Now they make movies about a child left in a house alone (Gasp!), as if it’s a thing. Somehow we survived. We didn’t burn down the place, or poison ourselves, or decapitate each other by accident, although I once put a rusty nail through my hand digging in someone’s back yard. Back when it was okay to be somewhere in the neighborhood playing until sunset, without a worry or a cellphone. At dinnertime, the sound of adult voices calling kids’ names echoing over the block. It makes you wonder what has happened to America that there are so many dangers we have to keep our kids safe from now. I wonder, is this called progress?

 
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Posted by on September 3, 2019 in Blog