Friday, May 29, 2015
in which some bloggers have read and reviewed Reconnaissance.
Here are some of them:
It's been great fun for me to read these positive reviews, and very encouraging, too.
Yesterday afternoon I took some photos and then found the "before" shots on Google.
Gone from the Washington Street Mall:
The Jackson Mountain Café
The Pilot House:
And what a time it was, it was
A time of innocence
A time of confidences
Long ago it must be
I have a photograph
Preserve your memories
They're all that's left you.
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
I also heard a birdsong I didn't know, and searched a long time to see the singer, who was very loud, but hidden behind the leaves. It might have been an Orchard Oriole. I have to look up the bird and listen to the song on the Cornell website.
When I'm not out birding, I'm spending time with the murder mysteries of Susan Hill.
I've read almost all of them at least once; when I say "read," I mean that I have listened to them, unabridged , either borrowed from the library or purchased from audible. Besides the gripping plot and excellent characterizations, her prose , especially her descriptions of the countryside by the fictional English village of Lafferton, is so vivid and elegant.
I should be working on reflection questions for the June 24 retreat, or writing more reflective pieces myself, or writing more poetry, but here I am, just enjoying the views of the ocean, and the picturesque houses and gardens of Cape May, and reading Susan Hill.
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
It's different here for me in Cape May this year. I'm vacationing by myself in the old house on Stockton Avenue, at least for the first five days. Four of my sisters arrive after that, and about twelve more, the day after that.
I feel that I am vacationing with ghosts. I've been coming here for a week at this time of the year since 1986, and have only missed about two or three years. But so many of the women who vacationed with me have died; if they lived, they would be in their hundreds. Around the quiet living room, and on the quiet front porch, I see Margaret D, Denise, Dolores S, Marcella S, Jackie K, Beatrice W, and Maureen B. That's only a few. And of the living, so many can't do the steps anymore. Our declining and aging population really shows itself this year.
Of course, the young and able women are here, but most are still in school, and many live so far away, now that our province stretches from Texas to Massachusetts, that they vacation elsewhere.
But I am still here, and in many ways I am relishing the solitude. I'm out birding a good part of the day, as I was when there was a housefull. But I am an Only Child, and I rarely mind being alone.
I have lived with women who have never been alone in their entire lives. Some of them come from families of ten, and joined the community right after high school, and have lived in community houses with as many as twenty sisters, and they are actually afraid to stay in a house alone.
So I'm reading and writing and birding and listening to books on tape and watching DVD's...
and walking around this beautiful town.
Friday, May 22, 2015
The format is this:
This particular retreat is a Praying with Poetry retreat. They are not writing poetry; they are reading it.
This week I have been working on this. I looked at the Scripture readings for the day of each retreat, and found them rich with possibilities for prayer and reflection. I located a theme for each day, and have gathered poems for each day, from a variety of sources. This has been fun!
I'll share some of the poems on this blog. Here's one:
Thursday, May 21, 2015
The holly bush and the boxwood that the birds planted have expanded to ten times their original size.
The Astilbe, just getting ready to unfold its gorgeous pink feather-like flowers, is squeezed on all sides by lilies of the valley and Ajuga.
It's a battle for territorial control between the Sedum and the lilies of the valley. An Easter lily from years past is also making its appearance, not to mention the weeds. I should learn the name of this weed.
From another angle, one can see the daylilies, hosta, and lamb's ears growing into each other, encroached on the right by lilies of the valley.
Thursday, April 30, 2015
I made it. The quality of these is uneven, but here they are, available for revision.
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
The title of today's poem is "Meet and Just" which is a phrase from the liturgy. But what is
"meet and just" about the troubles in Baltimore I do not see.
Baltimore has been on my mind and in my prayers, but I was having a bad time writing a poem about it. This one came about as a stream of consciousness , play on words piece.
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Monday, April 27, 2015
I woke up this morning and thought to myself: Girl, you are pushing Seventy. How did this happen?
Lately on Facebook I have been hearing from the other kids in my neighborhood from childhood, and those I went to grade school with. Here we all are, senior citizens.
Perhaps that's where this poem originated. I came across the quote from Transtromer, and it really hit me as well:
On my sixty-seventh birthday
- Tomas Transtromer
One previous face, nose wrinkling at
the gluey smooth smell of candy on my hands
in the schoolyard…
Another, at the supper table,
child’s mouth squinching up in disgust
at the sink,
at the feel of fried egg crust
wrapping itself around my fingers,
coffee grounds between my fingers
in the dishwater.
into the bathroom mirror for hours,
worried that the face was too round,
the nose too big.
Fate’s face, fat and funny,
Fine wrinkles around the eyes, cheeks
Pocked with pimple scars,
Oh smooth face, fair as flour, when did you leave me?
Sunday, April 26, 2015
I wrote this one as a prompt for a contest on Allpoetry.com: "Clint Eastwood!" Why else would I be writing about him?!
Saturday, April 25, 2015
Just a short one today:
The form is called a Pensee: