Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Back Then on Halloween

Back Then on Halloween

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

We wore cheap, plastic masks,
cartoon faces with holes for eyes,
held on with a metal-tipped elastic string
that your brother would pull and snap.

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

Suddenly we were transformed
into Casper the Friendly Ghost
or Mickey Mouse or an ugly monster thing
wearing a backwards baseball cap.

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

It was hard to breathe, and we could barely see,
but we couldn't wait to taste the treats 
our costume tricks would bring
after we canvassed the neighborhood lap.

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

We scuffed our way through the leaves,
following the trail of porch lights, 
glowing yellow on our street.

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

Ringing doorbells and knocking on doors,
we traipsed through the shadows,
begging our neighbors for something sweet.

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

After an hour or so we'd make our way back home
lugging our bags full of candy loot.
Mom would have hot cocoa waiting for us,
and we'd be glad to get in from the cold and off our feet.

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

We'd eat Halloween candy for days
trading Tootsie Rolls and bulls-eye caramels
and black and orange peanut butter kisses
for Mary Janes and Bit-o-Honeys.

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

We could hardly believe that all that candy was ours 
just for wearing something silly and saying,
"Trick-or-treat! Trick-or-treat! Trick-or-treat!"

Back then on Halloween,
way back when on Halloween.

One of my neighbors has this cute
scarecrow by their front steps.
Happy Halloween, everyone!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Encore! Encore!

 Encore! Encore!

At first, it seemed like any park--
just like all the others--
with grass and tall trees,

a slide and swings.

A place where little boys might fall
and skin their knees
and be comforted by their mothers.

But then you see the stone wall,
and it makes you think of castles.

And you walk all around
in search of kings and queens and jesters 
wearing jaunty hats with tassels.

But you find no moat,
and no fire-breathing dragons. 
You find no drawbridge
and no horses pulling wagons.

On the other side is a theater
with both seats and stage made of stone.

You long to hear a concert or see a play,
but you realize you're the only one there.
You're by yourself. You're all alone.

So you take center stage 

and recite a scene,
adding a gesture and a dramatic pause--
Your performance is perfect!

Who needs an audience?
The show must go on-- 
with or without applause.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Corn Muffins

Corn Muffins
Golden grape tomatoes 
sliced upon a board
(jewels plucked from the vine).
Added to a Jiffy mix, 
sweet and tender and oh so fine!
Brings back memories of cooking with my Mom
while sitting on a kitchen stool real high.
I miss her ham and soup beans
served with hot, buttered corn bread.
Eaten with a smile and a satisfied sigh.

Max, my constant companion, watches me when I am in the kitchen. 
He is at the ready in case anything falls to the floor!

*I used golden grape tomatoes instead of red cherry tomatoes.  
I also left out the jalapeno pepper.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Parade of One

Parade of One

Fireflies light the way at dusk
for a parade of one,
a lone lady bicyclist
winding her way along the trail through the park.

Black-eyed Susans and Queen Anne's lace,
the official representatives of summer,
firmly rooted in their spots in the judges' booth,
nod and wave at her as she pedals past.

Street lamps stand at attention along the route
lighting up one by one as the sun goes down, 
keeping her safe in the spotlight.

Brightly colored zinnias and golden coreopsis
perch eagerly next to the curb,
like children waiting for candy to be thrown.

Cicadas cling to their front row seats,
in the canopy of trees above.
Their deafening buzz,
a continuous applause.

Like swirling black confetti, 
bats swoop and spin through the air above and in front of her.
They are her own personal secret service, 
winged security dining on the mosquitoes,
so they won't dine on her.

Across the street at the edge of the park,
four deer are grazing in the golden field.
Their tawny sides make them nearly invisible.
They slowly lift their heads and watch 
as she passes by them.

The biggest doe snorts and mutters under her breath,
"You'd think she could oil that squeaky pedal.
She spoils the tranquility every time she rides by here.
Every single time!"

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Roadside Reminder

Update:  Well, you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men.  Things didn't work out for us to buy the house that I posted a picture of here a couple of posts ago.  So we are starting over again with our house hunting.  We are hoping to turn this minor setback into an opportunity to find something we love even more.  Stay tuned!


And now for something completely different!* 

Roadside Reminder

Love Bugs in rainbow colors
in a bizarre roadside tower
(like kindergarten blocks
piled in a precarious stack)
make me wonder 
if some folks-- 
where they should have brains--
instead have rocks!
(and good sense they quite obviously lack).
Then I smile at the whimsy
of these creative folks
(who stack cars by the road like blocks),
and I'm grateful they're around
to make me laugh 
and remind me
that sometimes it does us good 
to approach life from a different angle
and go off on the unbeaten track.

*with a small nod to Monty Python's Flying Circus fans everywhere

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Boxes, Boxes, Everywhere!

Boxes, Boxes, Everywhere!

Boxes, boxes everywhere,
piled in a heap.

Boxes, boxes everywhere,
stacked up chin deep.

Boxes, boxes everywhere,
filled with things we want to keep.

Boxes, boxes everywhere.
I even see them in my sleep!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Exciting News!

My friends, I have some exciting news.  The Williams County Writers Group has published an anthology of work by northwest Ohio area writers. It is a collection of short stories, poetry, and non-fiction contributed by thirty-three area writers. Ten of my poems are included in the anthology! 

The book is called Musings 2013 and is available for purchase through Amazon. Proceeds from the sale of the book will go to the Williams County Writers Group and the Williams County Public Libraries.

I want to say a special thank you to all of you who have been so supportive by visiting and commenting on my blog.  I love the process of writing poems and would write them whether anyone ever read them or not, but I also love hearing from those who have read them.  It is always interesting to learn how others see the words I write and to find out what their perspectives are as to how my poems affect them.

The Williams County Writers Group is holding a book signing at the library this coming Monday.  I'm looking forward to meeting the others who have contributed to this anthology.  I'm sure it will be fun.  I know some of them already, but there are many of them I haven't yet met.  That is a picture of my county's courthouse on the cover of the book.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Dragon Fangs

Dragon Fangs

The albino dragon of winter
swallows the house.
Its glass fangs
hang over the gutters
and windows
glinting in the light,
sharp points dripping
with melted snow saliva,
the jaws of a trap
ready to crash down
on any unsuspecting victim
who chooses to leave
the safety of the house.

The only warning is 
a single drop
of icy venom
that trickles down 
the back of your neck
as you go out the door
making you shiver
head to toe
and side to side.

Quickening your step,
 you feel the frosty breath
of the monster behind you,
and you rush away from the door
and glance over your shoulder,
not wanting to see it,
and yet, 
not being able to look away.

This poem and these photos are especially for my friend Mildred 
who looks forward to seeing the icicles on my house every winter.  :-)