Thursday, December 31, 2009

Montie Jean Poem 1: Microwave

She didn’t want the damn thing. She TOLD Jack
and Leigh, I got no use for that damn thing.
They set it up on the table she kept
potted plants and grocery sacks on, and she
ignored it for two weeks before warming
up some dinner rolls. She pushed start; her heart
fluttered at the sound of the glass cracking.
It’s that twisty-tie, Jack said on the phone.
She has a drawer full of them and ketchup
packets, rubber bands, odd buttons, pencils,
coupons, decks of cards, scissors, dominoes,
her husband’s upper plate with exposed wires,
silver and pink, flat, unused for nine years,
firmly stuck to a package of mustard.

The V-Word!

A friend’s recent Facebook post about considering values to embody, rather than resolutions to make, for the coming year took me on a search. In the search, I found a wonderful list of values, enough for every day of the year, if one is so inclined—everything from abundance to depth to zeal.

The list of 374 values is on Steve Pavlina’s website. Pavlina is known for his work in personal development and his book Personal Development for Smart People. His blog has a great variety of reading material. One is How to Cook Brown Rice, right next to How to Make Money from Your Blog. The list of values is one of the treasures, however.

2nd Hour-Fundamentals of English

Sing in the walls and behind the books.
They have gone through the set
Of encyclopedias, made a nest
In #23 Pumps to Russellville
And eaten their way through
The rest of the set.
They have learned so much
They can’t stop singing about it.
They want us to know about
Poland and how glaciers
melt and the population
Of Leningrad and the parts
Of a chrysanthemum.
All of their knowledge sounds
Like an irritating noise to us,
But to the lone cricket
In the corner of the room,
It is the song of wisdom.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Books Half Written: Books to Write

Since I finished revising this latest manuscript, I have the itch to look at the old pile of them turning yellow in the file cabinet (or worse--perhaps become irretrievable on floppy disks). I did have some good story ideas. Do any of these interest you? Please comment, if so.

Landscape with Chair: About a teenage girl who is into art and painting pictures that always have a different kind of chair in them. She lives in the garage apartment behind her parent's house and has a boyfriend who turns out to be someone who likes to beat up on girls!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Stop Being Boring: Non-Weather Writing Topics

On Facebook right now, there is a group called I Survived the Oklahoma Blizzard of 2009 with 722 members. As I search around for something interesting to read, while I finish my morning coffee, I keep finding posts about the weather. Really. Let's all collectively get over it. It's a boring topic--no matter how exciting the experience of "weatheriness" is.

So . . . what are some little-used, much more interesting topics to write about? Here is my personal wish list, in descending order of no specific order:

Monday, December 28, 2009

Custom-Made Poems for Sale-Cheap (FREE)

In the picture, I am at a storytelling conference writing custom-made poems in a minute. The buyer gives me three words or ideas and I go with it--quickly! Want a poem? Add three words or ideas you would like to see in it in a Comment below, and your poem will appear here--as soon as I see the Comment (well, at least a minute after).

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Poem of the Day: Parallel Parking

Buffy looms under the hosta—grey-striped and almost feral--
as she stalks Cloud. Beyond the garden, the street is empty
until the driver’s ed car coasts toward my house,
stopping beside the neighbor’s red truck
so the student can perform the parallel
park of the evening. She proceeds so slowly
that the cats watching her get bored and spy
a squirrel to chase up the sycamore. The student driver inches
backwards into the space behind the red truck,
so careful, so precise. But the car is too angled,
and she can’t complete it. Her fingers spread in a fan
of exasperation above the wheel. Every weekday evening
around six, another student and teacher come by
in the silver driving school car to attempt the maneuver.
I have found myself cheering them on, reveling in their
successes and almost tearful when the car won’t fit.

*This poem was written when I lived in downtown Bartlesville, in the house in the picture.

The Green Country Greenhouse Experiment

December 27, 2009

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Bug Cemeteries and . . . Imagination

Finding dead bugs was easy.

Acquiring the right size for the coffin was more a challenge. Mom bought the Diamond kitchen-sized box of matches with the red heads as big as the end of your pinkie. Those boxes were only good for mice or a small bird. But those weren’t the creatures I dealt with—they had blood and guts. Bugs, on the other hand, died without mess—dried up, weightless, brittle. A dead bug was easy to ignore. A bug cemetery seemed somehow suitable for them.