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Passions in Poetry

serenity's interactive journal

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serenity blaze
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125 posted 03-06-2004 10:20 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Kari?



One voice, ONE...makes a sound.

TWO is harmony.

Sunshine
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126 posted 03-06-2004 12:54 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

quote:
It reminded me of one of those stories one marries into.


Oh, those stories.  

Those are totally different stories…

My first father-in-law was known by and large as “Blondie”.  Seems he didn’t like his first name, Roland.  His middle name, Archibald, well…that didn’t suit him either.  He was a short, genial gnome of a guy, and a wonderful grandpa to his 12 grandchildren from three of his six kids.  His newly married son who took me as a wife wouldn’t give him his 13th grandchild for a couple of years.  

As I recall, it was just before I was pregnant that I learned of his penchant for fried brains.  Now, this “city” girl had moved from California to Illinois.  Oh, I had lived “in the country” a couple of times, not nearly long enough, and so I really wasn’t a “big city” gal, nor a country gal, but our town was about the size [by the time I left] of the town my ex moved me to, and my first taste of real Midwestern life was not nearly like what I had experienced when my mom and dad had taken me to South Dakota, dad’s stomping grounds.

No, this little town was a few miles south of Chicago, but had very distinct feelings about “outsiders”.  Quite frankly?  I never felt welcome, outside of the in-laws.  And even though the family had lived there for a couple of decades, they were “outsiders” too, having moved in from other areas.  I won’t name the town.  It’s bad enough that I had to live there as long as I did.

Anyway, back to Blondie.  He was quite the character.  We’d all be at the dinner table and some of us had enough on the first helpings of whatever great meal Mom had fixed.  Some even went back for seconds.  Blondie, however, he would keep eating until every bowl or plate was cleaned off.  Literally.  Mom would gripe about how he ate too much.  I suggested once that I’d bet he would quit eating if she removed the plates and bowls.  She looked at me as if I were crazy.  But she tried it.  And he never noticed.  He even lost weight after that!



Back to the fried brains.  Now, I knew where this delicacy came from, and the best of them came from a good old pig.  Blondie always said cows thought to much while they chewed their cud, so their brains were a bit more tough.  He liked his brains fried, as I mentioned above, and it always resembled a pinkish sort of scrambled eggs that had been breaded before frying.  My first thought was, “I don’t know….” and then the encouragement would begin, so I tried.  With enough salt and pepper, anything is palatable…

But it was after I was pregnant that I could actually handle the brains and prepare them, so Blondie made sure that every Sunday morning, we were invited to breakfast, so I could help Mom and take over the fried brains department.  He thought he was being kind and said I had a good handle on just when to turn them.  What he didn’t realize, was, that hurt Mom’s feelings.  But he never noticed, and just kept on eating those fried brains.

It was before the baby was born that Mom and Dad moved to Florida for their health.  They promised to come back up after their 13th grandchild was born.  And they did, when she was six months old.  It was June, and I hadn’t fixed brains since they had moved away.  We lived in their house, as a rental, so I went and made sure we had enough pints of brains for when they arrived the coming weekend.  As I handled them in the supermarket, I felt a bit squeamish.

And when they arrived, and Mom and I started breakfast that Sunday, I learned I couldn’t handle the fixing of brains.  Strange that I could before I had the baby, but not now.  Maybe that was a good thing, as Mom took over, and fixed them for Dad, and handled them “just so”, and he was quite happy.

Which was a good thing, because two days later, he died.  It was quick and the family all flocked in even faster.  Brothers and sisters and cousins and grandchildren filled the small house, and I found it very strange that my ex and I were supposed to feed and house them all with no help, pocket-book wise.  Arrangements were made even quicker, as I remember, and there would be two funeral services.  One there, where they had lived for a couple of decades, and then the funeral service in Florida, where they had started their “new” lives.  

As quickly as the house had filled up, after the service, it was quietly empty.  All of the brothers, sisters, and assorted family members left for Florida.  I was left behind with the baby, and a house full of fragrant funeral flowers, as Mom asked that I keep them alive as long as possible.  

When I went to the refrigerator later that night, in it was one left-over pint of pig brains that no one had bothered to prepare.  For some reason, I couldn’t seem to pitch them out.  So, I held my queasy thoughts steady, fixed them, and ate dinner in his honor, with thoughts about the number 13, and Dad’s joy in welcoming at least one more grandchild into his life.


serenity blaze
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127 posted 03-06-2004 02:00 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

"Never underestimate the ability of fried brains."

So sayeth serenity.



nakdthoughts
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Between the Lines


128 posted 03-06-2004 03:11 PM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

that story fried my brains....yukkkkkkkk
  nope  couldn't get me to eat nor fix them..bad enough I ate tongue until I saw what it looked like before  sliced....all those little taste buds sticking  up on the edges...


*shivering here*

M

Nightshade
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129 posted 03-06-2004 08:29 PM       View Profile for Nightshade   Email Nightshade   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nightshade's Home Page   View IP for Nightshade

What do brains taste like?

I would love to get in on sharing stories....but my own brains feel a little like they have been marinated in whatever brains are marinated in.....if they are marinated...yeeesh!

But you all go on. I am enjoying this.
serenity blaze
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130 posted 03-06-2004 10:45 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Chris? When you're up to it, please join in. Nancy too. You two just crack me up!

and I believe I'll try to turn in early tonight...

I believe I'll try--sigh, not sure about sleep.

and Kari? Thanks so much for keeping company with this--someday I'll tell you why that was important to me the past week.

Sunshine
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131 posted 03-06-2004 11:23 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

If I can recall, brains tasted, to me, like a very light fluffy oyster, scrambled.  The trick was to keep the outside from getting too dark, and making sure the inside got "done".  It was REALLY good if you put small bits on buttered toast points...

Hmmm.  Maybe I have this queasy thing in control  May BE I will be looking in the stores tomorrow...

And Ser?  If it helped?  Good.  If there's a story behind it?  GREAT!
Mysteria
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132 posted 03-07-2004 03:53 AM       View Profile for Mysteria   Email Mysteria   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Mysteria

Okay I have stuck with you all the way in this wonderfully fascinating journal thus far, but if you keep up this talk about eating brains, you have to find an icon to warn me okay?  Yuck! Actually, make that a double yuck! I think this one might just do the job quite nicely.

Sunshine
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133 posted 03-07-2004 01:12 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

No more about brains, fried or otherwise!

Re-reading through the thread, beginning on page one, and your loss of draweses…reminded me of my one vacation in N’Awlins…that, and I happened to watch Runaway Jury yesterday, but it got me to thinking on how much of your area I missed, and of whom I missed [even though I didn’t know you all that well that long ago…I’ve something to look forward to on a return trip…]

I came to New Orlean’s on Christmas Eve of 1999.  I’d only been at Pip for six months, but it was already engrained in me, and I was now looking at people, places, things, with a totally new outlook.  I knew I always looked through rose-colored glasses, ergo, felt I had a poetic soul, but now I felt like I had an audience, and wanted to capture things to write of.  I didn’t know you were in this fair city, so I didn’t know to look you up.  And I was only there for four days, and I imagine four days with you also certainly wouldn’t be enough time [as I think on it now].  

It was when we first landed that I wondered if we would find a place to eat, because it dawned on me, most places DO close up for Christmas Eve.  

[Oh by the way, Serene One, I had a rocker just like yours…and I miss it.]

Anyway…New Orleans is [or seemed to be] very quiet on Christmas Eve.  I know, because we walked up and down a few streets in search of a restaurant, and there were very few people walking.  I don’t remember the name, because I didn’t have my note pad with me, but it was a little restaurant in the French Quarter, tucked away quaintly behind what seemed to be a protective wall.  We had a choice of eating inside or outside, and dumb us, we almost did not choose outside.  Lucky us, we did.  I had never seen “outdoor” heaters…

And Christmas Day…well now.  There was a treat.  Again, we trotted around the French Quarter and I was surprised at the number of shops open on that day.  No real destiny in mind, we rambled in and out of shops and cafes, and I remember that the days were “just right” and the nights were…packed.

I enjoyed what I saw of your town.  I left a lot undiscovered.  I’m coming back, someday soon.


Michelle_loves_Mike
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134 posted 03-07-2004 02:20 PM       View Profile for Michelle_loves_Mike   Email Michelle_loves_Mike   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Michelle_loves_Mike

hey,,,,,,,thats what I was going to say!
LOL
Michelle

I wish all could find the true happiness I have found,,in the eyes of Mike

Nightshade
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135 posted 03-07-2004 02:28 PM       View Profile for Nightshade   Email Nightshade   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nightshade's Home Page   View IP for Nightshade

Gee....I just had a vivid memory!
It was I think 1981 and I had been split from my first husband for over a year. Went out to a dance club with some friends and met a bearded man from Missouri(did I spell that correctly?)...ummm....anyway, he wore overalls with one shoulder unhooked and was a big man. Like a mountain man really, and he made me laugh which felt oh, so good in that lonely time in my life. I had never ever been alone till then now that I think about it. Anyway to make a long story short, we got together and became an item per say. He was living in a motel that rented by the week - but believe me - I DID NOT go out there. So, time passes, my daughter who was only 12 then, gets to like him too, and then he suddenly up and leaves! He had this southern drawl that curled my toes, and looked at me and said "Gotta get fixin' to make tracks Little Bit." Ha ha haa that's what he called me - "little bit." Hmmmm...where was I ? Oh, yes, so he left.
   A week goes by and I get a phone call around 3 a.m. from....you guessed it..."him"..and where was he? NEW ORLEANS!!
   He was "missin'" me and had to let me hear what he was listening to on the radio. "She's a One Man Woman In Love With A Two Timin' Man." It was Mardi Gras and he was "havin" himself a time." I wanted to be there soooo much. Ahhh yes...takes me back it does whenever I hear the words Mardi Gras or New Orleans.....or like now....everytime Karen posts!!! But, don't worry Ser, I still luv ya!
   Whatever happened to him you ask? Well, months later a knock came to the door, my daughter answered it and came running to me yelling "John's back Mom!" There he was, Man Mountain Dean in all his glory. "Wantin' to make it all up" to me he did. My answer?
   "Ya better get a fixin' to mosey on."
    I was otherwise engaged. An Italian had entered my life with eyes so blue you could feel the chill to your bones....but that's another story. Hope I didn't bore anybody or take up space with this, but I had to let it out on this dreary Sunday. Hugs All !!
serenity blaze
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136 posted 03-07-2004 05:43 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

gleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

I'm not exactly in a position to swap ex-boyfriend stories, but you can look for them in my poetry--they are the ones marked with my "it's all fiction" disclaimer.

And yes, New Orleans...shaking my head again.

How to describe her?

I told the Cap once that seeing New Orleans is a bit like meeting a friend's eccentric elderly aunt, only to discover that she is actually your friend's uncle.

She's a city in drag, but with an inner grace and finesse that can't be acquired by mere means of donning the vintage gown.

I live about five, maybe ten minutes away now, but I seldom venture there. Something permeates my soul there, and it's a bit like letting a dog out of the gate. (I tend to run.)

Maybe it's just geography--the smell of mud and mildew that makes the people here celebrate decay. It does get into your soul, and maybe it's the steam of our summers here that encourages that lack of ambition--the very laziness of the natives here which branded her as "the city that care forgot"--or more famously, "The Big Easy."

We are below sea level here, and they like to comment that New Orleans is like a "saucer". I think the better definition would be a cauldron. Because this city is nothing if not bewitching.

I wish I'd taken more pictures when I was bounding through her streets, but I was so immersed in life that I didn't think to photograph it. I was young and it doesn't occur to the young that life is fleeting.

I spent the past couple of days looking for some photographs of the college I stumbled into a couple of decades back. I didn't find any in my albums or boxes, but I did find online, this photo of the Henry Buckner house that was once known as Soule College.

Before you take a peek at it, you should understand something else about me--I love houses. Architecture makes me wet.

Talk Ionic and Corinthian columns to me baby!
Greek Revival? YEAH--GIVE IT TO ME!!!

With that in mind, take a peek at this photo of this refurbished mansion where I spent my days trying to remember how to remember the alphabet by way of a typewriter keyboard:
http://www.vacationrentalsonline.com/vr/la/no/lano12/lano12.htm

Even in the state of near disrepair that I found this house in, I took one look at this place and I was in love. I didn't care what fate waited for me within those walls--I just knew I wanted to go there everyday. I wanted my feet to walk those marble floors, and my hand to caress the banister that lined the stairs. There was a hand-crank intercom system in the classeroom and the desks had holes for inkwells. The ceilings went up to heaven, and I remember wishing I had wings so I could touch the crown molding and ornamental finial touches that graced them.

I don't remember a word the Dean said to me during that initial interview--I was too busy looking around.

I was home.
Sunshine
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137 posted 03-07-2004 06:22 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Oh YEA!  A sis with Hamburger budget, but prime rib tastes...
Sunshine
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138 posted 03-07-2004 06:23 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

CHRIS????  I'm going to get you to remember something else, I can feel it in my bones!  [And I have very old bones!!!]
Nightshade
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139 posted 03-07-2004 09:01 PM       View Profile for Nightshade   Email Nightshade   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nightshade's Home Page   View IP for Nightshade

Oh, my gosh Karen!! What a beautiful place!! Makes me want to cry out "No Miss Scarlett, I ain't no good at birthin' babies!"
  Really though....I LOVE old houses too. Once my husband and I were at a small town just half an hour out of our city, and went for a look-see in an ancient estate home. The room that took my breath away was the main room with floor to ceiling - wall to wall mirror. It must have been filled with anyone who was anyone, back in the day, waltzing to a string quartet. Suddenly I felt myself wanting to twirl in front of that mirror and I told my hubby so. He looked at me with raised eyebrows as did the lady showing us the place. I just simply said, "I feel like I could dance and twirl here......or I have..."  So I did.
  I also love verandas. Porch swings. Tiffany lamps(which I finally bought one of for myself), and vintage clothing. I know, as I have told Karilea before.....I have been here before. Not here in Ontario, Canada as such....just here.
  By the way, Karen? You write incredibly. Your description of New Orleans makes me want to pack a bag tonight and take off!! I just love this. Sharing of lives is such a treat. Soul to soul.
  Oh, before I go....in that house you could also tour upstairs as well. I got up the stairs, looked in the lovely first bedroom decorated from the past and sighed.....got a few feet from the back bedroom and froze. Not sure what happened there back in the time, but it wasn't good. At least, that's what I felt.
  Thanks again for letting me share. Yes, yes, Karilea, I will remember more. So much has been locked up tight, but I can feel the chains loosening.
serenity blaze
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140 posted 03-07-2004 09:05 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Keep in mind that this was supposed to be a punishment.

"Nobody is going to cart you back and forth."

(er...they never had before, but anyhoo)

"You'll take the city bus and transfer to the streetcar."

The STREETCAR??? I LOVED the streetcar!

My joy wasn't even diminished by my lack of reception by the staff of Soule.

This was an "old school" business college"--they actually taught me how to sit for chrissakes. A combination of practicality and lessons in how to marry the boss. I was put in my place immediately too.

They took one look at my bloodshot eyes, blue jeans and free flowing hair and I was told:

"If this school wasn't in financial straits? You wouldn't be allowed to mop the floor. You, my deah, simply don't have the pedigree."

"Woof." But that was just a thought that I kept to myself--as I stated previously, I wanted this.

They looked us over and I was given over to a timid-looking typing teacher, who placed me in the middle of the class and told me "type."

"I don't know how," I said.

She was a teacher at heart though, and she patiently pointed out the finger placement chart to me, and opened my book for me, placing it in the bookrest for me.

"fff jjj fff jjj fff jjj"

I was incredulous, but I did that, and then that bell rang. Not a buzzer, but a hand cranked bell.

"Miss Hood?" She said, not even looking up, "Please stay after class so I can speak to you."

Uh-oh.

What now?

(Did I type "ffj" instead of "fff"? I had, but that wasn't what she wanted to discuss.)

After the others had gone on to the shorthand/Business English class, she discreetly closed the door.

"We need to talk about your appearance."

(We do?)

"Miss Hood? You look unkempt."

I was not completely without a clue. I'd just gotten home at 4:30 the previous morning, having been out all night, still working with the band.

I was unkempt.

I told her I didn't see the point of wearing a suit to hop buses and streetcars to come sit in a dying mansion to type "fff jjj".

"Well," she said, "We have a reputation here at Soule. We only 'turn out' the finest and most gracious of graduates--in fact, we've a waiting list of job opportunites based on that reputation. We foster a business atmosphere and you are required to dress accordingly."

OH.

"What do you suggest?" I asked.

"A simple business suit," she answered.

"And what might that be?" I asked, quite honestly curious.

She sighed.

"A skirt, a blouse, a matching jacket?"

She looked pained.

"Look at the other girls," she suggested, "and dress as they do."

"Let me see..." I replied. "Soule prides themselves on 'turning out' outstanding graduates and yet they aren't supposed to stand out?"

"Yes!" She looked at me like I'd "gotten" it.

Oh.

"I can't wear skirts," I replied. "It's a medical condition."

"Really?" This "timid" woman was showing some steel. "Just what might that be?" (Was she mocking me?)

"Contact dermititis." I said. "My legs are not only ugly, but the condition is contagious. If you like, I'll bring a note from my physician, but I'd like to consult my attorney first."

The line in the sand had been drawn. She knew I was full of it, but didn't dare call me on the bluff.

"Buy a pantsuit."

She sniffed at me.

"I don't care if you wear it everyday as long as it is clean. And? Do something with your hair."

I smiled and gathered my books, and proceeded to the door.

"You're excused." she added pointedly.

Oh, the race was on...


Nightshade
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141 posted 03-07-2004 09:14 PM       View Profile for Nightshade   Email Nightshade   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nightshade's Home Page   View IP for Nightshade

Ha ha haaaaa......Karen you crack me up!!
Pant suits!! ROFL ..... I remember them!
Sunshine
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142 posted 03-07-2004 09:47 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Pantsuits were really ugly things.  So were Farrah Face Me hairdos.

But, I tried.

Who really has been named Farrah since?

Anyway….

I was still in the process of self-education and learning when my high school teacher said… “this is for you,” and gave me the letter inviting me to send in a “resume” [at 16?] and high school transcript to the Business and Professional Women’s Association.  [Mom’s going to die…she said I was doing nothing more than trying to get clerical work!]

Excited? For a minute.

Then, I thought, OK girl….this is what is expected.

I still failed.

Well, for a while I thought I failed myself.  Yes, I won a scholarship…a $25.00 savings bond.   Wow.

When it matured, I paid bills.  Then the first marriage was done.  The second marriage [another tale] took place.

Somewhere in my soul, I knew I wanted to make things right.  Late in life [age 29, really seems old, right?] I entered the legal field.  I’ve been here ever since.  Have I made things “right”?  Well, yes, sir, I wanted to be Della Street.  I wanted to work for a trial attorney.  But…given the circumstances, perimeters, conditions, LIFE…kids, grandkids, etc., I didn’t go for the glory.  I went [am still going] for the paycheck and all of its security… what color is DUMB…?

And what color, is practical?

[where do I go for a name change?]

To side-step some obvious, y’all may be wondering now, what the heck is she up to?  Not much.  A novel to clean up.  Facts to face.  How can she publish anything, knowing what she knows?  Such are the questions I deal with, every day.

And life….goes on.  With, or without.  No difference here.  But, somehow, someone makes a difference every day, no matter what big, or little, thing they do.

I keep thinking, that little voice?  Makes for a hell of a big roar…down the pike.
Susan Caldwell
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143 posted 03-07-2004 10:52 PM       View Profile for Susan Caldwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Susan Caldwell

hmmm..I feel warm and comfortable reading these stories..

And it's a lonely night...I forgot how hard that is..to be lonely.  

Thank you, lovely ladies, for reading bedtime stories to me tonight..

serenity blaze
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144 posted 03-09-2004 06:13 AM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

I keep coming back to this thread, reading and feeding on the memory of that time. I'm transfixed by the picture of the Buckner Mansion. I stare and touch the screen, thinking, "well lady, look at you now." I read my own words and I see mistakes that I made, I understand now how I vandalized myself.

But as I'm looking at the newly painted columns I see hope for me, too.

(I have a Pygmalion complex, yanno.)

The truth is, I would not have loved this "house" as much if I'd found it in this grand state. The thing I fell in love with was not the elegance and perfection of what you all see now--I fell in love with the potential of redemption. (I am, afterall, just a flowergirl, with dreams of tiara and grace.) I secretly yearned then to be made over--teach me--I ached to be presented to the queen.

("I warshed me face and 'ands a'fore Oy caim, Oy did," said Eliza Doolittle.)

    

I felt at home in the womb of that estate because she was shabby too. I felt like maybe I could be grand, if someone gave me just a chance--and I was willing to work for it, but...I needed to keep a piece of me too. I needed to keep my 'bones' and I would not be bulldozed to be made over. I had to retain my foundation in order to be a success. I needed to be able to keep the original woodworks of me, because if I didn't? It would have been an acknowledgment that I was born "wrong"--that I didn't have the "pedigree."

I wish the janitor hadn't said that to me.

I wish more that it hadn't slapped me like truth.


So I compromised on the clothing--I bought a denim pantsuit.    

I put my hair in a ponytail, and removed some of the tourquoise jewelry I was fond of then.

Then I just went to work.

I was damned determined that those people would not discount me. And wonder of all wonders, I made some friends too.

Sort of.


They all looked like stewardesses to me. They wore those skirts and blazers, with the mandatory "clown" bow-ties flopping under their chins. I pretended disdain, but I was actually mystified:

"How come that stuff didn't look right on me?"

But I found my own style, and eventually, a few joined me on the steps at lunchtime. We'd sit on the side of the Corinthian columns pictured in the last photo of that vacation ad you may have seen. I never ate lunch m'self--food and sunshine didn't mix for me then, and I still have trouble to this day eating before evening hours. So I'd buy a soda and chain-smoke, while they ate those nasty tuna sandwiches or what-not. I always felt punished during lunch.

It was on those steps that I met "Pan-Am."

"Pan-Am" was actually two girls, but I thought of them as one--a siamese-twin flight attendant. They wore the required blue blazered suits with floppy stuffed animal bows; and yes, their names were Pam and Ann, respectively. Thus, (nod) "Pan-Am." (That little trick of memory is the only reason I remember their names at all.)

They were nice enough virgins though, so we became lunch mates, sitting there on the steps, staring out into the manicured side lawn of Soule Business College. There was a small sculpture garden there, with one choice piece of modern art that I loved. I would gaze at it as I smoked, listening to them talk tales between tuna bites and crackers. I was lonely during this time--I missed the art and vibrancy of U.N.O. then and that sculpture stood there as a reminder to me that I'd screwed up an opportunity--I'd willingly relinquished a part of me; and that bent piece of iron and steel stood there for me, like a relentless accusation.

"What do you suppose that is?" "Pan" asked "Am" one afternoon.

"Am" just shrugged and nibbled her soggy fish sandwich.

"It just looks so ancient..." "Pan" said.

oh dear...

"It is" I stated, blowing smoke. "What you ladies see before you is a replica of an ancient Babylonian altar, once dedicated to the goddess 'Tai-pee-rah-teur'."

I smiled and looked at them with confidence.

"She was considered to be the manifest keys of language, and only wild boars were considered for sacrifice." OH I was just warming up. "See that fluted piece of metal, the one that flows upward with no apparent destination? That was to receive the blessings of her holy spirit."

They stopped chewing long enough to let their jaws drop. I was amazed at the synchronicity of them too.

"How do you know this stuff?" "Pan" asked.

I shrugged and hid a smile, but "Am" noticed and narrowed her eyes.

"Wait a minute..."

She was suspicious.

"Tai-pee-rah-teur?"

"Tai-pee-rah-teur???

She was indignant.

"Typewriter!"

I giggled.

"Oh you!" "Am" swatted me, fairly annoyed.

*   *    *

Smile.

I kept myself amused.





Nightshade
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145 posted 03-09-2004 10:32 AM       View Profile for Nightshade   Email Nightshade   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nightshade's Home Page   View IP for Nightshade

So....did the tuna-twins accept you?
What a beautiful, grand old place to go for schooling of any kind.
  I never got to go any further than high school, and never got to complete my final senior year. But, my highschool was the first one ever built here in my city, and I loved every second there. It's age old grace remains still to-day, with a bit of modern add-ons. Whenever I drive by it, I see past the new front entrance and remember the grand steps and heavy oak doors that greeted you almost ominously. I hated having to leave, but a marriage altar and baby girl were too quickly approaching and my life would change big time. Still in all, my memories of four years there are plentiful.
  I will share some highschool stories with you sometime if you like. But,,for heaven's sake girlfriend......go on with your journal! I am sick with a darn cold and still I had to come to my puter and check in here. Tell me more - it's like chicken soup as I get well again.
Sunshine
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Member Caelestus
since 06-25-99
Posts 67715
Listening to every heart


146 posted 03-09-2004 10:39 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

quote:
I felt at home in the womb of that estate because she was shabby too.

There are substantive moments in one’s memory that we are slung back to for a sharp “remember!?” which then slings us back to now.

The sense of “you don’t belong here” spoke to me in voices rumbling from the foothills of the valley in which I drew the sun into my breast; the ocean waves crashed with a cacophonous breach when I, beached with thoughts of reaching out, felt the languishing hunger of not recognizing what called me.

Worse, I feared the difference.

And the difference was me.  

So I walled my flowers well, and being a slip of a girl, beiged my way into elder conversations, listening, listening, smiling, nodding, understanding even when the world of words slipped over my head; still, I sponged it up with a thirst, sometimes recognizing vinegar words, sometimes hearing their silent, unspoken words, “I can’t tell it all, but I can tell you this,” and the speaker refrained from pulling all of their own shadows into light.

So many do not understand the concept, “shy”.  Speak up, they say; don’t you have a voice?  Cat got your tongue?  Even as wild and witty retorts took form, they never fully congealed until after the fact; but, oh yes, I had a tongue.  Although, so many babbled effortlessly, that the question arose in my heart, what was really one more voice in a din when all of these someones truly needed but an ear to hear what they were really saying?

So, for that part of my youth, I listened.  True, most of it was nothing more than babble [babel] and even I knew that [“she’s really an old soul”, I would hear grandmother portray to mom, with a flight of her hands in a gesture of expansiveness] so much of it was to be discarded.  As I listened more intently, to hear when this or that person’s heart was crying out, and sometimes, yes, sometimes, I heard too much, and looked at them with such large eyes, that they could not even comprehend that someone could, or would take time, to understand.

I should have been more aware of the red-flag voices.  I fault myself now, and count the failures, of times when turning left, not right, would have been a better road for another.

Yet.  And these are the silver linings: I count on my hand two, and then one taken in; and from them, I count six.  And the numbers will continue, as I heed now voices that are more familiar, albeit more complex in that they tumble forth, as they do, for I have transcended the valleys and broke away from the surf, to find myself in the middle, knowing that I will again scale the mountains, and soak in salt, in the finding of myself.

For in my shabby countenance, where once one viewed an ice princess for her quiet, reticent ways, she has been exalted in their own way of belief, to be as a light everlasting, if only to rid them of their own shadows.
Nightshade
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147 posted 03-09-2004 12:28 PM       View Profile for Nightshade   Email Nightshade   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nightshade's Home Page   View IP for Nightshade

Goodness gracious! Between Serenity's awesome wording and yours Karilea.....I feel like just the bookmark between two pages. Hey..that would be good in a poem....hmmm.  
  How I wish I could word my life stories as beautifully. Oh well.
  Karilea, my sister and I had young lives that were also filled with lines such as "don't speak..listen." But, more often then that was "if only you could smile more on stage." That's what hurt and stayed with me(can't speak for my sister) the most.....always feeling like nothing was ever good enough. We were kids on stage like adults - we did do our best - really we did. So, throughout my life I was always afraid of disappointing people - any people. That's why I am sometimes still hesitant at posting a poem. But, the family here at Passions has been so accepting.
  My sister NancyLee whom I love so dearly, was the mainstay in our act....the magician, the anchor...I was just an accessory in case anything went wrong on stage....the crowd could giggle and "awww" at me in my silly penguin costume and forget the trick that wasn't. Enchantress never told me to smile more. She would hug me and make me feel special, she still does. Oh dear....I have gotten off track and all misty-eyed. Better go make a tea. Please you two....Ser.....Kari...more please?  


Ooops...almost forgot....I was only 5 years old on stage and my sister was 12.....yes...we DID do our best.
vlraynes
Member Rara Avis
since 07-25-2000
Posts 9136
Somewhere... out there...


148 posted 03-09-2004 01:53 PM       View Profile for vlraynes   Email vlraynes   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit vlraynes's Home Page   View IP for vlraynes

I'm here...reading every word... laughing, crying, smiling through tears... and yes... nodding in the understanding of so much of it...

I'm remembering so many things... some of them happy... many of them painful... but memories, none the less...

and yes, Karen... the story is forming... smile...

Story-telling doesn't come so naturally for me as it seems to for you... I envy you that...

I'm always too busy worrying (big surprise...grin) about what everyone else REALLY thinks of me...

Something I learned at a very young age... what people say to your face, isn't necessarily what they'll say ABOUT you, behind your back... so... I stopped telling stories a long time ago... stopped talking much at all, actually... especially in a group...

Somehow, one-on-one always felt a little 'safer'... but even then, I learned not to share the 'real' stuff... doing so always seemed to come back to bite me... so... at the ripe old age of...maybe 10?... I began to master the fine art of internalizing... smile...

But?... I'm learning... I'm trusting... and I'm slowly finding my voice again... and yes... I will be back... smile...

Thank you...
Sunshine
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Member Caelestus
since 06-25-99
Posts 67715
Listening to every heart


149 posted 03-09-2004 02:02 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

quote:
Somehow, one-on-one always felt a little 'safer'...


Vicky...we ARE one on one.  I'm telling stories to Serenity; she's telling stories to the world.  We're just bouncing off each other...

I'm listening.
 
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