Thursday, March 22, 2018

Finally published - Tucker and the Holocaust Survivor - Poem: The Former First Lady Tries Yoga

View the true story at Literary Yard. Thank you Onkar Sharma of Mumbai India.

Click here.

Onkar always chooses a perfect image.

mika-ruusunen-368862-unsplash  Ed Quinn called to tell me how much he liked the short story. Made him cry at the end.

I wrote it about a year ago and could not find a publisher, including the Jewish Exponent, who kept me waiting for weeks.

Anyhow, I feel great about it and am moving forward.

Wrote a Letter to the Editor to the Inquirer about the great service from SEPTA during the repeated snow falls we've had.

And, Guy P from the Intell and Courier Times said to go ahead and write a guest column in response to the recent school murders.

Freda is reviewing it now.

Here's my morning poem:

From the Geraldine S Dodge Foundation:

Poetry of the Body:
Led by a certified yoga instructor, participants will explore yoga as poetry of the body through a combination of gentle poses, guided meditation, listening to poetry and taking pauses for writing and reflection. Movement and mindfulness will become writing prompts in this special session.


We guide her gently, as she remembers
that husband of hers, yes, she loved him,
would run through the corridors of hell
with him

Was he a winner or loser? The Checkers speech,
the humiliating treatment as VP by his beloved Dwight
D Eisenhower.

Relax, now, Pat, we said, placing our hands gently
on the kinks in her neck, sitting inside loud helicopters
she always thought would crash, her pocketbook
beside her.

China she loved. They treated her with deference.
She slouched in China, watched ballets, operas. As a
kid she loved General Tso Chicken.

That final helicopter ride out of the White House.
"Shave, dammit," she told Tricky Dick before they
boarded the helicopter.

"It's so sad, It's so sad," she said.

My front door had smudge marks on it so I put the cat photo on it plus the white azaleas.

Last night I finished my collage and neighbor Pat K hung it up today, after shoveling w his friends. He selected the space and it looks great.

Push pins.

Helen thought the mini-egg cartons were pill boxes.

I'd guess the mobile took about five hours to make. I walked around a lot, thinking. In the Obama portrait book, there are marvelous shots of him thinking.

I particularly like the huge crab hanging down on one of the jutting-out arms.

The Eagles' emblem.

Just finished reading Obama: An Intimate Portrait by official White House photographer Pete Souza.

Image result for barack obama an intimate portrait

I bought the book on Amazon. Here's Pete's website.

Lunch was a chick pea salad with tangerines, pecans, sunflower seeds, tuna fish, mayo, pepper and paprika.


My sugar is normal now - 111 - so before I go to Scott's I've gotta eat something. How about salted pretzel rods and peanuts?

Got a new book out of the library. Of all the books I'm reading, this is the best!

Great research job, J. Randy Taraborrelli, who's written many other great bios. While reading, I practiced saying his name dozens of times but still can't remember it!

Taraborelli, taraborelli, taraborelli - several names in one. 

Now, in his new book Jackie, Janet & Lee: The Secret Lives of Janet Auchincloss and Her Daughters Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Lee Radziwill, author J. Randy Taraborrelli takes an intimate look at the sisters’ complicated relationship with the shipping magnate, and reveals for the first time what really happened when Lee learned her sister was marrying Onassis five years after John F. Kennedy’s death. Below, publishes an exclusive excerpt.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Scott goes to work early - Newest collage - what shall I name it? - Poem: Two Fingers - The Best Soft Drink of Them All

Scott made an early SEPTA train in case the later trains stopped running.

If he can't get home tomro, he's got plenty of food at work.

I called him up - he'd already left -  and said I was downstairs and listening to the Nightly Biz Report on PBS and did not hear Tyler Mathisen's voice.

Sure enough, he got a new job.

He left on excellent terms with his former colleagues.

Image result for tyler mathisen   
He has a blog and I left a comment.

This is a Nature Collage. "The End of our Natural World" or is that too pessimistic.

Story of the collage. I bought my grandson Max, 4, a huge dinosaur which came in a gorgeous box which of course I saved.

Today, with the snow falling all around, was the perfect day to work on it.

When I went into the kitchen while it was still light, I thought, I'm cocooned by the snow.

 Worked in the living room where the light was good. Turned around so I cast no shadows on my work.

Used calendars I keep for postcards I send to friends.

Tools included scissors and stapler and Scotch Tape, real Scotch Tape.

Used Magic Markers. 

Hold on. Let's see what's on TV.

Something really good on NOVA, up I go.


My imagination flags, thinking of good things
to eat. Healthy things, to keep my body young,
supple, like the way I feel inside. Mary Martin
in green outfit swinging from ropes in Peter Pan.

Will visit Mom later in the day. She loves the
shrimp egg rolls prepared by Helen in the Chinese
kiosk at the Giant.

I hold up two fingers for two egg rolls, not realizing
it's the victory symbol from World War II
or the peace symbol as in Give Peace a Chance.

Folks say the world's no better or worse than
it's always been. Trump's inanities, school shootings,
reversals of sexual assault convictions.

That's me, burying my head on the pillow,
beret snug on my head, thinking about
absolutely nothing.


Coke? Diet Coke? Sprite or Dr Pepper?
You may read something like this in a book:
She brought out a pitcher of lemonade
on a silver tray.

Lemonade's my favorite drink of all.
Since I'm on a weight loss campaign
I drink it without sugar.

I sip it slowly so I can taste the
true taste of lemon.

Try it and see if you don't agree.


When I worked as a therapist at Bristol-Bensalem Human Services I used to drink Diet Dr Pepper.

The place became condos with rocking chairs on the front porches, which are now covered with 7 inches of snow.

View the incorrect info here.

TALENT AFTERNOON at New Directions, 2012.

View it here.

Photo by the late Ron Abrams.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Distribution of Compass - Poem: Happy Easter - Update from Rem at bottom

Picked up 150 copies this morning.

Everything I did this morning was to hurry up for when the snow came down. It began flurrying about an hour ago. Maybe 3 pm.  I quickly deposited my garbage in the compost heap.

Onions, tangerines, egg shells, bananas.

Mark's Buxmont Stationers is next to the post office.

So I mailed out the Compass to far-away people including Harriet whose photo of the Key Largo Florida marina is on the cover. Also Ada, Judy Kroll, Iris Aronson Fuller.

Ed Quinn is here now. He took the two cartons of Compass out of the trunk.

Wrote a poem about my egg breakfast.


When I was a kid
I'd make my Easter Bonnet
out of a paper plate
festooned with Gramma's buttons
and ribbons of all colors -
red, purple, yellow

Jesus was a rebel -
does he wait for us
when we pass? Or is it
just a sweet sad song?

Easter will hit us
on April 1. I'll go
outside, hear the
woodpeckers and crows,
view the tulips,
iris and crocus
and sip on my
tea as I celebrate
the seventh anniversary
of my kidney transplant.

I keep flowers on my ladder in the kitchen.

Yellow orchid and refresher of yellow forsythia.

Ed collects pens. Write with it, he said, you'll see good it feels.

The pen is a replica of a hunting rifle cartridge.

A German family makes the ink cartridges. This, after all, is a ball point pen.

The outside of the pen is made here in America by a metal artist. His work is rare but he's retired now.

Ed submitted several excellent articles.

Ed and I drove his rented Chrysler to Linda Barrett's house to give her the Compass.

 To start the car you press a button. Is it called a fob?
 Linda sprained her ankle.

 The modern 88-yo woman shovels her driveway. I guess she wears an ID badge to show she's not a recent immigrant.
 Okay, here I go, a-snooping.

Red amaryllis.
 Lovely wreath.
Abigail Hughes and mom Maria.

They picked up some Compass. Abigail, on left, wrote an exellent piece called Alternative Therapies.

"We have hardly any blacks," I said, "I promise to remember your name next time." Mom comes from Antigua and daughter has a slight accent.

They were very disappointed to miss Ed's talk tonight on Neuroplasticity.

Ed had a great idea!

We'll do it at one of our Saturday Giant meetings!!!

One of Linda's hobbies is making pillows with old T-shirts. I use a Pennypack Trust cushion, one of about 12 I have on my bed.

What a delicious dinner I had.

Salmon, onions and capers.

The salmon was frozen. I have loads of frozen foods. Fingers crossed the electricity doesn't go off.

One year the late Tony Garofola delivered it. We went to the Motherhouse of Holy Redeemer Church. They invited us to have lunch with them.

A good reason to become a nun. Good food, no money worries, and you can just pretend you're praying.

When I looked up Tony and me driving I did find this other blog entry here.

I'm always trying to think of a catchy way of ending my blog. Tonight at 7:53 pm, it's Enjoy each and every day. You don't know when you'll keel over dead!

Image result for tombstone  Action News said the storm will stall over Philadelphia, possibly giving us over a foot. ABC News reported that this time Philly will get it worse than NYC or Boston. It will be bad tomorrow afternoon. I have to report to work. I want an exit plan from my boss. This time I might want to walk home from Roslyn.--Rem

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Concert at APC

The Sanctuary is lovely! If there were few people yesterday at the library, today the auditorium was filled!

I tried to look nice, tho I forgot my earrings.
B/c of something Joel Fuhrman said, I'm gonna lose weight. A big belly is large on both the outside and inside.

Image result for joel fuhrman
Read first graf of Fuhrman's Wiki bio.

The Cross was draped in purple. Lent? Can you see the arch? It's a brilliant turquoise color. I meditated on the beauty of the church.

Several years ago they closed it for almost two years so New Directions met at St Peter's Episcopal in Glenside.

Pastor Kirby introduced the concert. Took all of 60 seconds and was beautiful. He used the word "hope." Here's the website of the church.

I wanted to leave an 'offering,' but there was nowhere to put it so I left it in the lil box in front of my seat. Finder's keepers.

Changed seats so I could sit with my friends Tom and Fran Bareikis Pulli. She's on FB a lot.

Before the Three Songs came on, the composers and singers discussed the writing process. Quite uninteresting for me.

Was slightly late to the concert. Why? I think it was a tricky left turn I sat thru for about four or five minutes. You can't see the opposing cars and I'm sure not gonna crash and lose a kidney or other precious part of myself.

Gotta figure out anudder way to get there.

When I arrived there were ERRONEOUS signs telling you how to go inside. I met Anne G there. She went in doors she wanted to while I marched in my fabulous boots to the front door and Yes, it was open. 

I sat behind Susan and Gil High whom I met the day before.

Two more minutes till the Cauliflower Pizza Crust is ready at Scott's.

This morning after watching Crossover, a film noir, on TCM, we watch a library movie that was quite good. Only the Brave, with Josh Brolin and Jeff Bridges. Let's find it, shall we?

Despite some cynical reviews, I liked it. Scott caught up on his sleep while it was on.

Okay, pizza-time!

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Poetry and Music Festival at Abington Free Library - Poem: Reading at the Abington Free Library

Got there 20 minutes early and walked all around the parking lot. Luckily I knew about this event. Karen Burnham had sent out email announcements.

 John Sall and Elise Paschen (German surname). I recognized John from Abington Presbyterian Church. He's the choir director. Very tall. In the below pic his wife Ruth stands next to him. They have four girls and the little leprechaun is Ruby, methinks.

Got Ruth's email address as she teaches singing. My former instructor Caitlyn, in Hatboro, moved to my birth state, N C.
I had submitted poems to Misfit magazine. Quickly rejected.  Click here to read Aleppo, scroll down, which he didn't accept. Alan, the editor, asked if I made up the name of the ballerina, Maria Tallchief.

Our poet, Elisa Paschen, is the DAUGHTER of Maria Tallchief. I wrote Alan to tell him.

I actually gasped when Elisa said she was the daughter.

Not terribly many people in the audience. Audrey from our Upper Moreland Library was there, walking with a cane and holding her crash helmet as she walks everywhere. So was someone from our Book Group who would be mortified if I wrote her name.

Oh no! More pretzel rods please. I'll pliee into the kitchen to get them.

 When I first saw Elise, I thought, What a beautiful woman! We chatted briefly when I bought her book The Nightlife.

Many folks bought her book. You always have the poet endorse it. Haven't read it yet but I will later when I'm riding my bike.

Her mother had dementia. She recognized her family, barely, but was not the same person. 

She, her husband, and children live in Chicago. The oldest girl is going to Stanford and her son is still in high school.
 Oh, the white-haired woman introduced herself and her husband to me. Susan and Gil High. We talked about her beautiful white hair. I'll see them both the morrow at 3 pm for the concert.

Just called Nelson, sexton, at APC to urge him to come.

His no. is in my phone book I bought years ago from Myrna.

John and Ruth Sall were discussing other collaborations of lyrics and music.

The last four songs of Richard Strauss. Listen here.  Elisabeth Schwartkopf.

Mahler Kindertotenlieder by Dieter Fischer-Dieskau. Listen here. What a handsome man he was. I vividly remember listening to him on the radio.  Read about Dieter here.

And of course the wonderful Knoxville, Summer of 1915, commissioned by the singer Eleanor Steber, lyrics by James Agee.

Listen to Knoxville here.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna write a poem about today's event. It's 8:32 pm and I'll turn on some music.


Elise was beautiful
her long blonde hair
Indian-long, though
I had no idea she was
the daughter of Maria Tallchief.

When I learned, I gasped.
Right here in Abington,
Pennsylvania. Her mother
had danced with everyone,
Rudy Nureyev - what a lovely
name and body - Baryshnikov -
these Russians have danced
their way through Gingerbread
Forests, arising like
nightingales from the earth
and pirouetting toward the heavens.

She cried when she read
about her mother, entangled
in the web of dementia,
and her elderly dad with
gnarled hands, O Lord
what becomes of us
as we age?

Elise's smile was huge
a neverending smile
radiating across the
yellow room and up
the stairs and into
the parking lot where
she banished the cold
and the piles of snow,
the daughter of the dancer
we can watch tonight
Maria Tallchief, dancing
on a moonbeam. 

Image result for maria tallchief

Pedestrian Bridge in Miami is the city's latest tragedy - Poem: Collapse

   Collapse on Thursday, March 15, 2018

From the Times:  An engineer reported cracks on a newly installed pedestrian bridge two days before it collapsed on a busy roadway here, killing at least six people, state officials said on Friday.
The report, by the lead engineer with the company in charge of the bridge’s design, was made in a voice mail message left for a Florida Department of Transportation employee. That employee was out of the office, however, and did not receive it until Friday, a day after the collapse.

The cracking was on the north end of the span but the company did not consider it a safety concern, according to a recording of the message released by the Transportation Department.

“We’ve taken a look at it and, uh, obviously some repairs or whatever will have to be done, but from a safety perspective we don’t see that there’s any issue there so we’re not concerned about it from that perspective,” said the engineer, W. Denney Pate. “Although obviously the cracking is not good and something’s going to have to be, you know, done to repair that.”

The transportation department said on Friday that “the responsibility to identify and address life-safety issues and properly communicate them is the sole responsibility of the F.I.U. design-build team,” referring to Florida International University, which commissioned the bridge.
Continue reading the main story
In a statement, Figg Bridge Engineers, which designed the bridge, said that it was “heartbroken by the loss of life and injuries” and was “carefully examining the steps that our team has taken in the interest of our overarching concern for public safety.”

“The evaluation was based on the best available information at that time and indicated that there were no safety issues,” the statement said. “It is important that the agencies responsible for investigating this devastating situation are given the appropriate time in order to accurately identify what factors led to the accident during construction.”
Earlier on Friday, the authorities in Miami-Dade County announced that they had called off the search for survivors. Officials were now turning their attention to finding out exactly why the new bridge — hailed as a breakthrough in speedy, safe construction — had given way over the road beneath, killing at least half a dozen people and sending 10 more to hospitals.

From The Sun Sentinel in Miami - The bridge was put in place Saturday and was to be completed in 2019. It crossed Southwest Eighth Street and was intended to be a safe passageway for students and connect the school’s campus to the city of Sweetwater to the north.

State and federal investigators began Friday to figure out why the span failed.
The university was open Friday. A main entrance to campus was closed because traffic along Southwest Eighth Street between Southwest 107th Avenue to Southwest 117th Avenue will be detoured indefinitely.

“The people of South Florida have been through a lot, obviously, over the last several weeks, ” National Transportation Safety Board chairman Robert Sumwalt III said Friday, referring to the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, when 17 were killed and 17 wounded. “And this is just yet one more tragedy to add to that sad book.”

A “go team” of specialists, including experts in civil engineering and materials science from NTSB will study the failed project. He expects the NTSB team to work on the scene for five to seven days. Investigators from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration were also working at the fallen bridge.

“Our entire purpose is to find out what happened so we can keep it from happening again,” Sumwalt said.

Authorities declined to address reports about whether the bridge had undergone testing before the Thursday afternoon collapse.

Ever read The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder?




The screams echoed in my ears.
Help! Help! Help!
I'm falling. I'm falling.

In the blink of an eye
I got ready to meet my maker
Steering my red Toyota
ridiculously back and forth

A million thoughts buzzed
through my brain. The inmates
who made the plates, did I turn
the dishwasher off? How would
I look when they found me?

Quickly I felt to see if I'd
worn both aquamarine earrings.

Broken collarbone, they said
at the hospital, the one where
Colin and Amanda Lee
were born.

Was it my fault? Had I done
something to anger the gods?
Was my Toyota too heavy?

Thy will be done.

How'd you like to have your work published for free and not by a vanity press

Image result for snyder pretzel rods

Yes, I was munching Pretzel Rods as I submitted.

Welcome to Bareback Press.

I submitted a no. of poems and short fiction.

Also told the editor he or she could hear my poetry on You Tube here

Be sure to listen, Dear Reader. Pay no attention to my wild hairdo. 

How did I find this? I always study where people have published their work.

Am listening to the below from my red couch. 

Celebrate the new generation of Doo Wop performers as the original legends reunite to pass the torch. Performers include Kenny Vance & the Planotones, The Duprees, The Whiptones, Charlie Thomas' Drifters, The Modern Gentlemen and many more.

View The Modern Gentlemen on YouTube here

Channel 12, of course. Biking while watching. My butt really hurts on my bike so I'm trying something new.

Next time I'll sit on a thick towel.

Wanna write a poem about looking out the bathroom window.


Shut the lights with a click
Stand on tiptoes and watch
the goings-on of the heavenly bodies
in the darkness.

So many tiny pinpricks dot
the sky. Connect the dots
and you'll have the constellations
the ancient seafarers watched by night.

Stephen Hawking left the earth
yesterday, only 76. What a fight
he put up. Loved teaching folks
about the cosmos. He left his mark.

O hoary, ancient universe, that
created every little thing
from buttons to bunnies
to coffee cups to me's and you's

Let's pray that the lord above
knows what he's doing.

Image result for lord whimsy wikipedia