Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Will I die of heat stroke? - Poem: Copycat

It didn't occur to me I might die of heat stroke until I was halfway home.

Drove to the Willow Grove Staples at Terwood and Easton. Backing out of my driveway, the ignition made a strange sound. This was about the fourth time it had done dat.

Dave at Staples told me I wouldn't need my Macafee Virus renewed until mid May, 2019.

But that was on my laptop downstairs. Am now typing on my desktop upstairs. Yes, this is where I'll need the new antivirus. We'll have to bring in the whole tower.

Luckily I was wearing sneakers and not a pair of sandals.

Knowing I'd walk home I stopped into Dunkin Donuts, ordered a croissant with butter, sat and choked it down, I was not hungry but didn't wanna go LOW while walking home and pass out on the sidewalk and be taken for a dead mouse, which I did see on my way home.

Stopped at my nephrologist's office and saw him thru the door. Good, I thought, I'll have him sign that damn Kronic Renal Form. I waited 15 minutes and got it.

Off I went down Terwood Road.

Passed Old School Shakes and Burgers

Image result for old school shakes and burgers

Looked ahead of me and there was a long long stretch where I must walk. I was immensely proud of myself. I kept up a steady pace, my backpack with Grand Canyon of PA on my back.

Since I wasn't wearing sunscreen I wore my blue blouse over my tank top.

Was so intent on walking that I didn't even think.

Found a blue jay feather close to home and held it aloft to put in my front window sill.

Then I fetched the bill from Rems Auto, who inspected my car on June 18, 2018 and told them my problem. They'll send someone over to pick up my car keys.

Today's poem


Throwing aside my purple drapes
I saw an ordinary woman
out for her morning walk.

I changed into my shorts
and rhinestone trimmed
tank top,

sneakers whose tread
gives away killers and

off I went. Not a
soul was about, only
the melody of the birds.

As I walked the dimness
of the outdoors began
to brighten up.

When I mounted the Kiernan Myers
Hill, I was bathed in light.
Had Jesus come down to earth
to save us all?

Monday, July 16, 2018

Swimming at Ada and Rich's

Wrote this poem about swimming for Facebook.

I used to attend lectures at Abington Library, which they still have. Richard Tyre, an expert on Robert Frost, would give lectures. Somehow I learned of the suspected murder of his daughter.

Read about it here. Her name was Shelley Tyre.


The breaststroke's my favorite
You can see where you're going

Then Ada told me to do the elementary backstroke
I flipped on my back and felt at peace with the world

As I looked up at the sky a silver shiny plane
flew by, with all them people aboard

Where to? Your choice of a window seat
or an aisle seat.

Do the back crawl, suggested Rich.
My arms, unaccustomed, loved the feel

Water splashed in my face
and I giggled.

Swimming! The best the world
has to offer. Forever and beyond.


Image result for sour orange pie  Our dinner consisted of a big fat hot dog on a toasted bun, slices of fresh veggies - peppers, etc. - Ada's fantastic carrot pudding (get recipe for Mom and Ellen) and Rich's Sour Orange Pie with a dollop of whipped cream on top.

You use a can of frozen orange juice. Remember when that's how we used to make orange juice?

I keep OJ in my fridge in case I go low.

Gonna ride my bike now to keep the Complications away. Yes, I have feelings in all 12 of my toes.

Annual Arts Fest - Part Four

What! It's Monday already!
We often schmooze afterward in the Starbucks Cafe, aka The Beer and Wine Shoppe of the OK Corral. Ellen Rosenberg is with her BF Saint Anthony. Terry Livorsi came late and said our door upstairs was locked. He's in the Recovery Business.... Drug and Alcohol.

Remind me to tell you later that when I first went to Goddard College in Plainfield, VT, I had my first drinks of liquor, other than the Manichevitz Wine on Jewish Holidays.

Here I am again sitting next to Sharon Quinn, who got my name for FB, where I snatched a photo of hubby, Ed Quinn, who took all the photos.

Image may contain: 2 people, people standing, suit, flower, plant and outdoor

And, as Columbo would say, One more thing!

I wanted total audience participation, so I wrote a list of questions to ask the audience. Got the Q idea from Toastmasters.

I did mention I'm a member of Affinity Toastmasters, which meets at the Giant Supermarket every Thursday night from 6 to 8.

Questions included:

... Think about the last expensive item you bought, whether it's a new watch or new stove. What made you buy it?

... I live on a street where nearly everyone has a pet. Anyone here have a pet? Helen Kirschner, who runs our daytime meetings, used to have wabbits!

... Who's a favorite singer of yours, be it Renee Fleming, Joni Mitchell, Judy Collins, or Steely Dan, tho Walt Becker died last year.

... What are you addicted to? Suggestions: Coffee, Facebook, Netflix.

There's so much more to write but my fingers are getting tired and my bed with 15 books is calling me. I'll pick up the Jack Reacher book. Janet Maslin said it's one of the best books of the year. I find it repetitious and very slow going.

But I do have to finish it.

Annual Arts Fest - Part Three

I always bring flowers to our Giant Programs. Hard to see, but on the table behind me, is a vase of a Stoat Beer Bottle with the violet tops of hostas inside.

Can't stand the looks of those tops, but they look great all by their lonesomes.

 Crowd shot:  Linda is sitting next to her mom Jane. Ken Ivins sits next to his wife Dot. Rem, back row, is probably thinking up the next chapter of his Randy Package scenario.

After the program we met downstairs to schmooze in the Starbucks Cafe aka Wine and Beer Shoppe of the OK Corral.

Ellen Rosenberg came with her BF Saint Anthony. Terry Livorsi missed the program. He said the door was locked upstairs, so I lassoed him in, and he spoke a bit about his work as a drug and alcohol counselor. Sharon Quinn took my name to 'friend' me on Facebook.

Annual Arts Fest - Part Two

Here's one of Rem Murphy's poems.

              Your Fancy Coffee Table Book

You’re living it up, dear reader,
I see you’re really enjoying your coffee table book,

There you are, re-visiting the high Sierras,
Courtesy of Ansel Adams,

Pondering the mysteries of ancient Egypt,
With its mastabas and mummies,

Marveling at vintage John Deere tractors,
Nomadic peoples of the Middle East,

Poring over the Great Big Book of Taxidermy,
Gaping at underwater dogs,

Gazing starry-eyed
At Frauen auf Baumen, Women in Trees.

This time, however,
We’re going to turn the tables,

All that fabulous artwork,
All that pinkish sunset scenery,

Vivid enough for the ViewMaster
Your mother threw away,

The hooded Bedouin herding his goats,
The icy black and white photography

Riding the wave of your palm,
Shooting the curl of your fingers,

As they glide, let us say nimble
As a pickpocket’s

Through the thick glossy pages,
Like I said, we’re turning this around,

This time the fancy coffee table book
Is going to look at you.

Look at the nerdy suburbanite,
Exclaims the soaring Douglas fir

Alone atop its mountain ridge,
Look at the lady in curlers, says the goat,

Look at the guy with the five o’clock shadow,
Remarks the woman in the sycamore.


More photos, including some repeats
 Donna Krause read a couple of honest, poignant short stories. Hey, where was her pipe-smoking companion, Denny?
 Oh, c'mon, I can't really be that petite. Next year I'll probably be as small as Thumbelina. Wouldn't it be funny if people kept shrinking until they were as small as a grasshopper.
 Gianni has a nice look about her with blond hair and a flush of pink on her forehead. She showed us a tattoo on her bony chest of roses. Ouch!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Annual Arts Fest - Part One - Held on July 14, 2018 at the Willow Grove Giant Superstore, large room at end of hall - Big thanks for Robin Franklin and Sandie for their help, and in getting us healthy refreshments

 Gianni talks about her anime illustrations. Her wish is to go to Japan to study the art of anime and produce her own films. View anime here.

Gianni and peer counselor, both from Project Transition in Warminster PA.

Below, Bob M read some of his work from our Beehive magazine. Many of our performers are from our Beehive group, which meets at Beatriz Moisset's home in Abington, PA.

Since B couldn't be here due to serious health concerns, we wished her the best.
Ken Ivins combines storytelling with recorded music. Very clever!
Prolific poet Linda Barrett read three poems, including one she composed earlier today. She likes doing fresh work.
Rem Murphy dazzled the audience with his admittedly strange poems. Gianni said she liked the one about UFOs.

I will see Rem on Sunday for New Directions' Lunch Bunch and the Grub Burger. We couldn't go to Burgers and Shakes as it's closed on Sunday.
I made a sculpture on showtime morning. As I walked around our hilly block, I met bushy-bearded Kyle, working overtime on installing sewer pipes on our street. He said it's OK to remove the yellow plastic flags that tell where gas lines are located.

Many jokes about my house now exploding. Hold on. Lemme check if I'm still alive. Yes, pulse is there.
Ruth reads two poems graciously given us by David Subacci, a Facebook friend. One about a

Friday, July 13, 2018

Uber - Terrible medicine for mental illness - Poems: The Importance of a Window Sill - At the Compost Heap

Image result for over the river and into the trees

Figures! I have an opportunity to publish my first novel and can't find the darn thing. Got a new HP Laptop and it's not on there.

Stayed in bed this morning until about 9 as I was deliriously happy reading in bed. Of course in the supine position it's easy to fall back to sleep.

Read Midnight Line, a Jack Reacher book, which Janet Maslin declared one of the best books of the year.

Also read one of the 24 short stories of Haruki Murakami. It was called Nausea. Yes, I felt a little nauseous when reading it.

Let's see what Sartre's Nausea is about.

Google! Here I come!

Image result for sartre nausea
 It's his first book, published in 1938.

Spoke to a woman on the phone I'll call Jean. She called thru the New Directions line. No meds work for her. She's even had TMS.

She's estranged from her family b/c she has a mental illness. Disgraceful.

It took her 8 months to see a psychiatrist who takes Medicare.

She took a med called Rexaulti and ended up nearly dead at the hospital.

This is true! Read about side effects here. Scroll down.


Got a phone call from sister Lynn. Tonight I'm going to New Hope to see a play. At 6 am, while I was asleep, UBER arrived outside my door. Then he drove off. It cost $6.

Lynn said the Uber may come again around 4 but ignore him. She will drive me to New Hope. Am really excited about this night on the town.



Twilight twinkled in my eyes
as I set out 'round the block
garbage cans purty as fine
china in the old widow's window

My sneakers hopscotched down
Cowbell, up Greyhorse, where I
snatched up stray bottles,
paper plates and a smashed
something that lost its shape
and stuck em in open containers.

There! I'm glad I did dat!

A fast-moving jogger and I
waved and there was Sue,
walking sweet Sydney, as
I trotted toward home,
Poland Spring water bottle
in hand.

I found it on a Greyhorse curb
and emptied it into my bird bath
went inside for my gardening gloves
and sprinkled our crops.

Barry Bush, what are those huge
leaves that look like elephant
ears? Kale?

With arf an hour to go, what
shall I do till the Garbage Men


My bright yellow pitcher
I hold by the arm
spills out egg shells,
lemon wheels and cherry pits
Stay here a while, an inner
voice says, on the day when
my father died 38 years ago.
(He could do numbers in his head)
A canopy of leaves grows over Scott's
property. Members of little civilizations
- hundreds! I'd say - buzzed around.
Honeybees, though I couldn't see what
they were drinking.
Dad wished he had been a rabbi. His
favorite was Lelyveld at Fairmount Temple.
I hurried inside to eat a few more
cherries and spit the pits out the
back door.

You can find Arthur Lelyveld here.

Went to the Upper Moreland Library to complain about not liking The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, which I listen to in the kitchen, while preparing meals.

Katie told me the evening group, which read it, offered many different opinions.

I gave it another shot this morning and actually enjoyed it. So I'll keep on listening. I'd told Katie is didn't have any likeable characters.

Actually we just met dictator Rafael Trujillo, a truly horrible person, but he   is    fascinating! So I will carry on.

This informative link talks about the years of the South American dictators.


Monday, July 9, 2018

So long Ray from adult daycare - Thailand soccer team rescue - Poem: Ron cuts to the chase

I dressed in what finery I had - some very fancy trousers I bought at Bloomie's - as I was going to present a poem I'd written to Second Home about saying goodbye to one of our cherished clients.

I asked boss Boris if he'd like a copy. He took it and I never saw it again.


His earthly form will
no longer pass through
the door

Still I will look
pretending he will return

So handsome, so debonair
dressed like a
country gentleman

Remember his neatly tied
saddle shoes?

His crew neck shirts
with the white-pointed
collars jutting out just so

The ribbing he'd take -
and enjoyed - from our
table mate Ken?

Lunches made especially
for him, this special man
who had his own medical practice

I envied his crustless sandwich
of ham and cheese, a bag of
chips on the side

His darling wife Ellie
has moved him to a forever
home, where he will stay
until the angels call him forth

Ray, Ray Schwiebert, 83 years old,
his earthly run was fairly long
but not long enough for a man
who so loved the world.


And, darn it all, Table mate Ken wasn't there, as he's on vaca with his family. And R wasn't there either as he family was on vacation and they sent her to respite care.


My yard looks fantastique! Ron Moran and his sidekick Dan Alexander, mowed down the high shrubs, so tall a mean old witch could've clumb right up to my bedroom window and forced me to give up my first-born child.



Vat else? Scott's off. Cauliflower crust pizza was delicious but I injected too much insulin, he pointed out, and we don't want his Ruthie - c'est moi! - to go low. So I'm munching on - guess?

Snyder's pretzel rods, of course. When I finish writing my progress notes for the adult daycare, I'll go back to his well A/C'd house and we'll watch a film about a Paris train.

Oh! On Facebook, I wrote an imaginary poem about how it might feel to be rescued in the Cave in Thailand. Click here about rescue, wrin an hour ago.

A truck carrying oxygen tanks arrives outside the Tham Luang cave complex, where 12 schoolboys and their soccer coach were trapped inside a flooded cave, in the northern province of Chiang Rai, Thailand, July 8, 2018.
As we know, the first diver ran out of oxygen and perished.

My poem was dissed by a know/all woman, so I erased my poem.

Hmm, how to get it back?

God will provide.


He came three days early
as I dilly-dallied at
the supermarket, their new
asphalt finally as smooth
as butterscotch pudding.

Pretending I was a grownup,
again, I told him how short
I wanted the shrubs. He
introduced me to his pardner
Dan Alexander, who said I can
call him Dan, but I prefer the
entire name, the way you refer
to a Toyota Camry or Prius.

Waiting inside in air-conditioned splendor
watching The Break en francais
on Netflix, I wondered how the shrubs
would look when I emerged from my

It was like a new home. A new yard.
Everything was visible. A green frog
from my sister Donna. A tiny deer
I'd bought on a day trip. The bird
bath where birds come to drink, bathe,
and altercate.

Now, I needn't worry. When the wicked
witch would climb up to my bedroom
window via a stepladder of a vine
she willna find it. I am safe in
my bedroom, drowning in sweat.

Hello Brandi Carlile - Poems - Driving Home from the Party - Eating at the Hatboro Dish - SPLAT published in Mad Swirl

A couple things.

Image result for brandi carlile

Just woke up to the sounds of Brandi Carlile doing THE JOKE. She is good! "Robert Drake is my name," said the announcer. So I ran to my computer and found the official video. Here tis.

Dig the faces in the film.


You're feeling nervous, aren't you, boy?
With your quiet voice and impeccable style
Don't ever let them steal your joy
And your gentle ways, to keep 'em from running wild
They can kick dirt in your face
Dress you down, and tell you that your place
Is in the middle, when they hate the way you shine
I see you tugging on your shirt
Trying to hide inside of it and hide how much it hurts
Let 'em live while they can
Let 'em spin, let 'em scatter in the wind
I have been to the movies, I've seen how it ends
And the joke's on them
You get discouraged, don't you, girl?
It's your brother's world for a while longer
We gotta dance with the devil on a river
To beat the stream
Call it living the dream, call it kicking the ladder
They come to kick dirt in your face
To call

DRIVING HOME FROM THE PARTY (Nicole Deming's 40th)

Vanessa Collier is hollering on XPN
"Sweat like a pig, sing like an angel,"
my hands hard on the wheel
roads are wobbly in these parts
can't figure out why

The long winter's toll and slabs of
asphalt patching up the road
makes us drive like a scary sleighride

A family of five wishes to cross
the street. Mom's got the two-year-old
slung like a watermelon on her hip
Tall dad's looking back and forth
waiting for an opening the way
a ship waits for the drawbridge
to rise up

Three kids trusting their elders
positions they will someday assume
as I float on by like a swan
on a stream.



Walking in a fog of heat and sweat
I opened the heavy door and stepped
right in. The Dish was mobbed. I
pointed to the tables by the window
and sat myself down.

Jen, with a long braid down her back,
looked like an Ingmar Bergman character,
was very solicitous as she poured
me my black coffee, and plopped an ice water
down. With a straw.

A blue-eyed man with a "Gulf of Tonkin"
T-shirt, called women "sweetheart,"
and sat with some croneys, as I thought,
just what I don't wanna think about,
the ruination of a beautiful country.

Just as ours, too, is being ruined.

Quiet, girl, I thought, and open your book.
Ever heard of Peter Orner? Me neither.
Or is it NITHER?

The guy's good. Read fifteen pages before
and after my breakfast, sipping coffee,
quietly, no cream, of course, and a
breakfast of a cheese omelet, taters
with salt n pepper, and some burnt
rye toast.

Loads of fatties there, my blubber
hidden beneath a voluminous dress,
no panties needed, too hot for dat,
coffee, very filling, as I watched
bellies jiggle like vibrato on
Casal's cello

What, honestly, could have been better
than sitting, alone, reading an author
who moved me to laughter in my window


Here's SPLAT just published by Mad Swirl.  Tyler wrote something very nice about the story. If only I can find it.

Mad Greetings, Ruth

Splat! You do have something here, an entire world. Characters with
back stories that perfectly plot the trajectory of your story. That’s
a rare thing in about 1,000 words. We can’t wait to share this madness
with our readers... well as see what other fiction (and poetry!) you send our way.



I saw two shooting stars tonight (yesterday). One while coming home from Scott's. It sailed low on the horizon in the shape of the edge of a pear.

The other I just saw when I took my evening view out the baffroom window. Odd shape, up and down, very bright.

Wrote Grace Gaga, 8, to tell her, and also to say I painted a little bed for her she can use for a doll. Did it at Second Home.


Back to bed now, ladies and gents. The fan be's whirring onto my bod, clad in a brown nightie w white stripes sister Donna gave me. Smells delicious as it's in a drawer with some sort of soap.

Image result for ivory flakes

Just for the heck of it, I flashed my baffroom light on and off, on and off.

Maybe they're looking!