Sunday, February 18, 2018

Poems: When you can't sleep - Something as simple as a walk around the block




WHEN YOU CAN'T SLEEP

What was the last good thing
you watched on Neflix? I came
downstairs, trailing my favorite
blanket, settled on my red couch,
and began a night of film.

I'd see them all.
Jaws, Goodfellas,
Godfather. Chris Rock's new comedy special sucked.

I did like when Chris said, "What if some white
bitch were shot by a black cop and they'd all
be moaning in the middle of the suburban street."

"A Serious Man" came first, overly
long, redolent of Isaac Bashevis Singer
but not half so good, followed by a
British spy drama called Fear, what a
mistake I thought as the beach ran
red with blood.

The kid's name is Nikolas Kruz, filled with
pride for what he did. Loved his killing tools.
Took an Uber to school, pulled the fire alarm
which screwed up the "school-shooter
protocol."

What if, right here, right now,
on our quiet street, a 19-yr-old with a shotgun played cowboy
and Indians, and shot 17 of us down dead.
Blood in the snow.

Took a break between kills. Walked over to
McDonalds, got some salty fries and maybe a
burger or two. No pickles please.
A cop recognized him.

Half hour later he was behind bars.
Nikolas. Cruz. His last name could've
been Tesla. But it wasn't.

***

Spoke to Phyllis Katz, formerly of Goddard College,
this morning. She's married and loves living in
her home in Puerto Rico, where they're still
recovering from the hurricane.

Quelle tragedy!

I have eaten everything in my cupboards in preparation for writing a poem about a former slave - hear that, O Muse! -

 Ate the last of my vegetarian bean soup in my favorite bowl - Goodbye Elinor Schuler goodbye!
Scott's tea roses are doing well.

SOMETHING AS SIMPLE AS
A WALK AROUND THE BLOCK

All over America - oh, say
can you see! - thousands, if
not millions of Americans, say
I'll be right back. Just going
for a walk around the block.
They may pick up a carton of
cigarettes, a gallon of milk,
the newspaper they can roll
under their arm and bring home.

I said nothing to nobody and
struck out, winged sneakers
on my feet like a Valkyrie,
walked down the street, avoiding
the puddles, the disgusting
garbage on the side of the street,
rounded the bend to Sleighride
and with a huff and a puff
marched up this high slope,
oh don't you worry, not one
of them Olympic slopes in
Korea.

And pride mounting
as I neared the summit
then trotted downward
and burst into my house.

The slo-cooker was making
chili for me. Vegetarian.
With everything in it,
especially those Udon
noodles I can't get
enough of. Which lovely
dish shall I serve it in?
Helene's. The blue thatch
pattern I snatched from
her house before she
left for the old ladies home.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Mmm Good, This Earl Gray Tea

DON'T MIND IF I DO, MR GREY

How delightful it is sitting on the veranda
here in Calabria, Italy, the warm temp is
simply divine, this tea has a flavor as sweet
as the songbirds flitting all about.

Scuse me as I take another sip, pinkie lifted
in this fine blue cup. Amazing how the Oil of
Bergamat makes it safely throughout the world,
do they drink Earl Grey at the Pyongyang Olympics
where the wind often blows skiiers off course?

Ah, time for me to start my day. Won't you join me
here at my yellow house? I'll put the tea kettle on.

***

Just came home from eating at the COLONIAL QUY BAU restaurant.

Image result for colonial buy restaurant willow grove
My sister Lynn picked me up. I said even tho Mandarin Garden is closing, let's go somewhere else.

We both loved it. Kelly was our waitress. She wore dogtags around her neck to remind her of her late father.

Then she insisted we go to the Willow Grove mall.

Off we went!

Neither of us have been there in ages. First thing we saw was a gelato place.

I had a Raspberry Cheesecake Gelato, Lynn had a Carrot and Orange atop a chocolato.

We walked around the mall for exercise, me wearing my Chinese slippers.

Lynn is currently under the influence of the late great Louise Hay, who can be heard on YouTube. She listens in the car.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Official portraits of Michele Obama and Barack Obama - Unique Valentine Card

In the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC, here are two unusual and modern portraits of the former First Lady and the former President of the U.S.

Image result for barack and michelle official portraits


Image result for michelle obama official portrait      The portrait artists are award-winning African-American artists.

View here.

Here's a poem I wrote this morning before leaving for my Monday Volunteer Job at Adult Daycare on York Road.

FRONT DOOR OPEN

The dead autumn leaves are racing each other
up the street, the backpacked school kids have
left to pursue the world of eraserboards
and laptops, and I am listening to Billy Hart
on drums in the kitchen, an Ethan Iverson leftover
(he's on there, too)

Awaiting the moment to crack my first egg to make breakfast
Dinosaur? Grace would laugh. Peacock? Didn't we have the option at The Pennsylvania State Fair?

Make mine a plain ole white egg. Such stories carried
within there! Must I remind you that "ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny"

A gust of fresh air enters and sends me off to the kitchen
there to crack the first egg of a million years ago.

***
We are doing well on The Compass. Front cover will be a Marina in Key Largo.

Back cover a melange of Superbowl Photos.

As always, Mark Amos of Buxmont does a great job telling me what pix will or won't work.

Sent a Valentine Card to Sarah and Ethan today. Made the card with the Rice Carton from Mandarin Garden.

Was on the way to the PO, when at the bottom of my street, was a mailman, Chinese, I believe. He assured me it would arrive just fine. 


 Made it in the kitchen with scissors and Scotch tape. Then ran upstairs to type a note on my new HP printer.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

The Days of Blueberry Blahs - The Letter to the Editor that Never Was

What in tarnation?

Into my egg a little white rice must fall. Leftover from Mandarin Garden. And then the usual .... whole egg (quack quack) garlic, frozen spinach, and onions.

I like to eat while doing something.

Terrible news on the Times...what's that idiot gotten us into now.

So I checked Netflix and am still watching Fred Amisen, the drummer, but then he says, Ruth Deming, who dat? Original and funny.

Armisen speaking at Cinequest film festival, San Jose, CA 2017


But that was this morning. Now it's afternoon. Just woke up after the friggin sound of a phone call.

Oh no! Who could that be? Lana, Anna, Danielle, Dana, Superman, Candace.

Konk! I'm back to sleep again.

It is POURING outside. Just came down and ate a Mandarin orange for my cold.

My forced forsythia in a corner of the kitchen on my decorated ladder.

So I call Dan.

Bubby's on, he calls. Who wants to talk to her?

Max is gets one.

What's doin, kid?

I'm building with Legos.

Are you building a tower?

No, I'm building a house.

Wow!

Dyou have a cold, Max?

Yeah, but it's getting better, he says.

Daddy and Grace have colds but not Mommy.

And, we're trained to say, It's getting better.

Then I call Mom and tell her the story.


This has been laying around the kitchen for about 5 yrs.

John M, designed them for our then writing group. I listened to him endlessly when he was going thru a divorce. His wife had already picked out his successor. Why not?

The guy 'owed' me hundreds of dollars of therapy fees so I asked him to print us out a hundred brochures.

Extremely well done! He's an artist. Bipolar.

So I went over to his apt in Jenkintown to pick em up.

Went into the baffroom, and locked myself in there.

Pull pull pull

Finally!

Now we're getting THE COMPASS ready. I have no idea how to write now that I'm sick. This is no joke.

Did I tell you the rice was crunchy? Too crunchy? Or did I tell that to Mom or Nancy?

Am going back to bed.

Scott stopped by this morning. He too is getting better.

Should I have anudder Mandarin orange?

Sometimes there's just no one to ask.

THE DAYS OF BLUEBERRY BLAHS

Blueberries have not helped
nor strawberries either though
they twinkle on the plate
and do their best to please

My bags are packed, I check
my watch to see when the limo
will get here

for I'm foreign bound
a little cafe across the
sea, Renoir's Cafe, tis true

And there I will sip my cafe au lait, just so,
bask my head in the sunshine, flirt with
the garcons, and walk along the swirling
Seine, forgetting all about home. 

Image result for blueberry crunch

SUNDAY CINEMA AT THE LIBRARY

"Of Gods and Men" was the featured film at the Upper Moreland Free Public Library on Sunday, Jan. 21. The third Sunday Cinema brought out 30 people for this intense and mystifying film about Trappist monks in Algeria.

Discussion leader Maurizio Giammarco, PhD, asked pertinent questions from the audience to get us thinking, even as we mused about the Eagles playing the Vikings that evening.

Giammarco, a slender, casually dressed film teacher at Temple University, always brings "treats" for the audience, reflecting his Italian heritage. Think: cannolis and powdered sugar cookies.

Those are simply the frills. His choice of films is always superb. A visionary, he has pondered and reflected on the films and wants his audience - of mostly seniors - to find deeper meanings, such as the music, the dialogue, the lighting.

He remembers our names and insists we think on our feet.

On Feb. 18, join us for "Carnage."

Ruth Z. Deming
Willow Grove, PA
215 659 2142

Image result for of gods and men
ONE MORE THING

When I took my laptop to be fixed, Joe said, "You write all these emails?"

Then he advised me to put things in the trash.


Saturday, February 10, 2018

A little bit of rain, of cold, of mist - but why cry the blues - we're alive - The Last of the Rum Coffee (Sam Shepard)

Gosh, it's been so long since I blogged...

I've got a hacking cough. As long as I don't start, I'm all right. But once I feel my lungs start to hiccup, I know soon I won't be able to resist and the spasms will come.

THE LAST OF THE RUM COFFEE

I sipped it upstairs in bed
in the cat cup as I locked
myself in bed, vowing to
finish at least one of my
now-overdue books, the
Tom Hanks I could not get
through, but out of honour
and respect, I picked up
the short but profound
book by the ALS-dying
Sam Shepard.

Taking tiny sips of
coffee, as Sam himself
died slowly in his
wheelchair on the porch.

The last pages were
magnificent, his entire
family, the men especially,
pushing him down the dust-strewn
road toward his deliverance.

***
Today, Saturday - no writing group - we're all sick - I stayed in my dark room and watching cooking shows.

Had no idea they were on on Saturdays.

America's Test Kitchen...

Mary Ann Esposito...Italian,,, she made an awesome fish soup

What? You're not looking at the links?

Just visited Scott now. Worst cold he ever had. He'll call the doc on Monday, he said.

He loved the sweet Mandarin Oranges I got him.

Image result for mandarin orange     I love them too.

You know what? I avoided oranges cuz of my diabetes. How foolish!

I did treat myself to frozen strawberries and blueberries.

Shockingly cold! And delicious.

I'm gonna write a poem now. Excuse me while return to my childhood home of Cleveland Heights, go to the third floor and compose.

WE'RE COUGHING LIKE DOGS HERE IN PHILADELPHIA

Quick, I'm pouring the chicken soup down my throat,
the broth soothes with spiral noodles
and tiny chunks of chicken that resemble
Purina puppy chow.

Cough! Cough! Sometimes a burst resembles
a nocturne by Chopin, which Mrs Kultti
my teacher called Chopang

or a burst of the trumpet that prophecied
victory by the Alfred Deller trio

Sound the trumpet! Cough cough cough!
Sound the trumpet! Coughghghghgh

Sound the....nevermind.



Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Eagles won the championship after 57 years! Poem: Golligog's Cakewalk

 Scott and I watched together. He was a nervous wreck, pacing back and forth.

I was at home watching MANNIX on the Decades Channel and submitting my final two true stories.

Just wrote Mom and said I have a terrible cold. Thanks to Scott he brought me delicious chicken and dumpling soup.

I do feel awful, but it's only temporary.


GOLLIWOG'S CAKEWALK

Do these words mean anything to you?
Not unless you're Jonathan Biss or
Ethan Iverson.

The Cakewalk is a sprightly dance
by Debussy I played on our living room piano.
A friend of mine who served in Vietnam
called the composer De Bussy. It made me
cringe.

I was trying to get him to like classical music
the way he liked Paint it Black and Sky Pilot
as he sat in foxholes hoping the gooks would
pass them by.

Dave Moyer is still alive I'm sure, if he hadn't
melted away from Agent Orange. Originally from Lansing,
I wonder if he was at the Eagles game last night in
that huge stadium like the Sistine Chapel,
guzzling beer from paper cups, hugging his grandchildren
and hearing Golliwog's Cakewalk when Nick Foles
handed off the football for the final touchdown.



***

Here's what the Boston Herald said about their Patriots.

Actually look it up yourselves as my blogspot is having and touch time.

And, yes, Cakewalk is indeed a derogatory term.



Monday, February 5, 2018

EAGLES WIN THE SUPERBOWL after 57 years - Poem Superbowl 52

What an exciting game. I watched with Scott so he could explain things to me. He said football is very complicated which made me feel better.

Eagles' quarterback was voted most valuable player. Nick Foles.

Image result for nick foles Read about him on Wiki. Thanks, will do dat I have more time. I am exhausted.

Nick is 29. He's enrolled in divinity school online. He and another Eagle said something like I owe this victory to Jesus Christ my Savior.

Frankly, I was shocked. Should I convert?

Patriot's quarterback Tom Brady played very well, too, but not well enough.

I wrote this poem early today to put on FB.

Thought of the names Peggy - Peggy Cappy - yoga instructor on PBS, and Miranda Esmonde-White  bouncing exercise guru.

Fireworks keep going off for the Eagles.

SUPERBOWL FIFTY-TWO

"It's cold here in Philly, Peg."

" Yeah, but Minneapolis is worse," said Miranda.

"It's all under a dome like the Hagia Sophia,

with fake grass that hurts their tootsies,"


she continued twisting that fabulous muscled


body of hers, as she stirred Breakstone Sour Cream


into the Spinach and Anchovy dip.


Husbands Harry and Max were at Romeo's Bar having

their pre-game Heinekens, watching pre-game maneuvers

on the huge screen over the bar. If they blinked or

went to the loo, big looming screens deleted nothing

from their eager glee-filled eyes.

"I got it," said Harry, peeling out two twenties from

his well-worn billfold.

Back at home, chubby Harry cozied up to Miranda, kissing her

long swan-like neck. "Babe," he said, you got more muscle mass than Tom Brady."

"Yeah, but you're my man, ole man Brady ain't."

"Hey, what smells so good," asked Max, moving to the oven.

"Don't look," said Peggy. "New recipe for chicken wings." He

would never know she was getting concerned about his girth

- all those beers and midnight snacks - and used breaded seitan tenders—BBQ or spicy Buffalo style—served with vegan ranch dressing.

Appetizers ready, drinks set on coasters of flying ducks, the party of four went downstairs to the den, sitting in front of the roaring gas fireplace.

The guys' Lazy-Boy chairs had room for appetizers and drinks.

The ladies drank small shots of Martinelli's Apple Cider or tall glasses of filtered water from the fridge.

Go Eagles Go, said chubby Harry, as he fell asleep and snored.

As game-time approached, they stretched their legs, walked around, went outside for a breath of fresh suburban air.

When they returned, Harry was on the floor, with BBQ sauce smeared on his face. Stone-cold dead.

***

I had until midnight tonight to submit two true stories to Bella Online.

First I had to think of what I would write about. Then I had to write them. The shorter the better.

Titles: Mary, The Pizzelle Maker and the Doomed Apartment Complex.

The Moon and I.

The reason I wrote about the moon was b/c Sandy Wood of the McDonald Observatory at the University of TX at Austin - hey, I went there for one semester - spoke about Schroeder's Valley, a location on the moon, just as Lake Erie is a place on Planet Earth.

I think it's a good story and I hope the editor, Lisa Shea, likes it, too.

I was also watching Mannix, starring Mike Connors, on Decades TV. Channel 3.2

Excellent, suspenseful.

May I now be excused and go upstairs to sleep?