Thursday, December 24, 2009

My gratitude list / Poem: Once again Evelyn

- My house

- Looking out the window

- The sun rising over Charley's house, stonehenge-like smack in front of me as I type these words

- Drinking water ("the first thing we do and the last" from one of my poems)

- My ability to influence people to improve their lives (thru the support group I founded after being diagnosed with manic depression)

- My eyes that so keenly see.

- The ability to love so deeply. I think if people have an aura mine would radiate love. We become what we lack. I lacked love for much of my life and little angels who dwelt within me built me a house of love. Thanks!

- My psychotherapy clients - the long parade of them who hopefully still remember me as I remember Darleen and the earrings she gave me which I still wear; and John who still calls me (I sent him an Xmas postcard) - his parole is over in 2010 for vehicular manslaughter; and for my new clients who broaden my mind incredibly esp. exasperating "Evelyn" who I've wrin a new poem about

- Ada and Rich Fleisher

- Return of motivation to work on my novel - thanks Nicole Bokat, who will be my editor/mentor

- Helen and her Mall Talk. I'm gonna try not to be late today since I bought everybody Celestial Seasonings Tea. We've got more than a dozen folks now coming to the Mall.

- All the donations I was able to make this year which include:

...Pennypack Trust - the nature center 5 minutes away from home
...Bread and Roses in Philly for Social Justice. I wrote the director, You write a mean email, Casey, and mailed her a check
...Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama - they lost 20 percent of their funding since they invested with the fallen Jew Bernie Madoff
...Planned Parenthood
...Peter C Alderman Foundation for setting up hospitals in third-world countries
...BioGems to save our wildlife from imminent destruction. Did you know you can adopt a polar bear or a rainforest tree thru their organization?

- All my friends at New Directions

- The amazing ability to have the correct information when I need it. Joan sent ND a donation of fantastic books. I'm bringing the Montel Williams inspirational book to the mall to give to Judy.

- The ability to write a great letter. Had my last appt w/Larry Paster, physical therapist yesterday who always restores my body to health after giving me exercises which I do in bed and on the living room floor. I wrote him a Donation Letter and he said he'd mail in a check.

- My fearlessness. I attended a funeral of a former ND member the day after the snowstorm. I'm terrified of driving in the snow but I faced my fears and drove safely to the church where the funeral was held. Goodbye Ann, goodbye! I feel her presence hovering over me right now.



once again Evelyn you have with words alone
deceived me like a skillful lover who plies me
with flowers and adoring looks
and boxes of chocolate covered cherries
a woman my own age who has never had a man
or a title or someone to kiss her goodnight
and whose face I noted this morning still bursts with
scabs of unknown origin

your latest caper, as I shall call it,
left me broken and despondent
though I get paid to see you
a handsome amount for doing nothing but
accompanying you to lunch or
watching Hogan's Heroes with you in your
raggedy chair apartment littered with empty
pizza boxes that smell

you’ve spent half your life enraged
and tied up in asylums’ cruel arms
one too many misdemeanors no one
can figure out and
you ask me with your cockeyed stare
why do I do these things, Ruth

and were surprised this morning that
after you’d snookered me and I walked you home
I refused to come in and play the end
of today’s game as you planned

small victories are what I cherish with a woman like you
whose mother drank while you floated inside
forming an oh-so-odd constellation of a human
oh, the millennia of unending combinations that
formed to create solely you
yes, people look when you pass them by
not because you talk to yourself
or wear the same green jacket and shorts in
cruel december
but simply something out of tune
an always dissonant chord
a jazz tune sailing into the winter sky
with no accompaniment

you drive all of us away
every last one of us
needing a hiatus from your
though when I returned home
still smarting from my fall
I realized I’d have to see you soon again
to bring you the box of Triscuits I’d forgotten
for your big I-love-you surprise.

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