Saturday, June 25, 2011

Catching up with Mother after my writer's group / Poems: June 25 and Yo, God!

Nice turnout at our Writer's Group. The online newspaper, which serves communities between 15K and 100K, accdg to their website, will cover our Writer's Group for their Willow Grove edition. Our group was excited to hear this.

Everyone presented something at the last meeting. My two poems are at the end of this post.

I usually order a relatively tame drink at Weinrich's cuz I don't drink caffeine. Well, something came over me and I wanted coffee!

I couldn't remember why I'd given up caffeine - dependence, I believe - so I ordered a small iced decaf. Since they were out of that, Jenn gave me the cappuccino.

ZOWEE! It was so delicious! But I only drank half of it cuz I was afraid of getting totally stoned and not being able to drive to mom's.

At mom's, we sat out on the screened back porch w/ the sun streaming across our bodies. Mom says she sits here in the late afternoon to get her Vitamin D. She has 3 friends named Ruth, all of whom are still alive (88-ish like her), and all living in Cleveland

Ruth Katz, who never married
Ruth Grossman
Ruth Gans

She told me about all the accomplished dead people whose obits were in the Cleveland Jewish News.

Recently she talked to the Biskinds, who lived next door to us in Shaker Heights. Now they live in Flagstaff. Oh, I could go on and on. I used to babysit for the kids. June would leave a coke in the frig for me. I would eat anything from their frig that I thought wouldn't look like I took it.

I also used to also read John's medical books w/sickening photos. He was an ob-gyn. Today he's a healthy 85. His license was revoked in 1998. Don't ask.

My sister Ellen arrived home w/Chinese food. Since I haven't had Chinese food in a year, I couldn't remember if it was contraindicated by the strange diets I'm always on - first the kidney-preserving diet and now the diabetes diet.

I'm not much for avoiding temptation, so I told them I'd shoot up and then join them. I got my shooter out of my bag, stood up at the table, and injected 10 units in my ever-expanding belly. Yes, I am gaining weight. Scott doesn't notice. I think he just likes flesh.

When I finished, my mom said, Oh, can I watch you inject?

I just did, mom, I said, but I'll show you how I did it.

That nite I went over to my sister Donna's in Hatboro.

Dyou have any snacks, I asked her.

She brought out sunflower seeds. The salt hid its minor rancidity.

We watched a film noir classic on TCM called Out of the Past (the book was titled Build the Gallows High) starring a sultry Jane Greer and a hot young James Mitchum who couldn't keep away from this beautiful bad woman. A tramp!

In his intro, Robert Osbourne, looking dapper in a suit and tie, said Out of the Past is his fave film noir.

In short, every single scene was perfect-o. The way every scene was framed, the snappy dialogue, the character development, and constant surprises.

Poor Virginia Huston loses her beloved James Mitchum to a soul-less con-woman only out for herself. In the movie she kills at least three people including her man Kirk Douglas.

Wonderful double-cross movie almost as good as Double Indemnity w sultry Stanwyck and lovesick Fred MacMurray.


who better than me
has studied her fingernails
over and over
curling them upward
for reassurance
in the ceaselessly marching
days since my red rooster
arrival in the military hospital

they were glad to have me
raised me a girl
in pretty dresses and
piano lessons

he left first of a
monstrous disease
she's going slowly
an icicle dripping from
the eave

why is it I remember a
birthday at six-and-a half?
popcicle molds my gift
to make lemonade and
cherry pops

today I celebrate
my one-hundred-and-thirtieth
fingernails intact
brain a little shrunken
appetite gargantuan.

polite applause followed by Yo God, in which it helps to know your Bible history


I've got something on my mind.

Know first
I am not Job
prepare yourself for

Tell me,
are you a merciful
god or

Sitting there on your golden throne
polishing your long fingernails,
a regular Chinese mandarin,
can you see me Walking
among the maples

Why did you let me flourish
while she lay her head on the
railroad track?

Do you hate the Jews?
How dyou like our pretense:
Chosen people!
Rationalization of the first degree.

When did the tide turn?
You gave us free will
and now we destroy
everything you gave us:
the oceans
the hills
the Amazon

So, as the Deuteronomy of
generations unfold
we'll soon be bereft
like the Neanderthals
abandoned in the snow
no buffalo in sight.

The splash of your tears
comforts me.


  1. Nice poems, Ruthie but like the second better for some reason. Your mother has your curiosity, I think@

    Nice that the Patch is doing an article on your group.

    Am struggling myself today with a poem that wants to come out but has a distint mind of its own. It is straining at the chain and trying to take control of me instead of the other way around. Should have out in the fresh air, exercising, also writing some blog posts or finishing a couple but never made it.

    Really enjoyed the last two stanzas in particular of the second poem. Love the title as well.

  2. your right about mama! she only gets better. here's what my poetry menTOR bill kulik said about my poems:
    a couple things here and there I might change but goddam there's no frill or flab in either ( I dont know whether you subscribe to APR, but in last issue a fine poem on that old Job question. Different wrinkle, different tone. (It MAY be on line; I forget its name but the author is Henry Israeli--can you get more Jewish?!

    I KNOW you'll like it.

    Keep up the good work, dear lady!

    he knows how to make me feel good! ya know what, i decided Just the g'dam poem, it doesn't have to be good.

    so, should you make a start on your poem? i think so. get it outa your head and then struggle w/it when you can see it and push it around like a piece of bread dough you're shaping.

  3. I'm glad you have your writers' group to help keep you sane. I've been dealing the most frustrating computer problems ever. Gone quite insane.

  4. oh no! et tu, bill? losing one's computer is like losing the ability to speak. funny, was just thinking about you and hoping for the best: total sanity.