Sunday, December 14, 2014

Writers Group - Good Stuff, as Floyd would say - Poem: Lavender Bedroom

Floyd B Johnson. Just try and buy him a hot chocolate with whipped cream. He won't hear of it.

His short story "Citizen of the Year" was marvelous. It was about a screwed-up guy - no, not Floyd in disguise - who reclaims his life and earns everyone's respect.

Did you notice how the word 'respect' is on everyone's tongue in the media.

Carly, who looks great in her new reddish-colored hair, read us "A Terrifying Day." Her friend Sarah woke up and couldn't see out of one eye. A stroke? Cancer? The lens had fallen out of her eyeglasses.

Donna started us all out on polishing our nails. Could not believe that Martha came in with painted nails. Her g'daughter Brianna left the polish there when she and her mom moved out. "I hate it," she said.

"You'll get used to it," I said. "They look nice."

Donna is writing a fictionalized version of her life. She and Carly are writing it together. If you think a poem is hard to write, try a novel.

Floyd and his buddies from all over the world, actually, just collaborated on a 60-chapter novel. They all have different writing styles and the novel is pretty much a mish-mash.

We suggested getting an editor who has the final word.

"But we'll have to pay them," said Floyd.

No you won't, I said. I edited a 200-page memoir written by my 88-yo friend Freda Rose Samuels. No way would I charge her.

"Ask around," we urged Pretty Boy Floyd.

Donna wrote a poem about Carly's cat Toots, which Donna incomprehensibly spelled Tottes.When I read the word at the top of the page, I thought, "Wow, something fascinating is coming." Hmmm, what can I do with that word?

Here's a line from the poem Toots: "She appeared bored by their angry accusations."

Just like a cat. You can't change em, you can't train em.

Smiling Linda brought in two poems.

Animal Footprints

Winter had this great line "Animals make statements through the language of their footprints."

Ever heard of Smiling Jack Martin?

I was an avid comics reader back in Cleveland, where we subscribed to the Cleveland News.

BTW, woke up at Scott's this morning with a sore throat.

"Maybe it's from snoring," Scott said.

Am drinking tea now, Twinings Jasmine Green Tea, a gift from Coach Iris, and my throat is somewhat bettah. The tea is quite good, thank you.


here's Linda and mom Jane at Scott's 56th birthday party wrote a terrific poem Fight the Darkness about an illness she has. We'll put it in the next issue of the Compass.

How did it feel, I asked her, after you'd written it.

"Like a burden was lifted off," she said.

Kym, who looked great in a blond wig, read us some erotica. Some were quite good. She puts them on Twitter, which means they've gotta be less than 138 words.

Barbie got tired of Ken.
He's lost his balls.

Martha's A Simple Christmas Story was far from simple. It beautifully illustrated the Christmases of her childhood, when her dad was a minister, and churches would put on Christmas pageants.

Today, she wrote, people can't sit still throughout a service, always on their smartphones. And modern technology has usurped the simplicity of the old ways.

I tried an experiment with my hair. After washing it, I towel-dried it and left it alone. Then I began to write. Well, first, I sent off more Xmas cards. Remind me to send one to Linda and Jane Barrett. Martha thanked me profusely for sending her and David one.

I've never bought a card in my life. They arrive for free. I try to write thoughtful statements in them.

Rob, have you gotten yours yet?

First, I cleaned up my poem Lavender Room.

I do love my new room. The new-carpet smell is fading away.

Then I worked on my newest flash fiction called TIES THAT BIND.

Ties That Bind (Amanda Jaffe Series #2)

It's written from the point of view of the book, which has been left behind at Hotel LaQuinto in New Orleans by a woman in Pink Socks.

Funny, but your blogger is wearing pink socks now.

OMG! I can't believe it. The mailman just drove by. It's Sunday.

Quick, Ruthie, send Linda and her mom a card.

Actually, they only deliver packages today. 


I sat on the living room floor
studying the swatch books
Perhaps we could
carpet my bedroom with both
the pink that was the color of
a cat’s tongue and the lavender
like ballooning pants worn
in the harem of Topkapi.

Crazed with the colors
I came to my senses
and shouted Lavender
over the phone.
Like the wedding night
or a new shade of nail polish
there must be no mistakes
no regrets.

Giddy with happiness
I lie in bed and welcomed
Charlie Rose into my
room. In dark December
I wear navy polka-dot
pajamas that caress my
legs like a husband would
if I still had one. I don’t fantasize
a Jim Rockford or
Damien Lewis beside me
aging, it seems, has driven
such marvelous thoughts away.

I lie in the cradle of reality, pretending
God loves me, though, truly, I feel the knock
of emptiness in my breast.

Look at the walls!
Bare now. Let’s keep them that way. The
better to be alone, undistracted, acquainted
with every heart beat, every bit of sadness
that comes from living without children or

The noises of the house
they comfort me. The song of
the refrigerator
keeping cold the food
- such devotion! - and the soughing
of the furnace that delivers
through tunnels in the walls
heat that keeps my blood from
freezing like Popsicles

or becoming homeless
and sleeping with the deer
in the backyard, rolling myself
in frost-encrusted autumn leaves
and remembering when I used
to play piano, Bach most of all.

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