Thursday, March 30, 2017

Today is World Bipolar Day! Documentary on Tanaquil Le Clercq - Poems: My New Watch - The New Postage Stamp - John Craig Venter

 Watched a marvelous documentary last night on Tanny the Ballerina. Ironically, at the height of her career she developed polio and was paralyzed from the waist down. She was married to George Balanchine, who you always called Mr. Balanchine.

Never George!


Filmmaker Nancy Buirski discusses her Tanny film here.

Image result for tanny ballerina

Sent the below email to my support group:

Hi everyone,

One of the websites didn't work.

Let's try it again here and then I give up.

I subscribe to THE MIGHTY, which covers many illnesses including bipolar disorder.

An email just came in stating that today is International Bipolar Day. Read the many fascinating stories here.

My friend Rem Murphy is the counter-man at the Roslyn PA post office.

I'd sent him a poem about the Civil Rights leader and activist Dorothy Height.

He liked it and will display it at the post office.


Of course I bought it.
Celebrating Black Heritage
let me introduce you to
Dorothy Height.

During her tenure on
earth, which you notice
is the color of ruddy clay,
she was a feminist and
helper of our people of

What that woman would
not do! Fearless, like
Martin and Malcolm, she
was threatened by the
Klan, called every
name ever invented
to bring tears and
self-doubt, but like
an oak in a storm,
Dorothy Height would
not bend.

She wears flowers and
jewels in the postage
stamp, she smiles like
a favorite aunt, and
wears the color purple.

I just bought a spring
wreath for my front door.
Lovely in purple and white.

Wish we could all change
the world like Aunt Dorothy
one footstep at a time.



Thrift shops in our town
vanish like last night's stars

Heavens Treasures with its
dreadful loop of Christian
music bought out Impact Thrift
which was closing

Before that it was Santerian's
a claustrophic store where I'd
drag my kids for brand-new
shoes at quite a discount

Heavens Treasures was bright
and cheery. I need a new watch
I told Toni Ann. The band must
be one I can slip right on
like a debutante's white glove.

She presented
me with a velveteen tray
of men's and women's.

I'll take this, I said, looking
at an expensive Bulova. I spose
there's no point in bargaining,
I said.

It's not a beaut, like Ada's Movado,
rather it is handsome with thick
hands like draft horses and a
second hand - fancy that! - with a
red Cupid's arrow that may strike me
at any moment.

What I am afraid of is Who I will fall
in love with on my way to the library.


Ate at Mom's tonight.

We have no food, she said.

All right, sez I, I'll bring you some salad.

I quickly made it as I was starving and wanted to eat, while listening to

Image result for craig venter book a life decoded Excellent. He's a true risktaker and adventurer. Here he is on Wiki.

He looks terrific at age 70.

Then I remembered he's a year younger than me.
Image result for craig venter boat
John Craig Venter (born October 14, 1946) is an American biotechnologist, biochemist, geneticist, and businessman. He is known for being one of the first to sequence the human genome[1] and the first to transfect a cell with a synthetic genome.[2][3] Venter founded Celera Genomics, The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) and the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI). He was the co-founder of Human Longevity Inc., served as its CEO until 2017, and is executive chairman of the board of directors.[4] He was listed on Time magazine's 2007 and 2008 Time 100 list of the most influential people in the world. In 2010, the British magazine New Statesman listed Craig Venter at 14th in the list of "The World's 50 Most Influential Figures 2010".[5] He is a member of the USA Science and Engineering Festival's Advisory Board.[6]  

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Went to B's for lunch - Poem: Dairy Queen

Brought the remainder of my veggie soup to Beatriz's.

  Old foto of veggie soup.

Also brought Triscuits and chive cream cheese.

Like me, she eats in the living room.

Wait a minute, she said, and raised up her coffee table, so it came up to my waist so I could eat.

She got it at Gamburg's, which is still there after all these years. It's in Hatboro.

Image result for gamburgs furniture store  

 B's son Steven came downstairs to use the microwave. His cat Simba came down with him. What a beautiful cat. Blue eyes. Very delicate.

B gave me some cat nip to feed him. Told me how to do it.

You'll be friends for life, she said.

BTW, I've gotta stay up for hours and hours submitting to a lit mag called GLINT. Due in two days. Well, it's not like I'm writing a dissertation.

Last night on TV was a program about having trials for men responsible for genocide. This is the first time these men have ever been brought to trial. One of the judges was none other than Benjamin Ferenz, who presided at the Nuremburg Trials.

He is one well-spoken seeker of justice. Let's applaud this 95-yo man whose parents had the foresight to leave Romania when they first started rounding up the Jews.

 Benjamin Ferencz - Chief Prosecutor in 1947 Einsatzgruppen Trial - In Courtroom 600 Where Nuremberg Trials Were Held - Palace of Justice - Nuremberg-Nurnberg - Germany - 02.jpg
Even though I don't know the man, I feel like called him Uncle Benny.

Fell fast asleep at Scott's while watching the news. You know what the NY Times motto is:  All the sh*t that's fit to print.

The news was pretty disgusting. I always wonder what Fashionista Judy Woodruff will be wearing.

Image result for judy woodruff   She was interviewing two people about the Supreme Court nominee Neal Nonesuch. (Can't remember his real name). Looks like he'll be confirmed. One of the panelists, a curly-haired black woman kept talking about Obama's appointee, Merick Garland, if that indeed was his name.

C'mon, curly-head, you're wasting our time. Let's move forward.

When I got home from Scott's I took my sugar. LOW.

Stuffed myself. Then drove Scott to the train and I drove off to the Dairy Queen.

Finished my drink when I got home and I also had SAUERKRAUT on my dangling reading glasses. What's a girl to do but lick it off and then wash em off.


I order "the usual,"
Mocha Iced coffee, the
chocolate fresh as a
Hershey Kiss dropped
straight from the
coffee tree

Ice that delights and
swirls around my mouth
spinning like Nureyev
in all the right places.

The chili hot dog was gooood.
I sat on my usual bench, fresh
winds blowing in my face. A treat
from the gulag.

The Toyota Family piled inside
their high-born carriage.
Dad was drinking Snapple. Remember
the various flavors? Raspberry
tea was my favorite.
Mom steadies her sundae as
she claims the front seat,
looking with her blonde bouncy
curls like a kid. The two
boys race into the back seat.
"Ever see pink ice cream like
this?" one says to his brother.

Enjoy these days of your childhood!
I, too, was once young. Rock in the
cradle of the love of your families.
Listen to what each one has to say
and state your own mind. Be heard!
Kneel down and say your vespers
before bed like Christopher Robin
and dream yourself to sleep.

Dyou believe I haven't ridden my bike yet?

Upstairs I go to read a new book I bought at the Abington Library.

You'll be the first to know when I remember the name. It's quite good.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Poems: Sitting in the Dead Man's Chair - Sixth Kidneyversity on April 1 - Poem: When the Fog Comes Rolling in - Story: Pals

Image result for vampire drawing blood


I'm sure someone who's sat
in the chair has died, not
me yet!

At Quest, I pull up the
gray sweater I have worn
for nearly a week

It's become part of my skin
and I'm not ready yet to take
it off

Jane tries a spot on my
left arm. That damn needle
pokes around looking for a
nice big vein. I sit there
in suspense.
Have you found it yet, Jane?

Now we try the right arm. Jane
finds the gray-green upraised
bruise, high as a pitcher's
mound, where she poked me
last week.

Did you have surgery, she asks.
Jane, I laugh, you did that to
me last week.

Now she pokes me in a new place.
Virgin territory. Staring in
wonder, I ask, is it coming out?

Yes, but it's in no hurry, as it
takes its time filling the empty
vial, but only half way.

The moral, the mantra, the message?
Relax and take it slow. What's the
hurry? Your appointment in Samarra
will come when it will.


Ellen is doing some family geneology on my mom's side and discovered this:

BERNICE BEGIS, you are...
Ashkenazi Jewish
Middle Eastern
 Ellen CCd the results to The Sisters and I wrote back to Donna and Ellen:

Daddy will explain what the Iberian part means or else Donny Garber.

Both have passed away. 


Helen and Larry Kirschner saw The Bad Plus at Bucknell University on Sat, Feb 18, 2017 at 7:30 pm. Helen gave me the poster, which is posted below and is also on the bulletin board just to my left. They brought friends and family members who are now fans.

Image result for the bad plus poster weis center    I've been listening, while I compose, to TBP plus Joshua Redman here on YouTube.

My little sweetie pie called.

You know what's happening on Saturday, she said.

Uh, yeah, I said. Our sixth Kidneyversity!

Sarah will find a nice restaurant downtown and I'll take the train in to celebrate!

For dinner, I took myself over to the Willow Grove Giant. Needed to make some soup so got all the ingredients. It's bubbling away in the crock pot now.

The salad bar was closed, darn, so I bought one shrimp egg roll for $2.00 and a half pint of fresh orange juice for $2.00

Man, that OJ was tasty! Egg roll good too.

Image result for fresh o j

Very high in carbs.

Then I sat and read Illumination Night by Alice Hoffman for about 15 minutes before driving home in the pitch black dark.

Tyler was working the Beer and Wine Dept. He has no idea he's a main character in my short story PALS.

While still chomping on my egg roll, I got up and asked him, Can a person drink a bottle of wine in here?

Startled, he answered, No it's too big.

Just a question, Tyler, wasn't gonna do it.

But why not? 

When I got home from my high-carb snack, w/o checking my sugar, I walked around the hilly block. It was very dark out. Did not see a soul except for cars passing by. Hi Patrick's house. Hi dead man Luke's house.

Then I return home and know I must exercise more to lower my sugar. Watch PBS for 20 minutes while riding National Velvet with Elizabeth violet-eyed Taylor and then go downstairs to check my sugar. It's a perfect 81.

But you gotta eat cuz it's gonna go low.

My new fave food is

Image result for apple rice cakes
I spread two with peanut butter. Fantastic!!!

Just ate anudder one so I'll hop on my pony shortly and ride like the wind.

Took the liberty of sending Sarah Lynn three poems to read. Am gonna submit them to Proud to Be: American Warriors.

Southeast Missouri State University.

She really liked Poem for my Father, which had a couple parts. She said it was very emotional.

The Napoleon one? Eh....nice try.

And she really liked Memories of Vietnam. Liked the new rhythms and short stanzas. My friend CC did not like that one atall!

Are YOU as tired as I am?

This is the first Monday I have not worked at Symphony Manor. They fired me last week for lack of funding.

I would joke with Scott yesterday.  Gotta choose my two songs now!

Here's a poem I posted this morning on FB.


Greg Whiteside, the first voice
I hear in the morning, told us
the fog lay dense in the
Philadelphia area.

I put down my book - Whistleblowing
in the Age of Snowden - and walked
to the bedroom window.
Where was all the fog? In these days
of celebrations on the deeds of women,
I walked downstairs and onto my
front porch.
Standing in my warm polka-dot pajamas,
I inhaled through my nose as if meditating
and then blew out through puffed cheeks.
Thick fog enveloped our street and
Mailman Dante, driving his truck,

They "liked" it which made my serotonin blink on and off, on and off!

It's reminiscent of the great children's book The Five Chinese Brothers.

Five chinese brothers.jpg

Thursday, March 23, 2017

What's that DING on my laptop - Bella Online Spring Issue published!

Was in the kitchen eating my Leg O Lamb when I heard the familiar PING, meaning a new email had just come in.

Don't look, I said, it's nothing important.

Lemme tell you first about the tragedy of my Leg o Lamb, which is filled with fat. I was about to carry my bowl into the living room. It had a soup spoon in it. As I started to walk - I've been wearing PJs all day - the g'dam spoon acted like a cantilever and my Leg o Lamb spattered all over! Twas on the kitchen table, the floor, between the slats of my chair.

It must be cleaned up fast or it would congeal and stink.

I decided to peek at what had come in. Was very pleased it was the 2017 Spring Edition of Bella Online, in which I got lotsa stuff published. I knew that already as Lisa O'Shea had written everyone about their work, asking us to make sure everything was correct.

Click here.

I emailed folks in our Writing Group about Linda Barrett's GREAT poem, Morning Conversations. 

Read it here.

Wrote this poem this morning and posted it on my home page plus a poetry page that my friend Iris Arenson Fuller created on World Poetry Month.

Image result for white orchid kremp


With its floppy
green leaves that
look like dog ears,
my new white orchid
likes its home
on the coffee table
A slant of winter
light breaking
silently through
the windows caresses
it far from its
home near the Panama Canal.
Transplants. Immigrants.
All of us. Movement is
the universal condition
of life. The earth
moves beneath our feet.
Hush! And you may feel it.

You may wonder if I ever go to sleep.

Had a huge nap around noon. I was exhausted. As I slept I felt the presence of someone in my room. Probably a man.

HELP  HELP!  I called, very frightened. Then I woke up, heart pounding.

When I told Scott, he said, that's not a dream, it's a nightmare.

Wanna get a start on a short story I plan to present to a Thursday Evening Poetry Group at the home of Linda Jones on nearby Fern Avenue.

It's about a young boy's experience of his dad going off to war. His dad will be a Marine, like mine own father.

Where should the family live?

Am reading a spectacular novel SOUTH OF BROAD by Pat Conroy. Should I set it in Charleston, SC? Of course not!

Then it came to me.

Why not in Trevose PA, home of Symphony Manor.

Image result for symphony manor    Perfect, I thought. On Buck Road, where it's located, there are lovely homes plus a swim club.

Image result for dolphin swim club  Dolphin Swim Club. Great name!

Then I thought, No, the family should live in a trailer park!

So, if you'll excuse me, gonna make a start on the story now. Gotta get up early and get a blood test for 

Image result for tacrolimus

PS - Am terrified to start my story. I have no idea what I'll do.