Glancing Out The Window

Glancing out the window
Water and sky, grey mirror.
Green palms, blow slightly,
Brown hill with speckled green.

The stillness makes me restless
Remembering last night’s dream
Of a small lion chasing a yellow fish,
And running through the mountains.

Melancholy: A space between tears and slight agitation.
Uncomfortable and silencing
In a lull; still as the small blue boat
I see, glancing out the window.

Some haiku, senryu, and micropoetry

Here is a list of some of my favorite haiku I’ve written recently:

 

 

Yesterday/on blue and white paper/tomorrow’s wishes

 

 

Slice of moon/a streak of mountain/echo in stars

 

 

The night-finding meaning-under stars

 

 

Four sunflowers-reminding me-to smile

 

 

Nostalgia/momentarily, rises/water shimmers below

 

 

The sky-rests gently-upon butterflies

 

 

Grey skies-twisting flag-mixed blessings

 

 

Hot summer eve/wet in my mouth/green grapes

 

 

Jasmine blooming-in old coffee can-the path to heaven

 

 

Her neck-it tasted-like stars

 

 

White blanket/against the horizon/his lips across  mine

 

 

Green bay, like sapphire/rolling beneath heavy wind/sea bird holding on

 

 

Her tears-butterfly feet-tiptoeing down cheeks

 

 

Sunset-shimmers deeply-in sapphire waters

 

 

Two stars-fall slowly-like hair strands-on cheeks

 

 

For the tragedy in Aurora CO:

The breeze-is filled-with angels

 

Children at fountain-I struggle to find hope-the angels weep

 

The sun-turned to the moon-and wept

Fascination object poem

Ant

The small black dot crawling across my wooden floor
That makes my daughter scream or squeal,
Depending on her mood.

The natural acrobat who moves quickly across a green wall
To get that crumb on the counter, or the long leaf in the potted plant
Moving quickly and gracefully.

Caught in the urgency of my day, you manage to land on me
When I am typing or slicing a peach, I take notice
And find you roaming my arm, slightly confused.

When I see you outside, working methodically
I move in closer and see the single grain of sand on your back
I watch, your consistent pace hypnotizing me

Till you disappear,

      into
          the earth
                  below.

My start into writing, haiku, and more…

About a year after I had my daughter (and FINALLY she started sleeping through the night), I began to realize I needed a change. Becoming a mother is certainly change enough, but I needed something completely different for me.  Slightly panicked, I came back to my work as a personal trainer and found that although I loved and had done it for years, my heart just wasn’t into it anymore.  Don’t get me wrong, I was completely grateful to have my business and clients to come back to, but the drive and energy I used to have in running it wasn’t there any longer.  My body felt so exhausted and my mind felt restless.  I also had just come out of a deep fog and depression after having a very difficult birth with my daughter.  It literally turned my world around so I realized that continuing work as a birthing doula was no longer for me at this time (although I hope to revisit in the future) .  Right now I had to come back into the birthing world in a different capacity.  I felt I had to communicate, to speak my mind, my experience to others.

I finally began to see some light while having wine with my very good friend who was literally gifted to me right before I had my daughter (and she had her’s).  We were connected through Facebook after many years past.  We grew up in the same community in Oak Park, Illinois. After birthing our daughters, we emailed like crazy over the following year.  We laughed, cried, got angry, felt scared as we journeyed through having newborns together.  Our emails were real and raw; sometimes bordering on hysteria.  Not ones you would expect to see from two women with young babies (or would you?!).  Through a series of ironic events she ended up moving from our home town an hour away from me in the San Francisco Bay Area.

So there we were on that early summer afternoon when she suggested making a book out of our emails.  I practically spit out my wine, I had JUST been thinking the same thing that week.  So we agreed and clinked our glasses to this new endeavor.  From that point we sorted through our emails together, and began writing.  As I painfully struggled to get through writing my birth story I realized two things: one,  I still needed more time to process this experience and two,  I felt like I needed a major brush up on my writing.  It had been years since I had been in an English or writing class.  So I decided to do just that, go back to school.  I registered for a writing and composition class at a local community college and after discussing with a counselor, decided to pursue completing my BA in English. From a suggestion of a good friend, I ended up taking the class with a professor who was very highly rated among the student body.  I had no expectations and upon the first day of class, I was blown away.  My mind and soul felt like it had woke from years of being asleep.  We read a lot of poetry, “The Odyssey” , “Sir Gawain And The Green Knight”,  Hemingway, and Shakespeare.   I was taken back to my love of English (I loved the subject from an early age) and how much it made me feel inside.  I was lucky to have a professor who had such passion for the subject and opened my eyes again to literature.  His classes were filled with humor and I admired his own accomplishments as a writer.  I loved this class and more importantly,  I felt alive again.

I learned to be a better writer and a better reader.  It was so refreshing.  After completing the class I knew I wanted more.  Fortunately my professor also taught Creative Writing.  I was ALL over it.  Once starting, I had to shift my mind from being a critical thinker and writer to one that was more open.  I had taken a creative writing course years back and had forgotten how freeing it was.  We started with poetry and read a mixture of poets dating centuries back to more modern like Billy Collins (who I LOVE!).  I NEVER considered myself a poet, but after we began learning craft points of the art and I began writing, I saw this new piece of me emerging.  One craft point in particular I felt really resonated with me was the art of noticing.  I am a very sensitive person and have always been since I was young.  Some areas where my intuition was necessary I found it a gift, others areas I despised it. For writing though it was a gift.  I could literally find a poem everywhere I looked.  It was exciting.

After poetry we began writing fiction.  I found fiction to be a bit more challenging, but never the less I was up to the challenge.  Fiction didn’t seem to come as easily as poetry for me, but what I was needing to do was read more.  I remembered my English class the semester prior, I really liked reading Hemingway (much more than I did in high school I might add!).  Perhaps it had to do with being an Oak Park native myself, but I now felt I could connect to his writing style.  His way of writing with such concreteness, such simplicity, and his dedication to his work I really liked.  I promised myself to read more of his writings.

By the end of the semester, I had two portfolios:  one of poems and the other of short stories. I felt proud of myself and my work.  I was excited to continue writing and also get back to working on my book.  As the last day of class neared, I realized that having it to go to weekly kept my mind working: being creative and wanting to write.  With the summer off what was I going to do?  That is when I learned of haiku poetry.  My professor told me about it as he recently started a Twitter account where he only wrote it.  He explained the syllabus of traditional haiku being 5/7/5 and that they made a reference to nature and season.  “It was a juxtaposition of two concrete images where the reader should arrive at a sudden emotion or insight.”  Haiku was objective and simple: a moment in the present tense.  He also talked of  senryu: a type of haiku that dealt with human experience and human nature.  As I listened to him, a poem I had loved and read earlier in the year immediately came to mind:  Ezra Pound’s “In the Station at the Metro”

 

THE apparition of these faces in the crowd;
Petals on a wet, black bough.

 

Pound’s writing:  so simple, yet implies so much more.  Just like a haiku.

The following weeks my mind exploded and my love of haiku began.  Fortunately having a smartphone paid off as I was able to jot down a quick line or two while keeping up with my very busy toddler.  That’s when I decided to join twitter, and to my surprise people liked what I wrote!  My haiku was being retweeted and favored.  I quickly gathered a following.  I liked seeing how others were writing, it helped me to tighten up my own style and explore new ones.  I felt honored to have others enjoy my writing and it also gave me confidence that I was moving in the right direction.  I felt very excited.

Many of my friends suggested I start blogging, and actually had been telling for quite a while.  Truthfully,  I was daunted by it.  What could I possibly have to say that would be so interesting for others to read? Would anyone even want to read it?  I sat on the idea for almost a year.  One thing that kept fueling the notion was wanting to share the difficult birth of my daughter.  To have a space that would allow the huge disappointment and slight bitterness be released fully.  I wanted to reach out to other women who had similar experiences.  I also wanted to remind women to communicate, to be informed, yet feel secure in themselves with their own choices of birthing:  To feel empowered.

So I just recently decided to take the plunge and start a blog.  I’m nervous and feeling a bit vulnerable about letting my voice be heard, but I’m still going to take a chance.  I hope all that read will enjoy and I welcome positive feedback and comments.  My blog space is linked to my twitter account so please feel free to follow as I write small poems daily.

Thank you so much for reading!

Mary

Moments With My Granddaughter

Sitting on a single bench

And staring at the folds of my hands,

I look up to behold your mouthful of teeth and bouncy curls.

And hear your voice squealing “Gra!”

My heart pounds like new.

I lift you up, hugging and feeling the delicacy of your skin

and remember bottles, a rattle, and laughter

New life that I relish, momentarily.

Then, with sudden urgency, you are off and running

And I am taken back into my own being

I inhale a deep drag of my cigarette

And I glance down, into the folds of my hands.

I Dreamed I Saw Costumes Of Gold

I dreamed I saw costumes of gold

Shimmering like small coins at the bottom of a fountain

That danced around me

Dusting cheeks like butterfly wings

 

I dreamed I saw costumes of gold

And I danced, joyously with the water dragon

With kind eyes and prickly skin

Its hooved feet resting gently in my palm

 

I dreamed I saw costumes of gold

Next to a magic lamp on a small table

And I wished

For a sky filled with blue balloons

 

I dreamed I saw costumes of gold

Shimmering like small coins at the bottom of a fountain

And I sat forever blissful

With my water dragon, lamp, and blue balloons.

Bench

As I walk aimlessly, inhaling air that is heavy and rich, I come upon thee

Looking like something out of a Robert Frost poem

Hidden, beyond branches, deep with red like a fall afternoon

You glisten, like droplets of water on a blade of grass

Worn, old with history, and welcoming-like a long lost friend.

You sit upon damp earth that was once shared with brown Indians

And a single tree canopies over you

Safe, secretive, and silent

The road less traveled…

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