Sued51's Blog

{March 7, 2018}   Fireless Dragon




Jackie Paper has left.


I crawl like a turtle,

too big and too green

to hide,

losing bits of myself


on the pathway

back to my cave.


One last turn of my head

slow and stiff,

to see no one

skipping across

my shadow,

only the lost

pieces of me like

a moat of glass,

glistening colors

in the setting sun

that catch and pierce my eyes,

a simple explanation

for my tears.


Susan Merrifield Desrocher

{December 25, 2011}   A Lovely Christmas Gift

Just before Christmas I received a package in the mail that I wasn’t expecting: it was my copy of The Binnacle with my published poem!  What a special Christmas present for me!

I loved the presentation; it came in a little box. Each poem chosen in the competition was on a card (business-card size) with the author’s bio on one side and their poem/prose on the other. At the bottom of the box I found 9 cards of my own poem (including the one which appeared intermingled with the other work). The box is perfect for me to put on a little table and, every once in a while, pull out a poem to read.  I just may have to enter again in 2012!

{February 23, 2011}   Losing My Voice

It is usually caused by a virus or flu, but I’m not sneezing or coughing.  I feel weak and achy, but there’s nothing physically wrong.  My father’s death, the economy, world events, and a very long winter have all combined to give me an emotional flu.

I may not look ill, but my voice betrays me; it’s rough and strained.  I’m speaking too deliberately, and I have to catch my breath.  Speaking through my blog, I concentrate so hard on the grammar and not making a “mistake” that will damage my “career” that my voice is stilted and subdued.  No sense of humor comes through no matter how much I try to concentrate on funny events. What I say doesn’t matter; it’s how I say it.

People don’t want to get too close because they don’t want to catch whatever I have; I understand that and I know that I need to recover on my own. Long-lasting flu bugs require a balance between conserving strength and making some time to rest and going on with life as usual, continuing to get the necessary chores done.

There have been many years that I coughed all winter from dry, dusty inside air — when I couldn’t get my breath until spring came when I could go outside and let the sun be my WD40 and loosen my vocal cords. The achiness would go away with plenty of walking in the sun and fresh air.

I will get over this flu like any other — with time, rest, and a little babying.  I need to get my voice back; I still have a lot to say.

{January 29, 2011}   Was that an Owl?

It was a dark October early evening when Jane picked me up in her pride-and-joy white camaro for our weeknight gym ritual. It was the ‘80s so we were dressed in our “Flashdance” gym outfits: torn paint-splattered sweatshirts and sweatpants, and of course the obligatory sweatbands around our heads.  We were on a small town winding road listening to music and yapping, when suddenly something big hit the windshield—little screams escaped from us both, “What was that?!”

Jane pulled over and we walked back to what we thought was the point of impact.  There in the dark sat an owl, looking at us with accusatory eyes, by a lump on the ground.

“Oh, God,” Jane wailed, “I hit an owl! What should we do?”

I tried to take charge, “I don’t think it is dead; why don’t we see if we can take it to the Natural Science center down the street.”

Jane squinted at me, “How do we do that? I don’t know about you, but I’m not going to pick it up. That other owl looks like it wants to kill me!”

I thought for a minute; I could see the lights of house down a nearby driveway. “Let’s go to that house and see if they have a shoebox or something to put it in and maybe some gloves to pick it up.”

We walked down the driveway to the house set back from the street and rang the doorbell.  A harried-looking woman answered the door.  She looked us up and down disapprovingly. “Yes,” she questioned us impatiently.  Jane and I looked at each other: you—no you.

“We just hit an owl,” I blurted out.  She looked at me with squinty, suspicious eyes, so I continued, “Do you have a shoebox so we can take it to the science center?” She said nothing and continued to look at me; I started to realize how strange it sounded.  We continued to look at her with concerned innocent eyes.  She finally decided to give us the benefit of the doubt, “Just wait a minute…I’ll get a flashlight and a box.”

Jane and I started to doubt ourselves.  “This is pretty weird, isn’t it?” Jane whispered.  I gave her a sideways glance as the woman returned and then turned to a curious child behind her, “You stay here; I’ll be right back.”

As we walked down the driveway I started to feel unsure and nervous.  I have never liked people walking behind me, but somehow I also had a bad feeling. “It was down here,” Jane said, leading the way.  We were taking the woman farther away from her home. “Wasn’t it?” Jane muttered to me.  We kept walking…there was nothing there. “It was right here,” I impassioned.  I turned to look at the woman.  She pursed her lips; she looked white-hot angry.  She didn’t say another word; she took her flashlight and her box and stomped back to her house.

“But it was here…” Jane whined.

“Must have been stunned,” I mused.  I suddenly thought that if we could have read the woman’s mind, she would have been assuming we were pranksters or worse, and swearing all the way back down her driveway.  If this were a comic, I could see the cartoon bubble full of symbols.  We looked at each other and started laughing, “I can’t believe it,” I said.

Jane must have had the same picture in her mind because she began to laugh even harder.  Laughter can be contagious and dibilitating; it was difficult to walk back to the car.

“What must she think?!” I blurted.  I suddenly saw us as the woman must have seen us — teenagers dressed in ripped clothes trying to get her out of her house…so our delinquent boyfriends, hidden in the woods, could rob her.  We laughed all the way to the gym…that could only happen to us.

{June 9, 2010}   First Love Revived

My creative writing teacher in high school, Mr. Kawalski, told me, “If you want to write poetry, you have to read poetry every day”.  I hear this advice in my head every time I read poetry, which lately has been much too rarely; certainly not enough to inspire me to write poetry the way I did at past periods of my life.

Mr. K’s advice came back to me again recently when reading the obituary of June Beisch, complete with lines from her poems.  They captured me and made me want to read more, reviving a dry, wilted part of my mind and soul, bringing back feelings of being in love with poetry — the way I felt as a teenager when I found Leaves of Grass in the attic and began to read it.

Right now I am spending so much of my energy trying to survive, there seems to be no time left for feeding my mind.  I am trapped at the bottom of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs with the top of the pyramid nowhere in sight.

June Beisch took up writing poetry at 43 and published one poetry book.  Neither Mr. K nor Ms. Beisch know that I am thinking of them and receiving inspiration from them, but that’s the way life is.  I hope that someone someday may be reading my obituary and a few lines of a poem I wrote may capture their interest and rekindle a lost love.

et cetera
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