Apr 30, 2013

National Poetry Month: day 30/poem 30

This last poem that I'm posting on the last day of National Poetry Month was written about a year after moving to LA in 1999.

Aerial View

Poetry is the one true word
The air is cool and soft
atypical of
a summer's day
in Southern California
A light mist
falls from
the blanket of clouds
shutting out the sun
I am sitting on my porch
I am soaking in the coolness
A breeze softly caresses
my browning aloe plant
and gently swings
the bird feeder
hanging over my head
but does not disturb
my guest
a rugged looking bird
whose kind I know not
but who's been with me
all day
while my cats
closed in by the screen
cannot take their
little slanty eyes off
my new friend
Yesterday's paper
lays in ruins
on the white plastic
Rite Aid chair
across from me
with a half finished
My feet rest
on an ugly green
Sears cooler
that acts
as a makeshift table
and holds cigarettes,
matches, the cordless phone,
and perspiring iced jasmine tea
To my left is a half
filled Marlboro ashtray
sitting on the stucco wall
of the little porch
I can hear the
building's children
playing in the courtyard
but my view
is only of alleys,
other buildings' backs,
and our fenced-in pool
like some terrible tease
on hot days
The air brings
scents of far off
and my mouth salivates
for hot dogs
and burnt hamburgers
(vegetarian, of course)
my mind drifts
back to my childhood
and 4th of July
cookouts at Grandma's
in Worcester, Mass
with games of badmitten
then trekking through the woods
to view the fireworks
at Worcester airport
A helicopter
searching the LA area
brings me back
the soothing sounds of Handel
switches to the fast paced
beats of the Dave Brubeck Quartet
I take a drag
on my American Spirit
I see a car zooming
down the road to my left
destination unknown
a flock of pigeons
escape their rain shelter
when the mist
suddenly lets up
But my bird friend remains
seemingly bobbing
to the now cool beats
and ice cream sax
I wonder at the time
My days
home alone
tick by
into nights
metered by
my husband's tired snores
from long days on set
I contemplate my book
finished but still needs
more editing
I ponder my short story
not finished but needs
to be sent in by the end
of next week
for a writing contest
I spy cautiously
on my neighbor
across the way
who steps out onto
her porch briefly
eating rice with chopsticks
out of a colorful bowl
Life in LA is not
what I expected
but nothing
ever is
Life is what you make
of it
and that is why
I'm taking it slow
instead of jumping
into the fast paced
game of fame
and fortune
I stare long into
the bright
of the sky
and I see
moving pools
of nothingness
like electricity
I stretch my legs
and feel the muscles
in my calves
and the joints
in my ankles
and I marvel
on the beauty
the gift of life
and flesh and bone
and how so many women
don't see this beauty
in the mirror
only fat and disgust
all beautiful
all wonderful
No matter what
we look like
(Or think we look like)
And I feel
a vague sadness
stirring in my soul
when my mind
conjures up
hazy memories
of the Colorado
school shootings
and I don't want
to dwell too long
but I wonder at
what really went wrong
I recall
feeling alone
isolated and alienated
back in younger days
of school
and teasing boys
and hateful girls
and I remember
how I hated them
how I hated myself
and if it weren't
for him...
for them...
I'm older now
older, but still young
And the world has
so much
hidden beauty
I must seek
and I want
to tell
the world
to slow down
to listen
to music
soft and slow
and cool sweet jazz
and I want
to tell the world
to read
to ponder
to recite
to believe
And I want
to tell the world
to make art
and love
to smell
the sweet scents
of wild flowers
to feel
soft wet grass
between bare toes
or hot grains of sand
between sunscreened
to taste
salt water
and orange cream
to hug
to love
their parents
and children
to relish
laughter and tears
to make every
moment matter
to live
to love
to be honest
and free
to harm no one
not even yourself
to remember the past
and heed the future
but live in the now
the time
to revel
precious moments
that combined
is a life
that is not
too short
if cherished
to love
all others
we are all
the same
to relinquish control
to your heart
to feel the oneness
of all things
to find the poetry
on your own
back porch
and write the words
of your heart
for they are true
they are right
no matter
what anyone else
and to teach others
young and old
to do
the same
When you eat a peach
feel the fuzzy soft
taste the juicy sweet
smell the fresh scent
and let the sticky
run down your chin
and over your fingers
with no worries
this is life
savor each moment
savor the earth
savor your life
before it's gone
before you eat
all of your peach
A plane
flies low
and slow
presumably to land
at LAX
I think about the view
toy cars and broccoli trees
like a huge
train set
An aerial view
to watch
and protect
Let it be
trust and believe

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