Friday, October 09, 2015

#9: Chimayó

I wander in the desert of my imagination, 
down along the banks of the Rio Arriba,
near a small gathering of placitas, little plazas,
some twenty-five miles north of Santa Fe,
to find you, Chimayó,
a place of weavers, the warp and woof
of Tewa tradition, those ancestral Puebloans 
who survived here
by making life in this dry place. 

Your hand woven blankets and rugs 
have scattered far beyond this valley,
treasures of comfort to place over the back of a sofa,
the design of feathers, gifts from the sky,
worked in berry-dyes of red
and gray, the colors of the desert,
and turquoise, 
the color of soul healing. 

I found my Chimayó weaving at a garage sale for six dollars, wrapped in a plastic bag. I picked it up and held it in my arms. I only knew I had to take it home, though its story and weaver remain unknown. 

The soft wool of this small weaving (34” x 60”) and the feather design inspired research where I learned more about Chimayó blankets, their history, and this particular style called Moki. The stylized feathers greet me in the morning and end the day.

Read what others have written for OctPoWriMo HERE.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

#8: Simple Things

Simply Green (Jeff Stemshorn 2015)
Each morning begins
simply, just that moment
of being thankful for this day
even as summer ends,
and the Canada geese wend south,
plaintive calls marking their direction.
If I remember not to shudder
to a stop, surrounded by far too many
I can stay centered,
well aware of the beauty
of this moment,
the interconnectedness of all things,
your hand in mine,
a comfort and a promise.

Perhaps writing a poem a day will be enough. But computer problems have prevented me from reading what others have written. Will you go see what my writing colleagues are up to at OctPoWriMo?

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

#7: Volunteer

Chocolate Lily (Camp 2015)

My grandmother called them volunteers,
those bright, sturdy plants that simply appear
in unexpected places, leftovers
from previous seasons,
the seeds forgotten, now
a yellow flowering vine
or a meandering pumpkin
taking over a corner.
Gardeners don’t always like
this unexpected bounty,
for we’re not talking tidy rows
deliberately planted.
Instead the seeds arrive,
perhaps floating on the wind
or dropped by birds. These self-set plants
grow on their own, tenacious,
sometimes invasive, bringing change,
surviving, despite another round of seasons,
roots digging deep,
something like me.

Today's prompt from OctPoWriMo is the road less traveled. I could write a book about that . . . but I didn't see the prompt until after I had written today's poem, a melange of memories from growing up and feeling I didn't quite fit in. I've even experienced a volunteer or two in my own short-lived gardening. You might find this article on what to do with volunteer plants amusing, now that the season for growing things is nearly past.  

Read what other poems have been written for OctPoWriMo HERE

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

#6: Fall

Manito Park (Camp 2014)

Set the teapot aside.
Settle now by the window to admire
the change of colors: green to gold and red.
My gnarled fingers yet ache to write
words that seize this moment
of beauty and peace.
Generations of women, mothers to daughters,
sisters, and friends, all pass along this truth:
Every day, every age requires
tenacity and courage to choose
acts of love and hope that honor
this gift of life,
that nurture creativity in ourselves and others,
no matter how tiny these actions appear,
no matter how few the days.
Soar, leaves, and swirl,
as free and timeless as any bird,
as loved as any child.

Autumn Leaf Child by Philippe Put (Flickr)

Today's prompt from OctPoWriMo was to explore the links between freedom, courage, and happiness. Whew! I certainly wandered around awhile before finding this poem. I think it takes much courage to be a creative person AND to be a good person, goals we strive for and may not always achieve. But there is always beauty and hope.

Read what others have written for OctPoWriMo HERE.

Monday, October 05, 2015

#5: Big Sister, Little Sister

Big sister on momma's lap
welcomes little sister just born.
Who is this little baby girl? 
Can I touch her? Gently?

You can love her 
without really knowing
you are not the only child anymore,
that you will always have
a little sister somewhere,
toddling after you and
challenging you. 
Sometimes you won't want to share.
Later, you will be grateful for every memory.
Big sister, little sister.

Today's prompt for OctPoWriMo is simply love. I think of love in so many different and sometimes complicated (maybe always complicated) ways. Here, My granddaughter greets her new baby sister. What a world awaits them!

Read what others have written for OctPoWriMo HERE.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

#4: Magic

Between The Lines
Between the Lines by Joel Robison

Whatever brings
the song alive, your breath
or mine, the clicking of the keyboard,
memories, imaginings, 
that space between
hope and despair,
to look within and know
with a kind of certainty
that today I will write.

OctoPoWriMo's prompt for October 4th is Magic. 

Joel Robison, a creative photographer I follow on Flickr, inspires me continually with his ability to say much with his images caught between what the camera sees and what he invents, whimsical, sweet, and filled with light. Click on the arrows on the picture (middle right) or check his works out HERE. Why not visit other writers who are writing a poem a day for October HERE.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

#3: Showing Up

Sea shells on the seashore by Gideon Chilton

Today’s 7:30 a.m. appointment,
a screening MRI.
I wait on the platform
in classic dead man’s pose.
“Breathe and hold still,”
a disembodied voice directs.
The machine whumps its own language,
the platform slides into the tube,
my closed eyelids trace flashing lights.
I imagine the round, narrow tube
encircling me now
with sea shells and green waves, 
unlimited horizons,
and the test is over.
“Have you had cancer before?” the attendant asks
as she helps me to the waiting room.
I look at my gnarled hands and shake my head.
We all travel this way, diagnosed or not,
sometimes cured,
but not immortal.

Note: This morning I sat in the waiting room, wondering how I could write a poem for OctPoWriMo today. Allen's MRI went fine, but I remember other friends and other times. Today's prompt: Showing up.