Life is a Teapot

Life is a teapot, wide in the middle and usually a bit on the short side. The teapot’s long spout keeps hot stuff at a safe distance, unless, you splash willy-nilly, being someone who doesn’t mind  messes. A good handle also helps, particularly when handling copious amounts of hot water. Unless, of course, you tend…

Earth, Water, Fire, and Air

Earth’s endless hills and dells Symbolize life’s parallels Rising high, sinking low Shining light and dull shadow Water’s gentle ebb and flow Cradle and rock my very soul The shallows and great depths Reflect my deep and rhythmic breaths Fire’s constant flicker and flame Burn away both fear and shame Hot-dark red and cool-light blue…

Brenda Lurleen Comes for Cookies

Girl, you work too much. Where’s the fun? she says as she picks up a cookie. The way she brings the ginger snap  to her frosted pink lips and carefully, gently nibbles its edge, shocks me. I assumed brazen meant voracious, over-indulgent. I munch on my own cookie, inhaling awakened spicy sweetness. Still, I don’t appreciate…

Tell Me What You Need

How can I love you better What is it that you need How can I help nurture your soul So your true self can be freed Tell me the truth Don’t be afraid Loving means asking So your joy can pervade Your true spirit glides   through the sky with ease Dipping and cavorting Bolstered by the…

The Two Helen Leatherwoods

Helen Leatherwood There are two of us in our family I am a Junior of sorts Though I don’t have Marie as my middle name The two Helen Leatherwoods have a few things in common: a love of literature a deeply spiritual side a passion for learning a left-leaning political persuasion a deep interest in…

Undergrowth

Undergrowth,  where the secrets are hidden. Down in the moist soil next to where the doodlebugs cluster together, rolled up in their little balls,  luxuriating in the dark and the damp. Secrets like the dark and  the damp as well, where they can tunnel deep and feel safe. Where they can burrow to spots where…

A Poem for My Sister

I found this poem I wrote to my sister back in 2012.  It seems fitting tonight so I decided I would share. Sweet Leslie, I love her so even now. Good-Bye to Leslie I see her lying in her hospital bedDark brown eyes half-closedSquare jaw tightCan she hear me? I lean close“Hello, Sister.”Her pale lips shiftInto…

Brenda Lurleen, My Alter-Ego, Comes to Visit

Opening my front door I spied her sashaying up the front walk to my house. She wore big green sunglasses and a pink leopard-skin top. Hair teased high, glowing reddish-gold in the sun. Then she disappeared. I heard her deep-throated chuckle half-amused, half teasing A feeling wriggled in my stomach A giggle I half-remembered I…

A Lesson from Mae, the Cat, and Her Friend, the Scrub Jay

I am up at our orange grove in Ojai Today, my daughter Liz told me that her outdoor cat, Mae, has a bird friend, a scrub jay, who hangs out wherever the cat is If the cat comes to eat The scrub jay stands nearby patiently then eats any remaining food the cat leaves No…

Happy Birthday, Rachael!

Rachael is my youngest daughter She is also someone I work with three days a week. She is smart, funny, opinionated, and loving She can tease me mercilessly She can also make it crystal clear how much she loves me We share a deep love of literature and writing She also embraces the antique business…