Category Archives: poetry

Prius

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers

it’s been raining, and it’s about to rain again
but even dogs who don’t like rain, need walks
so Finn and I walk
down, around, through the park, back up and around
he sniffs the rain-green grass, I sniff the air
the smell of the wood burning stove
from the house on the corner
is my favorite

we cross the quiet street
on a diagonal
avoid a Prius silently coming closer
finn loves the sound of a Prius
it’s the sound of someone coming home
he stops at the corner, head turned
wags his tail
sits at perfect attention
won’t budge when I ask him to
I don’t have the heart
to force him, show him I’m boss

the Prius parks
the man stares at us
Finn’s tail keeps wagging expectantly
I want to explain to the man
my dog thinks you’re his dad
he doesn’t understand that our Prius doesn’t come home anymore
that is why we are standing on the corner
staring at you
and the rain-green grass




What’s in a name?

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers

I remember sitting on my fiance’s mom’s bed after her husband’s funeral. I was on a corded landline, talking with my high school drama teacher. It was just weeks before my wedding. She told me she hoped I wouldn’t let the death of my fiance’s dad pressure me into changing my name. I didn’t. I kept my name.

I remember my daughter’s birth. I didn’t want to have a name different from hers. So, I filled out paperwork, updated my license and taught everyone at school to call me by my new title. One of the secretaries never got it right. For years, she would call me over the PA system by my old name. I knew she was talking to me though.

A few weeks ago, after my divorce was officially final, I called the Social Security Office, confused. In order to prove I was a real person, I needed all kinds of paperwork. It seemed silly since somewhere I still have the Social Security card that I got when I was like 12. I wondered why I couldn’t just use that and pretend the last few decades never happened. Instead I had to have my doctor’s office give me paperwork proving who I was. Thankfully the doctor agreed, I am indeed a real person.

Today I opened the mail from Social Security and pulled out my new card.

So now,
I am officially the
old me with my
new (old) name
on my
new
social security card
that looks a lot like my
old old card

#sol22 March 31 I’m Not a Unicorn

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!

I may not ever be a unicorn, but I am a writer
I’ve been thinking about this
all-day since I put on the shirt my friend gave me
It says “Being a Unicorn was hard, so I decided to become a writer”

I mean, honestly, being a writer is hard too
But I can’t stop now
I won’t stop now

I had a hilarious chat with a teacher today, and as we laughed and walked our separate ways she called after me,
“Don’t write about me!”

I said, “Well, now I kinda have to, right?”
But I will respect her wishes.
I’ve decided that telling this part of the story doesn’t count.

The thing is, I will keep telling my story
And if you are
secretly thinking
Don’t write about me!
I’m here to say
It might be too late
I will never be a unicorn, but
I am
will always be
a
Writer

#sol22 March 22 A Drive on March 22

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!

I’m happy I’m in a van
not a Bonneville
You oughta know

That’s what I’m thinking
as Alanis sings
and I drive

There’s a bird in the road
I wish she would move
like she’s supposed to

I look in the mirror
the bird is walking
back to where she started

Why does she like that spot
in the middle of the road?
I wonder, I worry

Alanis sings some more
I turn up the volume
Why are you so petrified of silence?

March 22 doesn’t mean
anything
anymore

#sol22 March 21 This Stye in my Eye

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!

When something is bothering me
I like to write a little bit of poetry
Then I can complain and whine-
It’s more fun if you make it rhyme!

I have an annoying stye
in the lower lid of my left eye
this added much dismay
to my sunny, spring otherwise lovely school day

Before this stye came along
there were plenty of other things wrong
enough stuff to make anyone queasy
but blaming the stye? That’s super easy

The world is full of hullabaloo
All sorts of real trouble people are attending to
Much Worse than my having to be courageous
with a little stye that’s not contagious

But this stye
In my eye
I can’t deny
It’s enough to magnify
the problems I can’t specify


#sol22 March 17 Imperfect Limericks

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!

Addicted
I wrote a limerick example as one way
To help teachers who write find a slice today
But now I’m conflicted
Am I addicted?
Or, is it maybe okay?

Teacher Writers
This March there are some teachers
For writing, they don’t sit in the bleachers
They know there’s a way
To Slice every day
They’re part of our schools’ best features

Speaking of School
There once was a year so academic
You couldn’t tell there’d been a pandemic
I’m kidding you know
It does totally show
Because the trauma is systemic!

Masks
All the learners in school wear a mask
It’s not really a whole lot to ask
But on Monday, it’s true
It’ll be optional for you
I hope the teachers are up for the task

Lunchbreak
Thought I’d come home for a quick little walk
Take the dog once or twice ‘round the block
But the cat dragged his butt
And there was poop in his strut
So I mopped and kept checking the clock

Leadership
I was happy to run a teacher-writers meeting
We were writing and talking, I was happily leading
Until I couldn’t unmute
That was really a hoot
My leadership? Unfortunately was fleeting!

Slice
I could just use the limericks I’ve already written
Imperfect, I know but still, I am smitten
I’m hooked for sure
And I’ve looked, there’s no cure
So I hope my limerick slices will still fit in!

#sol22 March 11 From my (Uncle’s) Chair

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!
From my chair I see 
boats on lifts 
waiting  to be lowered into 
grey green water rippling through
a coastal waterway

From my chair I watch
for dolphins
as they curve in and out of the water
I saw them this morning 
But I'm feeling greedy 

From my chair I see
an ibis
a heron
I think - I'm not so great with the bird names

From my chair I see
palm trees 
sway
as the wind picks up
the birds swoop down
the water ripples
and I watch for 
dolphins

#sol22 March 9 Captain Al

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!
Captain Al described the island as uninhabitable, un-walkable, spooky
as we passed an opening where you could almost see through the first layer of twisted roots and branches
"I don't think anyone ever wrote a poem about walking through the mangrove island," he said
and I took it as a challenge

I've kayaked through mangroves
I've touched their branches to push my kayak back on course
I've passed by a crocodile, still as a rock sunning on the shore framed by mangroves
and other crocodiles too
Captain Al himself told us of the hidden prairie as we passed the last key, complete with a beach
a family used to come on and off the shore of their home there years ago

Now I learn that mangrove pods contain fully developed miniature mangroves
that float horizontally as far away from their parent tree as they can
before turning vertical and planting their roots in the muddy ground
"Seem familiar?" Captain Al asks

My dad, next to me on the boat asks if this must mean the mangrove islands keep expanding
"Oh yes," Captain Al says
"Beautiful beaches are temporary."

I probably won't ever walk through the twisting muddy mangrove island
where I might finally get a few feet in only to be greeted by a crocodile
But I can boat by
I can watch the anhingas, herons, osprey and egrets
I can peer through the branches
I can imagine walking through
And I can certainly
write a poem

#sol22 March 4 I love I wonder

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!

I love, I wonder

I love
the way the cats wait for me at the bottom of the steps in the morning
I wonder
if they start waiting at a certain time, or hear my alarm, or me, or maybe they just know what time it is?

I love
the pink and orange sunrise through the trees in my backyard
I wonder
when will the trees be green again and will it feel sudden? I don’t remember what the sunrise looks like through the trees when they are full

I love
when my coffee is perfect – smooth and creamy with a hint of maple
I wonder
will I move my quiet coffee time from the couch to the porch when it’s warm again? If I close my eyes I can feel those spring mornings

I love
quiet mornings that start with stretching, journaling, mindful light therapy before I scroll
I wonder
how long will these good habits last? How many good habits can you start at once and what good habit can I start next?

#sol22 March 3

Slice of LIfe
Part of Slice of Life by Two Writing Teachers March Slice a Day Challenge! I’m slicing every day this month. Thanks for stopping by!
My house is quieter now-
               unless the boys are wrestling or yelling at each other or singing loudly for all to hear,
               unless the dog is barking
When they were babies, toddlers, preschoolers, I used to tell myself "you'll miss this noise." 
                I was wrong
I don't miss the noise.
               well, sometimes I do
I do miss the cuddles, the chatter, the little hands, the weight of a sleeping child on my shoulder
               the weight of a sleeping child on my shoulder

A quiet early morning
                 I remember when mornings started this early but  with crying, or drumming, or a Super Friends DVD so I could sit with my coffee
I sneak downstairs early this morning, trying not to wake the dog 
               I tripped on a boot on the steps, and heard his doggy yoga stretch begin
I used to be scared of the dark
                But somehow after betrayal, the dark isn't so scary
Outside, I breathe in the quiet and watch the dog sniff around
                Until a strange noise comes from the darkness of the street
                I watch my dog become more interested in the noise, and quickly bring him in
I've been expecting an owl
                That was not an owl
I wait until the sun is up to try going outside again
              The house is quieter
In this moment I am thankful for this mindful time to write
               I miss the cuddles, the chatter, the little hands, the weight of a sleeping child on my shoulder