my grand canyon

Amber vermilion ruby copper
Infinite prodigious beauty beckons
Magnetic draw to wonder supreme
Unmatched vastness entices, stuns
Striations reveal endless hues

Coral scarlet gold umber
Sun glints on narrow precipices
The brink invites the brave
A closer look, a peek into the depth
Teal ribbon dizzyingly far below

Khaki orange salmon apricot
Proximity excites, fear grips
The edge repels seduces coaxes
Frozen feet keep their distance
Phobia forges an unapproachable rim

Oscar’s Advice

Calm kindly eyes beseeched
What can I teach you?
Asked Oscar of the children
Slowly drowning in the stuff
Only money could buy

One replied as others squirmed
Serious brows drawn
We suffer in our crowded heads
Benign trivia overwhelms
Thoroughly devoid of solace

Take a walk, came the considered reply
Soak in the bursting buds
Gulp the scent of lilies of the valley
Wonder at the momentous gold
Sun setting over verdant hills

Mean Tweets

Cloaked cowards sling slime
Attack the famous without restraint
No thought precedes loathsome spewing

Words unchecked, attacks unfounded
Anonymous animosity, masked malevolence
Small-minded child, does your mother know?

Human humans have actual feelings
Wounding words abuse and bully
The open and guileless withdraw to heal

Hate loses steam, dust settles
The barrage subsides, rancor fades
Graciousness resumes, kind words prevail

Poetry Inventory

The beginning, Feelings Friday, Thursday night homework

5 prompts (Name, Un-invented, Inanimate, Repeats, Letter)
5 poems (Different, Death, Delicious, Appreciation, Darkness)

Momentum interrupted, The lull, A void

April Fool, or kismet, by chance, please help

“It’s been a couple of weeks since Mary Lambert’s poetry prompts ended, and I need something to keep it going” Cinnamon Paws (Thank you, my love), fresh start

16 days of poetry – Perspective, Art, Misogyny, Non-conformity, Injustice, Eavesdropping, People-watching, New Ride, Attention, Memory, Earlier times, Spring, Birth, Hope, My loves

Today, Thank you Mary Lambert

April possibilities remain

Bouncing

They say I make up memories

Baby memories I shouldn’t recall

I scoff, and run the memory movie

Giggling sister jumping on big bed

Me at her feet, little 2-year-old body bouncing

I laugh… laugh more…bounce higher, can’t stop laughing

9-year-old legs jump higher, bouncing my giggling body still higher

50s style sharp corner night table looms

Then, my dad, starched white shirt, skinny tie, shaking head

Me, head on Mom’s lap, scratchy sofa on bare legs

Bloody dishtowel wrapped ice pack covers my eye

“Again?” Dad asks

Perkiomen

Valley Forge National Park, Betzwood lot

Back seat duffle, gear overflows

Cleated shoes, helmet, sunglasses, gloves

Hybrid Giant tires pumped

Ready. Garmin set. Go.

Leading, Pedaling. Trailhead north

Thick woods flank long green tunnel

Iron bridge S curve down, down. 3 miles

Perkiomen River, today’s neighbor

Zig-zag of bridges, crossing, crossing over flowing streams

Weaving around kids on tiny bikes, past runners, past chatters

Pace set, rhythm

Steep, steep hill, flying down past rocky creek. 13 miles

Water views, bouldery cliffs, rugged trail, trendy towns, trail-side bike shop

Open field, bridge, woods, another bridge

Hill, Green Lane, halfway, glimmering lake, kayaks, barbeques, fishing poles

Park-bench rest, calories consumed, water gulped, 21 miles

Back on trail, path retraced

12-degree hill, up, up, Walk or ride? 29 miles

Top of hill, recover. Ancient ski lift rumbles, Pedal

Folk Fest stage. Sparkly water. Breath

Parking lot, right turn, bike rack, duffle, 42 miles

Dear Jerk

Dear jerk-off guy,

I was the person stopped at the red light behind you Saturday morning, headed for a weekend at the beach with my family, waiting for green in the burgundy SUV. You sat in the driver’s seat of a dirty, open, military style Jeep, with another beefy young guy in the passenger seat. While we waited, you (surprisingly, horrifyingly) heaved a grocery bag filled with fast food containers toward the bed of the large red dump truck that waited ahead of you. Physics guaranteed that you’d miss the truck bed, and the bag of trash fell to the road and scattered in the breeze. I honked. Not a quick, friendly “hey the light is green, stop looking at your phone” honk. Not an “I’m laying on my horn because you almost killed me” honk. But an in-between “I can’t believe you just threw trash on the street, get out of your car and pick that up” honk. Your reaction to my honk was shocking; you raised your hand into the air and flashed the rarely seen outside of middle school “jerk-off” simulation. The jerk-off move was followed by a “gangsta” style pointing move that said “come up here and say that to me”. My family felt the wave of your arrogant, angry aggression crash into our safe hybrid haven. As the light turned green and we made the left to head south, I hung back from you and your continued gesticulations. Who knew if you had a gun.

“If I were a cop I’d have a hard time not beating that guy up” I mused.  “But I think that’s the kind of guy who becomes one…”

After a long pause, from the back seat our daughter added “part of me wants to chase after that guy and follow him to wherever he is going”

“There is nothing you can say to a person like that to convince him he’s wrong” said her mother.

“And someone like that would have no qualms about hitting me” I piped in. “Don’t ever chase after someone like that” I admonished, looking back to make sure she heard.

Our conversation continued on from there, for two hours until we were at our Rehoboth door. So, thank you, jerk-off guy. You were the catalyst for a thoughtful conversation about misogyny, feminism, stupid arrogance, road rage, police brutality… also the recommendation from my loved ones not to call this poem “the jerk-off guy”.

I hope we never meet again.

Susan