23 December 2008
19 December 2008
Work is a little slow this afternoon and I have a few minutes to write a short post. While my mind is wandering here, there, and everywhere, I know that what my few faithful readers really want to hear about is how/when/where Jon popped the question.
First, it must be said that Jon is not a quick mover. While I had decided only a couple of months into our relationship that I wanted to marry him, he took his time considering all the implications. By the time we headed to
Good signs of a possible proposal flitted across the horizon, but considering Jon's methodical (and sometimes procrastinatory) tendencies, I thought it might be possible that he would propose around Christmas or New Years. At that point we would have been dating for 7 months. If you know my family history that definitely qualifies as a LONG-term relationship! For Jon, on the other hand, it was still quick. He has no married siblings and one of his cousins dated his girlfriend for 7 YEARS before they married!
All of this set me up for a bit of an emotional quandry. Everyday Jon was giving me more and more evidence or his strong character, passion for God, brilliant mind, tender heart and hilarious sense of humor. When I imagined someone partnering with me to minister to the body, raise children and impact the world for Christ, no one seemed to fit more perfectly than Jon. He was what I wanted. But I had already learned from long and hard experience that the pain of un-met desire is infinitely easier than the pain of fighting God for something He is unwilling to give.
To be continued….
11 December 2008
We have not yet figured out the wedding band thing, but I am thinking I'll go with a plain, rather narrow white gold band because nothing is really going to fit with it.
Many apologies for not updating this blog in a timely manner, particularly considering the recent excitement. Perhaps the excitement is my excuse as well as my prod.
On November 8th, 2008 I got engaged to my beloved physicist (hereafter refered to as BP). It was the day after my 30th birthday, in idyllic Sarasota FL and we are both ecstatically excited about this wonderful provision from the Lord. Many more details will be forthcoming about the how, where, and when of the proposal as well as tentative wedding plans.
Thank you for your patience and consideration.
18 November 2008
06 November 2008
Praise Him from whom all blessings flow
He who did not staunch wound in side and head
Whose hands and feet poured unmeasured grace
So full and free that wretches can drink their fill
Praise Him all creatures here below
Below but not put down, by Him declared
Only a little lower than angels
And created in His likeness--the image of God
Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts
With wings covering your eyes because His
Beauty is more dazzling than a Caribbean sunrise
Bowed, tossing at His feet songs and hymns
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost
Unimaginable Trinity, perfect community
Love overflowing and so super abundant
That it had to be shared
05 November 2008
One of the difficulties for me in using these prompts is that Robert Lee Brewer's own poems seem so far disconnected from my theme that I don't know how to translate his inspiration. HELP!
I am posting the link to the Total Church Conference recordings because I think they would be valuable for me to listen to while I consider my role in an urban context and as part of an urban church. They are here so I can find them, but some of you may be interested in them as well.
Thanks to The Resurgence!
Imperfections are beautiful
try to look past the lack of supermodel
proportions or MENSA-like
self-discipline of the ascetic
or even the NFL athlete
Throw out caution with the next
bag of kitchen trash
embrace the hedonism of unlimited
X-Box gaming and Wii tossing and
there are no more new leaves to
finger or resolutions to make
Embrace a self-love that asks
not what you can do for anyone or
anything else, but only what you can
do for the perpetually straining ego
that gets bogged down in flaw-hunting
or ever growing self-improvement
is not grace.
the heavy oak slab
of a door blocked out
the sun and rain but let in
so many wisps of apprehension
lay unguarded to fragments
of decayed hope
03 November 2008
Dishes are heaped ignominiously
the littered counter crunching
with toast crumbs
sticking with jellydrops
and I run the hot water
laughing as the soap suds
billow from the dishpan
chaos will be subdued
before my sponge
the clink of glasses and spoons
will sing in praise of common grace
and the joy of work
27 October 2008
10 October 2008
Erik Redmond at Irish Calvinist often has interesting or provocative posts, but I really enjoyed his brief reflection on the irony that he spent his single life being macho with his guy friends only to marry and have a woman for a best friend:-)
Good ole JT had another great post that led me to an online PDF about loving God with your heart AND your mind. I am looking forward to exploring this at greater length.
As if I didn't already have enough to read, Practicing Writer pointed me to an online community of readers and writers that looks like it should yield some interesting reads... Maybe I'll even comment if it is worth it...
Some of you know my passion for godly marriage--eventually my own , but mostly the support of marriage-mindedness in singles and marriage-committedness in my married friends. Boundless provides another interesting post about why they are so vocally in support of marriage.
JT had a post earlier on Nichols' book on the Blues and what an African-American pastor thinks of this exploration of a minority view of Christianity. Recently J and I were discussing what it feels like to be a minority when there are a very small number of Christians in a setting where there are systematic thought patterns that keep people from even seeing their prejudice. We discussed how it requires much grace, patience and genuine love to help someone see their faulty thought patterns and systematic beliefs for what they are.
It made me think of those unconscious prejudicial patterns in my own thinking that I rarely see because they seem so natural. I have been repenting daily since then. There is no way around it... my heart harbors prejudices, particularly racial and intellectual ones. Now I am struggling to change those patterns, but I can see it will take a lot of grace and patience on the part of those who are the objects of this prejudice and a great work of the Holy Spirit to redeem my thinking.
That leads me to Parchment and Pen's interesting post on one argument against atheism that may not be very effective.
Finally, I close with my friend April's ode to her beloved father. Her attitude, if not her specific examples could all be spoken about my own father. I don't know what I would do without his love and loving relationship with me. He has taught me much about what a man can be by the grace of God. In addition, my sisters and I experienced some of adventures in the company of April, Stacey and their incorrigible dad:-)
Enjoy the weekend! It should be beautiful weather here in the Chicagoland area, and hopefully good weather for the Marathon. May God be with anyone who thinks running 28 miles is a good thing:-D
A new Bible is not the only book on my list. After many promptings from my dear friend TulipGirl, I am also desiring a copy of Grudem's Systematic Theology. They have it at Westminster Books, but it is also on my Amazon wishlist. Never one to pass up on a little light reading, it seems like an ideal bedside companion. As I grow in my faith I see a greater and greater need to have a firm grounding in Biblical theology. I need to chew and savor...
Note: I recently split my wishlists on Amazon--one is of books that I want to purchase and the other is for books I want to read/get from the library. They are often completely different types of books:-)
Edit: TulipGirl reminded me that it was actually Berkof's Systematic Theology that she recommended.... So now that has been added to the wishlist as well! Don't know who it was that recommended Grudem...
07 October 2008
Astronomy Picture of the Day is another one of my favorite sites! Today's picture, which you see above, will be my new desktop for awhile. I subscribe on my igoogle homepage and find myself praising God for the awesomeness of His creation! I encourage you to check it out!
Jon and I read the first chapter out of Abolition of Man by CS Lewis on our way home from MO over Labor Day and had some lively discussion about worldviews and the training of young minds to be prepared for answering difficult questions. Justin Taylor over at Between Two Worlds posted some links to more interesting dialogue about worldviews here.
Another interesting post from JT concerned adhering to Biblical truth even when you may have emotional disagreement with it. This is not something you hear about very often and is definitely worth thinking about. What do I believe even though it doesn't resonate with me? What do I NOT believe because of the way it makes me feel, rather than because I have a firm conviction that it is not true? It reminds me of some of the conversations that I have had with non-believers and believers alike who don't believe in hell. They just don't think it fits with the idea of a good God.
Finally, any conversation about theology or philosophy eventually leads Jon back to naturalism, which he loathes. My own forays into worldview studies and my interest in philosophy and the understanding of truth was one of the first things Jon loved about me;-) He also finds that sort of conversation very romantic, so I like to make sure it is in good supply! Here was an interesting article on Parchment and Pen that makes a good argument against naturalism's ability to provide a foundation for morality.
There is always more to write, but that will have to wait for another post.
03 October 2008
The other day one of the blogs that I read regularly suggested subscribing to a read through the Bible plan as a way to incorporate more Bible reading into your day. I had been thinking and praying about that so the timing was providential. I have started doing that and it has already been quite a blessing. I encourage you to try it, especially if you work most of the day on the computer, like I do:-)
There is so much more on my mind but I don't have the time to post it. I will try to get somethings out here more regularly. Also, I am bringing the camera with tomorrow as Jon and I apartment hunt, so hopefully that will equal more pictures on here as well!
edit: Just to clear up any possible confusion, the apartment hunt is for Jon, whose lease is up in November. For now I am very happy and comfortable with Beth and the cats.
Autumn has arrived in Chicago and I LOVE it! Just one more month until the big 3-0 and I am excited about that as well. My plans have crystallized .... I will be celebrating my joy at the turn of a decade with some dear friends that I see far too infrequently: TulipGirl and her riotous clan! Jon has agreed to come along as well, so it should be a good party.
Thanks to my generous boss I have access to my vacation several months early so I am taking a long weekend (Thursday to Monday) to visit Sarasota. We fly out the day before my birthday and then have all weekend to celebrate and catch up.
My heart pines for some international travel, but my pocketbook and vacation days do not allow it right now:-( I am hoping to possibly do some travel in March to destinations yet unknown.... Another friend is going to be moving from Cyprus to southern Spain and I've never been to Spain before... So many options and so little time (or money)!
29 September 2008
"The soul should always stand ajar, ready to welcome the ecstatic experience."
~Emily Elizabeth Dickinson~
She thought it fit me. What do you think?
07 September 2008
This is us crowded into the very small plane that takes you up. I am sitting directly in front of the blond-haired blue shirted man on the left. His name was Jerry and his was my tandem-master. We were hooked together the whole way down. He has been tandem diving since 1987 and it was a bit like going skydiving with my dad *GRIN* I would HIGHLY recommend him for anyone jumping for the first time. He was very professional and encouraging and made the whole experience more fun! Jerry asked me, at about 7,000 ft and gaining, if I was ready to jump. I told him that it was a little late to ask, and that I could handle anything for a little while, so I wasn't worried. He laughed at my answer, but at least I was honest!
J was the last one off the plane. I was one of the first, after a group who were doing a formation dive, and he mentioned later that when he saw me fall out the door is first thoughts were: "There goes my girlfriend! Will I ever see her again!?" He added that he then felt a compulsion to get out of the plane and on to the ground quickly to find out if I was OK. I thought that was very chivalrous of him:-)This is the view from the plane--which is basically what we saw as we were falling out of the sky. The acceleration at the beginning of the freefall almost made me want to throw-up, but as soon as you hit terminal velocity (125 mph?) all you can feel is the wind. We jumped out at about 12,000ft and did a freefall to 5,500ft when you pull the cord on the chute. We jumped at about 7:30pm and it was just becoming dusk and very beautiful. It is hard to tell that from the pics.
I believe this is actually J in the picture. While I was one of the first ones off the plane, I was one of the last ones on the ground because Jerry showed me how to turn the parachute using the brake straps and I had a lot of fun spinning around in circles!
Here are the 3 totally endorphin-high jumpers. Joel is the tall guy on the left, a friend of J's that I dubbed Eyore almost immediately after our meeting. He is a very nice guy, but he does sound just like Eyore both in tone and commentary!
J was so hopped up after the dive that he acted like he was almost going to jump out of his skin he was so excited. To relieve the pressure he let out very loud hoots at random moments. I thought it was hilarious, but Tiffany was a bit weirded out.
One of the funniest parts was when I walked over to meet J after we had jumped. After squeezing me in a very tight hug he whooped and then looked at me and said, "You look totally hot in that jumpsuit!" (He continually surprises me with what he finds attractive, alluring or sexy. Thankfully, it is usually something that I do not have much control over (my vocabulary or the fact that my hair falls in my eyes) but that is a prominent or natural part of who I am. Very convenient!)
SkyDive Chicago had a heavily discounted rate for your second dive if you paid for it within one week of your initial dive. J and I have both purchased ours, so now we just need to plan our next outing to Ottawa IL.
05 September 2008
However, my favorite middle sis did take a few and you can see them (and her delightful commentary) here. Enjoy!
As soon as I can get the memory upgraded on my laptop I will be editing more of my own pics and getting them up here...
25 August 2008
An informative bio of Amundsen is available here. You can download a free translation of his book on his South Pole adventures via Project Gutenberg here. Because of my insatiable need for more adventure stories, I will be checking him out a bit more thoroughly. Enjoy!
Adventure is just bad planning.
- Roald Amundsen
Norwegian Arctic & Antarctic explorer (1872 - 1928)
Is it possible to lust for a Bible? If so, I am currently in the throes of an intense Bible lust. Some of you may remember from my birthday/Christmas post from last year that I was looking to get a new Bible. A leather-bound to-last-a-lifetime Bible. Well, I didn't get one last year, for myself or from someone else. It was a disappointment, but like all disappointments, in hindsight I can see the upside.
The upside to this disappointment is the ESV Study Bible. Due out in October (just in time for my 30th birthday!) it looks amazing. Normally I shy away from too much commentary in a Bible. My old stand-by Slimline NASB with cross-referencing was enough for years. At this point in my walk with Christ, though, I think I could do with some quality commentary.
So, if anyone is looking to drop a large amount of money on my birthday celebration, I would love the premium calf-skin:-) It needs to last for 60 yrs or so, so the cost/use analysis makes it a great deal--just over $3.00 a year!
08 August 2008
This past week one of the foremost Russian writers died. I've linked to two different obituaries, the NY Times and a Boundless blog post. There is always so much to be said about someone as controversial and pugnacious as Solzhenitsyn.
I distinctly remember reading One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich. The writing was hard and visceral and almost too simple to be real. I had wrestled (unsuccessfully) through Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov and Crime and Punishment, firmly convinced that Russian novels were an Everest I was incapable of climbing. But still, I had seen that unpronounceable name in the writings of individuals I admired. If I was to be an educated 20th century reader I had to read something by him. My reading was so random and lopsided. Here was a chance to fill in a gap.
Universal human experience is one proof, in my mind, of the centrality of a Creator. It is fact that, regardless of seemingly consequential differences, humans have a huge well of shared experience. Pain, loneliness, anger, fear, pleasure, happiness..... We have families and friends. We experience gain and loss. We love beauty, hate ugliness, and often times don't think past our stomach or our bed. Any person that I meet anywhere on the planet shares far more with me than could possibly be different.
Because of this great shared wealth the gulag became my life for the short time that it took to read One Day... I was a suburban teenager in my basement bedroom, surrounded by a loving family and recipient of the freedom and decadence of an American middle-class life. I was female, young and almost excessively sheltered. But I knew the reality of that life.
Solzhenitsyn reminds me often of an Old Testament prophet. I don't know that he wept much, but he was often misunderstood and he spoke truth when all wisdom seemed to advise silence. He championed against injustice motivated out of a passionate love of his homeland and people. He was often disillusioned and alone. The general public regarded him as a saint and crusader one moment and painfully awkward old coot the next.
He was just a man and one who lived long enough to prove that all men are fallible and easily misunderstood. But irregardless of some extreme and often mistaken views, he clung tenaciously to the truth when the truth promised little but heartache. In that respect, Solzhenitsyn was almost a living embodiment of anti-postmodernism. It is not all about questioning. Deconstruction is only valuable when you are actually taking apart something harmful AND are willing to subject your deconstruction to the lens of truth. Finally, truth doesn't change, no matter how you look at it, or whether or not it is fashionable or pleasant.
Haven't written anything this complex in some time. I am still wrestling with the implications of a life well-lived and whether or not I or Solzhenitsyn can lay claim to having one. Death brings so much to the foreground that I rarely think about. The NY Times obit is in my bag, haven't finished it yet, so I have some more time to think.
04 August 2008
- Thunderstorms that crash so loudly they make me jump... even if I have my earphones in.
- Changing the hem on $0.80 pants from the thrift store and having cute office wear.
- A best friend who will sit and listen to me verbally process my relational experience without yawning once.
- Thumb-wrestling with an extremely intelligent man and considering it just as fun as deep conversation.
- The fragrance of clothes fresh from the clothesline.
- Anything that combines mushrooms, spinach and good cheese.
- Standing in front of A Sunday on La Grande Jatte by Georges Seurat with someone who has never seen it before.
- Living over a year without a car.
- Working with interesting people at a job that really only requires 35 hrs a week from me and still pays me a livable wage.
22 July 2008
There has been so much to thank God for recently.
- The ability to even have thoughts of gratitude for instance. Anxiety has definitely been higher on the mental to-do list than that.
- Renewed intimacy with God and an insatiable desire for more.
- The sharpening that comes from interacting with other strong Christians.
- Dynamic conversation that blows my mind.
- Longer walks than I've had in a long time.
- The opportunity to purchase really cute girl shoes.
- Adventures in moving a stove for my best friend. Go Girl Power!
01 July 2008
The position reports directly to the President and working as her assistant is also a sizable portion of the workload. We really clicked in the interview and I look forward to working for her and learning from her. She is direct and upbeat--both things that help me in communication with my superiors. She also was looking for an energetic and extroverted person for this position, so that was a great plus.
In addition to all of this, the office is literally at the end of the stairs of the El about 35 minutes from me so it is a very easy commute. Get on a few blocks from my apartment, walk from the stairs into the building! There are so many other little things that make this such a fun providential gift from God! Rejoice with me:-) I am definitely rejoicing!
21 June 2008
There has not been an update in a number of days and now I am sitting on the couch in KS while Abigail and Hannah play in the basement, Issac and Joanna nap on their beds and Amy and Daniel have a little couple time in Wichita. In some ways it is Christmas in June, since this was my Christmas present to the family.
It is good to have some quality time with the munchkins. We've played hide-and-seek, watched cartoons, went to the park, painted on pasta and generally had a fun time. I am at that age when the biological clock as well as personal inclination make me eager to have children. Watching women make unwise decisions, though, helps me stay content as I wait and pray for the husband that God has chosen for me.
Currently I can't edit pictures on my laptop, so I will have to wait and see if DnA can get some for me to add here. I know you all like pictures and the Asher clan is quite photogenic:-)
One last note.... The job hunt is going well. I've had several preliminary interviews, one pretty major one at Moody last week, another one with a downtown non-profit after I get home, and have had some temp work in the meantime. I am hopeful that I will have full-time employment by the beginning of July. In general, the job hunt has been positive. It is always nice to hear people tell you how employable you are and how eager they are to help you find a good situation. Now it is just time to wait and prepare. Even if I have only been unemployed for a couple of weeks, I am totally ready to work again.
29 May 2008
My friend TulipGirl tagged me and I usually don't get these things done... But this time I am going to do it! You can check out her list here.
Obviously, I just moved into a new apartment so a lot of this is subject to change... maybe I'll come back and do it again in 6 months.
If you came to our house. . .
You would see:
Several of my art quilts, piles of boxes and rubbermaid tubs, a bright blue living room with a big print of a DeGrazia ballerina above the mantle, the 3 kitties
We’d probably feed you:
Roast Beef from my parents' farm or Chicken Alfredo or Calico Beans for dinner if it is warm out
Biscuits and Gravy for breakfast
And offer you this to drink:
Homemade fruit smoothies
We’d undoubtedly ask if you’d read:
Whatever we’re currently reading
We’d want to play this music for you:
Astor Piazolla tangos, Ella Fitzgerald, whatever is on my laptop or ipod
We’d want to tell you the latest about:
What’s happening at church or school
We’d probably suggest a game of:
Word Thief, Canasta, Sequence
We might would definitely show off:
The latest projects we are working on… the cats
We might get on the computer and show you:
My sister’s children, pics from my travels
If it was a long enough visit, we might watch:
Not sure… don’t have a TV;-)
28 May 2008
Today I found out that the sister of a dear friend and co-worker of mine was raped this past weekend while at a party. She is 20 yrs old and has done all the right things, including going to the police and gathering her family around her. Please pray for justice and peace in this entire experience. Pray that the family will be able to be a support and encouragement to her as they sort this all out. Pray for my friend that she would have wisdom and be able to care for both her sister and herself. This is one of those things that always happens to someone else, but now it has come close to home. Pray also that I might be an encouragement and support to my friend.
24 May 2008
06 May 2008
sorry... can't help it
at least I don't screech
my sleep deprived brain can't handle Indigo being smart
its just too much
It is like Jonatan being a good ole boy
overloads the synapses
A little background: Indigo regularly laughs and talks so loudly in class that she disrupts everything. The other instructor reprimands her regularly. So I laughed at a face another instructor made and Indigo informed me, very properly, that I was being too loud. It was too much, coming from her, so I just busted out again. Then my acerbic co-worker IM'd that my laugh was as bad as Indigo's singing, etc. Then the above poem happened. Oh, and Jonatan is one of my very sly 9th graders that will look me in the eye and insist that he is working hard when I just saw him playing cards with another student.... Then today he shakes my hand as if there was never a conflict betwixt us regarding his work or any other possible issues. Just too much!
03 May 2008
Also, it looks like Sara and I are going to try and move the weekend of May 16-18. Our lease isn't up until the 31st and I will likely camp out at the apartment until the 30th so I don't have to commute from Lincoln Square, but we need to get everything moved before Memorial Day Weekend because we would like to use that time to go to Berea's graduation. So, if you are around and would like to help.... We feed well!
30 April 2008
Turning the last page
Emptiness knocks me down
Like that huge wave in the
My sunglasses and contacts
ripped from my face
left me blind and vulnerable
on a foreign beach. The epilogue
completed--not a single word left
leaves me hollow and floundering
reaching for a life preserver in
the waves of loss and confusion.
She sucked me in--tossed me
into an articulate oblivion of
personality, philosophy and beauty
to no end.
My gluttonous reading has left me
gorged and unsatisfied
The End cut off all hope of escape.
28 April 2008
The only problem is that DePaul's tuition is a bit pricey. I think I mentioned earlier that I was hoping to get a job there in order to have my tuition waived. Well, I just found out today that I am not being considered for the position that I felt most confident about--Administrative Assistant to a law professor. That was disappointing in the extreme. There are still 3 more jobs that I might still be considered for. I am also on a waiting list for an English TA position. The way I see it now, I need a job at DePaul, a job with tuition reimbursement or a job that pays me about $10,000 more per year than I originally decided that I needed. I have submitted resumes for jobs that pay that much... It is really just a waiting game.
On the job front, I have submitted resumes for every job that I can find and I am going to try and look for more this week. That is about 30-40 resumes floating in cyberspace waiting to be read and considered. Thank God that I believe he is sovereign in these things because I don't know how I would arrange things if I had to figure it all out.
On the apartment front I picked up keys from Beth this weekend and started looking at paint colors for the living room and bedroom. Beth is having a graduation party this weekend, but after that I am going to break out the paint and get going. I am excited about moving... but not about the 3 flights of stairs all my worldly goods have to be carried up!
27 April 2008
Crumbled factories, Ayn Rand
Facades in empty lots: 45,000
Square feet for rent lie only blocks
From the newest highrise on south
Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois
Rusted ironworks bridging the brown
Sluggish river no longer dyed green
Testament to languishing industrial
Glories now lead to former tenements
Cum studios for the poor intelligentsia
Paving paths for the bourgeoisie
To invade the ethnic enclaves
Urban is chic and concrete pours
For Eco-Friendly Resort-Style Living
Where formally public housing stood
The sprawl has turned upon itself
Rushing home from the suburbs
To refurbished brownstones and the hope
That their righteous urbanity will restore
Life to the fretful deities of mangled nature
That said, the prompt for the 23rd was to write about age... how wonderful your age is now, the age when you thought you were in your prime, etc. I think about age a lot. When I was about 11 I told my grandmother that I wanted to be 80, that I was pretty sure that was the best age of all. She was appalled, and probably rightly so. I just thought being a grandma would be the best thing. I had no desire to be a teenager, or middle aged. I didn't want children, just grandchildren. But I digress.
Now I am facing turning 30 in just about 6 months. Several of my friends recently beat me to it, and several more will hit the mark before I get there (the joy of having a November birthday LOL). The reality is, I can say unequivocally that this is definitely the stage in life when I most shine. Maybe it is the urban living. Maybe it is the great new haircut. Maybe it is just being so in love with life and the God who has given it to me. Maybe it is having a boyfriend for the first time ever;-) Whatever it is, I am grateful. So I think this could be the best topic for my poem.
Thirty and flirty?
Sex in the City says now is the time
To grab what you can get with all
The gusto you can muster.
But like a dark storm brewing on the horizon
My friends cower in cubicles and at desks
Waiting with foreboding for their 3rd decade.
I, on the other hand, have come into my
own at last. No more hiding behind
shapeless "artistic" clothing
No more wishing that my intellect would
Dull to the common mental brilliance
No more squinting at the fine print
I dance in red fishnets and black high heels
Whirling to the rhythm of salsa and swing
Laughing at partners in wingtips and fedoras
I stand tall in black wool sweaters and
striped trousers before students who
shout "Hey Ms. WB!" down crowded halls.
Greeting newcomers by name in the atrium
Of a music school cum sanctuary, welcoming
Diversity into an urban, ancient worship.
Like the wise woman of Proverbs this age
Does not scare me and 30 means I am just
Beginning... I can laugh at the days to come.
Welcome home! My soul has found its rest
In a size 14/16, with Ashley's best bob swinging,
Eyes flashing, wit sparkling, and poetry falling from
I can't hear you.
Is that static on the line?
What? I thought you said
Ryan but that was Brian, right?
I don't believe it, that's not like
You always say I am naive.
But really, you can't mean it...
How far along? NO WAY!
Does her grandfather know?
I would say--
Don't you think---
STOP INTERRUPTING ME!
I can't listen to this anymore.
She is my sister, after all.
I might call tomorrow, or Thursday
Bye. No I mean it. Don't call.
26 April 2008
Who would have guessed
as we slept on that couch that
the seeds of a new family
were being sown.
Who would have guessed
as we dreamed or slept
dreamlessly that two who
are so different would joyfully
Who would have guessed
that me, smack in the middle,
would not be the arrangement
Who would have guessed
that a snooze in January
2006 would become
Mr and Mrs Gambill
At the Department of Vital Records
"Matthew Simon Nolan Tupac
Roddie Lorenzo Butch Darnell
Stu Emmit William Solomon
Aaron Donald Mickey Antoine
"Are you sure that is it?"
"Ma'am if you do not have it
in the correct order or have all
the names spelled correctly
we will be unable to release
the birth certificate."
Wouldn't a DNA test be a simpler
way to find out your baby's daddy?
Naming him after every possible
father means subjecting him to
YEARS of paperwork hassles
and you know everyone will
call him "Sonny" or "Big Daddy"
But I am just microfilming and this
has nothing to do with me.
I am so over teenagers
You look at me with jaded eyes
"Do we have to read more poetry?"
The whine is killing me.
Poetry today, and poetry tomorrow.
We will read it, write it, comment on it.
Alliteration animates all the asinine
verbiage the rappers throw at you.
Why can't you just try to enjoy a little
Dickinson or William Carlos Williams?
Your hormonally fired synapses
produce the most flagrant abuses
of language. But I accept the
beating if only you will listen
to the Beats or at least The Beatles.
But alas, you are in that most
narcissistic of ages and places.
Perhaps I am asking too much and
should just accept the occasional
gift: "That was hyperbole!"
22 April 2008
A New Sister
When the small bundle
arrived in my mother's
arms I was not concerned.
When she cried and wailed
and my mother gave her breast
there was nothing to fear.
When she was laid in the
bassinet to sleep
I watched in fascination.
When they told me she was
staying, I said,
She can go home now....
Take her back to the hospital.
Adolescents in heat stare at me
There is no connection.
"What does this haf to do wit us?
There is no connection.
"How can I Listen Actively
if I am reading a book?"
There is no connection.
Impassivity like a dial-tone
droning in my ear.
There is no connection.
They sit in a semi-circle
scribbling away on faded brown
clipboards, the wind playfully
grabbing stray hairs, loose papers,
and untucked shirt tails.
Rounded cheeks, unspotted skin
flaky, chapped lips betray their
concentration while flat chests,
thin limbs proclaim their youth
They write poetry with an intensisty
that comes from a simple place--
"When I am annoyed I am like a
sleeping volcano being interrupted."
"I am IceBerg that dances on water
when the wind puches me."
"Busy as a bee/ who am I supposed to
be, myself or somebody else."
16 April 2008
Kyle read his message out loud to us
Totally forgot! Stink.
Of course he feels bad
Thursday night belongs to us.
Herb usually calls. Lol.
Probably has a lot on his mind.
Anyway, i am super tired.
I can see it... house music blaring...
DJing keeps him up so late.
I went out with my mom last night.
15 April 2008
O the glories of IRS
Forms with numbers this word
Worker can never recall!
Long before I owed I wished
Away all income—pining
For a land where money
Was no more important than paper
Instead, the computer keys
Keep clicking and the futile
Search for old returns
Plummets me yet again
To the depths of green Rubbermaids
When will the ceaseless toil
Find its reward in a fattened
Billfold or Ledger?
Only when assets are not greater
When income and outflow
Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security
Have gorged themselves
Unless I can deduct for the bib
I gave Lucille and the wine
Donated to the writers’ circle
How my pen behaves
Pouring forth indigo goodness
Script ripples across alabaster
Pages tied by thought
And fragile threads
Winsome words weaving wonders
Scarlet gel slips and slides
Consonants and vowels
Pulled into a black and white
But then puddles of violet
Soak futile linen
Doodles replace eloquence
Scratching, no longer gliding
Ripping raw syllables
A tool, a toy, a torture
This is how my pen behaves
13 April 2008
“It’s late and I’m feeling so tired/ Having trouble sleeping/ This constant compromise/ Between thinking and breathing” Trouble Sleeping, Corinne Bailey Rae
The hot pillow no longer
Caresses my cheek as racing
Images explode my exhausted
Prompted always by a restless thought
Undisciplined monkey mind
Needs training like a recalcitrant puppy
Sleep keeps no company
With manic mental gymnastics