Saturday, June 30, 2012

Lament of the demise of the handwritten letter

Elegy for the Personal Letter

by Allison Joseph

I miss the rumpled corners of correspondence,
the ink blots and crossouts that show
someone lives on the other end, a person
whose hands make errors, leave traces.
I miss fine stationary, its raised elegant
lettering prominent on creamy shades of ivory
or pearl grey. I even miss hasty notes
dashed off on notebook paper, edges
ragged as their scribbled messages—
can't much write now—thinking of you.
When letters come now, they are formatted
by some distant computer, addressed
to Occupant or To the family living at
meager greetings at best,
salutations made by committee.
Among the glossy catalogs
and one time only offers
the bills and invoices,
letters arrive so rarely now that I drop
all other mail to the floor when
an envelope arrives and the handwriting
is actual handwriting, the return address
somewhere I can locate on any map.
So seldom is it that letters come
That I stop everything else
to identify the scrawl that has come this far—
the twist and the whirl of the letters,
the loops of the numerals. I open
those envelopes first, forgetting
the claim of any other mail,
hoping for news I could not read
in any other way but this.

"Elegy for the Personal Letter" by Allison Joseph, from My Father's Kites. © Steel Toe Books, 2010.

I just started a Meetup Group called the Denver Letter Writers.  The purpose is to share in the act of letter writing.  I love paper, sealing wax, words, stamps, you name it.  And I plan to keep the post office in business all by myself.  We are actually doing a little Salon Tea at DTR in July where we'll kick off this Meetup Group.  I'm so excited - I have 6 other folks like me who want to attend!!

The poem above was shared with by one of the Meetup members.  I just love how you can "see" it.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Bottles of thanks to you

I was going to post a photo of a pretty bouquet to give you flowers as thanks for letting me whine in the last two posts. 

But instead, you get a bottle tree.  I love these trees.

So, many bottles of thanks for letting me whine!

Thank you for the solid advice.  I'm trying to put some of it into play and still a little scattered at the moment.  But it's nice to hear from you!!

And this poem, below, has nothing to do with whining or bottle trees, but I like it.  Reminds me of the things I say to the CO Boy when he asks about school.  Part of me thinks he should learn this stuff and part of me thinks, not really.

To David About His Education
by Howard Nemerov

The world is full of mostly invisible things,
And there is no way but putting the mind’s eye,
Or its nose, in a book, to find them out,
Things like the square root of Everest
Or how many times Byron goes into Texas,
Or whether the law of the excluded middle
Applies west of the Rockies. For these
And the like reasons, you have to go to school
And study books and listen to what you are told,
And sometimes try to remember. Though I don’t know
What you will do with the mean annual rainfall
On Plato’s Republic, or the calorie content
Of the Diet of Worms, such things are said to be
Good for you, and you will have to learn them
In order to become one of the grown-ups
Who sees invisible things neither steadily nor whole,
But keeps gravely the grand confusion of the world
Under his hat, which is where it belongs,
And teaches small children to do this in their turn.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Someone, kick me, please.

I like this.

It's true, you know, but oh so hard to do.  While I'm trying to live the life I'm capable of, I have to do laundry, get kids to horse camp and work.  Now I love all of that - except maybe not the laundry- but it's difficult for me to juggle.

This post and the one before sound so whiny and I just hate that.  But it's where I am right now and I guess I need to deal with it, because truly, I do hate whiners.

I've been taken over by laziness.  I simply can't manage to do anything but the necessary items required on the "to do" list.  I should change my "to do" list to include items that are important to my soul, but dang, who will wash the dishes, ya know??

Someone please yell at me so I can get out of this funk!!