Friday, August 31, 2012


In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about marriage: "We" is impenetrable.
Trifextra Week Thirty-One:

Robert Frost one said, "In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on."  We want you to do the same.  Sum up anything you want, but do it in three words.  Your response should mirror Frost's quote by beginning, "In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about--."  And the last four words are yours to choose.


Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Rural Alabama.  Swallowed by kudzu and red clay.   Names like Eufaula and Reeltown, Loachapoka, Notasulga and Selma rattle loose in my thinker.  Those are Alabama.  Standing stark against modern Auburn, its bohemian-cum-intellectual university culture; Gulf Shores, try…ttt…try…ttt…try as it might to attract young’uns with beaches and golf; Birmingham, with fancy urban temptations. 

My momma was born in Eufaula.  And for as long as he could, her Pawpaw remained there.  His house was a time machine.  Where reality laughed at vintage notions.  Technology an afterthought, dangling from one shoddy wall outlet to the next.  Where the concept of plumbing was the grandchild of the original floor plan.  Where the quilts were made by the hands of the cold, and chairs by the hands of those tired of standing. 

The house was older than him, Pawpaw already quite the dinosaur back then.  A towering man is who I remember.  Leaning with age.  Khakis and heavy black boots, function for the working man.  He creaked.  And though dust had not yet claimed him, he smelled of it.  

It was something much simpler, though, that called to my little doll eyes.  More than the exposed plumbing or enlarging black mole on Pawpaw's left cheek, it was the walls that tugged on me.  More specifically, watching the beams of sunlight breaking through their cracks.  Or darklight.  Or rainshadows.  Or bugs.  That house was from a time when pee beckoned man into the night.  Darkness chased him to bed.   When man came from the dirt and the dirt fed him, so little removed from the wilds from which he crawled.  There, Pawpaw’s tacked wires and PVC pipe evidenced man’s brittle conquest over nature.  And there gaped the cracks in the very thing that holds us still.  And as I sit, I find myself a bit envious of Pawpaw’s walls.  Solid against the menace of storm, yet arms open to the fantasy of wilder things.  It’s strange the silly things we remember from childhood.  I named my son after Pawpaw. 
Trifecta Week Forty- Dinosaur
3: one that is impractically large, out-of-date, or obsolete

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Fly away
sweet Gracie May
From stages slick
for grind ballet
From filthy hands
pretend to pray
Lovely hips
bound soul buffet
Your sparkle void
disgraced Monet
to dance with angels
fly away

Trifextra Week Thirty-
This weekend we want you to write a 33-word response using the name of an animal as a verb.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012


She is a river in an undying hand
a diamond riddle flowing in the shape of time
through a loupe of fertile faces 
powered by the grains
falling down to sway a fouler heart
The hand of lady justice calls
her sodden song
sets right the scales
for the head that ever weeps below
and the tails that never reach the sky.
Her current feeds on shelter winds unbound with laughter and 14-karat secrets. 
Her sediment hides the sadder dreams, silt for losing, thorns for the crying times.    
The day comes once when she spills into newborn trickles,
seeded by her fading tides until the bloom rushes in. 
Dry beds etched with the story of Mother Rain,
the tale of Father Sand cracking bones of painted desert
darking games to bleed the shame 
darking games to feed the pain
skipping rocks for kissing sweeter
on and on she flows
shaping time
time again
birthing eyes to grace the lips
sway the heart
on tipping scales
weep and reach
laugh to cry for the fading child
tides shall fall
wither to bloom
and again
rushing in.

3: personality, disposition <a cold heart> 

dVerse Open Link Night- Week 58

Monday, August 20, 2012


 I quit smoking on April 16 of this year.  Cold turkey.  Flat out.  Even with a couple left in my last pack.  I threw it away and never cheated.  Not once.  I didn't use patches or gum or meds. 

I started smoking when I was 15 years old to impress a boy.  Camel nonfilters.  No shit.  Never more than a pack a day.  And I quit for both my pregnancies and during the time I nursed them.  

I was doing yoga one day.  Well, on April 16, obviously.  And the girl in the video said, "every breath is a chance for joy."  And it was just like that.  I quit.  Because I want lots of chances for joy.  LOTS.  Until I am dead.  Which also played a big part in keeping me quit.  The irrational fear of it, that is.  

But I am ashamed to admit that I have filled that vice with others.  Just as addicting.  With an actual physical reward response when engaging in them, and an actual withdrawal when I cannot.  

I chew an entire pack of gum every day.  Sometimes more.  That's 14 pieces of gum in a pack, my poison being Orbit Wildberry Remix.  I chew it.  And swallow it.  Every.  Fucking.  Day.  


I pick at the skin on my lips with a pair of tweezers.  Until they bleed.  Every.  Fucking.  Day.  

My lips look like shit.  And they hurt.  And I don't care.  I just keep picking.  Chris even tried hiding the tweezers.  I asked him to.  But then I found them.

I ran out of gum and forgot to get more at the grocery store.  So Chris went up to the store and bought 8 packs of gum.  

I don't even want to know what my intestines look like at this point.  I know human bodies digest gum and the "7 years" thing is just a wives tale, but there are ingredients in the gum that it takes longer to digest, and swallowing a lot of gum in a small amount of time causes it to build up before it has a chance to digest.  

I swear to all that is good and holy, if I have to go to the ER because of a fucking bowel obstruction due to GUM, I will start smoking again.  

Fortunately, if my lips fall off, I won't be able to start smoking again.  

But seriously, I will never start smoking again.  

Now I must go. 

So that I can continue picking my lips until they fucking bleed.

And obstructing my gastrointestinal tract.

This is such crap. 

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Closer

He smiled in horror.  “What’s your name, sweetheart?” 

My lips met to forge the consonant of used-to-be, but tasted only blood- the afterbirth cradling my soul’s dead reckoning.   

“Today, my name is Anna.” 
Trifextra Week Twenty-Nine:
Last month we asked you to give us a killer opening line in exactly 33 words.  This week we're asking for an equally amazing closing line.  It can be the ending to the story you began in the previous challenge or a completely different ending altogether.  Just make sure it's exactly 33 words.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Where You Are

It is how I fell
in love with a one-room flat
seven thousand miles away
jutting from a mountainside
toes on the dirt path 
to my front door. 

It is how I roamed a fool
through an old city 
where people were strange, 
oh yes, I the stranger.
Letters and words
so big for my little mouth. 

It is how I stuck,
a girl-tipped pin on a map,
foreign droplet 
in curls of ocean
east, west, and south.
Fenced by the enemy
twelve kilometers
to the north.

It is how love lingers
in a contrary little place
old and beaten by history
tramontane bayonets
waiting on shoulders of fear
for some ancient retribution.

It is how a soul stretches
across delicacies and rhyme
along the cracks of dictum
yet the heart is never reaching
for a chest too far to fill.

It is how my feet remember,
when the way gnarls round and back again,
that home is never 
a place you are not,
but is always 
the place where you are.  
"a : a familiar or usual setting : congenial environment; also :the focus of one's domestic attention <home is where the heart is> b : habitat"

Friday, August 10, 2012

Mother Tongue

All we are
essence to force
master, child  
blessed name

Voices ring shyly
enlightening hearts
dirty-mouth promises

Spitting disdain
madness on lips
stompers, saluters
warlord berserkers
fealty without self

Trifextra Week Twenty-Eight: 
"Give us 33 words (exactly) that tell us three different uses for one object."

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


Open your hand
It is there
The scion flame
remembrancer’s eye
memento vita
the fire of magic past-
a gift meant only for you.
Within is scrawled the dreamwalker’s prayer,
a story in the shadow of time.
That path now lay fallow-
lone in a winter of deeper skies,
waiting for your feet to find.
Your hair, parted in a wasteland,
feels the shame of a weakened hand.
Mudslung and maligned,
days fall dark.
Yet with each autumn passing,
a braver boy shines,
touched by the au fait hand of gold
waving you by,
waving you through.
Carry on, sheikh marigold maker,
Brought to court
by the sweetness of
outcast angels.
May your treehouse stand strong
in the face of undoing.
May your light glow hot,
raining love on men at war.
Oh, kindled star
Carry on.


Saturday, August 4, 2012

Elver Royale- Le Fable

The Prince of Eels grew lungs,
slithered out under the sun.
His kingdom of dirt christened
Upon all he surveyed
lied strewn legless bones of eelfare.
For eels should never grow lungs.

"Tell us an original fable in exactly 33 words."

Friday, August 3, 2012


Shall I become a vapid lay? 
Like she, all the shes, mommas, prickly and bright.   
The shes standing in line with their wine and lip shine. 
The mommas with their soccer balls, 
mating calls, 
chasing grades and smalls and babydolls. 
Shall I feather a wisp of hair
ever sweet across a cheek
and answer my door mid-chore
as the lovely, languid lady of the house? 
My man be damned
belly filler, bacon slayer
bringin’ the meat with angry feet, 
tight-lipped, teeth chipped 
and his hair a little grayer. 
Momma taught us how to suck and walk
grace under buttons, shaming gluttons
of the modern deuce unit.
Skinny minds trapped in a belt of jesus felt-
Babies, babies, pay and die.
Worky, worky, smile and lie. 
Shall I wink for him, shy and prim?
Laughing grim in a circle of wifely dim?
Sigh, man.
The man. 
Dan and Sharon birthing Sam
A normal stacked with blanks to fill
slapping pork chops on a grill.
No hell way.
Not a chance.
Time stands still for no man
and stiller still for his little woe-man.
I’ll dance without pants
scream and steal a slim chance
to live the way I want to die-
with a grin, full of sin
through the cataract of godly men
who peel away the haze of try
with a finger
in her wicked eye.  

 This is me pledging my undying love for sweet Sinead for the Real Toads prompt,
in all her rebel glory and for all her silly renegade shenanigans. 
You're right there next to Joan Jett, girlfriend.  Right there.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Going Rogue

Have you ever done that before?  Thought of words that sound great together, use it as a title for a blog post, and then have no idea what the blog post should be about? 

Yeah.  Me neither. 

Is that right?  'Me neither?'  I think it is.  

I remember when I was a kid.  Everyone at school made fun of me for saying "EYE-ther" and "NIE-ther."  Apparently, it is supposed to be "EEE-ther" and "NEE-ther."  I still don't know why I say it that way.  We all grew up in the same town, went to the same school, watched the same TV.  Why do I say it differently?  I don't know. 

It's frustrating being the mother of boys sometimes.  Especially boys who have.  Umm.  A following.  Kind of like their girl posse.  Why do girls do that?  Are we really that hard up for attention?  Do we relish the challenge?  The competition?  Why don't parents see this trait in their daughters and try to circumvent it?  I wish my mom had.  I see Blanky and Blankee and Blankie Sue standing on my front porch.  Ringing my doorbell.  For the third time today.  One twirls her hair.  The other stares through black eyeliner.  Another digs her toe into imaginary sand.  All ask, "Umm.... yeah.... can I talk to Andrew?"  in the very most hushed tones.  I crack the door and turn to see my youngest spawn standing behind me with the "I'M NOT HERE!!" face.  Gawddamnitalltohell.  I've had a talk with him.  About how bitches be trippin' and whatnot.  I've talked to him about letting girls down fairly and with kindness.  I've talked to him about not playing games and being rude.  He's a 15-year-old boy.  And he is still such a little boy.  He has so little interest in girls.  He wants a girl to skateboard with him, listen to Skrillex, and play World of Warcraft.  He wants to talk to chicks about the latest horror flick or doing kick flips or the next big dubstep band.  I just learned about dubstep last night, by the way.   I had to ask Andrew to show me what it was.  He was so proud that his momma asked him to show her his music.  His momma wishes he would learn that girls have tender hearts.  And if a boy breaks that heart, he does so at his own risk.  Because.  Well.  Bitches be trippin'. 

I've decided why I am having so much trouble just sitting down and writing.  I think I am allergic to writing stupid shit.  People say to just write.  Just do it.  Stop using the "I'm a perfectionist" excuse.  Stop allowing mental blocks to linger.  Just WRITE.  Well.  I've been doing that.  A lot.  Matter of fact, I have probably "just written" a whole book in the last couple weeks.  If you count everything I have written.  And then deleted 10 seconds later.  Sorry.  It sounds stupid.  It's dumb.  It doesn't meet my standard.  I refuse to allow it to stay on my computer screen.  Stupidity has no place in my brain.  It is not allowed to fall from my fingers.  If dumb stuff gets written,  I delete dumb stuff.  Full stop. 

Rest assured, however.  That when this book is finished.  It is going to rock your fucking socks off.  Maybe even some toes.  

My oldest little monkey child went to a concert with his Poppa the other day.  It was actually more like a day-long music festival.  I think that's what they call it.  Sort of like Lollapalooza.  Except with the kind of music he likes.  Ahem.  Dubstep ain't got nuthin' on "screamo."  Seriously.  OH. MAH. GAH.  But you know, it is because the boy can school ME in everything from Rammstein to The Police to Tenacious D to fucking Beethoven all in the same breath that I lay off the screamo stuff.  Not only that, but the kid can play it all, too.  On 4 different instruments.  I have no idea how he schools me on music from MY OWN fucking generation, but he does.  He knows shit I have never known.  Songs I have never heard of.  The stories behind the writing of the songs.   And then he plays them for me.  So.  Jake can pretty much listen to whatever the fuck he wants to listen to.  Because in truth, those bands are damn lucky to have a kid like Jake who is interested in them.  Sweet Jake.  Was so starstruck.  By these little screamy kids with black eyeliner.  

I swear to god you better shut the fuck up.  Stop laughing at my kid.  STOP IT!

Hmmmm....... too many choices.......
Christ on a fucking cracker, yo....
Here is what I know.  First of all, I have to pee.  
Second of all, I am very glad that my dog is walking.  I thought she was gonna die.  Because she is old.  And her back gives out on her.  Because she is a fat basset hound.  She has already had surgery once.  But she's not gonna die right now.  Oh hell no.  Fucking stubborn diva.  Bitches be trippin', yo.  Even four-legged ones. 

Thirdly, I really fucking have to pee.  

That will be all.  

For now.  
Oh, and I am really glad that I used the word "die" or any form of it only once in this whole post. 
Now I am going to pee.