Baby boomer · Memories · My Thoughts · poetry

Why Write Poetry? It’s How I Relate!

Why write poetry?

Why write poetry? During the pandemic, I wrote lots of poetry and included many in my latest book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? about how I processed the pandemic. But during that time, I wrote other poetry on other topics. That’s how I relate to life. Here’s a couple poems spanning a screen door and do you really know me:

Screen door

The Slam of a Screen Door

July 16, 2020

Slam

            A screen door

                        Not today’s version

                                    But a relic from the 50s and 60s.

It bounced a couple times

            When shut

                        No latch to hold it

                                    Tight

                        Pesky mosquitoes, flies and other

                                    Bothersome pests

                                                Escaped inside.

Sharp, resonating sound!

Not as protective

            As the 21st century!

But the slam

            The sound

                        Echoes through

                                    My childhood!

Running outdoors

            Giggling

                        Afire with life

                                    My brother chasing me

                                                With a water gun

Summer’s sound

            Of freedom

Slam!

            Close with a bang!

Mom’s repeated shout,

            “Don’t slam the door!”

            Never heeded!

We didn’t do it in anger

            Only in haste

                        In urgency

                                    To get outside

                                    To start the adventure

Slam

            Too active

                        And driven

                                    To catch it!

Focused

            On other priorities

                        Other possibilities     

                                    Outside.

A hike to Brown Springs

            To discovery

A bicycle ride

            To freedom

A secluded time in our treehouse

            To dream.

Slam

            Close noisily

A new day

            A new adventure

A door opened to the world

            And

                        Possibility!

Let’s Go!


Why write poetry?

You May Think You Know Me, But . . .

August 9, 2020

As I ponder a topic

            Old yet new

I marvel at the thought:

            Daily Honesty!

Honesty

            Truthfulness

            Sincerity

            Frankness

            Freedom from deceit or fraud

To be honest

            Is to be vulnerable

                        To risk exposure

                                    To lay bare my insides to you.

Are you safe?

            Can I trust you?

At this moment,

            I feel compelled

                        To do so.

I’m a country girl

            You know.

I grew up embarrassed

            And ashamed!

Not sophisticated,

            Like the ladies on TV

            Like the ladies in town.

I’m religious

            A Christian to the core

                        But unorthodox!

I’ve dabbled in

            Native American

                        Savored the peaceful sweat lodge ceremony

            Buddhist beliefs

                        Became a silent observer

                                    Valuing the art of listening

            Jewish wisdom

                        Honored the roots of Christianity.

I’ve divorced three times.

            One heartbroken

                        But necessary for my sanity

            One victorious

                        Because I stood up

            One heartbroken

                        But a major turning point.

I’m a political

            Independent for years

                        Raised Republican

                                    But moved on,

                                                Caused by disillusionment

                                                            With both parties.

I hate arguing politics.

            Remember many hurtful conversations

                        With my dad.

                                    We didn’t change each other

                                                In the process

Just bitter memories!

Saying that,

            I’m a liberal!

That’s not a dirty word.

                        Dictionary says, “tolerant, unprejudiced, unbigoted, broad-minded, open-minded, enlightened; permissive, free, free and easy, easygoing.”

                        I can live with those!

I yearn for equality

                        For all!

I’m a talker

            Love sharing my thoughts

            Love heart-to-heart conversations

                        On spiritually real topics,

                                    Not head stuff.

I hate gossip,

            Yet I get sucked in!

I love people

            All colors

                        Shapes

                                    And sizes!

            Young and old

So much to learn!

My heart has been broken!

            I’ve faced despair

                        Depression

                        Suicidal thoughts

                        Alcoholism

                        Promiscuity

                        Incest,

                                    Yet survived.

Recovery gave me my life back!

I was an English major

            I have book shelves lined with

                        Shakespeare’s plays and sonnets

                        Hemingway’s short stories

                        T. S. Eliot’s poetry

                        Hillerman’s southwest novels.

I’m a poet

            At heart.

                        Words inspire me to life

                        Words create images

                        Poetry gathers words and motion

                                    And creates life.

I’m a writer

            The voice of the plains

                                    Of my heart

                                                And

                                                            Marshall Flippo.

I’m a dancer

            When the music starts

                        It sets me free!

                                    The movement

                                    The rhythm

                                    The connection to the universe!

I’m a computer geek!

            The magic of technology

                        Captivates me

                                    And I want to create!

I’m fragile

            Sensitive

I’m strong

            Resilient

I’m the baby of five.

            My daddy’s little girl

            My mom’s “baby girl!”

Adored by my parents!

I’ve feared obesity

            My whole life

I watched my mom struggle

            And her mom

                        And many of the women

                                    On that side of the family.

I make friends

            I keep friends!

I’m a paradox.

            So, my honesty jumps

                        From here to

                                    There.

I’m an expansive spirit

            Today a soul on fire

                        A God-driven energy

                                    And

                                                A sleeping cat,

                                                            All rolled up into one!

That’s me!


Finally,

why do I write poetry? I love expressing what I feel in words, lines and imagery! A slamming screen door, honesty and looking at me. Poetry opens the door to all possibilities—I can write about whatever! That’s delicious!

What do you think of poetry? Do you write poetry? If so do you share it? Let me know!


~If you missed my post from the two weeks with an Easter flair:

~Celebrate spring with 20% off select book bundles at my Etsy Shop, Larada’s Reading Loft until April 30!

~NEW PODCAST to be released Thursday, March 17, 2022, discussing my new book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? : Live on Purpose Podcast at https://liveonpurposeradio.com/category/podcast/

~MY FIRST AUDIOBOOK IS AVAILABLE: Go to Audible to buy my first audiobook, Let Me Tell You a Story

~Do you listen to podcasts? Here are three podcasts with interviews about my new book & some Flippo stories:

Just Another Square Dance Caller: Authorized Biography of Marshall Flippo

~Buy a copy of Flippo’s biography on my website: https://www.laradasbooks.com or at Amazon.

~Here’s a variety of Christmas greetings from Flippo & Neeca, featuring his song, “When It’s Christmas Time in Texas”: https://youtu.be/mpJCUGffU3A

Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? mem

~Are you on a spiritual path? Do you want to heal from the horrible effects of the pandemic of 2020? Visit my website to find out about my new book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? and my other five books and three cookbooks: https://laradasbooks.com

Memories · My Thoughts

Places from my Childhood

A little girl running - places from my childhood

Places from my childhood in Branson, Colorado, floated to my consciousness today. There are four places I loved: the store, the Community church, the jailhouse. I’m in Branson, visiting and took a walk today to a friend’s house. I passed the church and the jailhouse on the way. A smile crossed my lips as memories surfaced for each place.

On my return trip, I passed the foundation of the store. As I walked by, I marveled at the size of the foundation—as a child, the building looked so big. Today it looked so small! Memories overcame me! In my book, This Tumbleweed Landed, I wrote poems about each of these places. I’d like to share them with you!


Branson Community Church

Branson Community Church - places from my childhood
Branson Community Church
The Branson Community Church
small and quaint.  

People that touched my life
Maynard Bowen,
Walt Graham
Ministers of God, who took the time for me.  

The Loudens
The Gilstraps
The Smiths
The Warners
The Cummins
Mabel Survant
Mrs. Jamieson  

Sunday School teachers
and family friends who let me sit with them,
singing my songs out loud when I couldn’t even read.  

Beautiful old hymns and singing.
They loved me, taught me, and encouraged me.
A safe place to be on Sunday morning,
and a nice place to meet God.  

Youth group on Sunday night games
and talking about God
Youth group picnic and camp-outs at the Gilstraps
and the annual Christmas programs.  

One year, at the Christmas program
I was an angel
with the other young girls.
Donned in our white robes, wings, and haloes,
we walked in a straight line carrying lit candles.  

The girl behind me got too close
and caught my hair on fire!
Our teacher quickly handled the situation,
and I wasn’t burned.  

The program went on.

The Jailhouse

The Jailhouse
A landmark
That everyone wants to be pictured in.
Close the door, stand behind the bars
and smile.  

Two cells
A window in each
And also, a hard bed of concrete in each.

Numerous stories
about notorious criminals
who slept there and broke out!  

A special place for us!
Scott Warner would steal
cigarettes from his mom.
Bub and I would break
a piece of the salt lick
stored in Grandad Horner’s garage.
It was for our cattle.

We would meet at the jail.
Smoke then suck on the salt lick
to hide the smell of
the cigarette smoke.

I felt so sophisticated.
So grown-up,
So fashionable.
Smoking!  

Like
Dad
Clara and Millard
Reu
Uncle Gay and Aunt Helen
But I never liked
The taste of it.  

Years later Bub and I told Mom
About our clandestine adventure.
She said she knew what we were doing.
She teasingly said,
“The smoke billowed out of the jail’s window.”  
But she never questioned us
Or Disciplined us.  

A growing up safe adventure!

The Store

The Branson Store - places from my childhood
The Branson Store
Dust, hard wood floor; aisles of adventure. 
Goods for sale—
Eggs, milk, and beef;
all the regular staples of life.
The McMillans owned it— 
Roy and Mokey.

Oversized paintings on the walls— 
a gold miner,
wild animals images 
long forgotten; 
painted by Julian Hancock.

But my favorite part
the candy!
A big wooden display case,
taller than me.
Glistening glass windows separated me 
from the mouth-watering delights.So big, so
wonderful.
So many colors, sizes, shapes, and 
designs.

I had a quarter—
I could buy the moon!

My walk awakened memories of these three places—they flooded me with Candy’s laughter at the store, Scott and the adventures of cigarettes in the jail, and so many people who loved me in that beautiful quaint little church.

Do you have childhood memories of special places? Share them in the comment section.


~NEW PODCAST to be released Thursday, March 17, 2022, discussing my new book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? : Live on Purpose Podcast at https://liveonpurposeradio.com/category/podcast/

~MY FIRST AUDIOBOOK IS AVAILABLE: Go to Audible to buy my first audiobook, Let Me Tell You a Story

~Do you listen to podcasts? Here are three podcasts with interviews about my new book & some Flippo stories:

~Buy a copy of Flippo’s biography on my website: https://www.laradasbooks.com or at Amazon.

~Here’s a variety of Christmas greetings from Flippo & Neeca, featuring his song, “When It’s Christmas Time in Texas”: https://youtu.be/mpJCUGffU3A

Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? meme

~Are you on a spiritual path? Do you want to heal from the horrible effects of the pandemic of 2020? Visit my website to find out about my new book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? and my other five books and three cookbooks: https://laradasbooks.com