I’ve mentioned the Red Clay Writing Project a time or two now, and today is our next-to-last day. It’s been a whirlwind, and I haven’t slept or cooked or spent time with Micah nearly enough–but I’m still sad that it is coming to an end.
Like I mentioned before, we’ve pretty much been writing nonstop. I’ve got a Google Doc now brimming with story starts, scraps of poems, little bits of introspection….and most of that work is unpolished, rough, and completely unsharable.
Now, if you’ll indulge me, I’ll share a couple more with you.
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The first is a poem inspired by this little scrap of plastic:
Stiff, knuckly fingers
took scissors to me one day.
For those fingers,
for the hands and the body
that moved them,
I was the voice that told doctors,
“Yes, you can care for this old man.
He will be paid for.
He is covered.”
wheezing in from plastic tubes,
leaning on a cane clutched tight,
he needed care—
In a year, I was replaced
with a copy of myself—
not yet thumb-worn at the edges.
Useful, while I was used up.
The old man could have snipped me
into a trash can
like crescents of yellowed fingernail,
silver mustache trimmings,
an expired credit card.
But this old man,
practical as he was,
was also a man of songs.
Aged, bony fingers—
the same ones that wielded the shears—
plucked out melodies on guitars and banjos
as a tiny granddaughter looked on
I once was a silent thing in a leather wallet,
only speaking at the pharmacy,
I once was a thing of business.
I make music.
* * * * *
The second poem I’m going to share came out of a movement and improv activity that we did in our class last Thursday where one of us would start a scene, the others in the group would join in. It was also inspired by my first date with my husband (six years and three days ago) and our honeymoon in New York City (almost three years ago).
Death-Defying Stunts and Other Human Oddities for Your Amazement.
Remember the fire-eaters,
the knife-jugglers, the sword swallower.
Remember the tattooed lady.
Remember the spectacle, the danger,
the applause of a mesmerized crowd.
Remember the Cyclone,
the old wooden coaster,
up and down
peaks and valleys.
Remember the Wonder Wheel,
that tilting car on the Wonder Wheel,
sitting with the one
who quickens your heart
and flushes your cheeks,
sneaking a curled pinkie
around his thumb for the first time
and the electricity of one feverish hand
reaching out for another.
You could look across the water,
across the glittering boardwalk lights,
across the popcorn-dusted bustle
of buzzing, bumping bodies,
and see sparkling Manhattan
stretching infinitely before you.
But you don’t.
You are in Brooklyn,
at Coney Island,
on the Wonder Wheel,
surrounded by sideshows and chaotic sweat,
clutching the trembling hand of the man
the man who will still thrill you,
still swallow fire for you,
* * * * *
And last, here is the digital literacy project that I created to present to our group this morning and to share with all of you in the blogosphere, too:
The music is a song that our band, Fleet Machine, has been playing together since we formed in 2010. Blake wrote the song long before that, and it’s been performed in many different incarnations in different bands he and Micah have been in together. But this is the version we play, minus the vocals. (If you click the link above, you can hear the song in its entirety.)
The images are Creative Commons-licensed issues from flickr (full image credits here).
And the text, visual effects, and layout/design are all my own.
Thanks for letting me indulge a little.
* * * * *
Next post: two more recipes for gluten-free goodies. 🙂