Interesting thing about hats with pompoms and feathers–they usually look better on a younger person. I could get away with the most outlandish hats when I was younger. Now I mostly stick to baseball caps and a beret and when I feel brave, I attach a red felt flower.
My husband and I are not big fans of birthdays. While we’re grateful to have lived well into our seventh decade, birthdays are really, on an unconscious level, the birth trauma all over again. Few of us have felt welcomed into the world. Most of us, as we traveled down the birth canal, heard our mother’s screams and strange voices telling her to push. We felt her vulnerability and we may have felt guilty for causing her so much pain.
When we finally arrive into a world of harsh light and cacophanous sounds, many of us were slapped on the rear end while held upside down.
We may not have been put on our mom’s belly right away, but were whisked away to be weighed and vaccinated. We felt estranged from she who carried us all those months.
Especially as we grow older, many of us realize the sacrifices our mother made for us. We may feel sad that we could not have done more for her while she was alive, but the truth is, we cannot repay our mother for all she did for us.
So it’s no wonder we put candles on birthday cakes. The light welcomes us into the world another year and while we are glad to be here, for the gifts life brings, we cannot forget our day of entry. I for one prefer to feel what I’m feeling and to let the day unfold the way it wants to. That may include watching the birds from the window or going for a walk with my camera. My husband and I know to let the other be and if we need it, we’ll make a cup of tea or offer an open ear.
birthday feeling the moon’s age
at the feeder
January 6 was a day we’ll never forget. Most of us who hold our democracy sacred felt, as did I, extreme fear. We were rattled to our core. What saved me once again from the craziness of the crowd was Nature. The birds, the diamonds sparkling on the lake. Deep breathing. Taking a walk around the neighborhood. Many of us find refuge in poetry. It’s how we get through the day.
here are the links to the audio version, which went up late last night:
iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/ep-75-alexis-rotella/id1477377214?i=1000505180128Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/rattlepoetry/ep-75-alexis-rotella
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/episode/07v2jzKznUCPC7oigZGWqFmp3 download: https://www.rattle.com/audio/75-Alexis-Rotella.mp3
It’s always a joy to receive feedback on my work and I am grateful to the swarm of emails I received after the broadcast. Life is brief–enjoy the haiku moments!
I’m excited to read some of my poems tomorrow night, right before the new moon in Libra. Empty Souls was included as one of the finalists in the Rattle Finalists Contest. To read the Reader’s Choice Award and other finalists’ work, check out Issue 70.
As many of you know, Tim Green is one of those editors that gets people to think. No wonder he named his journal Rattle.
Tune in: see you there.
And for YouTube, the link is: https://youtu.be/W2LO4Vb3ei8
wears a mask
we hide from
A lot of haiku is being written about Covid-19 and why not? We gotta let out steam somehow. On Facebook there’s Haiku in the TIme of Covid. I encourage you to take a look and share your own haiku because as we keep hearing over and over, we’re all in this together.
My father dying –
he and his brother finally
talk about the war
published in The Aurorean 2020
Back to the Middle Ages
A little girl
teaches her kitten
to jump rope
At the garden center I search for tiny pink flowers to encircle a potted
evergreen on our front porch. Under my breath, I start to sing Ring a
Ring a Rosie, pocket full of posey, ashes, ashes, we all fall down. My
husband asks, “You know the origin of that rhyme, don’t you?”
a photo of my bronze-skinned father wielding a scythe
A clerk tells us to keep a six-foot distance from one another as the
line to the cash register grows. I didn’t find the flowers but I do buy
aromatics such as thyme, bergamot, rosemary.
a man wears the mask
of a raven
There are people out there who are known for their random acts of kindness and I wish to thank whoever was responsible with the deepest bow I can muster. Colleagues are saying it is long overdue.