In This Time of War,

I’ve rummaged too long in my dresser drawers sniffing
at dead sachets.  Even the rose petals are scraps

of paper with no names written down.  So how
must I dress myself to walk about upon

this reddened earth?  Today I will wear my snazzy
new panties of snake skin, those cool translucent scales

that slither in only one direction, up.
Never to droop or gather about my ankles.

I once knew a woman who lived through the London Blitz,
and her knickers were stitched from German parachute silk—

all the elastic had gone to the army, only
a safety pin to hold her homemade panties

up; she stood on the platform at Waterloo Station
where a long troop train chugged in with the wounded,

and just as her right hand ascended to her forehead
in quick salute, her slippery silk panties descended

and puddled over her sensible shoes, and she stepped
right out of them and kept on walking,

leaving all that tender and airworthy silk
under the crooked and shell-shocked wheels

of the gurneys, many,
so many gurneys.

—Penelope Scambly Schott


Ode to a Dumbwaitress

Up and down, up and down
you think that she would lose a pound
Down and up, down and up,
bringing breakfast, bringing sup
Thirteen stairs from top to bottom
She must climb them
cause she's got 'em
Newspapers, beer bottles
stack 'em high
'till the recycling truck draws nigh
Take the dog to pee and poop
Hula dance and loop-de-loop
Up and down the shaft she goes
stands on her head and wiggles her toes


Tonight we eat Sloppy Joes, rightfully named, these comforting kid food delights involve a messy hamburgerish mixture concocted by women who had large families to feed in the Midwest in 1964.
My version of my mother's is as follows:
2 lbs. Of hamburger with at least, dare I say it, 10% FAT! Sauté this with chopped onions and carrots (a cup of each) my mother would have added a cup of chopped celery, but I am out, then, uh, uh...(losing my concentration as my neighbor girl is pogo sticking away with far too much success just seconds from my ear). Ah, I believe she fell. aw..
...back to the recipe, add worcestershire, 4 or 5 sloshes, salt and pepper, a can of red kidney beans washed and mildly mashed with a fork, can of tomato soup, some canned diced tomatoes or leftover pasta sauce (a cup), some mustard and ketchup. Cook this down to a nice saucey, but firm, topping and spoon it onto slider buns. Serve it with the salad of your choice, sit back, compare the fireflies to the shooting stars and enjoy.

For dessert we had Oh,Henry! bars and Cracker Jack, no real prizes just stupid stickers, but still it felt good to dig the stale sweet hulls out of your teeth
.... then just twist again like we did last summer!

summer days
~ tapestry weaving class on Friday......wow, what a lot to learn! Three hours and counting and that was just setting up the loom! Left a bit early as hour four would have had my brains leaking out my ears.
~ a picnic on Lake Washington solves everything. We set up our chairs by the shore to watch eagles flying, floaty planes rumble up into the sky, boats-sail or motor away, our lunches disappear and our books get read, the sun sparkles on the water even after we close our eyes.
~ excavating studio box by box, goodwill, trash, recycle, save (repeat), goodwill, trash, recycle, save (repeat), goodwill, trash, recycle, save (repeat), goodwill, trash, recycle, save (repeat)
~ I have a half an apple pie to eat, leftover from yesterday's Thanksgiving dinner. Thankful that life is good and that we will have turkey sandwiches for dinner tonight.
~ folding my son's laundry is a guilty pleasure...ssshhhhhhh.
~ I find a picture of an old hotel room in Virginia City, NE (home of the newspaper that Mark Twain wrote, Territorial Enterprise)... I remember it was hot and dry there during the day, Ray was playing piano at the Bucket of Blood saloon and I roamed the nearby cemetery....
a welcome event at the end of the day was to have a mint julep at the bar across the road. hmmmm...can't think of the name of it. Crystal Bar?...someone who looked like "Uncle Billy" from IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE was the owner and bartender. ...my they were delicious! Oh, here it is as I remember it all atwinkle with sun setting through the crystal lamps and glasses, bouncing off the mirrors.

Anyway, back to the hotel room photo that I must have taken,  black shadows and sun-washed away lace curtain, frilled glass lamp, the toothed top of a dark radiator against the white window sill...and, oh dear, there is a baby bottle on the sink shelf so Johnny must have been with us and it was years later at another hotel in a different historic hotel.... maybe Truckee? Fun to travel memory's crooked path. Sometimes you get a twofer!

~ Dogsitting a Yorky poo and realizing owmiemdiefnrufnurf, wow, I must be tired and need to go to bed now! and wake up (always a good idea) and see what is in store tomorrow!