A Walk in the Woods #Poetry

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.A couple of years ago, I wrote the following poem for a contest sponsored by National Braille Press, but it didn’t win. So, I submitted it to The Avocet, and to my surprise, it appeared in this week’s online issue. You can click on the title to hear me read it.

A Walk in the Woods

 

Bird songs fill the air.
I smell pine, flowers,
feel the whispering breeze,
as I pause to drink cool water.
I don’t see much,
but my other senses
help me appreciate nature.

 

My Books

 

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

My Other Links

Visit my website.

Like me on Facebook.

Monday Musical Memory: Under the Boardwalk

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

When you read this, I’ll be on my way to Jupiter, Florida, where I plan to spend a relaxing, fun-filled week with my brother and his family. In past years when I’ve been there, I’ve enjoyed walking on the beach, feeling warm sand between my toes and the whoosh of cool water as waves wash over my ankles. I’ve also walked in the water, tried my hand at boogie boarding, and eaten many wonderful picnic lunches. If Bill were still alive, we might be sitting on a blanket under a boardwalk having some fun just like in this song. Click the link below to enjoy.

 

Under the Boardwalk

 

How about you? Have you ever been to a beach? Did you enjoy walking along the shore and in the water? Did you ever swim? Have you ever tried surfing or boogie boarding? Did you bring your own lunch or buy hot dogs and French fries from a vendor? Have you ever sat under a boardwalk on a blanket with someone you loved?

 

My Books

 

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

My Other Links

Visit my website.

Like me on Facebook.

 

Clock Dance #Thursday Book Feature

Clock DanceImage contains: Abbie, smiling.

by Ann Tyler

Copyright 2018

 

Willa has as normal a childhood as can be expected, growing up in Pennsylvania with a theatrical mother and  mild-mannered father. She graduates from high school, goes to college, and marries a boy she meets there. They move to California, where they have two sons. During the boys’ teen years, Willa’s husband is killed in a car accident. That’s the first part of this book.

The second part opens years later. The boys are grown and leading separate lives. Willa has married another man and moved to Arizona. After receiving a phone call from a stranger, for no fathomable reason, she finds herself flying across the country to Baltimore, Maryland, to care for a mother and child she doesn’t know. There, she enters a new world and is content for the first time in years.

I’ve enjoyed many of Ann Tyler’s books because of their mix of straight-laced and unpredictable characters and the humorous situations in which they find themselves. This book didn’t disappoint me. I liked the ending.

 

My Books

 

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

My Other Links

Visit my website.

Like me on Facebook.

 

The Ice Cream Stand

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

Thanks to blogger Mary Hiland for inspiring this. In her post, she shares memories of buying sweet treats from an ice cream truck as a kid.

When I was a kid, I wasn’t a fan of cones, Eskimo pies, or any other treats you could eat with your fingers. Instead, I preferred malts, sundaes, and other treats that could be eaten with a straw or spoon. The stand at Kendrick Park here in Sheridan, Wyoming, had plenty of those. When I was in high school and college, our house was only a block away from the park. My younger brother and I often walked over and swam in the pool, then bought ice cream. Behind the stand was a playground, and when I was younger, I often enjoyed myself there, even after Mother accidentally caused me to fall off a swing.

On Tuesday nights when there were concerts in the park, Dad and I often took our Irish setter, Clancy, over. After the concert, we made our way to the ice cream stand. While I had my usual chocolate malt, Dad got a vanilla cone and a spoon. He told Clancy to sit, and he fed him some of the ice cream from the cone. When the cone was empty, he gave that to the dog as well.

One summer, my ten-year-old cousin Shelley and her family were visiting us from Iowa. Dad, Shelley, Clancy and I walked to the park as usual on a Tuesday evening. We brought lawn chairs, and after the concert, Dad decided to stow them behind a tree while we made the quarter-mile trip to the ice cream stand. When we returned to that tree after enjoying our treats as usual, the chairs were gone.

Dad told Shelley and me to start walking home while he looked around to see if the chairs had been dumped somewhere else. They were old and not of much value. While we waited to cross a busy street, to our surprise, Shelley spotted the chairs in the back of a green pick-up truck that was driving by us.

So, when we got home, Dad called the police. When the detective arrived, Shelley gave him a description of the truck. The next day, the chairs were found. Unfortunately, the police needed to keep them for evidence, and we didn’t get them back until October. By that time, I was away at college, and attending band concerts and eating ice  cream were far from my mind.

What about you? Do you have any specific memories of buying and eating ice cream from a stand or truck? What was your favorite kind of ice cream? Did you prefer it in a cone, dish, or malt? Any way you like your ice cream, I hope you enjoy plenty of it this summer.

 

My Books

 

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

My Other Links

Visit my website.

Like me on Facebook.

 

 

 

Reflections with Rhonda— What I Don’t See—Rhonda Partain

A couple of weeks ago when I attended the Wyoming Writers conference, I was captivated by the poetry presenter when he read one of his poems on the first night, and I wanted to attend his workshops the folllowing day. My friend Rose, who is also a poet, pointed out that he was black and wore dreadlocks. Because of my limited vision, I wasn’t aware of this. So what, I thought. The next day, I attended his workshops, and I’m glad I did because I learned a lot.

This is exactly what Rhonda talks about in her post. It’s important to look past what your eyes tell you about a person. You may be pleasantly surprised at what you find.

Love really IS blind!

We so often focus on what the blind and visually impaired don’t see or can’t do, let’s take a listen to a few things Rhonda doesn’t see that are a blessing.

We’re ever expanding! Come see our new website:

https://inspiravatenow.com/

View original post

Monday Musical Memory: Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

My late husband Bill was an avid baseball fan. His favorite team was the Colorado Rockies, and he stood by them always. They lost many games over the last few years of Bill’s life. At the end of a losing game, he was so frustrated sometimes that he would say, “The Rockies are rotten to the core.” At the start of the next game though, his ear was glued to the radio, anticipating the first pitch. Bill’s adoration of this team inspired a character in my new novel, The Red Dress, coming soon.

A year after he passed, I had an opportunity to attend a Colorado Rockies game. I was visiting relatives in Colorado Springs, and my uncle from California, an avid Los Angeles Dodgers fan, was also there. He had tickets to see the Dodgers play the Rockies at Coors Field in Denver.

So, I went with him and my uncle and aunt in Colorado Springs, and my cousins from Denver joined us. Because of my limited vision, I couldn’t see much of the action, and I forgot to bring a radio with headphones so I could hear the play-by-play, but since my cousins were Rockies fans, I could tell which team was ahead by who was happy. As the evening wore on, my uncle became more jubilant and my cousins more depressed.

I felt close to Bill, sitting in those stands. If he were still alive, he would have called me a million times from the nursing home to discuss the game and perhaps hear the roar of the crowd over the phone as well as on the radio. If he were actually at the game, he would have stayed till the bitter end, which my California uncle did since the Dodgers were winning, but I left with my Colorado Springs kin soon after the seventh-inning stretch.

Speaking of the seventh-inning stretch, the song I’m singing today is in commemoration of the opening of the National Baseball Hall of Fame eighty years ago on June 12th. The song, which is usually sung at the ballpark during the seventh inning stretch,  was recorded live at Elm Croft, an assisted living facility where I entertain for their monthly birthday parties. I accompanied myself on guitar since a piano wasn’t available. Click the link below to hear it.

 

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

 

How about you? Have you ever attended a major or minor or even a little league baseball game? Did your team win?

 

My Books

 

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

My Other Links

Visit my website.

Like me on Facebook.

 

Dad, Fats, and Me #Poetry #Music

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.Here’s a poem I wrote several years ago about something my father and I loved doing together. It was published in Magnets and Ladders. You can click on the title to hear me read it. Below the poem is a video of the song mentioned in the poem. Happy Father’s Day to all you dads out there.

Dad, Fats, and Me

As the piano’s base notes
imitate baby elephant patter,
I stomp my six-year-old feet in time,
while sitting on the couch
across from Dad, sprawled in his easy chair,
his nose in a book.
He looks up, chuckles.

As Fats Waller sings no praises
to a woman’s over-sized feet,
I stand, stomp around the den.
Dad sings along–I giggle.

As the song crescendos
with blaring saxophone and trumpet,
I lift my feet,
bring them to the floor with purpose.

The record has other songs:
“The Joint is Jumpin’,” “Seafood, Mama,”
but my little feet always stomp in time
whenever I hear Fats say, “Your Feet’s Too Big.”

 

Fats Waller–Your Feet’s Too Big

 

My Books

 

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

My Other Links

Visit my website.

Like me on Facebook.