life

NO-WAKE ZONE

 

Red-right-returning
Channel markers
Red and green
Confusion sets in
For someone like me
Who has a reversed compass
In the brain
My life, then
Has been a slow movement
Fearful of attracting attention
The making of a wake
Sloshing the water
Best to obey
Don’t make waves, they say
But by the time it is okay
To speed up and get someplace
The tide is out
The boat is low
Knee-high
Tow with a rope
All is pull and push
Always that much more
Difficult
By land or water
By air or even fiery balloon
Easy does it
Shuffle-shuffle
Never make a wake…

(c) 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

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JUST 5 MORE MINUTES

 

View from the window
Announces 6 o’clock
I can tell because
The dark of night
Has given way
To pale gray light
And the Spanish Moss
Dangling from Live Oak trees
Resembles my morning hair
Tangled and curly

 

I pull the rumpled quilt over
The silver mess
But my dogs
Ever-attuned to my moves
Nudge me, now in breakfast mode
No, I murmur, not yet
7 is my target time

 

Everyone forgets, except me
That I deserve this hour
Most of adulthood
Up at 5
Lighting the kerosene heater
Those years HE refused to fix the furnace
Shivering in my morning shower
In a one-bathroom home for four
Waking the boys
Making the breakfast
Coffee the prime objective
Feeding dogs who long ago
Crossed the fabled Rainbow Bridge
Dressing us all
Gingerly waking
THE MAN
THE DAD
THE HUSBAND
Through the years
Kids to babysitter
Then preschool, then real school
Me to school
Internships
Student jobs
Real jobs
Not much changed
Even when I began my new life

 

Oh, no!
My Rottie is hungry
Sticks his head
Larger than mine
Into my face
Goofy smile
Not yet, I say
View from the window
Announces 6:30
The early birds
Get the dehydrated meal worms
Red Cardinal dads on the feeder
Brown Cardinal moms on the ground
Pecking the leftovers
(No feminism this morning,
Clarissa, I think
Go back to sleep)

 

But I never make it to 7 o’clock
Because retirement, to me
Means an almost hourly pee
Lucky dogs
Breakfast determined by the
State of my bladder
I’m up and out
And the view from the window
Announces 6:45
That’s a nice compromise
Enabling to care
For the dogs and birds
The life I live and love…

 

(c) 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: Morning Moon and Sun

SCRABBLING UPWARD

 

Into every life

A little acid must fall

Alkaline isn’t homeostasis

Challenge grows the intellect

And what some have named the soul

Adam and Eve, for instance

Flat bored

Sure, some of it was hormonal

But living in a perfect place

Like Shangri-La

No decisions to make

(unless you are the servants)

Yang and Yin

And all those common antonyms

Gift of a feather on the grass

Crawling with fleas

Pick up a piece of polished glass

Tiny shard draws blood

In the glaring sun

Part of life

Striving to live in the center

Where we will be happy

Will we?

Living

So difficult

But oh the feeling

When we emerge victorious…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Wildflowers scrabbling on my fence post

WAKING-UP DREAM

 

Holding the Book of Illusion

Tied with nine knots

Containing the secrets

Of the Conqueror Worm

Welcoming me

Shades of Poe!

Human mortality

Inevitability of death

Is this a message?

Acculturation of dragons

The blood in my body:

German slave owners

Planting their seed

As the Gypsies stripped grapes

From the vines for wine

Further cross-cultural symbols

Existing for Romani, too

Maternal Kalderash word: Azdaja

Paternal Sinti word: Draxo

Oh, Poe!

Why do you bedevil me

In my sleep

With dragons, serpents, worms?

Once again I study the knots

What thoughts

Emotions

Incantations

Are woven throughout?

Binding the dance

Between life and death

But there is no depth

To the dream

After all, it doesn’t have to be a

Warning

Merely a reminder

Immortality spawned from

Fiction, rhyme

Live the best you can

Within finite time

A never-long-enough

Lifespan…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: book & knot (cs)

 

 

PASSING ALONG THE POWER

 

*scroll down for a Tom Petty video*

Entwined in DNA

Dreams refusing to die

Whether for

Fortune

Fame

Freedom

We will grow legs

And crawl out of the muck

We will align with the greenery

And face the sun

We will rev up the engine

And drive forevermore

Movement

Physical or mental

Brings us to the border

O, we must refuse to

Hover between fantasy

And the real

Because

Those who dig the deepest

Wresting the treasure chest

From the Earth’s grasp

Those who claim the prize

Will inherit the future

The priciest double helix

To pass along

Singing the sacred song

Of a life well won…

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: My son B. Michael’s car

https://youtu.be/Qv4-m-cIZf4 YouTube video Running Down a Dream (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers)

ALGORITHM

200 px soprano w the stars 1 life wip

Forgetting the stars

Were already dead

Sang high SOPRANO

With thoughts of love

In my head

A joyful plunking

Of strings and voice

Youthful optimism

Wandering through

A bazaar of choice

 

200 px Luna Peace concert ukulele 2 wip life

Moved into a CONCERT

Of love and peace

Strengthening the range

Born of adulthood

Chains of dependency released

A perfect fit

In hand and song

An oasis of music

Happily growing

Sure to be content lifelong

 

200 px tenor wip life

The next stage

Vocalizing change

TENOR’s timbre

Reflecting experience

The Body estranged

Like winter’s last berries

Burning hot and red

Aging reflected

In deepening tones

Presaging thoughts of the dead

 

200 px baritone2 sm px

Ball and Chain

Channeling Joplin’s pain

As BARITONE chords

Mature like the guitar

Voice a burnished stain

Facing the box

Body juxtaposed

End of the line

Growling in anger

Gradation of life decomposed…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGES: My 4 ukuleles

DINELO NAX (THE FOOL)

Zero or Twenty-two?

Tarot card meaning

Contended

All have opinions

Me?

Romani

Tradition of

The final number

Dinelo nax

Fools, crazy people

Touched by the gods

Because they know

The secret of life

Been through the journey

Freedom from Earth’s pull of money and gold

From Water’s emotional advance

And Air’s mind games and aloofness so cold

Finally, Fire’s negligence of life’s importance

Foolish

Mad

So glad

I’m almost there…

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

(with lines from my book Madame Sosostris Explains, 2014)

IMAGE: The Fool (Smith, Waite & Rider tarot card)