ukulele

THINGS THAT AREN’T THERE

WORK/SONG IN PROGRESS (NEEDS LOTS OF WORK)

(ANOTHER AUTISM POEM/FOLKSONG)

note to me: chorus ?

Things that aren’t there
Life often unfair
Reverse imagination
An unaware incantation
Impossible at times to overcome
For some of us on the Spectrum

note to me: do I want to rhyme the verses traditionally or chaotically?

Can’t make myself
Get on that train again
Happened months ago
Can’t let it go

Thought I saw a small trash can
Next to coffee shelf
Tossed my uneaten sandwich
Porter flipped out, upset my mental health

Can’t make myself
Get on another plane
Body search in my long dress
Made me feel like an embarrassed mess

Can’t go around huge crowds no more
Walked into an ad board not on a door
How’d it get there, I asked, rubbing my head
Knew I should just stay in bed

Can’t cross streets, haven’t learned
To watch for cars when talking
Friend saved me when we were young
No one there now when I’m walking

chorus

Things that aren’t there
Life often unfair
Reverse imagination
Is an invisible conjuration
Impossible at times to overcome
For some of us on the Spectrum

Autistic brains can perform magic
An unaware incantation
I’ve taught myself to think first
And not lose my concentration

There’s a secret door to the attic
Dusty, yet brimming with bling
Often difficult to let it shine
But I know the effort is mine

What came first, I wonder
The Princess or the Pea
Mounds of moldy mattresses
Brain on Silly Putty

The pea’s an irritation
Like pearls to the oyster
Sensitivity crazes me
Just lock me in a cloister

I guess I want you all to know
Autism comes in many colors
I’ve shared mine with you today
It’s sometimes painful but mostly okay

chorus

Things that aren’t there
Life often unfair
Reverse imagination
Is an invisible conjuration
Impossible at times to overcome
For some of us on the Spectrum

(c) 2018 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: CS & fallen Florida Black Vulture perch

 

 

 

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SPOONS!

*scroll down for a YouTube video*

Sun’s morning stretch Over the Atlantic Ocean
Sinking gratefully into the Gulf of Mexico
Silken sheets of green embracing
Seaweed waving to coming darkness

Spoons enter my life day and night
Stirring hot espresso
Scooping raisins onto a plate
Scent of cinnamon oats seductive

Slipping away to play through the day
Seductive invitation to join a jug band
Spoons of dessert size clicking on my hand
Singing Bluegrass songs of summers to come

Simple life of peace perfect
Superman Nietzsche’s Amor Fati
So simple: Love your fate
Starting to understand “acceptance”

(c) 2018 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: My spoons!

https://youtu.be/qFC2pJctBUo Spoon Lady YouTube video

 

NEW POETRY BOOK

The paperback edition of my newest book Xeriscaping Poetry (A Wild Mellowing) is now available on Amazon for $6 with B&W photos. The Kindle edition is $1.99 and the photos are in color. Although I edited and redid the photos, some of them are not centered and I made the decision to leave them as is since there is some inconsistency with the Kindle Beta Program for paperback. I do want to thank Karen Bruton for her invaluable help with my book cover. I will NEVER understand how to change the DPI despite her meticulous instructions! Here is the link:

 

 

SPRING FORWARD, STEP BACK

Daylight Savings time
Urges a spring forward
Optimists insist we grow
But I’ve learned to step back
Blocking my shadow
Momentarily confused
But then she gets it
And follows through
We do tend to strive
Upwardly mobile
So when I made my move
From ukulele to baritone
Planning on a guitar solo
Within a year
Found myself in a dark nook
Described in the Peter Principle book
Of not moving
Instrument too big
Chord complexity obvious
So from GCEA strings
Practiced happily hours a day
Plucked DGBE ones
Barely fifteen minutes
Absolutely no fun
I tried
I did try
Didn’t cry
Just took the advice of a friend
When you’re stuck,
Step back
As long as there’s no gaping pit
Behind you
Like the mnemonics of time
Spring forward or
Fall back
No shame
Make it a game
And I did
And I played
On this Spring Equinox Day
Although it tried to discourage me
Got through the afternoon
With a Tornado Watch
It’s finally removed
As if the Spring wind approved
Of my decision to fight its force
So glad…

(nothing to do with Spring, but happy Spring Equinox!)
(c) 2018 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: UKULELE SUNFLOWERS

SOMETHING PRIMAL

C/Never been in love or D/loved
D/Struggled to stay C/afloat
C/Can any man be so D/perfect
D/As a series of musical G6/notes?

F/Something primal G6/making it sing
G6/Slapping bongos or F/tambourines
F/Skin aglow D/feeling the sting

C/Fantasy in D/chords of blue
D/How will I ever Am/find you

C/Flavor of a D/good man
D/Like eating chocolate C/Ice cream
C/As taste buds revived D/deliciously
D/In a piquant G6/dream

F/Something primal G6/making it sing
G6/Blowing horns hot as a F/thermal spring
F/Pumping blood rides D/an upward swing

C/Fantasy of D/honeyed kiss
D/Craving a present Am/life of bliss

 

C/Longing for a D/reality
D/Consigning all the C/nightmares
C/Back to the D/dreaded past
D/Of implacable ghosts of G6/despair

F/Something primal G6/making it sing
G6/Fast picking of guitar’s F/heart strings
F/Spiraling out on strong D/beating wings

C/Fantasy of love D/in the now
D/Intending to live the Am/myth somehow

© 2016, 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja) words and chords appearing in Self-
ie Reflections: A Blogetry Collection
IMAGE: Valentine Ukulele & Tambourine

FOR UKULELE TUNING G, C, E, A

HAPPY V-DAY!

NOT JESSICA

*scroll down for a YouTube video*
Often think of the Allman Brothers’ song

Jessica

Don’t know

If this is so

But sometimes imagination

Is better than the

Google answer

To me

I see

A young woman

Short cut-offs

Halter

Barefoot

Long, straight hair

(yeah, mine is curly, ugh)

And she is as welcome as Spring

Uncomplicated

Lovely

Desirable

The song IS Jessica

So attempted one about you

But oh

Five different

Almost discordant

Songs appeared

You’re that layered

Peel away one skin

To find another

What is the vision

From the music of your soul

As I hear it?

One billion parts

Make up the whole…

 

(c) 2018 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: Playing with the stars
*youtube video Jessica, Allman Brothers
https://youtu.be/yRDivUb5EeA

O HOLY MEMOIR

Why cry
When playing and singing
O Holy Night
I miss my high soprano
Soaring above the All City Choir
I cry for my youth
But hey
Think of that time
Tenth grade
I was being bullied in the girl’s bathroom
Bus tokens stolen
No boyfriend
Unknown autism making me
The school alien
Social Misfit of teenage hell
But that was then
And today, my voice
O Holy Voice
Gone
So I’m strumming the song
Didn’t know how to play
Ukulele in Tenth grade

But

And this is a positive
can play it now

Cracked singing
Like some boy entering puberty
High
Low
High-and-Low
Yet O Holy Night
Makes me cry
And I can’t see the chords
On the songbook by the time
I finish it
But WHY cry
Lost youth
Actually
My life is better than it was
In tenth grade
Yeah, I’m old
Yeah, really don’t do
Social niceties now or then
But a mere thousand miles away
Live my sons and granddaughter
Got enough money
To eat and dress and buy songbooks
So why
Why cry
For times past
When the truth is
Tenth grade sucked
Except for the voice
Soaring into the aethers
O Holy Memory…
(c) 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: Baritone, songbook, sunflower (planted by birds)

MUSIC ROOM

 

When we met
Couple of decades ago
Heard you play guitar
At flea market bazaars
But you’d never buy one
You’d left your childhood
Garage band
Because your
Stairway to Heaven
Didn’t sound like
Zeppelin’s
Stairway to Heaven
And you never played again

Radio music interim
Interspersed with
MP3 tunes
Did their job
Kept me sane

Then two years ago
Thanks to internet window shopping
Bought a soprano ukulele
With a how-to book
For thirty dollars
And although I couldn’t decipher
Musical notes
Chords enabled this wannabe
To play amid laughter and joy

You listened for two years
And finally picked up the baritone
Tuned like guitar
Playing like a rock star

Love the ambience
Music frequently welcomes
Dawn
Often lullaby away those
Sleepless nights
Most of all
What fun to play together
Voices gritted with age
You picking with a hint of flamenco
Me strumming with a campfire aroma

And although we will never
Be what we were
To each other
All those years ago
It’s a functional way
To segue
Into old age
Making what we believe
Is beautiful music
Together…

(c) 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: Guitar & Ukulele in the backyard

BARITONE UKULELE SONG IN PROGRESS

(WITH BASIC CHORDS–NEEDS LOTS OF WORK)

 

Am/ Is it our destiny to always be Em/ apart
Am/ Mending fragments of an empty Em/ heart
Dm/ Will we suffer, unable to Em/ touch
Dm/ Love and truth not meaning Em/ much
Am/ Why no gazing in each other’s Em/ eyes
Am/ Why no chance to weave faithful Em/ ties

 

CHORUS

 

A/ Never, never must we sever
G/ Esoteric linkings of us forever

 

Am/ Perhaps we’ll meet in a cold,dark Em/ place
Am/ Celestial bodies reflecting from each Em/ face
Dm/ Silver astral chords tethered to Em/ Earth
Dm/ Experiencing a long-awaited spiritual Em/ rebirth
Am/ Celebrating the moment we finally Em/ meet
Am/ Discarding the sadness of being Em/ incomplete

 

CHORUS

 

A/ Never, never must we sever
G/ Esoteric linkings of us forever

 

(c) 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
Baritone Ukulele D, G, B, E

SONG-IN-PROGRESS (ELEPHANT EARS)

 

many years ago
known on a planet
of the sky-ing-est blue
most glorious green
and the tastiest brown
lived magnificent animals
with intellects equal to their size
wisdom reflected in their eyes
many cultures used them, true
transportation or war machines
many worshiped them
many invited images into the home
as good luck tokens
herds of elephants
caring for their young
forming families as they foraged
long memories for friend and foe
GREED
can sing of greed
but you know
only one way to go
do you remember the dodo?
extinction…

 

(c) 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Elephant, Elephant Ears & Mandolin

 

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