The Rambling Blogger

As I mentioned yesterday, I’ll be switching to my new blog home next week. I’ve picked out a very summery looking header I hope you’ll like. I’ve also wondered how it would work to put some order into my blog-keeping. Maybe having a plan will keep the juices flowing.
So far I’m thinking:
Tuesday something historical
Wednesday I’ll post a poem
Thursday a fiction story
Saturday I’ll write about an interesting book or blog post I’ve read

To start my new habit, I’d like to tell you about a post I read yesterday over at Another Purple Planet. This blogger is turning thirty and sharing with us a list of the important truths she’s learned up until now. I told her in a comment that I’m more than thirty years older and can’t add much to her list. (So why is it that we human beings who consider ourselves so intelligent, spend years learning the same lessons over and over?)

Click here to read her article and see if you can add anything.

A heads-up for readers of this blog:
You won’t have to do anything. Subscribers will be moved as well as the domain, christinegoodnough.com. This current site will revert back to the pre-domain address of christinegoodnough.wordpress.com, so if you want to check out some post in these archives you’ll need to type in that address. Christine Composes will go back to christineevelynvance.wordpress.com.

Hope you’re all having a great weekend!

Old Poets

By Joyce Kilmer

If I should live in a forest
And sleep underneath a tree,
No grove of impudent saplings
Would make a home for me.

I’d go where the old oaks gather,
Serene and good and strong,
And they would not sigh and tremble
And vex me with a song.

The pleasantest sort of poet
Is the poet who’s old and wise,
With an old white beard and wrinkles
About his kind old eyes.

For these young flipperti-gibbets
A-rhyming their hours away
They won’t be still like honest men
And listen to what you say.

The young poet screams forever
About his sex and his soul;
But the old man listens, smokes his pipe,
And polishes its bowl.

old-man-black-hat

There should be a club for poets
Who have come to seventy year.
They should sit in a great hall drinking
Red wine and golden beer.

They would shuffle in of an evening,
Each one to his cushioned seat,
And there would be mellow talking
And silence rich and sweet.

There is no peace to be taken
With poets who are young,
For they worry about the wars to be fought
And the songs that must be sung.

But the old man knows that he’s in his chair
And that God’s on His throne in the sky.
So he sits by the fire in comfort
And he lets the world spin by.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Alfred Joyce Kilmer, born 1886 in New Brunswick, NJ, USA, was killed
in action in World War I, never obtaining this mellow state he writes of.

Talents & Frustrations

Today is my dear husband’s 75th birthday. Quite a milestone! We celebrated officially last Sunday night after a church function, and are looking forward to a dinner out with the family tomorrow. Of course he blogs about it on his site, mentioning all the things that have changed since he was a boy.

What really scares me is the thought that the next twenty years will go by just as fast as the last twenty. Whatever happened to “old age, when the hours would drag by”? We find the flight of time incredible!

I can assure you that in his youth Bob was a studious lad just like the young fellow below. I don’t know if there was ever a “Willy Brown” in his school to be jealous of, though. Hope this poem gives you a smile.

FRUSTRATION

My teacher says that I’m the best
And smartest boy in school;
I’m never careless like the rest;
I never break a rule.
If visitors should come to call,
She has me speak a piece,
Or tell what makes an apple fall
Or binds the coast of Greece.
You might expect that since my brain
Holds such an awful lot,
I’d be extremely proud and vain;
But, oh–I’m not.
For Willy Brown’s a cleverer lad
Than I could hope to be;
Why, I’d give anything I had
To be as smart as he!
He can’t recite, “Hark, Hark, the Lark,”
He’s not the teacher’s pet;
He never gets a perfect mark
In ‘rithmetic — and yet,
Could I be he, I’d waste no tears
On foolish things like sums;
For Willy Brown can wag his ears
And dislocate his thumbs.

Author’s name unknown to me.

Of Empty Wallets and Washing Gifts

While I’m on the subject of haiku this morning, Mark Redfearn’s haiku about after-Christmas window-shopping gave me a chuckle.

And today I must tackle Mount Wash-more, as the FlyLady calls it, which brings to mind another after-Christmas scenario:
New year’s laundry
my red towel gift set
pinks hubby’s pjs

If you enjoy haiku, Mark consistently posts some of the best verses I’ve ever read. Another haikuist, Charlotte Digregorio, posts a collection and often showcases other writers on her blog. Who doesn’t love the rush and whistle of a train? Here’s a verse she’s posted that I really like, written by UK haiku poet Alan Summers.

I also follow poets Bill Bisgood at The Write Idea — here’s one of his verses I enjoyed and you will, too — and Ron Evans at Haiku Odyssey. Here’s one of his haiku. Ron moved this fall, so his site has been inactive for awhile. (Hope all went well with that, Ron?)

Though I haven’t written many this year, I’ve posted all my haiku at Treetop Haiku.

I think everyone should try their hand at haiku — or short verses of that kind. It takes mind-power to get a whole thought condensed into a few syllables without sounding thrill-less. Like:
I went for a walk
saw footprints in the snow
someone else has been here

Haiku is not just a line of words strung together. It takes skill to compose a verse with a twist, something that makes a reader think or imagine without giving them the answer. For example, here’s mine about a scarecrow – which in Japanese haiku symbolism represents an old man or old person.

Too telling, IMO:
this sorry scarecrow
grown stiff in autumn frosts
wishes for summer days

My final version:
this sorry scarecrow
grown stiff in autumn frosts
sighs for the tasseling corn

Which one do you prefer?

But I’m NOT Pearl

I said, “Hello?”
And the elderly woman said,
“Hello, Pearl.
How are you today?”

I said, “Fine. But I’m not…”
She said, “You sound
quite perky this morning.”
I said, “Well, I am. But you have…”

She sighed. “Yes, too much
time. The days get so long.
So I hope you have
a few minutes.
“I’m feeling quite
lonesome today, Pearl.”

I said, “I’m sorry to hear that.
But I’m not…”
And she said, “I’m glad for you.
It’s no fun feeling so
alone. I don’t wish it
on anyone.”

I said, “You’re right.”
And she said. “But I’m glad
you’re always willing to lend
a listening ear, Pearl. You’re
a wonderful friend.’”

So we talked for two hours,
even if I’m not Pearl.

—Christine Goodnough

Word Press daily prompt: Protest