The Orionids

For Quadrile Prompt at dVerse. the prompted word is “early”. What is a quadrille? A form unique to dVerse Poets Pub consisting of a poem (any form) of exactly 44 words, sans title, and the prompted word.  the Orionids is a meteor shower that always comes in October.  The “falling stars” are grains of sand from Halley’s Comet.  The sand burns when it hits Earth’s atomosphere

The Orionids
“We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.” Oscar Wilde

The moon is bright tonight
almost hiding the rain of meteor showers.
early, 3:00 a.m.- I gaze upwards
wishing for moonglasses
to better see.
In the ocean of night waves
crash on the shore of earth
leaving on its sands
memories of long ago fire

nbc news – public domain

THE Job

For Poets United Poetry Pantry and Real Toads Tuesday Platform. I cooked through university balancing studying on an academic scholarship. I eventually obtained my MS and became an environmental engineer. But I missed cooking. A few years ago I retired and went back to cooking volunteering at the Food Bank and at church. I began cooking with my father when I was six. This is also why I don’t keep a handwritten notebook. I kept things in my head for years and still do and arthritis in my hands due to cooking professionally.

THE Job
“It’s been an adventure. We took some casualties over the years. Things got broken. Things got lost. But I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.”Anthony Bourdain

My once dainty hands became ugly –
Scarred with burns from handling hell hot saute pans,
knife work and the vanity of not wearing
a protective chain mail glove.
I broke down my back,
my knees, my feet, my hands
from carrying heavy stock pots,
manhandling sides of beef,
emptying out bathsized mixers,
Developed arthritis from standing over hot fires
and going outside in the freezing cold to smoke a cigarette or a joint.
I sacrificed lovers on the altar
of cooking – separating them from myself with one long bloody slice.
My first love,
My best love,
My most faithful love –
Cooking.
The longest relationship I had –
Twenty years professionally.
Sixty years total from start to now.
I don’t regret one minute.

I don’t need no stinking notebook

Hi.  This is for Kerry’s prompt on Toads.  Using ink to write.  I read this and snort.  I haven’t written anything by hand in 30 years.  Even my Christmas cards and grocery lists are printed off the computer.

I don’t need no stinking notebook
“I just do the best I can and write something interesting, to tell stories in an interesting way and move forward from there.” Anthony Bourdain

I don’t have a notebook.
I haven’t had a notebook in 30 years.
All of my poetry, all of my ideas,
all of my words. all of my thoughts
are filed into a file called “Notes”…
on my computer.
Bits of poems,
A line or two,
A few words.
I have to shake my head and laugh.
I wouldn’t be able to read what I wrote.
On the puter, it is perfectly legible.
I haven’t used a notebook,
pen, pencil, or marker in 30 years.
I am not about to start now.

Notes

The Kittens

For Sanaa’s Get Listed at Real Toads. The four words I chose were lucid, touch, sleep, gravel. This is also being posted on dVerse Poets Pub Open Link Night.

The Kittens
it was a clear and chilly morning.
The gravel crunched beneath my feet
as I walked back from getting our newspaper
from the foot of the drive.
The chill snatched the sleep from my eyes
and the frost sparkled on the grass.
The morning was like a lucid dream
and I bent down to touch a blade of grass –
the frost melting beneath my fingers.
I put the paper on top of some boxes in our garage.
Something caught my eye.
I looked behind the boxes and saw a nest of newborn kittens,
huddled close and tight for warmth
And then I noticed the maggots
crawling on their beautiful fur.
My mind warp sped to the body of a cat
I had seen in the road a few days earlier.
The kittens were stiff in death –
Orange, tabby, black, and calico
all together in a nest of death.
I began to weep in grief.
The morning turned to nightmare
as I grabbed a shovel and walked
to the edge of the woods to bury them.
When I was through
I sat on the back steps and thought
of how the death of wild kittens
could hurt so damn much.

Harvest

For Poets United Midweek Motif – Abundance.

Harvest
“Skills can be taught. Character you either have or you don’t have.” Anthony Bourdain

A bushel basket full of freshly dug potatoes,
Yellow squash and zucchini,
Green beans and tomatoes, peppers –
Heaped up, running over.
The last of the harvest of my garden.
The vegetables have been shared with neighbors.
and now at the end of the season
the basket of goodies will be shared
at the Food Bank.
I use the abundance of my training as a chef
to share and cook there.
The smiles will grow like my garden.
Abundance in its purest form.

 

Haibun: Things I learned in the CIA

Posted for Mish’s prompt at dVerse Poets Pub – finding beauty in the ugly.

Haibun: Things I learned in the CIA
“Skills can be taught. Character you either have or you don’t have.” Anthony Bourdain
Many years ago, I attended and graduated from the CIA – The Culinary Institute of America that is. I was paired up with a tall lanky homely young man with curly hair and large deft hands. Unlike the rest of us, he always had a piece of rotting fruit or vegetable on his work station. Out of reach of the knives and other items, but always there. I remember once one of the instructors yelling at him to get rid of that damned piece of rotten fruit. He would but the next day, another one took its place. I think the others felt sorry for me because I was paired with him but I liked him a lot. He was dryly funny and open to everything. We became lovers after a fashion and finally I asked him the question: Why the rotting fruit? He smiled and said, “in its own way, it is so beautiful. And we all come to this you know.” I would sometimes see him lift a pear, an orange, a bell pepper and look at it from all angles before carefully replacing it on the table. After graduation and working under some excellent chefs, he went his way and I mine. I never forgot him. And no, it was not Tony Bourdain.
rotting fruit
in its season –
so must we all

The Season of Fireflies is Past

For Reat Toads Tuesday Platform.

The Season of Fireflies is Past
“There is no Final Resting Place of the Mind.” Anthony Bourdain

The season of fireflies is past.
the shade from trees is getting longer –
days are becoming shorter –
nights are growing cooler.
It is so silent
The sound of a train whistle
several miles away carries
faintly over the tops of trees –
it moves like a slow river and pools
on the black grass of my back yard.
I’ve seen one firefly here at the end.
It winked at eye level
and a few minutes later it winked higher up
and still a few minutes later it winked
up in the top of the old oak.
The train whistle awakens the insects –
the cicadas and crickets –
it awakens the tree frogs who begin their
treble belching – and the old bullfrog
in my dying garden sings
basso profundo – the cicadas
ratchet it up a little bit louder.
I can feel it in my soul and in my bones –
Summer is taking her shower and soon will
be in her jammies and sleeping.
autumn will awaken and begin his
royal progress throughout the land
trailing clear blue skies, deer, and golden leaves
in his wake.
The season of fireflies is past.

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