Tag Archives: poetry

Post-Holiday Wisdom from the Bell Jar

3 Jan

This is precisely how I feel as each holiday season comes to a close.

Bell Jar Holiday Quote



30 Aug

Sylvia Plath Purple Thistle drawing

I’m a riddle in nine syllables,
An elephant, a ponderous house,
A melon strolling on two tendrils.
O red fruit, ivory, fine timbers!
This loaf’s big with its yeasty rising.
Money’s new-minted in this fat purse.
I’m a means, a stage, a cow in calf.
I’ve eaten a bag of green apples,
Boarded the train there’s no getting off.

Sylvia Plath

**Note: Plath is one of my favorite poets, and this is one of my favorite poems by her. It is my belief that her mental health issues and tragic suicide often overshadowed her raw talent. Whenever I tell people that she is an inspiration to me, they often wonder why I prefer to read poems written by a woman who ultimately committed suicide. As you can tell in this 9 syllable by 9 line work (and drawing featured above), Plath was so much more than the depression from which she suffered.

April is Ruthless

30 Apr

APRIL is the cruellest month, breeding

Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing

Memory and desire, stirring

Dull roots with spring rain.

Winter kept us warm, covering

Earth in forgetful snow, feeding

A little life with dried tubers.


I have never found T.S. Eliot’s words to be this true as I have in 2013.  “Why is April so cruel?”, I would think. The weather starts getting warmer, the flowers blossom and coats are no longer necessary in the majority of the Mid-Atlantic states. I believed that Eliot had really never seen the potential in April.

Well this April, I discovered why. In the fourth month of this year, I had my heart broken, and then hastily and arbitrarily pasted back together. My career changed (and not necessarily to my benefit). My canine nephew,Bosco, decided to hate me and never share a bed with me again. I basically turned my back on who I am by somehow avoiding reading, working out and eating healthily. Instead, I opted to eat Pop Secret Homestyle popcorn or barbecue flavored kettle chips while gulping down half a bottle of red wine.

Due to ridiculous and uncontrollable circumstances, this month I have obtained the least amount of sleep ever. When I did obtain sleep, it was terrible in quality. Not to mention, I discovered that I have a totally unlikeable personality. Four jobs in three years, and I felt that everyone hated me at every single one of them. Six months at my current job, and I see the same pattern again. Snide remarks. Whispering behind me. Hidden notes/emails. Is this adulthood?  Moreover, my heartbreak was caused by the discovery that my beau’s friends and family seem to dislike me, disrespect me, or just completely disregard my feelings altogether. I started to feel as though I should have taken a tip from Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman, and tried at least a little to be more well-liked.

As the protective comfort of winter thawed, a culmination of unsavory scenarios unfolded. I didn’t read as often as I wanted to. I didn’t blog at all. I failed to really celebrate National Poetry Month. I felt unintelligent, unsuccessful, unwanted and certainly unfit.

And then, to make matters worse, I got even more upset realizing how self-absorbed and ungrateful I was being. My laundry list of complaints is considered trivial in comparison to the issues most individuals face on a daily basis. This very month, not too far from home, tragedy struck Boston. Several people were killed, including a child, and hundreds of others were injured, even to the point of losing limbs.Colorado

Well, for the remainder of spring, I will be less self-absorbed. I will let “comments” roll off my shoulders. I can’t allow the petty nonsense of others affect me to the point of gluttonous microwave popcorn consumption accompanied by a lack of physical and mental exercise. I won’t allow meager opinions to upset me to the point of turning my back on blogging and literature. These things all come together to make me who I am. I am a strong woman, and I will remain steadfast in my stance.

Note: Dear readers, thank you so much for allowing me to more honest and personal than I ever have been in the history of this blog. 

“A Dream Deferred”

29 Apr


What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore–
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over–
like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?

Langston Hughes

“Barbie Doll”

13 Mar


This girlchild was born as usual
and presented dolls that did pee-pee
and miniature GE stoves and irons
and wee lipsticks the color of cherry candy.
Then in the magic of puberty, a classmate said:
You have a great big nose and fat legs.

She was healthy, tested intelligent,
possessed strong arms and back,
abundant sexual drive and manual dexterity.
She went to and fro apologizing.
Everyone saw a fat nose on thick legs.

She was advised to play coy,
exhorted to come on hearty,
exercise, diet, smile and wheedle.
Her good nature wore out
like a fan belt.
So she cut off her nose and her legs
and offered them up.

In the casket displayed on satin she lay
with the undertaker’s cosmetics painted on,
a turned-up putty nose,
dressed in a pink and white nightie.
Doesn’t she look pretty? everyone said.
Consummation at last.
To every woman a happy ending.

Marge Piercy

“The More Loving One”

21 Feb


Looking up at the stars, I know quite well
That, for all they care, I can go to hell,
But on earth indifference is the least
We have to dread from man or beast.

How should we like it were stars to burn
With a passion for us we could not return?
If equal affection cannot be,
Let the more loving one be me.

Admirer as I think I am
Of stars that do not give a damn,
I cannot, now I see them, say
I missed one terribly all day.

Were all stars to disappear or die,
I should learn to look at an empty sky
And feel its total dark sublime,
Though this might take me a little time.

W.H. Auden

“Ancient Music”

9 Feb


Winter is icummen in,
Lhude sing Goddamm.
Raineth drop and staineth slop,
And how the wind doth ramm!
Sing: Goddamm.

Skiddeth bus and sloppeth us,
An ague hath my ham.
Freezeth river, turneth liver,
Damn you, sing: Goddamm.

Goddamm, Goddamm, ’tis why I am, Goddamm,
So ‘gainst the winter’s balm.

Sing goddamm, damm, sing Goddamm.
Sing goddamm, sing goddamm, DAMM.

Ezra Pound

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