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FRANCES

FRANCES

I choose to remember you
as you were back then
so long ago

driving your new ford demo
with dealer plates
all around town

I choose to remember you
picking up the mail
before noon everyday

getting your hair done weekly
while catching up
on the town news

I choose to remember you
at your camp by the lake
BBQ time with friends

watching your soaps
and planning dinner
for your family

I choose to remember you
for your bright mind
trapped in the wrong era

born in a town too small
when those
glass ceilings were cement

I choose to remember you
holding your son’s child
for the first time

watching your face
as you fell in love with her
unconditional love

I choose to remember you
for only those times that
were good

and I say goodbye to you today
as your tired pained eyes closed
just as the sun rose.

Mary Frances Rita Achey Bisson
06/10/1925 – 03/31/2012

Childhood

Thank you to Haiku Heights for the opportunity to write about childhood. What memories, what love, what fun, and what a family!

CHILDHOOD

Warm arms embrace me
family love surrounds me
raspberry kisses

My sweet watermelon cut and ready!

Sweet Watermelon Rebellion

There is no snowman in my front yard. It certainly isn’t because we don’t have enough snow. In my neck of the woods we have had over a foot so far today, and it seems to be spitting and trying to decide what to do next. Any of you without snow, please, feel free to head my way. I will let you jump and romp to your heart’s content. You can even build a snow house or a snow fort. There is enough for that. If you don’t know how, I will set my childhood memories in gear and give you exact details how to do it. When you get tired, you can take a break by making a snow angel, laying in the snow, rosy red-cheeked and exhausted from building your home, while looking up at the blue sky and reading the shapes of clouds letting the fluffy white stuff kiss your face.

This winter in my area of Maine it has been mild, to say the least. I have loved every minute of it. We have had a minimal amount of snow. That in itself has saved me at least a couple thousand dollars. I have had to plow my yard only once, up to today. Beaucoup dollars saved. And oil…I can’t even tell you how much I normally use, even though I always try to be conservative. I usually keep my thermostat on 57F when I am not home and set it at 62F when I am home. I heat my two-bedroom one level living space and also the apartment upstairs that I added on years ago.

I woke up this morning to announcements on TV of school closings, parking bans, and turnpike accidents. I forced myself out of bed, walked past my house thermostat without so much as a glance, and headed for my living room window. It was snowing at a pretty good rate, although not furiously. Right then and there I decided it was NOT going to be winter IN my house today!

I headed for the thermostat and held my breath as I turned it up to 68. I was performing true oil blasphmey…and I didn’t care. My Sweet Watermelon Rebellion was starting. I then made myself a cup of coffee, adding a bit more cream than I usually do, for rebellion’s sake.  I took out my latest book and began to read…after I put my flip-flops on, of course (with stockings – cold bones can only stand so much). A couple of hours later, feeling like the lady of leisure I was proving to be, I decided to make myself useful. I headed to the kitchen and made a huge batch of spaghetti sauce kept simmering on the stove all day. Now I wouldn’t have to try to figure out when I was going to get time to cook my contribution to this week’s Sunday dinner party with friends.

What a lovely relaxing summer day I was having. I figured it was time to cut the watermelon I bought yesterday on a whim. Ahhh, there is nothing like watermelon in the summer, even if the summer is just inside your house…or inside your head! The plate looked scrumptious and juicy. This was indeed a great-tasting late breakfast.

Today I have been on call for the local medical center, my shift ending at 9:00 P.M.  The phone rang in the early afternoon. Work! As I looked out the window at the deepness of the snow, and then down at my flip-flops, I knew I was going to have to change, albeit reluctantly.  I didn’t want to go from summer to winter, but…work is work. Just then, an interpreter texted me saying she was at the hospital and would be happy to do the assignment if I preferred. YES, more sweet rebellion in store for me!

I sat at my desk and leisurely wrote four cards to friends living far away but always near at heart. Then, I ventured into my guest room and emptied the closet. I am looking forward to having tiger strand bamboo wood floors installed and an empty room and empty closet gets me one step closer. Walking through my dining room to my kitchen to stir my sauce, I noticed the hutch looked pretty dusty so I took on the task of not only dusting it, but rearranging it. Much, much better.

The washing machine, dryer, and dishwasher all had turns singing to me today. I sang back “hot fun in the summertime…” even thinking for a minute that I just might be Olivia Newton John and John Travolta just might walk in anytime, at least if he didn’t get distracted making a snow angel outside.

This summer day was so pleasant. It was warm and cozy in here and I am glad you came by for a visit. There is plenty of watermelon left if you want to make another trip. I will even put a small umbrella in your drink and let you use a pair of my flip-flops!

Last Kiss

Indigo Spider has done it again with fantastic visual prompts. Visit her blog and enjoy reading the stories and poetry her prompts inspire. I have chosen the hauntingly beautiful picture titled LAST KISS by Martinakis Adams. My contribution this week is in the form of poetry, a Tanka.

Visual Prompt 5 — Last Kiss by Martinakis Adam (http://deignis.deviantart.com/)

 LAST KISS

touch my lips, my love
knowing my heart answers yours
kiss me gently, sweet
letting memories mingle here
wishing we could start anew

I enjoy all of the Haiku Heights writers. You will, too, if you stop by and read their wonderful works. This week, the word prompt is ILLUSION. My take on this is as follows:

ILLUSION

Slight hint of a smile
Upturned mouth and grin intact
Heart heavy and sad

Shadow

Thank you to Indigo Spider for Sunday Picture Press and the picture prompts this week. I decided to go sappy and romantic with this one. But, I couldn’t help throwing in sadness, too. The picture I chose to write about is prompt #3, title unknown by Diane Arbus.

Visual Prompt 3 — Title Unknown, Diane Arbus

SHADOW

Laurie studied the handwriting on the package. It was not familiar to her. The return address didn’t include a name, just 1465 Gibbons Drive. No city, no state, no zip code. She glanced at the postmark, Fieldcrest, and sucked in too much air. She started to cough. It couldn’t be.

Her hands shook, and her heart raced as she gently opened the package. Inside was a small wooden box, exquisitely and painstakingly hand carved. At the center, was the sun, raised above all else, warm and inviting. Its rays emanated to all areas of the box. On the right was a single rose bud burnished into the rays. The bud wasn’t in full bloom yet, but it looked hopeful. On the left side were two hands, intertwined, fingers gently and intimately holding each other. The sun’s rays surrounded and caressed both hands. Brass hinges on the back of the box kept the cover intact as Laurie opened it. On the inside cover, engraved simply, were three lines.

My promise to you
1962
Never forgotten

The inside bottom and sides of the box were padded and covered in fine silk, mostly the color of rose buds, with a delicate pattern set in, branches, laced in green and brown, like the limbs of a cherry tree.  On top of the silk, in crinkled, meticulously folded tissue paper, was a picture. Laurie teared up when she saw it. She remembered that very night. She had begged her sister to come along. She needed her near, for courage, to get through. Her sister had snapped the photo and Laurie always wondered where it had gone. It was the last night she spent with Bob, the night she learned he would be leaving to do the ‘right’ thing…marry someone else, someone who was carrying his child. Someone she knew he didn’t love, a brief encounter that happened before they met.

Underneath, below where the picture had been placed, Laurie saw an envelope. Her name was written in the unfamiliar handwriting. Carefully, she put the picture down and lifted the envelope from the box, opening it. Inside, was an obituary, cut out from the newspaper. She read it and let her fingers slide over the name…Robert Gordon, 69, of Fieldcrest.  Then, she opened the letter, stuffed in the same envelope, in the same unknown handwriting.

Laurie:
As I was going through my husband’s things recently, I came across this box he had hand carved and hidden in his garage. He promised me he would never see you again when we married and I know he kept his promise. He was that kind of man. I also know he didn’t loved me at the time and was being gallant since I was carrying his child. I thought time would take care of that and you would fade from his mind.  How wrong I was. I competed with your memory all my married life. He never mentioned your name to me, ever, but you were always there. He was a good man, good to me and good to our children. I’m not sure if sending this to you is the right thing to do and I may regret it, but since he gave up something he wanted badly for me, I feel I must do this last thing for him. Maybe doing this will help me to overcome the sadness I have felt all these years, living in a marriage under your shadow.
Best – Eve

Laurie fell back into a chair, staring.  A few minutes later, she stood up, holding the picture, the obituary, and the letter tightly in her hand. She walked to the mirror above the fireplace, looked at herself, 69 years old, soft delicate wrinkles, wrinkles of a life lived, and watched her eyes as tears slowly slid down her cheeks.

Haiku Heights has done it again…a delightful word prompt to get our creative juices flowing…DESIRE.

DESIRE

she desires youth
 botox injected, lips pursed
 much of life is missed!

(Photo courtesy of google image)