Reverso Poem

At the beginning of the month, this is a poem that filled my mind.


Now we have reached the final day of March, the challenge has been met. I can reverse the poem and celebrate.

My poems are examples of a reverso poem developed by Marilyn Singer. In her book Mirror, Mirror she wrote:

mirror mirror

“We read most poems down a page. But what if we read them up? That the question I asked myself when I created the reverso. When you read a reverso down, it is one poem. when you read it up, with changes allowed only in punctuation and capitalization it is a different poem.”

At the beginning of March, I am always tentative. What will I write? Will I have time to read and comment? On the last day of March, I breathe a sigh of relief. I traveled through the month and met the challenge. I celebrate!

I can answer the question of the second poem, What will I do? I will continue to write and post on Tuesdays. I hope you will join in and continue to share a slice of your life.





Text Messages Bring Smiles

The text tone on my phone is listed as glass. It sings a high pitched “Ding, ding” whenever a text comes in.

Previously, that sound did not raise my heartbeat or send me scurrying to locate my phone. But that’s all changed. Now, anticipation runs high whenever the high pitched ding plays. It could be a picture sent half way across the country bringing my granddaughter into the palm of my hand.

Clara was born January 3. We arrived to meet and greet her January 5. We spent the next four days holding her and savoring every moment with our family in California. Ever since then we have only had photos and videos sent via the phone. I am eternally grateful that we have the technology to bring family closer.


Great grandfather meets his great granddaughter.

Great grandfather meets his great granddaughter.




Petri Dish Stump

In December, we had two river birch trees removed from our landscaping. They were beautiful trees and the decision to remove them was an emotional battle. Finally the orders were given for the trees to be removed. Their roots are very invasive (didn’t know this ten years ago when they were planted) and we wanted to avoid complications in the future to our house’s foundation. I wrote about the tree in the front of the house earlier this month. That tree was a focal point in the landscape and is dearly missed.

The other tree was in our back yard. It sat in the corner, shading the house, but not in view from any window. Its loss was not mourned nearly as much as the front tree.

Recently we noticed something happening with the stump left behind. All of a sudden, it’s wet. Flies and bees buzzed to investigate this wet stump. I told my husband the tree was weeping. He didn’t appreciate my humor.


Within a day, the wet became filmy white. The liquid begian to ooze its way over the edge.



I stepped in to take a photo, and bubbles erupted from the rocks.

Look at the bottom, in the rocks. See that bubbling mass?

Look at the bottom, in the rocks. See that bubbling mass?

I step back and a foamy hole is left. I step forward, back, forward, back to watch the bubbles.

The bubbles popped and leave a hole.

The bubbles popped and leave a hole.

Several days later, the insects no longer buzz about the stump. It is still filmy but now we are adding other fungi to the film.


I don’t know when this show will end, but I’ll be checking every day to see the next development in stump slime. We have decided it is a Petri dish stump.



Christmas in March

My desk orientation in my office allows me to have a window on the world of our street. Truly, I am no Mrs. Kravitz. [Side note for you young writers who are scratching your head and muttering “Who’s Mrs. Kravitz?” She was a nosy neighbor character on the TV show Bewitched (show was on 1964-1972). Here is the Wikipedia link to read all about her. Now let me get back to my story.] Since we are on a cul-de-sac, there is not a lot of traffic, so movement on the street usually catches my eye, but not on this day.

I heard the truck stop. I looked up from my desk when I heard the truck stop. I looked up from my desk when I heard the truck stop in front of my house. The UPS man stepped out of his truck with a box. My heart raced a little faster as I hurried to the door to greet the bearer of the box.

A quick glance at the return address confirmed my suspicions. Eagerly I reached out to relieve him of my prize. I uttered a most heartfelt “Thank you!” He had no idea of joy he’d just delivered. Nestled in the box among filler paper were my eleven titles from Peachtree Publishers that I’d won. A treasure for sure!

Immediately, I began pulling them out, one at a time. Once they were all stacked on the counter, I wanted to sit down and savor the text of each, but I needed to begin my spaghetti sauce. Books were set aside, as my hands chopped onion and garlic, but my mind lingered on the covers I’d just unearthed. Quickly the chopped ingredients were dropped into the skillet of Italian sausage.

As the sausage browned, I read several books. The first book I picked up might not have been the best choice, Random Body Parts, Gross Anatomy Riddles in Verse by Leslie Bulion. Let me give you a little flavor of the poem “Lunchtime”

Flesh of fowl ground into hash,
Blood of berries bled from mash,
Wheat paste wet with human spit,
Plant parts mangled bit by bit.

See what I mean? (This poem is describing the stomach.) However, kids will LOVE these poems. Talk about a great opportunity for close reading!

I loved If You See a Kitten by John Butler.

If you see a cuddly kitten . . . say, “Ahhh!” If you see a pudgy pig . . . say, “Peee-ew!”

Love the alliteration! I can hear the kids guessing what word you should say. The details in the illustrations are fantastic.

Each book has such potential for reading and writing workshop. Thank you Peachtree Publishers for donating such an incredible prize! It was Christmas in March.




Tax Refund – Yay! From Where?

I wonder who has been doing our taxes in New Zealand? Six years ago we visited, but we only spent money. We didn’t earn any.

I've received this email several times in my regular email account.

I’ve received this email several times in my regular email account.

Wouldn’t it be lovely to think this was true? However, I know if it’s too good to be true, it probably isn’t true.

I am amazed at the ingenuity some people have to try to scam honest, hard-working people out of the few dollars we have earned. Just think of all they might accomplish if only they put forth the same effort to legal endeavors?

I’m thankful that the spam folder catches most of these emails, but why should we have to have a spam folder? Just play by the rules of society and we will all get along.


Missing . . . Again

As I am walking away from the car, into Sam’s, I touch my jacket pocket to confirm the presence of my phone. I touch nothing. There is no phone in my pocket. Panic starts to rise. I’ve been here before. Just as quickly the panic subsides. I’ve been no where else. Calmly I walked back to the car to see if it was in the door handle well or if it had fallen out next to my seat. A quick check of the front seat and door confirmed I must have left it at home.

I think back to what I was doing before leaving home. I must have left it on the coffee table when I looked up the phone number of a pizza place. Dumb move, I think to myself. I had several errands, I planned to call in a pizza so I could take it home for lunch when the said errands were complete. Resolutely I resigned myself to sitting and waiting for the pizza instead of breezing in to pick it up.

I trudged into Sam’s to pick up the few items on my list while weighing in my mind do I run home quickly to fetch my phone or just live the old fashioned out-of-touch life for the morning? Back and forth the thoughts volleyed like the ball in a tennis match. No, that’s silly, don’t go home. Yes, go home, what if someone calls? No, you can go an hour without the phone. As I walked out, I’d made the decision . . . I’d run home and drop the Sam’s items off and pick up my phone.

I opened the back door to set my granola and green beans down when I spot my phone lying on the floor behind the driver’s seat. Relief floods through my body as I quickly claim my phone and drop it into my purse, not my pocket this time. No need to return home. The agenda of the day was back on track. FYI: the pizza was delicious! 🙂




I was summoned to the backyard to weigh in on landscaping options. The color red catches my eye. Its hue is in juxtaposition with the surrounding colors.


I examine the surrounding area. This is what I discover.


More feathers! I follow the path of feathers. Tracking like an Indian. Take a step, study the ground, move slightly to the left, then to the right. Continue forward until this!

IMG_3531And this!

IMG_3530 (1)Horrors! Slowly it is dawning on me that someone feasted in my yard. I’m puzzled because I remember this from the last snow fall.

IMG_3503The tracks indicate was a scuffle of some sort.

IMG_3502But there were very few feathers scattered on the gleaming snow. Is someone using our backyard for their own personal dining room? Could it be the hawk?

I will have to keep a better lookout on the activities of the backyard.


This Is Just to Say

Yesterday afternoon, as I was grilling my pan of vegetables and dillyburgers, the smoky smell filled the air as it billowed out from the grill and wafted across the yard. As I savored the smell,  I hoped someone was out on their patio or walking the neighborhood so they might be tormented by the grilling smells. Thinking these thoughts reminded me of poems of false apologywcw0002 by William Carlos William. I consulted Gail Carson Levine’s book Forgive Me, I Meant to Do It for guidance as I developed my poem of false apology.

I was grilling 
the burgers and veggies
on my

which made your
mouth salivate
stomach grumble

Forgive me
I savored
every single
grilled morsel

Here is William Carlos William’s original poem.

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold



If You Make Corned Beef . . .

I love corned beef, so I am thrilled when stores put this meat on sale around St. Patrick’s Day. After the dinner with corned beef,  a domino effect influences our meals for the next week. If you make corned beef, you might have some leftovers. Those leftovers will make a great Ruben sandwich.

So if you plan to make a Ruben sandwich, you will need sauerkraut, but you won’t use all the sauerkraut in your sandwich.

Now I need another dinner where I can use sauerkraut. Dillyburgers* on the grill require sauerkraut. But you have to be sure you have propane in the tank for your grill.

Once you have procured the propane you have to install the tank, but you can’t remember how the pieces attached. So you look for the manual, but it is no where to be found. You use Google to find the pdf of the manual for your grill. Now the propane tank is back attached to the grill.

Since you are grilling dillyburgers, you might as well grill a pan of veggies too.

Finally, all the odd ingredients have been used and the dominoes have stopped falling. Now I wonder what’s for dinner tomorrow?

*A dillyburger is a double hamburger patty with a filling of sauerkraut, chopped dill pickles, onion, and mustard between the two thin patties of beef. It is eaten with a knife and fork and not on a bun. We tend to apply a generous portion of ketchup to this meat.