Pandemic Musings

During the pandemic

Isolation happened

Fear happened

Cooking every single day happened

Leukemia happened

Chemotherapy happened

Worry happened

Remission happened

Vaccination happened

After Vaccination

Hugging happened

Smiling happened

A glass of champagne happened

Hope happened!

Joy, a list poem

A baby’s giggle,


Dawn smiling on a bed of tulips,

Brahm’s Fourth Symphony,

The Starry Night,



Waves lapping the shore,

A gladdened heart.

Delight, Rejoice,

Be jubilant.

No regrets.

I’ll take it

Reward for five months of chemo

Enduring blood draws, drips, and pills;

Making headway, slow progress,

Injections, irritation, introspection;

Sessions with oncology team.

St. Jude, patron of lost causes

In my corner.

On my own, but

Never lonely.

With the support of my medical team, family, and friends, I am currently in remission. No guarantees, not a cure, but I’ll take it!

“Attention is the beginning of devotion”*

*Mary Oliver

“Pay attention!”

Blooming forsythia

scream their golden message.

“It’s spring.” Blossoms by yellow blossom

ten feet of beauty emerges.

“Let’s party!” it’s time for

outdoor adventures.

“Pay attention!” Notice the

hummingbird sipping nectar from my arching branches.

“Go ahead and whistle.”

Cheered by the house finches

circling my shrubness.

Bees and butterflies

cheer my presence.

Pay attention!

On Poetry

Poetry writing

Is not my “thing”

Poetry reading


Rouses emotions

Influences thinking

Gives hope and courage

Poetry is

“imaginary gardens with real toads

in them”*

Writing like that–

A perfect line–

Intimidates me.

I am but a “half poet.”

Forgive me.

*Line from Marianne Moore

Tanka poem

Today I try my hand at a tanka poem. Tanka is a Japanese song or verse a “short song.” It is best known as a five-line verse, 5/7/5/7/7 syllable count form.

Glittering sunlight

Dappling through budding oak leaves

Designing patterns

Shadows and sparkle flicker

Leading to shimmering hope

A new beginning


Ah Listen!

Soothe your soul

with symphonic sounds.


Awaken memories,

arouse emotions.


Let the melody

move you.


Find calm

in the cacophony of life

Today’s NY Times digital edition treated us to “5 Minutes That Will Make You Love Brahms” chosen by artists like Carlos Santana and Branford Marsalis. This was the inspiration for my poem today.

A poem for Quinn

Note: I write a poem for my grandchildren on their birthdays. This one is for Quinn, who is turning 16.

This is your Sixteenth birthday.

In numerology, “16” is the number of independence and intuition and wisdom.

Quinn, you think independently

Quick with a quip

Questioning but quiet, A young man of quality.

Quinn, you are intuitive and trust your feelings,

Fair and faithful to your friends, a

Fantastic cousin to the “little dudes.”

Quinn you are wise,

You are fun-loving and friendly

Affectionate and adaptable,

Witty and with it.

A grandson any Mom Mom would be proud to cheer.

Slippery Slopes





The Jersey Devil




Fearsome Creatures!

Fabulous Beasts!

First-hand accounts?

Furious searches!

Fiercely held beliefs…

Conspiracy Theories

Clandestine plots



False flag operations



Frenzied allegiances!

Ferocious adherence!

Fervent confidence!

Fiery rhetoric!

Fuming squabbles…

Shifting Realities

Golden Shovel Poem from NY Times Headline

Spring Classic

from Ezra Marcus

Holland, renowned for its tulips, making a

colorful landscape, luxurious tempest

of flowering bulbs. One row tumbles

into the next. A sea of splendor, from

vibrant scarlet to saffron to salmon, a

blended patchwork quilt, milk in a cereal

bowl of Fruit Loops.

Bulbs shipped to my door in a box.

Note: The news item from this headline reported the controversy over “shrimp tails” found in a box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch.