somedays, i got nothin'

the only thing you own are your words

(no subject)
 Life has certainly changed.

The biggest change was--I stopped writing for the most part.  Life was far too complex for me to take the time to sort out what I wanted/needed to say.

With that said, it all circles around, and I'm able to look for my words, wondering where they've run off to.... 

i've started writing nano fiction on seemed to be one function twitter was good for.

a short story in 140 characters... good fun!

the batch from this week:

1. the cat's meows are broken by angry hisses. her family was much the same; bellows for her attention cut with smiles. she hated both equally.

2. she stood frozen,eyes locked with the handsome man across the alley while she processed two facts;her curtains were open, and she was naked

3. mom's breath rattled like empty boxcars moving through the train yard at night. a few moments holding the pillow on her face-peace at last.

4. she sat-quiet,resigned, head bowed. he stood above her-shouting, aggressive, hand raised. he didn't know marriage would be this way; she did.

5. nothing made her happier at the end of the day than washing down her oxy-contin with a nice glass of wine, right before she nursed her baby.

6. he grew as he grew; three full meals a day, that he supplemented with copious snacks.he preferred obesity to the gnawing pain of loneliness.

7. there were times in her life when she felt she had the world on a string. times she felt it exploded in her face. today was one of them

8. ed hated working in frozen foods. if it wasn’t kids stealing ice cream, it was menopausal women standing in front of open freezer doors.

(no subject)
ages since i've blogged anywhere, aeons since i posted here.

working 70+ hours a week is a killer... working for no pay is stupid.  i'm doing both.  when i started, ruby was able to get herself up from her chair, use her walker... help me help her.  now, her legs are gone, she's in a wheelchair, and she falls when she insists on trying to get up.  i have to then dead lift her 190 lb body off the floor... and when i did it on thursday, i heard a pop.

now, the knee, the knee that had five procedures performed on it, hurts like mad.

this, too, shall pass.

hope all of those who take a look on occasion are well... we've internet at the house, so, i hope to catch up.

oh, the up side... the daughter is cheerfully preggers with a boy, due 17 january.  he's huge, and fills her tiny frame...she swears she won't use drugs, i think to myself, "yeah, right."

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sunday scribblings
Sometimes, We Choose

Margaret Mary Doyle set Saturday aside for shopping when she moved to a Chassidic neighborhood off the Jamaica line in 1970. This meant the shops were fairly empty and she could wander at her leisure, humming along with the Muzak, looking over the meat in the butcher’s section, finding relaxation in the beigeness of the chore. A change in her job schedule found her going on Sundays, when it was crowded with the women of her neighborhood; Brooklyn made wigs in place, lists at the ready, children in tow-- each one wanting the biggest chicken, the nicest kinsh, the freshest vegetables.

Eventually, they would congregate in the produce section, squeezing fruit and looking over vegetables with a small frown of concentration between their eyebrows... daughters learning the subtle trick to finding good ears of corn, sons standing patiently with yarmulkes bobby-pinned to cropped hair, pasez tucked behind their ears. It was there, the second summer she lived in the area, that someone finally answered the murmured hello she had offered many times. Weeks became months, and they saw each other enough to share a smile and a nod when their eyes met... accepting that the produce department and discussions of food would always be the extent of their friendship of sorts. The boys would watch Maggie from under their lashes, not wishing to speak to a stranger, much less a gentile stranger...wondering why their mother did. Maggie never failed to smile at them, comment on their growth--and they never failed to ignore her existence.

Over the next year or so, she watched the boys grow taller... knew when the elder made his Bar Mitzvah by his sudden absence. She congratulated her acquaintance on the upcoming birth of a child, bringing a small gift the week after she’d seen them back in the market. Passing the gift from one set of hands to the other caused them to touch--this action brought on the odd forced laugh one does in uncomfortable social settings.

Time passed, seasons brought squash and vine tomatoes and finally, the glory of summer melons. It was in late August when Maggie dashed in, late for a bar-b-que she was attending, focused on her list of items to buy, whispering under her breath and mentally ticking each thing off as it went into the basket. Unconsciously, she sorted meat from dairy, never allowing them near each other.

Cheese. Buns. Hamburger. All that remained was lettuce, two tomatoes and the cantaloupe she would cut up there, letting it chill while they all ate...knowing the fruit dripping with it’s juice, would cool throats rough from too many cigarettes and wine.

Looking the fruit over, she heard the voice she knew coming up behind her, speaking to the baby. The two women had never exchanged names, however, the children were known to her from their mother saying them as she sent them to get a bag of potatoes or some apples. Asher. Samuel, who was now a man. Yakob. Baby Rebekah, sitting strapped in the front of the cart, content to suck on her fingers, not caring who you were; if you smiled at her, she responded with her whole body wiggling. Maggie felt a twinge of irritation...she didn’t have any time to converse, not even for their brief conversations. The manners drummed into her head by Sister Mary Paul put a smile in place, the words of Hello, how are you? already leaving her mouth... a question put forth that she silently prayed to God wouldn’t be answered.

Discussing the price of cantaloupe, comparing it to larger, messier watermelon...never stopping in their testing, searching. Each had a different technique; Maggie sniffed the end, trying to scent the distinct flavour of the fruit. The other had the shaking method...holding them close to her ear, listening to hear if the seeds were at the point of coming loose from the flesh--a sign of perfect ripeness. As they stood and sniffed/shook and debated if this week or next would bring forth the best of the season, an older woman walked over, the younger boys holding her hands, all of them speaking rapidly in Yiddish.

Turning from greeting the three back to Maggie, she said, “This is my Mama. She is visiting us.”

Turning back, another set of hands joined the testing to find a cantaloupe that surpassed the usual standards. Like daughter, like mother, she, too, shook each round bit of fruit...moving from one to another, her wrist near her ear, listening for the ripe sound. All three concentrated on the task of finding that fruit; it bound them in the way only women are bound, the ancient voice hidden in DNA reminding them they were once the gatherers in tribes. It was then, as the older woman held up the yellow globe she had chosen, shaking it next to her ear, the long sleeves worn even in this weather slid back --Maggie saw it.

There. On the inside of the arm. Right. There.

Maggie stared. All else became unimportant. Those black-blue numbers held her eyes, her focus...stopped her breath. She wasn’t sure if it was the pale skin or the black knowledge of how it came to be there that caused them to suddenly stand out even more. With it, she’d been listed, tracked, made a thing. Maggie stared, knowing it was her memory for life.

A 24762.

She heard something, focused on it, realised it was the older woman speaking to her.

“.....Auschwitz, in August, 1943. I was 10. My Lilach stared that same way, the first time she understood this.”

Lilach took her mother’s arm, turned it so the tattoo was facing up, kissing it.

Putting the melon down, Maggie turned, leaving her cart, leaving the group that suddenly seemed closed to her. Swinging her purse over her shoulder, she moved towards the doors, towards air. Towards something she could comprehend.

She reached the bus, her seat, her was habit, and required no thought. In her apartment, sitting on the sofa, purse still in one hand, house keys in the other, she sat, trying to find some memory that didn’t have a dark place. She thought of the Leon Uris books she’d read, Mila 18, QB VII,...the works of Chaim Potok, books read since her move in some odd attempt to ‘understand’ her neighbors-- the books discussed the events, none had given her the skills to process what she’d seen.

The tattoo changed the words of fiction into reality. That string of numbers, created to de-humanize, to annihilate--numbers given to create what was held to be a perfect world. It had been a world envisioned by those who took part either actively or passively... both groups were equally responsible.

The loss of six million was there, in that number. The loss of homes, security, freedom...of generations that would never be born. All of that and more was contained in the cheap ink, the badly drawn characters.

A 24762.

Margaret Mary Doyle sat on her sofa, letting all of this settle into her brain that was still skittering over those details she’d never grasp, and knew something in her had changed.

With that knowledge came a great fear she’d do nothing about it, nothing to step up and voice her anger over genocides that still went on in the world. Standing, she let that fear find a hiding place in her soul, accepting it would stay hidden, accepting she’d live her life as it had always been...turning her head, remaining passive.

Unfolding the newspaper, she started to circle apartments in Manhattan.


First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a communist;
Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a socialist;
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a trade unionist;
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out--
because I was not a Jew;
Then they came for me--
and there was no one left to speak out for me.

----Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892-1984) about the inactivity of German intellectuals following the Nazi rise to power and the purging of their chosen targets, group after group.

(no subject)

has it been this long?

so much has happened, and at the same time, so very, very little.

shortly after my last post, i found myself over at my mother's home.. well, her temporary home.  she was living with a long time friend who is 86, had lost her husband, and needed some help to get around.

mother asked me to come over and see ruby... who had asked for me.  there i was, back in the presence of my teen years (ruby was a huge mentor in many of my hobbies) and my mother; who did what she could to stop me from being me.

a few days after that, i was awakened in the middle of the night by a phone call--mother was ill, and needed to go to the hospital.

long to short, i ended up at ruby's caring for her (very bright, but, infirm)... and dashing to the hospital to deal with my mother.  right now, mother is out of hospital, and i go every day from 8.30 until 5.30 to cook and care for the two of them. it will be darker before my dawn, as mother has to have a kidney out next week.. and i'll be there 24/7 for a bit.

i'm not sure why i'm doing this..  it takes all i have in every way to deal with my mother...

the plus side? i'm cooking again.  i'd forgotten how very good i am in this field...  i create and play and cook and someone else pays for the food i fix.  i cook very european, by buying one or two days food at a time, and preparing it.  i seldom make too much, causing leftovers.

the rest? well, i have no energy by the end of the day, and that includes creative energy.  i've stopped all writing, for the most part (including blogs)... i missed out on a chance to enter a competition because i simply couldn't find the heart to write.

this, too, will pass. all of it--dealing with two old ladies, driving across town, not writing, leaving sophie to play alone.

i will not miss any of that stuff... and, i know i won't miss the constant drone of cnn/fox (depending on the bedroom you are in) going on all the time.

(no subject)

the weekend.  well, the weekend that was sunday.

a great occasion--the celebration of zori's second birthday.  i keep that forefront in my mind.... the rest? gargh.

the ex, his girlfriend (there's class! bring your girlfriend to a family event that has BOTH of your ex wives there--how difficult for her), his mother, his brother, a niece, a nephew... the first wife, her boyfriend, her daughter from the second marriage (he died--meh), zori's dad and his family, who dropped the 'n' word all day, and smoked around my pregnant daughter and all of the little ones there.

and me.

one table held the maternal family, one the paternal family, one held the partner's family... and one held me and my eldest son who circulated.

bless him.

one table had a cloud of smoke, two had clouds of irritation, and one held a lot of laughter.

i was glad to be at the last one.

as for zo-zo, she ran and played and kissed everyone and smeared cake all over her face and laughed some more, so, all in all, it was a successful gathering.

thank god i don't have to do it again for a year.

(no subject)
i have to go to a party tomorrow for little zori... in attendence will be  my ex husband, his first wife, my ex mother in law, the eldest daughter's partner and his family (who look forward to the day when they can advance up the social ladder to trailer trash) and my mother.  

i anticipate a huge migraine.

denver, day 2
we are settled.

not unpacked, but, settled all the same.  the trip was fairly uneventful... sophie managed to chew her way out of her cardboard carrier in around 5 minutes... then, she tried to free kitty.  i ended up letting them both have the run of the truck cab, which elicited strange looks from people who passed me, and saw sophie sitting on the window edge on the passenger's side, surveying the passing scenery.  both of them managed quite well, holding in all body functions for 11 hours, then dashing for the litter box at miss h's house when we arrived. 

it was not a bad trip, looking back on it... sure, it was 11 hours of driving a 17' truck packed to the gills, but, it was smooth driving, i kept to a steady pace and my itouch held a charge all the way, allowing me to have good music to ease the drive.

the apartment is very sweet...  i won't be able to have a dining table, since my writing desk goes in that area.  there is a nice eating ledge thingy between the kitchen and living area, so, that works.  i made the decision to unpack my good china and crystal and silver... and use that to eat with.  why not use it is my thought.... silly to keep it packed away.  i have it because i like to use it, so, use it i will.

still unpacking the 4762 boxes... the ones that are neatly numbered, and the numbers are listed in a notebook with the contents next to them, thus allowing me to know what is where.  sadly, i packed the notebook, so, i'm surronded by 4762 opened boxes, and i dig through one at a time, looking.  it's like christmas with a twist.

i'm close enough to coors field to see/hear the fireworks tonight.  once i figure out where the hell i am, i imagine i'll walk to the light rail and take it to the center of denver.  deborahsof and i are going to see 'osage;august county' in august... there is theater all over denver, which is a good thing for me.

on the 7th, i have my first production meeting with the film crew i'll work with at the end of the month.. i look forward to that. 

i discovered the whole foods that is the size of walmart... two hours and $130 i left the location dazed and content.

and then, there is zori.  miss h's little girl, my first grandchild whom i've not seen since she was 5 months old.  she has her mom's bigass grin, beautiful cornflower blue eyes, and a head full of blond ringlets.  she told everyone, "my nonnie coming!"  "mom, where nonnie?" and when she woke up to see me there on thursday, she said, "who you?".  she's well aware who i am now, and comes easily into my arms.

hrh and her family arrived this morning at 7am after driving all night... i wasn't happy about that.  but, they are safe and fully moved and her new house is much like her; warm and welcoming.  it is sad for me that she's 30 minutes instead of 3 minutes away, but, we are all adjusting.  my location puts me in the middle for all of the kids... i just don't have room for all of them at once. 

it's late, i'm done for today, and i still have to get laundry folded.  all in all, i'm happy with the move.  i'm pleased to be back in denver after years away, and look forward to seeing good friends tomorrow.

life remains good.

(no subject)
i am stil in utah.


chait (the daughter and soninlaw) should arrive tomorrow night.. we have three days to pack the rest of their things, and then unload my storage to a truck and head out.

i'm still not sure of where i'm living, as the amazing art deco was rented from under me (blargh!) and the loft hasn't finished my paperwork.  oddly enough, i found a wonderful place that will be ready to be rented next april... i've already worked with the landlord on that, and it's just down the street from the loft in lodo.

mostly, i read and watch films and eat frozen milky way bars.  the last occupation isn't such a great idea.

sophie has settled in here.. i often think of my friend, e.k., and her cats...   i understand the term 'little angels' now.. except when sophie has cleaned herself, and expects to clean me.  or, when she plants her six pounds on my forearms, preventing me from typing.

creative work moves forward, with ventures into short stories and the work on the play.  i've already found a indie job in denver--second string acting and being the production manager for an indie film.  so, i'll arrive, unpack, and go to work for a month.  good fun.

i still do not talk to my mother... i'm still good with that decision.

wishing those who read my little bit of my world on here good health..
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i've sat on some wonderful news, awaiting the okay to discuss it here.

no, it's not about an apartment or moving or my non-existent love life (which will stay that way if i don't stop eating my current daily food addiction of lil' smokies and stokes chili with cheese) or about sophie.

two years ago this summer, two large events happened in my eldest gave birth to zori, giving us the first member of the next generation. i always tell my daughter that zori looks just like me, but, we don't share any, it's in my imagination. secondly, hrh married the soninlaw, who entered our family with his love for her and two children. in six weeks time, i went from being myself to being a nonnie.

i think the kids got more of an auntie mame, but, you get the idea.

my mother's day present this year was hrh announcing she's going to have a baby in january. she was worried, not wanting to tell anyone, because i had a history of miscarriages, and she wanted to be sure. as she put it today, "the baby is sticking", thus, i now refer to said child as 'elmer'... as in glue.

in january, i'll have another grandchild... one i don't view any differently than the others just because we do share dna. it is odd to think my baby girl is going to have a child... and, unlike miss h, i'll be there the entire time. i believe i'm banned from the delivery room, but, i'm good with that. i've no desire to see parts i've not seen since she was 5.

she pats her tummy, which is still as flat as a board, and talks about the changes in her body. how she's tired, she is getting cravings, she's tired. i tell her the second trimester is the best, and we agreed between all of us that she'll do thanksgiving (her favourite holiday) and miss h will do christmas, since hrh will be pretty far along and into sitting and moaning. or at least, that's what i did in my last month.

no water skiing for her this year, which has dampened her thrill for the boat her dad owns and her time on the water...but, she's willing to make the trade. i look at her, and catch her with that turned inward look you get when you are pregnant... the wonder of it all.

this child will be as spoiled as the rest, from her dad, her siblings-- me. i've turned into that woman who shows up with gifts and sugar and kisses--then i leave. i like doing that, it's great fun.

my little girl is no more. although i find great joy in her condition, in the fact her marriage brought two beautiful children into my life, who love me as i love them... although i find happiness in her happiness in her life.... although all of these things are marvelous and wonderful and joyous... makes me cry for a few reasons--the most being, she's a mom now, not my baby.

and, i'll miss that.

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