Just like this simple curlicue. Photo taken in Charleston. SC.
I was in Wickford the other night, so I visited the giant lotus pond on Rte. 1 again. We found the lotus three years ago after Mallory and Seth’s wedding, and I’ve visited the past three summers. It seems other-worldly to me every time I go, and it’s something I love to do. The leaves are large platters and the lotus are like porcelain.
Last night was the 2nd annual Poetry and Art event at the Wickford Art Association. Months earlier poets were asked to write a poem that related to one of the 40 pieces of art and sculpture created by art association members. Those poems selected were printed and hung next to the artwork.
I had selected a piece of art of old benches because I liked the technique and the colors. It also reminded me of the work of Andrew Wyeth. The artist turned out to be one of the poets I knew, so it was a wonderful surprise. I loved going around the room and reading all the poems and relating them to the artwork. There were some wonderful pieces.
The night was beautiful — the building is near the Wickford Harbor. I’ve posted the poem and the painting here with other photos of the night. It’s a great idea for other art associations to try.
This probably isn’t a good photo because you can’t see the contrast. But just imagine me — a middle-aged woman in capris, a turquoise shirt and flip-flops — excusing my way through this group of models. My daughter and I were playing tourist in the Hamptons on Long Island last weekend, and we walked into this little dress shop overflowing with models, photographers and lots of white wine and red lipstick. We knew we didn’t fit in, but no one told us to leave. I think they actually looked right through us — at least me.
Anyway, it was quite surreal, and, trust me, a great study in “contrasts.”
I dug back into my blog posts to five years ago when this poem was published in Alligator Juniper, a literary magazine out of Arizona. (I can’t remember which college.) Later, it was reprinted in a magazine published through the Mark Twain House in Hartford, CT. (which I still need to visit someday). I taught Huck Finn for several years as a high school teacher, so just a note about Huck’s wife, Joanna. She was one of the sisters in the book that Huck lives with. Joanna has a “hairlip” and is the only person who sees through Huck’s tall tales.
Midlife Adventures of Huck Finn
One pan-fried August evening
Huck eyed his hair-lipped wife eating
half-price appetizers at a local bar, and said:
“Joanna, I love you – but I’m not
in love with you.”
After tiresome-long years of selling stocks,
scrabbling up ladders, sucking up to managers,
he was sick of the human race, tired of her lip.
Huck wanted to rev up a chopper.
No, there was no other woman.
It was Huck’s turn to think of himself,
head downriver again.
Okay, maybe he’d change his mind
if she’d change her ways.
Like lose ten pounds, quit whining
about being tired, iron his button-downs.
After 23 years, six kids, five moves,
nine job changes, a giant hairball and a dead dog,
Huck told his wife he wasn’t in love.
Not any more.
Later, Joanna shed crocodile tears
until she heard Huck’s buzzsaw snores
from the basement La-Z-Boy.
Then she hopped on the chopper.
Lit out for the territories.
Alligator Juniper 2009, contest finalist