I was in fourth grade when my dad took me to the Apollo Theater in NYC. Little did I know then that I was listening to whom would be known as the Queen of Soul. As a teenager I sang many of her soulful songs. Of course, R-E-S-P-E-C-T will never resonate the same. She taught a whole generation of young women about self worth and about standing up.
I played her CD of goose bump raising Gospel songs today. For the first time in a long time I felt a little more inspired although sad by the news of her passing. She was Amazing Grace. No one can or will ever sing America the Beautiful like her.
I hope we remember the importance of her legacy and also engrave in our minds and hearts that we need to love and R-E-S-P-E-C-T each other. May she rest in peace.
Occasionally I come across a line or two that melt my heart. I often collect words, phrases and lines and use them in my poems. I found this lines and they served as my muse to write this poem. The attributions are below. Thanks to my fellow bloggers: Ricardo Sexton, John Coyote, Julio Jimenez and Charmed Chaos.
Every spring I try to plant a beautiful garden like the ones I have seen in magazines. No sooner I plant Begonias, Calandula, Petunias and Pansies, our resident cottontail rabbit and occasional visiting deer snap up the fresh or new blooms.
The rabbit loves the clover that grows wild and free in our backyard. Clover is a weed but I cannot bring myself to stripping it because it has very dainty white flowers and because I too love the green leaves.
Therefore, my garden is composed of large ceramic pots. I have resigned to the fact that I may never have a garden except for the improvised one on our deck.
So what does Stanley Kunitz have to do with my want to be garden? Nothing really. Except that Mark Doty once described how Mr. Kunitz would walk through his garden “paying strict attention to every inch of it.”
I too thought about Mr. Kunitz’s visits to his garden. My grandmother never left her house for years except to step out into her small garden. Hers was a real garden. She talked to the flowers and plants; she claimed they would grow more and bloom more robustly.
Thus, I wrote a poem about her love of nature and especially her garden.
Grandma only felt safe in her garden
the lavender plant soothed her soul
and helped her cope with her phobia.
On a few occasions, I heard her sing
to the tiger lilies. They leaned and seemed to listen.
She stood very still as if she were watching out
for prey like the cottontail did on the grassy lawn
there were no prey to speak of
no one would ever harm her
but she listened carefully to nature’s sounds and warnings
It seems that greeting for special holidays, birthdays, even Mother’s Day posted on social media should suffice these days. No phone calls either sometimes. A quick text with a cute emoji or some ridiculous Gif will substitute a sentiment.
Oh well, I suppose it is what it is. Luckily I have kept all the very special greeting cards, some hand made, in a box. It will probably end up being a time capsule someday. Just saying! Hallmark must be going broke. What do you think?