Writing Practice

Prose, poems and raw ugly beginnings

Ladyhouse Blues, 1943

Ladyhouse Blues, 1943

Red dress—Rhythmic steamfanned by shade trees  White dress—Iced teamelting in the sun  Sighs of syncopated staticecho across townfusing Red and White  Doorway ladies on a summer mornsuffering Ladyhouse Blues.

Freeing Vesuvius

Freeing Vesuvius

Movement was key, and the key was around my neck; that’s what extra shoestrings were for— skate keys. After eight hours at a desk, where the only activity was my pencil gliding haphazardly across the page to form letters and numbers I didn’t care about, I needed to...

Veteran’s Lament

Veteran’s Lament

Angular man with guitarNo longer gazes at the stars.  Fingers pluck with eyelids closedMuscles tense—               No chance for repose.  White hair like a mountaintopChanneling chords of...

The Beneficial Curse

The Beneficial Curse

My husband, Jack Wade, was raised by a brood of women made up of his mother and his father’s sisters: Agnes, Melva, Genevieve and Sandy— an outcome of his father’s death when Jack was three. Wade males died young; it was the family history. His mother constantly...

Ode to Mr. Koss

Ode to Mr. Koss

He stands in the back of the roomA veteran of warA monument of knowledgeMy teacher.  We must not look upon his faceNothing is written thereWe face front alwaysEven when answering questions.  His voice is unexpected baitFor our seventh grade mindsWe do not...

Scare in the Night

Scare in the Night

My first short story, written at the age of seven with all its glorious bad grammar and spelling. Charlotte Jahn lives with her old Aunt Henrietta in a worn-down old mansion. Charlotte’s aunt is a kind old lady who loves children. She is about in her seventies and...