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Anais Vionet Nov 18
It was the summer of 2014, I was just about to turn 13, spending June of summer vacation with my Grandmère, in Paris. Tonight we’re at a fundraising benefit for African relief (it’s always something). It was a coveted ticket, I was told, because Keira Knightley and Rita Ora were there - somewhere. It was being held at an empire-styled museum-estate in Paris, once owned by Josephine Bonaparte.

The rooms were ornate in the extreme, with dark, woodland, panoramic wall murals, large, finicky-looking furniture, heavy, with gold encrusted - everything. It made the small, dark rooms and tight passageways seem foreboding and claustrophobic.

A boy named Théo was my ‘date’ for the evening (NOT my idea). When my Grandmère was a girl, back when hoop skirts were the fashion and F. Scott Fitzgerald was just sharpening his pencils, a girl didn’t attend a function without a date. Théo was in my grade at school, but he was a couple of inches shorter than me, and his voice seemed different every time he talked. He was a surprise; I don’t even know how she found him.

As we snaked through the main house to the solarium, in a parade of otherwise middle aged, formally dressed guests, the dim hallway squeezed us down to a single-file line. Théo kept trying to take my hand, in the darkness, like he’s scared or something. “Stop that!” I warned him.

Then I saw a mirror - ‘Oh!’ I thought in surprise, stopping dead in the hallway to check my hair, straighten my dress, and pose for my imagination. I became aware Théo was talking, again - he always was - saying, “You're wa wa wa,” or something. Call me a casual and indifferent listener.

“Were you talking to me” I asked, “or just making words up?” He looked exasperated - why?
“You're blocking the way,” he said, anxiously, in a squeaky voice, the way he said it made me think he’d said it before.
He gently took my arm to move me along and I wobbled in my high-heels, I wasn’t very good with heels yet. “Easy,” I cautioned him, my arms briefly flailing.

“You know,” I said defensively,“ someone PUT that mirror there.. probably Napoleon or Josephine - they WANTED people to stop there.” Men are so illogical, it’s a wonder they survive.

As we finally entered the solarium, there was a jazz trio playing ‘C’est si bon’ (Arm in arm), what else? I said, “I’m starving.” A long table along a blue-glass wall featured desserts and champagne. My stomach growled.
I looked around, there was nothing for it - action must be taken - and Théo was useless.
“Want to go get something to eat? I asked him.
He lit up as if awakened, “McDonalds?” he asked. Our conversations were in French, naturally. His joy probably meant his parents didn’t like him eating there (American cuisine! = junk food).
“Bien sûr,” (of course) I said, grinning.

I found my Grandmère in a cluster of elegantly dressed patrons - and there was Keira Knightley - gorgeous, in a dress like she wore in that ‘pirate’ movie - she movie-star glittered, otherworldly.
“I’m starving,” I informed Grandmère, “we’re going to get something to eat,” I turned to show her Théo’s delighted face - he was her idea, after all.
“I was hoping to introduce you…” she started.
“Please!” I asked, bouncing up and down on my toes with some urgency, taking her hand.
“Very well,” she said, sighing, after a moment.

I turned away, wrestling my too-large iPhone-6-plus from my sparkly party clutch.
“Hey Siri, Call Charles,” I commanded. A moment later Charles picked up.
“McDonalds, Champs-Élysées,” I said, as Théo grinned, rubbing his hands in glee. “We’re in the solarium,” I added.
“Eyes on,” Charles said, indicating that he had me in sight.
Broadsky Jun 2022
mail gets delivered everyday

do you ever expect a letter from me asking you to meet me halfway?

packages getting delivered under the windowsill

accidentally spilling coffee on the water bill

I have my book of stamps and personalized stationary too

just give me a pen and tell me what address am I sending this letter to?

pictures and videos

your recorded laugh echoes

seeing these old photos of you in your youth

feels like waiting in line at a tollbooth

visiting the past comes at a price

it costs a pretty penny and tends to be unwise

these pictures and letters will never make it to your mailbox

just like when you see me you'll always move over to the other side of the sidewalk

finding these captured moments of the past

makes me want to climb in my car and drive fast

you seemed happy then and even happier now

it doesn't seem like I've brought you too down

eight years ago today you gave me ten digits to dial

I thought our six hundred and thirty six days spent together was beautiful like mosaic tile

you were the first, that I cannot change

but even if I could, there's nothing I would rearrange

you still move me in ways i cannot explain

even after all these years there are so many feelings that still remain

some bad and some good

just wondering

do you still wear the sweatshirt I got you,

the one with the hood?

I'm sure I am forgotten about

everything about me in your mind, completely wiped out

which is fine

just at least have a glimmer of when your heart was mine

mail coming on the seventh day is a nice concept


no matter where you are, wherever the trees sway

the mail never comes on Sunday
Eight years ago today you gave me your number, ill forever remember June 9, 2014 as the day I learned your name.
Nat Lipstadt Nov 2014
all my life
wanted to write just
the way
Joni (Mitchell) sings

rising unexpected,
write the changing temperament
in the pitch,
of now

yawing, oscillating,
speedy slow,
enunciating the whip of
love crazy

twist to fall into a
bass baritone insane
from and into a higher pitch,
switch on the
en garde,
blue ink
onto cloth napkin poetry

plain plaintive,
rendering the scene,
rendering my heart,
it's crazy high-lows,
emotion backyard
swing set

Oh Joni!
I could drink a case of you

that is was what I
told the single girls
when I was a wooing man

send me home,
high and crying,
thinking uneven,
drinking you,
pounding the dashboard,
sing our palpitating poems

thinking up
the in-between
songs of
till next time

that they loved so much
they begged,
sing it again and again

I drank them all
and think now of poem love songs,
vintages that never caged,
never aging,
those songs I wrote for them,
back in the day
when Joni
taught me how to
see life in verse
Nat Lipstadt May 2014
for SJR
who lets me borrow his voices, a good man, asks for nothing in return
and therefore, is given all I got...


“She's as sweet as tupelo honey
She's an angel of the first degree
She's as sweet as tupelo honey
Just like the honey, baby, from the bee
She's my baby, you know she's alright.....“

Van Morrison


old folk listen to old folk
and rock,
stung and sprung
from Pandora's box

you'll understand,
certain phrases,
from certain phases,
first tasted at a flavored oxygen bar
where youth drank,
worshipped and adored

and when those certain
word combinations reenter,
slipping in from unawares,
recalling easy the first time
you tasted with your ears,
Tupelo Honey

but what you remember is

that differentiating phrase

what you believed,
what you needed,
why you existed,
all because there was a new knowing
an angel of the first degree,
was out there waiting for you...
Tupelo Honey is the gold standard by which all other honeys are measured. For two weeks every spring, White (Ogeche) Tupelo Trees in the Southeastern swamps bloom with fine sunburst-shaped flowers that glisten with nectar.
Nat Lipstadt Jun 2014
the irises have passed,
their existence, entirety,
a three week, 21 day, gun salute,
to which I was witness to but an
abbreviated four short generational

the Kabbalist among us say Kaddish,
and a-Buddhist chants so-be-it,
both celebrating the brevity cycle
of natural things, both notating,
that death makes room for more

ugly yelloe'd and black now,
these irises are now
misfits on a breezy,
dancing summer lawn

today, shriveled and misshapen,
they compare and contrast
on a normative, glorious,
June Sunday that
picturesque presents
the living and the deceased,
side by side

all comrades,
all summer sundries
on a dancing grass blanket
half-graveyard battlefield,
the half-heaven

oft I have writ of the beach detritus,
the shells, the sun burnt *****,
a recycled funeral rectory where
no one utters prayers for the
no longer alive historical artifacts

what has this to do
with that human construct,
artifice of memory,
a string on the finger
of the mind,
a pausation, a man-made creation
to momentarily recall another of
nature's cycle -
your children

Have children.
Am a father.
Had a father in my youthful days.

this is a boy scout qualification medal,
marker of me as Expert,
permitting me to commentary
with gravitas, now that I’ve graduated
to grandfather status,
I enjoy superstar freedom
to opine inanely on such matters

of my father have I writ,
of my sons, those remain unseen,

likely neither will mark these day
with a telephone call
or an all-I-got-was-this-lousy-t shirt
gift of gall

I say that's ok for what else is there,
certainly not an unthinking, dismissive

it saddens me some for sure,
but it makes judge myself as human being
on a gradation of one to none

but more than this internal reflection,
I ponder this hallmark'd day,
as life cycle point notarized,
in verse and rhyme,
for that is what I do best

for before,
many father's day
in the priory passed,
most unrecallable,
just another ceremonial checkmark,
habitually acquitted,
but somewhere
in a drawer of shirts,
in a home I store stuff in,
I do believe, there are some cards
from decades past,
that prove nothing,
other than life goes on,
and we best capture
what we can, as best we can...
with small, objet d'art of sorts

Perhaps one will call after all...
in any event,
to honor the dead,
to mark the existing,
the bannered ship's bell rung,
its sonorous sound,
notable and onerous,
fades as well

but man and animal,
plant and tree,
a living fraternal sorority,
who all look over my shoulder
as I compose on
that Adirondack chair you
by now, we’ll acquainted

they know,
for whom the bell tolls this day,
and why as well,
as we all pause and contemplate
where we are on this day,
on our own overlapping cycles
nowadays I get a ten second video of a happy father’s day wish
Skye Shauger Apr 2020
is it **** for you to
think you've been burned
think it was your new chapter
your chance at a New York Times Best Seller

to make a villain of me
to make me operate
play doctor
dissect and cut open every part of me,
to look for a corruption, an ulcer, a cancer,

that you'd fabricated?
Broadsky Jan 2019
I braced myself for the impact of what the blow would be. Kissing the sleep out of you on that cloudy Saturday morning keeps on running through my mind like the memories are water swirling in a whirlpool, they keep going and going before my eyes and I can't shut it out to sleep. You- God kissing you, feeling one of your arms go under my neck and the other around my waist made me feel like all the harsh silences and sad facts became irrelevant and all that mattered was the way you kissed me by the piano and the way you pulled my body towards you this morning. I'm preparing myself for the blow of you leaving and I don't want to.
October 11, 2014
We were at Pat's farm house
Jas Feb 2018
Passive stances and subtle aggression
***** dishes wiped clean
A bucket of bleach and toxic masculinity
This is home to me,
Lavish meals and trips dripping in fantasy
Older men's eyes had *** with me
While my neck was seared with fake jewelry
Home appears to follow me,
Desire wears a scarf of sin
Lust around my ankles and wrists
Naked for all to see
This was home to me.
MaddHatterQueen Feb 2018
It is possible
for grammar to-
be a mistake ... sometimes

words are

NEVER  perfect

I type,



true words,
run like a stream


from my brain


this brain
my brain

had been
under construction
for all
my entire being

were born in here
in my brain

from my....


no conclusion


I was counting
scrambling numbers
poor additions
about life

adding, nothing

NOT YET.... no method
with a bit

of seizure

relying on them
to save me

deppening on them
to revive a tune

to make these mistakes
look pretty???

There are
many languages devided

= many errors in
                     perfect grammar


the ones with gutts
rasing amo  
firing reprisal

unique insignifacance
intellect that does not belong
to the world

it is possible
for mistakes
to be a grammar

not understanding
why I have to prove

there is no such existance
in humen kind.
© The Madd Hatteress
Nobody, and nothing is perfect.
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