Just another WordPress.com site

Archive for the ‘…And Other Stories’ Category

Stories That Maybe May Be-The Asher and Parisa Superhero Series: Asher and Parisa Save Halloween

Asher and Parisa Save Halloween

 

Asher and Parisa running back to the skeleton door. From Asher and Parisa Save Halloween © Jo Hewitt 2017

Asher and Parisa running back to the skeleton door. From Asher and Parisa Save Halloween © Jo Hewitt 2017

 

They had run through the night.

Through shadows long and short

And shadows unseen.

Under shifting moonlight,

They had saved Halloween.

They had help from two owls

And some slinky black cats.

They had been guided

By high and low flying bats

And a lantern named Jack.

They had heeded the words

Of the big birds black.

They had done everything

The ravens had rasped.

What was left-nothing more.

They hurried now, hurried back

To the skeleton door.

They had to make it through,

Before the mid-night.

Before it closed, forever shut tight.

They were at the fence now,

The door they were nearing.

Oh no!

Their skeleton keys were disappearing,

First one, then two.

With P-Nut and Sadie along their side

They ran so fast, they almost flew.

Would they make it inside?

Would they make it through?

Just a few more steps under the skeleton stare.

Just a few more steps.

They were almost there!

 

Asher and Parisa running back to the skeleton door.
From Asher and Parisa Save Halloween
© Jo Hewitt 2017

 

Stories that Maybe May Be-The Secret In the Snow

© Jo Hewitt THE TEAL MANGO, 2016

The Secret In the Snow

 He gave P-Nut one last hug and one last whisper, “Hurry!”

He gave P-Nut one last hug and one last whisper, “Hurry!” From The Secret In the Snow © Jo Hewitt 2016

 

Asher and Parisa had spent the day searching for the Secret in the Snow, from the last twinkle of the Morning Star until the Sun, tired of climbing higher and higher, leading them and their dog P-Nut through the snow covered meadows and wooded areas to  the hidden opening of the cave where the Rainbow Fish swam on summer days, decided it would stop and begin the trek back to the world on the other side of night. It was then, when they had carefully stepped inside the cave they saw it. It was amazing like nothing they had seen before.

The snow had followed them. It’s foot steps getting bigger and bigger to match the shadow it was leaving on the land. They wanted Mommy and Daddy to see the cave and the secret inside. But if they left now, the Snow would hide the opening to the cave forever and ever. They decided to stay, to guard the opening to the cave and its magic. They would send P-Nut back to get Mommy and Daddy, to bring them to the cave with the Secret.

Parisa kept watch on the growing Snow as Asher whispered into P-Nut’s ear, “Go get Mommy and Daddy! Bring them here.”

He gave P-Nut one last hug and one last whisper, “Hurry!”

And then they waited.

 

 

Wilma, With Love

© Jo Hewitt THE TEAL MANGO, 2016

With Love, Wilma

With Love, Wilma

This past spring, in the 3rd month of the year, it was the 3rd anniversary of my mother’s death 3 days short of her 97th birthday, 3 years short of her hundredth.

Over the years I had asked my mother things about her life. Evidently I did not ask enough or I have forgotten; questions do arise. I think, “Oh, I’ll ask Mom.” But it is too late. She had shared the events of her life, facts and observations of the facts. But I wanted to know what she thought and more importantly, what she felt. One time on a road trip I asked her some things. She relayed facts of events. When I pressed her for what she thought and what she felt in those moments of her life, she stopped talking to me, turned her head and stared off to a vacant horizon. She either wouldn’t or couldn’t tell me what she felt.  One of the few things she shared was when I asked if at some point she became ill, in a vegetative state, what  decision she would like me to make for her.

Starting off as a sickly baby, she had her share of hardship. I don’t think I could have gone through what she went through: 11 children, childhood diseases at a time when one suffered through and prayed no one died, sewing their clothing, canning their food in addition to a full time job teaching. Money struggles and a lack of robust health, and the death of three of her children before her own were added to that. The heart and soul of a naturalist and artist, a free spirit, buried beneath the heap of the demands of life, struggling for air. I think of her as a marathon runner. Maybe she didn’t have the luxury of thinking or feeling, but had to focus: one foot, then the next, to keep on going.

Still I wonder. I want to know. Still.

It’s too late. She will never tell.

 

Wilma With Love

 

Oh Weakened Wilma!

Yellow, puny, sickly baby, small.

Did they cuddle you, love you, 

Give you all?

Not enough mother’s milk for you to feed.

Not enough to meet your need.

Give her the summer milk they said.

Might as well, as well she’s dead.

Oh Weakened Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Wistful Wilma!

Did you find delight of dew on naked feet?

Did you run through meadows 

Or fields of corn

To catch the sky above 

You and flowers of the same earth born?

Did you greet the sun of morn

Or the stars of night?

Did your heart mourn the fall of leaves

Or autumn birds in flight?

Hay loft above, straw below,

Did you day dream, hay dreams

To a bovine low?

Oh Wistful Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Wondering Wilma!

From open fields to opening your mind,

Beginning at home, then off to school  to learn.

What will you find?

A new love, for knowledge, you yearn.

This drive, this quest, a thirst, your soul burns.

Science, nature, Latin, literature, art.

Elementary, high school, to university.

Valedictorian. Your hallmark. 

Valē. Embark!

Oh Wondering Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Winsome Wilma,

In this new, college town place

Did you know how much your world changed,

How much your life would be re-arranged?

Someone would not see a plain Wilma Jane face,

But a smile to beguile and rile

A force that would your past erase.

Unintended, unexpressed flirt.

Could you understand love,

Its joys, its hurt?

Oh Winsome Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Wandering Wilma,

What was this love, this vow? 

Was it somehow

A  deal with the devil?

Constant upheaval.

Far from your family home.

Another year, another town, another house, another baby-child,

Love’s illusions defiled?

Your emotions involute, to a dark inner alone.

Oh Wandering Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Wearied Wilma

Moving mouths and moving trucks or vans

Packing, unpacking, reaching, empty hands.

Sugar, eggs, milk shortage.

Ration.

Chipped dry beef gravy

Or hash on 

White bread.

Stomachs grumble to sleep in cold bed.

Not really enough to eat.

Worn out shoes or no shoed feet.

One house with floor of ice

On winter days and winter nights.

Children sick, was it five or six?

Diseases, was it four or more?

Diapers and vomit on beds and floor to clean.

Two weeks of quarantine,

With you to care, just you alone.

Tired, exhausted to the bone.

Oh Wearied Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Widowed Wilma

You are at no one’s beck and call.

There is no one there. At all.

After years of giving your life time blood

To children, dying son, dying husband

Can you answer to one, your heart, instead.

Is it time to pick up brush and pen,

to pick up palette and paint,

Begin again?

Orange, red, gold.

Splattering autumn pigment so bold.

Wispy fingers of dawn clouds so faint,

A trace of light, a trace of your soul.

Oh Widowed Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Waning Wilma,

Did the days begin to run one into the other?

Did monotonous time becomes your new master?

Slowly sucking the flesh of your days,

Faster and faster?

Did your heart running free

Stop, look back to see

The empty place,

The missing arms, the missing face,

The voice, words that at times were gruff?

The clock tick-ticking behind the chimes. 

Was it perhaps enough? Was it time?

Oh Waning Wilma, what did you think? What did you feel?

It’s too late. You never will tell.

 

Oh Waiting Wilma,

What will your heaven be?

What will your heart yield?

Is it the rose fingers of dawn

bejeweled with lingering stars of night?

Is it golden blue sky 

over purple drenched field

From which the winter crow takes flight?

What did death’s summon bring?

Did souls with loving arms around you ring?

Oh so many things I should have asked

before your invitation to death’s dance,

Before the adorning, death’s sunken mask.

Now I could not ask. I could only sing

and hold you, for this transitioning.

A silent wail,

I felt the rift in Heaven that morning night.

Your winter’s birds taking spring flight,

Lifting the veil. 

Oh Waiting Wilma,

What did you see?

What did you feel?

It is too late. You never will tell.

 

Girl With Kittens In Berry Basket. By Wilma J. Russell circa 1930

Girl With Kittens In Berry Basket.
By Wilma J. Russell circa 1930

 

 

 

Redolent D’or

© Jo Hewitt THE TEAL MANGO, 2015

An historic vibrant neighborhood is precious, glittering golden in autumn light. It is not just the sights, the sounds, but the smells. The SSB Drever and I walked in such a neighborhood today, the arms of the changing air wrapping around us, the falling leaves flitting down, waving before our eyes, flirting before dancing with our feet. The dusty, musty smells, fingers of earthy musk reaching up to us, inviting us into Autumn’s spell. Even the remains of vibrant Summer’s green succumb to the heady musk, numb to that which is to come.

 Redolent D’or

 

Woodruff in Autumn-© Jo Hewitt 2015

Woodruff in Autumn-© Jo Hewitt 2015

 
 
 
Delectable                                          
 
D’or Redolent 
 
Delicious Scent
 
Detritus
 
Days Diminish to
 
Dusty Debris
 
 

Stories That Maybe Maybe-The Winged Realm

© Jo Hewitt THE TEAL MANGO, 2015

The Winged Realm

Asher and Parisa at the sunshine spot. From- The Winged Realm © Jo Hewitt

Asher and Parisa at the sunshine spot. From- The Winged Realm. © Jo Hewitt 2015

Asher and Parisa ran to the sunshine spot. They had seen the butterflies appear and disappear from here before. They had wondered where the butterflies go.

They waited.

They knew the butterflies would be back because they had come to them in the dreamtime with soft butterfly kisses and said,

“Come to us at the sunshine spot. 

Come to the edge where light meets dark.

Fly with us to The Winged Realm.”

Soon they would know.

Snowball Bush -prelude to “The Gypsy Graveyard”

© Jo Hewitt THE TEAL MANGO, 2010
May Snowballs by Kim Stenberg

May Snowballs by Kim Stenberg

When the snowball bush blooms, you know it is the end of spring. It is fascinating that when your arms are sweaty, when the iron rail up the steps is too hot to touch, when the boundary between the outdoors and indoors becomes a fine wire mesh of house flies on a banging screen door, that there are ready made snowballs, yours for the picking, by the gas tank under the bathroom window.

 
That tank used to scare me. It looked like a big white ghost creature in the moonlight. And sometimes there was a little hissing noise coming from it. Maybe at night it did come alive. What if it came into the bathroom window and waited for me in the dark. Bathrooms are scary at night. Well, every thing can be scary at night, but especially bathrooms, and dark stairways, and the thought that maybe you waited too long and you would wet your pants and in the morning the yelling and screaming would start. But bathrooms are scary on a hot summer day, too. I always heard about how gas could explode when it was hot or near a flame. And the house would burn down and people would die. I figured sitting on the commode, all exposed like that would be a really bad time for the gas to go. That’ s what I would think of when I was six.

Spring is a happy time for me. But the snowball bush is blooming, it’ s getting hot. I’m not six any more, I’m ten. And it is not spring anymore, it has ended and it is getting hot. And the words around the house are hot. Snowballs in summer are an illusion.The security of home is an illusion. The towels from the bathroom, the plates from the kitchen, a few family pictures are boxed and hidden away, the way stifled words in the night are hidden.

The snowball bush is blooming and spring has ended. And other things have ended. I’m in a car, driving to I don’ t know where. I get sick in cars. It doesn’ t matter how much I crack the window, it can’ t quell the heat of summer and the hotness of the words that my mom and dad now have packed away, buried deep inside them.

I look down at the snowball in bloom that I picked, the last ghostly remnant of my old life, already wilted in my hand. I turn my head toward the window and lean into the glass, watch the farms and the fence posts along the road. Maybe I can fall asleep. Maybe I am already asleep. I listen for the hissing of the gas tank, hoping to awaken. All I hear is the motor of our car, its vibrations pushing me into the box of sleep.

Tales from The Teal Mango: A Love Story

I know someone…

Who knows someone who knows someone.  She  told me a story.

Once upon a time, as all stories about life are and begin, there was girl who had a brother who had a friend.  The brother and his friend had been in the service together remaining friends throughout their adult lives. But this story isn’t about them.

It is about maybe, a moment, years ago when the brother came home one weekend to visit his family on leave from the military, bringing his friend with him.  They started from the base early one Saturday morning to make the 17 hour drive, arriving late that night.  They left the following morning. But in that short amount of time, something eternal happened.  A boy met a girl and a girl met a boy.  No words were spoken but in the realm without words all had been said.

She told her brother that she was interested in his friend and to please let him know it would be okay to write to her. His friend told him that he was interested in his sister and to please let her know that he would like to write to her and  ask if it would be okay.  But like so many times in life, the moment comes and it goes and words that probably should be spoken are not.

Life goes on and even though some things change others do not.  High school is a time of social ritual,  and feelings, and that first date, of rides and roses and then rape.   Her father confronted her: How could she do this to him, her father. He was in the public eye. She would have to marry  her attacker and in his bed lie.  The abuse continued. One child became two, then three, then four. The abuse continued, then one child more.

At some point he abandoned her to poverty, left her on her own to feed, clothe and rear those children. And, at this point it doesn’t sound much like a love story.  But it is. It is now a story about her love for her children- the jobs she took that destroyed her health, the humiliation, and even derogatory comments from her own parents. Her pain and silent cry, re-occurring thoughts of suicide, all buried in the sleep of exhaustion in an unending darkness.

Finally the fifth child was through school and had been accepted at a college in another state hours away. She took her daughter there. Now it just so happened that  in that state lived another of her siblings, a sister, who invited her to visit, to spend the night.  After all it had been a long drive on a very long road.

This sister had also known the brother’s friend. He too had gone through life as many people do- matrimony and acrimony, bitterness  and blame,  marriage and divorce, so much the same. Interestingly, he had been invited for dinner the same weekend, driving another long road from another state to attend.

After that, she returned home.  But she made another trip- to visit him. And then she returned home again, one more time, to pack up the past to return home to her future.  He had told that if he had known she was  with child all those years ago, he would have married her and raised the child as his own. He loved her, and continued to love her. And she loved him. They lived a simple life with love for each other and for the children and for all the cats and dogs and living creatures around them that needed love.

She was with him this spring and this summer by his side with her love as he battled cancer.

He returned his love for her over and again trying to win. Love can save you from so many things, but not  from the end.

And those children returned that love over and over and again this year to be with her as she scattered his ashes over the bay.

Tag Cloud