Y is for . . . Yellow

The A to Z blog challenge is almost done. I’ll be finishing tomorrow at Childless by Marriage. I have also been doing a poem-a-day challenge. Today I am combining the two with this poem about the Scotch Broom that grows wild where Annie and I take our walks. It is considered an invasive plant that should be removed, almost as ubiquitous on the Oregon coast as the wild berries that sprout up everywhere. But I like them. Here’s my poem.


Never mind its reputation
for allergy-causing pollen
or its tendency to ravage
every patch of ground it finds
or its upended broom shape
or the way its seed pods rattle
as the wind blows them open,
scattering plants from road to ravine.

Ignore the talk at City Hall
of forming a vigilante group
to tear the unruly intruders out,
guests that no one invited,
that scatter their golden dust like laughter
and wear flowers so gaudy and bright
against the dark widow sky
that they melt the clouds and make it rain.

Stand in fields of Scotch Broom,
bury your face in yellow
and dance, dance as if you are on the sun.

There’s one more day left in the A to Z blog challenge. My posts have been spread among my three blogs, Unleashed in Oregon, Childless by Marriage, and Writer Aid. See the schedule below, and visit Childless by Marriage tomorrow to find out what Z stands for.

A Newsletter–A is for Annie
B Childless by Marriage–B is for Baby
C Unleashed in Oregon–C is for Crate
D Writer Aid–D is for Deadline
E Unleashed in Oregon–E is for Ear
F Unleashed in Oregon–F is for Fur
G Unleashed in Oregon–G is for Gunk
H Childless by Marriage–H is for Harley
I Unleashed in Oregon–I is for I-5
J Writer Aid–J is for Job
K Unleashed in Oregon–Key is for Keys
L Unleashed in Oregon–L is for Lick
M Unleashed in Oregon–M is for Milk-Bone
N Childless by Marriage–No is for No, I Don’t Know Children’s Songs
O Unleashed in Oregon–O is for Oregon
P Writer Aid–P is for Prompts
Q Unleashed in Oregon–Q is for Question
R Unleashed in Oregon–R is for Rhodies
S Unleashed in Oregon–S is for Shoes Full of Sand
T Childless by Marriage–T is for Talk About Childlessness
U Unleashed in Oregon–U is for Unleashed in Oregon
V Writer Aid–V is for Virus
W Unleashed in Oregon–W is for Weed-Whacker
X Unleashed in Oregon–X is for Xerox
Y Unleashed in Oregon
Z Childless by Marriage

Focus! Running on Overload, as Usual

My life is like a kaleidoscope, full of different images that come out different every time I look. What I need is a telescope that focuses on just one thing.

You see, I have this problem. I keep signing up for stuff and starting new projects, then find myself so overwhelmed by all that I have to do that I can’t do anything but play Spider Solitaire or read posts about the latest episode of “The Bachelor.” Or, I spend all my time getting organized and don’t have time left to do anything. But look at all these nifty folders with their neat little labels.
This morning I’m longing for one great thing to focus on, and I don’t know what that is. Part of this is post-novel depression. My new novel is finished as far as I can go for the moment. Now I’m in the marketing phase, which consists of a lot of sending things out and waiting for responses.
I’ve got a million other things to do. Okay, not a million, but I’ll bet I could come up with a hundred. The list of writing projects is endless, I’m teaching at the CatholicWriters Conference and the Northwest Poets’ Concord in the near future, I have countless songs I want to learn or get better at, I’ve got work to do for my music minister job, I have friends and relatives I should call, yoga I should do, more books than I could read if I live to 150, errands I should run, and the house needs lots of TLC. Now I’m the new acting president of Writers on the Edge, which is looking very much like another job. It’s wonderful. I’m happy about it, but it’s time-consuming. Plus Annie always wants to snuggle, eat, or go for a walk.Generally I finish everything that needs doing, but the non-essentials get put on indefinite hold. For example, I haven’t washed last night’s dishes yet. I was busy watching the Academy Awards and folding laundry. And responding to emails during the commercials.
Anyway, my most recent agreement was signing up for the A to Z blog challenge. Oh yes, I did. It happens in April. (Isn’t that the month I’m doing the Poem a Day challenge?) The bloggers who sign up agree to publish a post inspired by a letter of the alphabet every day except Sunday. We will also visit each other’s blogs, comment, share, and add them to our blogrolls.
I know, I know. I already see a therapist. Besides, I know I’m not the only one addicted to staying busy.  Do you say yes too much for your own good? Please share in the comments and make me feel better.
I thought I’d warm up for the A-to-Z challenge by starting with numbers. Today’s number is one. One task down, 99 to go.

What the dog expects

Winter has arrived, no matter what the calendar says. It’s raining hard here on the Oregon coast, with snow expected tonight. School kids are hoping for an extra day off while their parents are hoping the snow never comes. Friends from farther north are already sending their snow pictures on Facebook. For me, if it snows right now, when I don’t have anywhere to go, that would be nice. I’ll take pictures, too.

Meanwhile, I have been writing poems for the Poem a Day challenge sponsored by Robert Lee Brewer’s Poetic Asides site. For the most part this has been really fun. Robert sends out a prompt each morning, and we make it into a poem. This poem is based on the prompt to write a poem about an agreement.

My dog and I have this agreement:
When I sit on her couch, she will sit on me.
She will stretch out on her back,
paws in the air, head in my lap,
so I can pet her belly forever.
Whatever else I’m doing,
my right hand must stroke her fur.
I must not move, even if she snores
or whimpers in her running dreams.
If my legs go numb, too bad.
If the telephone rings, it rings.
If night falls and I am hungry,
I cannot disturb the dog.
I must love the dog no matter what
as she snuggles in my lap.
This is our agreement.
It suits us both quite well.

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