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Virginia

Opportunity

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Wed, 01/11/2023 - 13:43

OPPORTUNITY

Did you see the pomegranate, split wide from falling or by birds or some wild thing,

under the drooping branch of wet poppy leaves?

Even after days of rain it still looked dry and dusty, the skin cracked like old leather.

I feel like that some days, split, spilled, cracked open.

The bright seeds inside still held a juicy promise for a brown squirrel with a watchful eye

and he, or she, took time to taste those tiny glowing morsels

and then in a flash disappeared

the fruit empty, picked clean.

VW 2022

Comfort Food Virginia Watts Thu, 12/29/2022 - 13:18

Holiday season begins for me when the grandkids start planning their Halloween costumes. Those plans are usually made not long after school starts in the fall. I can remember a time when I complained about Christmas music playing everywhere before Thanksgiving, but my views on that have softened considerably as any family member or friend will tell you if they visit anytime between Halloween and New Year's Day. 

When I was a kid in the 1940's and 50's, no matter how depressed things were in my house, and often that was the case, whenever I saw the bright Christmas decorations and the row upon row of holiday ornaments lined up at the dime store, my spirits lifted. I knew it wouldn't be long before my mother would come out of her downward spiral and rally for Christmas. Sometimes those Christmases were more manic than fun, but at least they weren't sad.

Embossed Memories

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Wed, 11/23/2022 - 12:10

Embossed: "...(a design carved, molded, or stamped on a surface or object." That's how it's defined in the Oxford Language Dictionary. Do you remember embossed napkins on your table on special days? I do. I hadn't thought about them until I was given one at a restaurant this morning. Then I remembered one holiday sitting at the table in my grandmother's kitchen. My mother and aunt were busy with preparations for dinner, my grandmother was probably setting the table. I must have been fidgeting or complaining about something, and I can't remember who handed me an embossed paper napkin and a box of crayons. "Here. Why don't you color this design." And whoever it was went back to putting olives in the molded glass dish that held the carrots, celery, and pickles. 

Halloweening

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Sat, 10/29/2022 - 12:46

It feels like the beginning of something today, which is odd because it's the end of October, not January. But fall always makes me feel like new beginnings. Maybe it's because I lived so many years by the academic calendar, when fall was the beginning of the new school year. But in any case, I celebrated today by decorating the front porch with orange twinkle lights and pumpkins. Trick or Treaters will be coming soon!

SHARING

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Fri, 09/02/2022 - 15:38

It was a simple thing to do, and not something I was sure I was going to continue being a part of, but my local Buy Nothing FB Group has proved to be a source of inspiration and joy. This is a place where neighbors meet and share. And anything goes, really. People offer goods they no longer can use, for free. One person's trash does turn out most of the time to be another person's treasure. Sometimes people post that they are in search of something, and inevitably someone else has that item to give or loan. Everything from old lawnmowers to jars of peanut butter are listed, and snapped up within hours. Even things like packing materials, extra plastic shopping bags are taken with a please and thank you! People sometimes post that someone has moved into the neighborhood and don't yet have furniture. And they are offered furniture, pots and pans, to borrow or to keep.

Bits and Pieces #1

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Thu, 07/28/2022 - 11:24

Do what you like today.

If it's opening the window to hear

the birds

If it's to give the cat some treats

If it's taking your time deciding what you want

for breakfast

If it's sharpening a pencil

If it's lighting a candle

If it's making a pot of tea

or coffee

If it's listening to an old song your old self loved

If it's taking a nap

If it's unwrapping a new bar of soap

If it's window gazing

You know that all of it, every bit of it, is a good bit of doing.

A Good Clear-Out?

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Fri, 04/08/2022 - 11:19

It is Friday morning, and it is going to be hot here in the San Fernando Valley, unseasonably hot for early April. We are talking 99 degrees before noon. I have taken my morning pills, vitamins, had my low-calorie breakfast, put on my support socks and the rest of my clothes that will keep me somewhat comfortable inside our air conditioned house.

Every morning I wake up hoping that this will be the day my energy will return for all the pending tasks needing attention. And every day I go to bed having fallen far short of my own expectations. Even the simplest things like folding laundry and putting it away have morphed into monstrosities that refuse to be tamed. I have books that need reading (not just for pleasure!), a number of quotidian tasks that should be undertaken, and my level of enthusiasm and energy for such tasks has deserted me. I feel a sense of accomplishment when I can get the dishes loaded into the dishwasher before I go to bed. Such a small thing!

Optimism 2022 1st poem

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Fri, 02/11/2022 - 13:52

Today I planted onions.

I tell you this because it proves I can be optimistic.

One large red onion sprouted magnificent green fingers on

my kitchen window sill.

It was good, green company.

Today one onion has become three. Miracle, right?

Three from one, already a bonus.             onion sprouts

Tucked into the warm earth side by side (not too close!)

I left the sagging, spent tomato plant nearby.

There may still be whispered wisdom about living in our

hard adobe earth.

vw 2022 #1

Thanksgiving Memories

Submitted by Virginia Watts on Thu, 11/25/2021 - 10:28

The hot wind came from out of the northeast, and slammed into the trashcans, turning them over and spilling their contents. Southern California Thanksgivings are always unpredictable. Usually so hot and dry that the air is electric. This one ticked all the boxes. 

I am in my thirties, and we have two young children. My husband has taken them off to church and I am home attending to the housecleaning and cooking of the turkey. Guests are coming in the afternoon, expecting the traditional holiday feast. I'm new at cooking turkey, but confident I can manage. What's so hard about seasoning a bird and putting it in the oven? I've done it with chicken hundreds of times. I'm optimistic, looking forward to the family gathering in our home for the traditional feasting.