Too Old

He’s not my type
besides he has six girlfriends.

Which is it?
he’s not your type or
he has six girlfriends?

He doesn’t have six girlfriends
they’re only friends
you know, platonic.

Why do you say
he has six girlfriends
if he doesn’t?

When you’re of a certain age, my age
you look around
and you see things that aren’t there
at least not there for you.

Like what?


Are you too old to be loved?

I am.

Do the purple hydrangeas ever remind you
of bruised faces
bobbing at the window, as if seeking refuge?


Do you ever weep with the mothers in wind-blown small towns
the ones who accept delivery of flag-draped coffins?


Do you ever shout and pound your fists on the floor
when you hear of a woman raped the next street over
or 10,000 miles away in an unfamiliar country?

I do all of that and more.

Then do not say to me that you are too old.
Say to me the world is still young
shot full of promise…
and the potential for love.

Love Poem #22





I drove by your house again,
saw your car in the driveway.
I thought about ringing the bell.
I didn’t do it.
Are you proud of me?
I exhibited that self-control
you’re always touting.
I can do it. I can give you space.
It was tough not to knock, or ring, or shout.
I wanted to see that glassy-eyed look on your face.
That look that says, I’m afraid.
I know what you’re afraid of.
I’d banish that fear if you’d let me.
If only you’d let me
love you.
It’s been so long since I’ve posted anything I forgot how to do it… the time has come to finding the discipline.
The inspiration for the poem is a friend who told me a story. I worry about her definition of love. 





“I forgive you.” Shelly pressed her hands together in prayer, or Namaste, Zane couldn’t be sure. She bowed, deeply, like the Japanese.

“You forgive me? That’s rich.” Zane stepped backward.

“I know you didn’t mean it the way it came out.” Shelly’s beatific smile was real. Zane could see that. Not a hint of irony or sarcasm.

“Shelly, you tell me I’m an uninformed, poor excuse for a male dolt. And I’m the one who ought to ask for your forgiveness?” He was beginning to wonder if Shelly’s smile, she was showing teeth now, was something more sinister.

“You called me mean. Though I was only being honest.” She frowned as if Zane were a dolt, and just didn’t get it.

“Ooof, Shelly, punch me in the gut again…” Before Zane could complete his euphemism Shelly punched him in the gut. Zane crumpled to the floor where he lay in the fetal position.

Shelly blurted in surprise, “Why did you make me do that?”

Zane opted to say nothing, believing that the best tactic until he could get out of there.

“Zane? I didn’t want to do that. Why did you tell me to do it? You really are a poor excuse for a male. Like many males you lack empathy.” Shelly leaned over to peer in Zane’s face. He winced.

He’d always thought of Shelly as eccentric or quirky. She had a flair for hippie fashion that suited her. She had always made him laugh. But, this… what was this? Was she on medication, or rather, off her medication?

“Shelly?” Zane squeaked.

“Yes, Zane?”

“Are you on medication?”

Shelly kicked him in the chest. Zane groaned.

“Maybe I was a little too spontaneous with that kick. At least you didn’t ask me if I was on my period.”

“Are you on your period?”

She kicked him again, this time in the knee. “You really are quite hopeless, Zane.”

“Is this how you forgive all male dolts?” Zane shielded his face with his arms, just in case. But, no kick was dealt.

“You’re the first one I’ve met in a long time. Before, I ignored their innuendoes. You’re the first I decided to try to get through to. Wake you up to the reality of your doltishness.”

Shelly circled Zane who guarded his body parts as she walked.

“Shelly, tell me what I did. I thought our relationship was progressing to the next level.”

Shelly pushed Zane with her boot. He turned over, and she kicked him in the back. Zane grunted. “Grabbing my crotch is your next level?”

“Shelly, I thought you wanted me to. The way you looked at me. And that low cut t-shirt you’re wearing. C’mon. I know you wanted it. You’re just a little scared.”

Shelly kicked him one more time in the back. “Does it look like I want it, you dolt? Does it look like I’m scared?”

Zane moaned. “No, I guess not. I’m sorry, Shelly.”

“I forgive you. Now get out.”


For the Light and Shade Challenge. Click to discover the prompt, and read the other interpretations. Very different takes.. that’s what makes life interesting! 🙂


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Proverbs (“hint” fiction)

©Gerhard Richter
©Gerhard Richter


He wakes on his back in the grass. The searing sunlight! Hot as proverbial hell. Poking through the blades – the forked tongue of his confessor.



The immensely talented Jayne of inJaynesworld has challenged us to write the hint of a story in 25 words. Open to anyone with a blog willing to give it a go! Try it! Click here to submit…

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Jeannette – Part 2




“It’s ok Billy.” Billy did not resettle himself at Jeannette’s feet. Instead, he leaned against her right leg. She held his leash, not his harness, so he was not “working,” in the parlance of service animals. Jeannette breathed in the loamy scent of his fur, still damp from the rain shower that had escorted them to the Library as they disembarked from the bus. She loved the smell. It irritated her when strangers, not intending any offense, sniffed, and laughingly announced that Billy smelled like a wet dog. She never got used to it. In the voice of a sarcastic child, she repeated the phrase back at them, “he smells like a wet dog.” And then she stomped off, ignoring the volley of apologies that fell like shed fur behind her. So many irritations to endure in an average day.

“Oh my god!” Carrie shook Jeannette’s shoulders as if to wake her.

“Oh my god, is right, Carrie. That was loud. Probably Mitch is dialing 911.”

“How is that possible, Jeannette? Your own mother!”

How was anything possible? The world was full of lunatics like her mother. Jeannette sensed a hush fall over the Reading Area. In the thirty years since the event, she had told only two others the truth. At least once a month someone on the bus, the supermarket, a convenience store asked: Where you born blind? What happened to you? or her favorite: Why do your eyes look like that? She delighted in their embarrassment. Like what? I can’t see them, what do they look like? Followed by the stuttering apologies. She knew exactly how her eyes appeared. Her grandmother had described to her the gray white film, like a cataract but ridged, tiny hills and valleys, where the cornea had been burned away, the aqueous humor drained, where a green iris and a pupil should be, but weren’t. Sighted friends at school had sometimes remarked on long, beautiful eyelashes. Get lost, she’d replied. They did, and she was left alone.

Jeannette squeezed the leather of Billy’s leash, it was slack, and Billy stayed put.

“My mother was under the spell of her religion. She believed society was degrading, and soon the decadence would rival Sodom and Gomorrah.”

Carrie sighed into Jeannette’s hair. Jeannette savored the warmth.

Carrie tightened her grip on Jeannette’s shoulders, “Christ, Jeannette, I can’t imagine. I have goose bumps all over my body.”

“My mother felt it was her duty to save me from the corruption. She didn’t want me to see the filth on TV, or in magazines, even cereal boxes.” Jeannette’s shoulders ached from Carrie’s grip. Carefully she pried them loose. With a gentle squeeze of a hand she released them. She listened to the rustle of crisp cotton as Carrie folded her arms across her chest.

“So young,” Carrie squeaked.

“My grandmother, my mother’s mother raised me. She told me the story over and over. More times than I cared to hear it, actually.” Jeannette smiled, of all things, and tilted her face up to Carrie, an offering. Why did she smile? Why tell her any of this?

“Jeannette, I don’t know what to say.” Jeannette detected Carrie’s fight to hold back tears.

Extending a hand she discovered that Carrie was hunched over as if in pain. She rubbed Carrie’s left arm and wondered what color blouse she wore.

“I should be comforting you,” Carrie whispered, “not the other way around.”

“I think sometimes, though less frequently now, about my four years with sight. I remember color, the pink blanket with white stars. And a blue unicorn that I carried everywhere. I would wrap the blue unicorn in the pink blanket so that only his head was visible. I’d carry him around like my mother had carried me. And I remember Delilah, my dog. She was a stray who wandered into our house one day, and decided to stay. She adopted us. She was a black and white collie, like the kind that herd sheep. I can see her clearly in my mind.” Jeannette shifted her weight. Billy raised his head.

“It’s okay, Billy, good boy.” She bent to caress the side of his face, and he lowered to the floor resting his chin on her foot.

“What made you tell me this now?”

“Oh, I don’t know.” Jeannette paused, lowered her clouded eyes as if to look at Billy.

“I know what you call me, Mad Dog, and I guess I wanted someone to know. It’s not an excuse. You’re the only one I can talk to.”

“Oh shit,” Carrie moaned. “How did you know?”

“Voices carry.” Jeannette shrugged.

Part 2 of Jeannette… one more part will follow as her introduction to the story.

Thanks for reading!  🙂