Friday, June 12, 2009

The Airpark

We stacked our domino selves

Into the vehicles-

In search of the bridge we'd seen from the freeway.

The ice cream at my feet sweated out

the klaidescope roads

And just as the sun dipped its finger

into dusk

We dead-ended at a fenced-in Air park.

The runway blinked merrily at us

as we scooped the smelted ice cream

We laughed as we licked the drops of ice cream sweat from our cones and

The air began winking--

Fireflies flitting the dusk while

Our children giggled at

the Magic wrapping around us.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


The tide has come in;
gently seeping across the cluttered sandpaper beach
Lapping up the once-desolate shore.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Day 12

I am a-
1001 jigsaw puzzle with 999 pieces;
A gift receipt
A photo frame without glass
A drawer that's lost it's slider
A book without a cover
A mushy middle pancake
A too-short, too-long ponytail holder
And a three hole punch with only two punches-

Without you I am Serviceable,
but not Fully

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Day 11

An empty vase,
An unruffled pillow,
Cheese, uneaten in the fridge.
Tidy shoes,
Clean, not day-old-lunch-smelly tupperware-
All speak to me in tones of loneliness.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Day 9

Somehow everything got away from me-
heaps of laundry,
unread library books,
unopened mail,
dishes helter-skelter in the sink.

The insecure part of me asks,
Did you get away from me too?

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Day 5

Exhaustion waves across the sands of my body
And I fall into an empty desert bed.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Day 4

Even the trees
with their scratchy Long-fingered limbs--
blowing, blowing, blowing against a smoke-cloud sky
Are reaching out for You
As the wind sopranos a song of Longing.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Day 3

Today I scoured the house
And I did NOT find the eensy weensy bear puzzle piece from the library--
I found You-
Your old slippers, trusty, ugly and brown
A bike light waiting to show you the way
Dusty,under-the-fridge forgotten race cars-- I think you let Kenzie's car beat yours.
Popcorn under the couch,
The remote you were sure I'd lost forever;
Sticky notes with inscrutable diagrams and equations.

A place for everything and everything in it's place- (except that dumb bear
And you.)

Monday, March 2, 2009

Day 2

I will try my Hand
at Supermom-dom.

We stay in our pajamas
And Bake sugar cookies.
Hannah streaks from the kitchen
Her escapee sticky frosting fingers
folding cleanliness away, while Kenzie
licks her fingers and waves them patiently to get my attention.

At dinner, I wonder if you will return to find that
toes on the table is an acceptable habit.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Day 1

I almost cried as your lips
Gathered mine-
Imagining I'd never see you again.
Two weeks is not never, I brusquely told myself
And then sang Peter Pan songs to the girls as we drove away.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Letting Go

"Don't let go! Whatever you do! Don't let go!" My voice hinges on hysteria as the white streamered handle bars swerve wildly. "Are you holding on?"

The gap between our lawn and the sidewalk seems monstrous and a tractor beam emanates from it, pulling my skinny wheel towards it and ultimate doom.

"Don't let go. I mean it. Daddy, are you holding on?"

This bike, a fixed up and painted white, hand-me-down banana-seated Schwinn Stingray is a little bit too big for me. In the one picture we have, I am looking back and smiling while my dad, the refurbisher and proud father, stands to the side, ready to catch me, lest this head turn for the camera throw off my precarious balance. I can't see it, but I bet the kickstand is down. The date on the back of the picture says I'm five. The memory is a bit fuzzy, so my dad fills in some of the details.

"I was excited at the time to have you learn how to ride a bike," he says, conceding that perhaps the stand-on-your-tip-toes-to-reach-the-ground bike was too big for me. "We went up and down in front of the house. I remember when you saw the bike, the look on your face! You were excited; I remember taking that old bike and repainting it and putting it together and putting new wheels on it, cause I was good at that."

In the picture, and in my memory, it's warm outside, with the Utah snows melted. So the bike wasn't for my birthday, or for Christmas. I ask my dad what it was for; we didn't get presents unless they were for holidays.

He laughs, "I think I was excited about it and wanted to give it to you anyways; you know how I am with secrets. I remember taking that puppy right down apart at my dad's garage-- stripping down the paint, sanding it, painting it. I wanted to make it look new for you. I even went and got Schwinn decals. We made it an original type Schwinn with a long banana seat. That was the cool thing."

So in the picture, I'm smiling. But that's probably because the kickstand was down. (I believe in kickstands.) The feeling I have associated with the bike picture, the fuzzy memory, is a sort of shaky terror. And wishing my dad would have agreed to put on those training wheels.

My dad remembers it a little differently, "You were excited. I remember you crashed and burned, but you got back up on it. I remember you getting back on it, and when you finally got going, I remember running behind you and hanging on to it and trying to encourage you. I remember you giggling, but it might have been an nervous laugh, cause you were excited," says my Dad.

I remember the crash. I remember those big U-Shaped handlebars all tangled on top of me. But I fell on the grass. The grass that was always so green, and soft. I don't remember pain, but somehow a skinned knee is in there somewhere. That was when I started yelling, "Are you holding on? Don't let go! Dad! Don't let go." I tried to develop side vision, to see if he really was holding on. "Don't let go!"

"You did swerve and look back," says my dad. "And I said, 'Steph, concentrate.' And I do remember letting go. I remember you asked, 'Are you still hanging on?' and I said, 'Yes I am,' and I was right there by the side of you in case you fell, but I wanted to give you that confidence."

I knew it. When I was riding, in my memory, I knew my dad let go. But I kept asking, "Dad, are you holding on? Don't let go."

And he is running by the side of me, his long legs keeping up with my standing up peddle pushing, his hand hoovering over the back bar on the seat, but not holding on, and I keep riding.

Another Scribbit Writing Contest Entry. I wonder if a blog has ever been created just to enter Michelle's writing contests? This could be the first one! :) I swear, I'm trying to think of my own writing prompts, but really that's not my strong point.

Friday, January 30, 2009

I'm not crazy. . . just a little insane

I am a sweater. Not the argyle kind, the kind that has rings around her armpits. Ewwww. I sweat when I walk up stairs, I sweat when I run, I sweat when I'm sitting down in the summer doing nothing. I sweat. I also turn bright red. It's a very attractive trait, being so sweaty and bright red. I practically have to fend off suitors with my wedding ring.

My job makes me sweat profusely. My job is to call people and talk to them, or walk up to them and talk to them and then write newspaper stories. I was never going to be a newspaper reporter because I dislike talking to people I don't know. I feel claustrophobic in large crowds. I am not naturally outgoing. I am curious though, and I like making money by writing, so here I am, a newspaper reporter.

I have to give myself extreme pep talks about my awesomeness before I call someone or go to an event that I'm reporting on. And even if I believe my self-pep talks, my nervousness is still evident in the sweat that pours forth from my armpits.
Even if I'm just talking to you on the phone asking you about how you break bricks in a karate tournament, I'm sweating because I am so nervous.

When I taught school, this was a problem. I think I have tried every deodorant on the planet in a quest for less sweat. Now I'm probably going to end up with cancer because of all the aluminum in deodorant. And I'll still be sweaty.

Umm, I'm having trouble with this blog. My family blog already has a following (kind of), and I feel like this blog exists merely for entering writing contests because I'm so lame at thinking of things to write about. And when I think about things to write about, I think, "Man, I should just write that on my family blog, because then I'll get some feedback." So I'm not sure if this blog is going to keep existing. I have to think about it. (And probably sweat about it)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


Resolutions 2009
Personal Goals:
1. Stop fearing that I am a subject of a "Dear Abby" letter. To do this I will have to call babysitters (including the ones related to me) at least two days in advance, always remember the diaper bag, and do nice things for my babysitters.
2. Run a marathon--the Ogden one
3. Have a magazine published article
4. Stop obsessing over blogging. (Only check for comments three times a week, instead of four times a day.)

Mommy Goals:
1. Be consistent in our new "ticket system"
2. Play with girls at least twice a day.
3. Stop piggy backing. (Trying to do too much at once, like pretending that going snowshoeing with girls is about having fun with them and then getting frustrated when I don't get a workout in.)
4. Take a deep breath and have some more patience
5. Don't be afraid to live inconveniently.

Spiritual Goals:
1. Read scriptures at least once a week (I'm setting the bar low here, I know. But goals are supposed to be achievable.)
2. Be a kinder person-- don't just say what I think.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Finish Line

It's always been there, stretched out across the horizon, beckoning. And I've crossed it countless times. It's so final--The Finish Line.

I can still remember the first finish line I didn't cross. I was in jr. high and we were doing a 4x400 relay for practice. Each member of the relay team ran a 400. I was last, and I was 30 yards from the finish when I wavered and stepped off the track. I collapsed on the grass, and my teammates ran over to me.
"Why didn't you finish? You were doing so good!"
I was tired. And ashamed.
I always finished after that.

There was the time I got spacers in my braces. It hurt too badly to eat. So I didn't. At my high school district 400 meters that day, I ran as fast as I could, but within sight of the finish line, darkness. I still finished, my bare shoulder sliding painfully across the finish line.

Then there was the time at the state meet, on a blue track, that I crossed the finish line, my heart pumping so quickly in my legs as I looked up to see my time and place on the scoreboard. I had worn the wrong hip numbers and they credited another girl with my personal record and second place. But even though the 57.91 wasn't next to my name, it was my time and I laughed--triumphant and weary. I had never ran that fast before.

Through college the finish line always called to me. Through workouts, as we sprinted against each other, in my first college 4x400 where I ran with fear of disappointing three intimidating, powerful seniors, at the top of sidewalk hill by the gym. Always we would thrust our arms into the air as we crossed, not as a sign of triumph, but as a sign of finito, finished, done.

Another time at a track meet in Oregon--one of my last chances to qualify for the National meet as a senior--I watched the finish line waver and flip, as I slid, somersaulted, and went down in a pile-up of girls during the first lap of an 800 meter race. I watched from the ground, bloodied, as the last girl hurdled over and past me, carrying my dreams away around the track. And I stood up, and I caught that girl and a few others, but I didn't catch my dreams. Nationals eluded me that year.

My life was a finish line: getting good grades, turning in the best paper, graduating with honors, getting married--- a race to be won, one more finish line, triumphant or bruised and battered, I always crossed, and then there was always one more finish line, stretched out for me to cross.

After college, I still raced actual races, and always the finish line arched over my life.

Then my husband and I decided to have a baby. 9 months, and my finish line was ubiquitous and unreliable and fascinating, and difficult and never crossed. Mckenzie. When I held her for the first time, our hearts were both racing. And the world changed.

"I am your parent; you are my child. I am you quiet place; you are my wild. I am your calm face; you are my giggle. I am your wait; you are my wiggle. . . I am your finish line; you are my race. I am your praying hands; you are my saying grace."

Poem by Maryann K. Cusimano, "You Are My I Love You."

My bane in trying to become a writer is coming up with themes, or things to write about, so I give you another entry into a Scribbit contest.
Thanks for the prompt! I'm going to overcome this ideas-to-write-about" rut!