Tuesday, August 1, 2017


Tomorrow is my last hair appointment with my current hairdresser.

I met her shortly before Alan passed away.
Can't remember what she knew about his illness,
just remember returning to her shortly after, and he was

My mom came along, I was afraid to be alone,
afraid to be in a place where talk abounds -
the spinning chair like therapy or the back seat of a car for a child,
faces in the mirror but meditative, thoughtful conversation.
It's a strange ritual, words to the sound of scissors whittling,
paring things down artfully as part of us is shed.

That morning I can't remember much.
The anticipation of being in public,
the anxiety that consumes
when you feel as though your face says it all.
He's gone, my partner died,
he is dead.
People will see my face.  They will know.
They will wonder.
And the fear that if my mouth opened
there could be no words -
but a waterfall
of sobs poised at the top of my throat, ready to
cascade beneath the discards
as they floated to the ground.

She came to greet us, we were on a padded bench,
not sure what we said,
but know what must have been said.
It was quiet that day.
Sad silence but she made it ok.

Since then she has been through the anticipation and birth
of my girl.
She has done my hair regularly,
I breast fed under her wraps,
she has trimmed Lily's bangs, given her an 8 year old streak,
I have sent dear friends to her,
I have met her husband.
I know of her family, her musical and literary loves,
her food obsessions, her fasts, her yoga pursuits.
She has been a striking force of positivity
and has been with me through my parenting endeavors,
my travels, my milestones.
She has met Adam,
she has been
A removed fixture yet reliably present, I have never seen her outside of our appointments.
But she still has been the old friend you resume conversations with,
despite the lapse between visits.

She is off to a new, tropical home,
where I know the warm winds will envelop her with comfort and right-ness.
She will be well, her man will be fine,
and I will send her off with a Patti Smith book
so that she may bring an account of New York's most raw, most lyrical ruminations with her.
Those words can always be a comfort on the crests of waves,
amid the stillness of heavily fragrant air.

And I will move on, close this book,
and be grateful for what we shared, in our own, subtle way.

It is strange to say goodbye to people who
Knew You When
and Know You Now,
she's been a touchstone in my recovery.
And now off she goes on a new journey,
leaving behind a well tended garden.

Monday, June 26, 2017


Made it to One and it's an anniversary I don't take lightly -
Years ago I had plans for my first anniversary with Alan.
I had hoped to have a dinner party with our closest friends where we'd serve the same food that he and I, in our wedding excitement,
barely got to taste.

Longevity Noodles would have been prominently featured.

But the meaning behind those, proved not to work.
Though if one were to count a legacy of love as an offshoot,
they certainly did.

Now that I've reached the official end of one, with Adam,
I am still counting my blessings.
It is an action that never tires.
I tell him I even love being in traffic with him
It is all the moments I cherish.
The every and in-between moments.
And I forever feel fortunate that our lives reconnected - so that we could continue on, in life,

This anniversary, the two of us shared a beautiful meal.
We spent our weekend together in nature and savored our time in warm porch sun,
in some funky junky bohemian inn overflowing with dishes and instruments,
old furniture and other peoples' discards - juke box rock wafting through open panes,
air, river and hills.
It all reminded,  in the sweetest of ways,
how lucky I am to have enough.
Of love
Of children
Of friends.

Markers and milestones wear out the widowed.
But what I've discovered is that real love doesn't compete.
Doesn't have to. What's real is real is real.
There is room enough,
love enough,
for everyone.

As I approach nine years without Alan, here, his presence still shines.
In dreams, through Lily and people encounters that still crop up
and bring favorite stories and memories to light.
And every new story is like finding a photo -
Comforting even from a suspended distance.

Felt right to be surrounded by old things with my new love.
Reminded me how solid a memory can be even in the glow of fresh, afternoon sun.
Together Adam and I are building our own story and I hope the pages have no back cover.
I think when I marveled at how heavy and sound the floors there felt,
I was reassured to feel planted and rooted in ...  now.
The house was solid
and filled
with any-time.
Plenty of room for all of it,

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Girl Song.

This morning I asked my daughter to eat her breakfast
seven times.
I was angry and rushed and frustrated,
and am always bothered by her non-urgency when we have places to go.

But I'm the one who always tells her to be in the moment.

And this morning, when I entered the room with my EIGHTH plea,
there she was, singing Kumbaya, clapping,
toe-tapping and topless,
in front of her hamster's cage.

On plea seven, she had actually had a shirt on,
but somewhere in the after-moments...
her mind took a turn,
and new options had been put on hold.
For a song.

I yelled.
Not proud, but I did.
Her teacher says asking once should be enough.

Not in our home.
But even with my frustration there was
another thread,
that made my own heart sing.

When I reminded her of that concept on our way to the subway,
of once being enough,
she was looking way up.

OK mama, she said, eyes still on the sky.

Did you hear what I actually asked?

Yes mama.  The seatbelt light just went on in that plane Mama.

And so it went.

There is nothing I love more than the
voice - anytime.
But particularly
in the morning.
She sings and sings and sings.
In the shower,
in the bathroom,
to the mirror,
when she is sidetracked between drawers of clothing yet to be decided on,
sings as she brushes and ties and packs and unpacks.
I love her wonderment and whimsy.
Her loose energy that floats into our world at inopportune times.

Need more of it myself.

Think it's why I haven't written.
Been so much and nothing to say.
I let some hideous person permeate my life.
Way Too Much.

Got to get back on track.
Slip into her mind for a bit
to focus on the
Let my mind go back a bit,
cause this girl's looking at her days the way she should.
Will need to play this for her, tonight...