Tuesday, September 22, 2015


i had migrated away from the breakable dishes many years ago. i'm the one who breaks things, butter dishes fly when i swing the fridge door open wildly, coffee pots (i've broken more than i care to admit, WHY do them make them so fragile?), countless plates, bowls, and cups.
i embrace the glass is already broken mantra, because largely, that is what happens when i get glass, nice glass. so i don't. or didn't. but now, i've decided to migrate back to the breakable dishes, these japanese pottery pieces i have been wanting to employ when the children fledged. and now they have.
so i stacked up all the unbreakable, not lovely dishes, having already stashed my grandmother's stonewear in the garage for safekeeping until my daughter is old enough to take it (mind you, the woman did not gift me china, china would never survive my rough handling, neither did she gift me crystal, but stonewear in a pattern of my choosing, pfaltzgraff olivia. quite lovely).
the box of breakables and some undesirable bowls picked up on whim, sit in a box waiting for destination unknown. at this moment, i have no idea what to do with them. but likely they will end up at a thrift store and be purchased by some other mother with children under foot.
my new dishes are porcelain made in china or pottery made in japan. collected here and there over the years, i've been stashing it away in places where i could glimpse its beauty, but it would not get broken. until this weekend. i washed it all and replaced all the old stuff with these gorgeous pieces of art.
i think that is what it is for me, i want to enjoy this season of my life, so as i sat at dinner last night with my love, the fluorescents turned off and a row of candles illuminated the room and cast a gentle glow on our faces. it is time, to slow down, to enjoy all of the things we have worked hard for, and to trust that times will only get better.

Friday, July 31, 2015


the sluggish start to the morning gave way to a chai laced cup of cafe bustelo. something spicey to get going.

and so i picked up a porcelain dish and walked out to my garden. the marigolds, all from last year's seeds, have faithfully provided fodder for the coming year.

deadheading is one of the most enjoyable parts of gardening, it is reaping abundance. harvesting future marigolds. and so i carried this dish around to the trellis where my morning glories have all faded at the same time. from a riot of blooms to a collusion of seed pods, many ready to be harvested.  life, it seems, has left these vines this season, but they were all the fruit of last season's vines. and so, i have them now, gathered up, porcelain dish held at the base of the pods whose seeds burst forth at the slightest pressure. each flower offering up four seeds.

the chives went to seed and so i've gathered them as well. the poppy seed pods. the assorted wildflowers whose seeds i have never collected before and whose names i do not know, the little blue job and the delicate diminutive daisy. the seeds are almost imperceptible the tiniest grains of pepper they appear to be. but i have gathered them and laid them all out to dry.

the oriental lilies are astounding. they got a late start, as i was reluctant to plant them too early, but they are exploding in a riot of color now. the roses too. wasn't sure those would make it, but their salmon pink flower petals are everywhere to be seen. brightening up the patio.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

chilé verde


suzanne rae deshchidn reading her poem chilé verde at the allen ginsberg poetry awards 2014, passaic county community college.

Friday, February 13, 2015

a thousand lifetimes

how much times has passed.

how long have i been gone.

who really knows, frankly, who really cares.

i have been busy with life, and that, is a blessing. i look around and am grateful that i am caught up in the mundane. not doing too shabbily, just being. which is really all i've ever wanted. focused more on my daughter than anything at this point, and that is as it should be. still writing. still writing poems. after my last master's program, i needed a mental hiatus, and i just had to sit and stare at the walls for a while. (meaning: i taught twenty in-class hours last semester and i'm fried).

but now, the load is lightening (to a manageable fourteen hours in-class), and i'm finding my passion again. writing poems, even ordered some books on tape from the library. still no time for pulp and ink books at present, but that will come, soon enough. i've been plucking old standards off my shelf--those stored up for such a time as this--the unfettered mind, among them. mostly, i'm just reading student work, and i'm getting ready for what's coming.

see facebook.com/srdediting for my online editing resume

Saturday, August 23, 2014

be present

it has been a long time since i've had a yoga practice, though i desire one. i know what to do, i have props and mats at home, i just simply do not make the time to practice yoga daily and that bums me out.
today, as we wound down class, i thought, my god, i have been in my body this entire time. and it was a moment of triumph. only briefly did the idea of writing about it pass through my mind, and as the thoughts came and drifted away in shavasana did anything other than the moment enter my mind. and for that, i am grateful.
having just completed another master's degree, i paused briefly, one or two days, before i remembered all the other goals laid aside until that master's was done. it's done. time to move forward.
my plan at the moment is to apply for the psy.d program at rutgers. in preparation for that, i am taking a gre prep course and some undergrad psych courses to address any gaps before applying. i will know by april, and begin in september. this idea thrills me to no end.
while i will have to leave the jobs i have come to love, i will be moving forward in my life and that is all any of us can hope for. i would like to be self-sufficient and in a stable career, not one beholden to the whims of registrants. although i know private practice will have its ups and downs, there are so many other things i want to do, need to do with my life. this feels like the beginning of something wonderful.
and so, i bowed low to my heart at the end of class, from the hips, nearly touching my head to the floor in honor of that which has so strongly supported me. i am grateful, for all the triumphs of late, i am grateful. for all the challenges too, for they are what keeps me on my toes.
my finch has taken to wrestling with a picked clean mullet stem, and is rather delightful to watch.
find the thing that brings you joy, that is all i can say, and do it. just do it.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

unforeseen tears

on my porch, this bright sunny spring morning, an atv chatters loudly through the forest across the street, spitting its gasoline powered bark (or fire, it sounds more like the rapid repeat of machine gun fire), across to envelop my whole porch and i try to remember the lessons of yoga.
embrace the silence,
she said, and the footsteps trotted across the floor above us and we lay in a meditative state. when we rose, cross-legged and touched palms at heart center, a tear escaped from my closed eye and streamed down my face. it was the beginning of something beautiful.
set your intent,
she said, which is exactly how i start my semester with my writing students.
i just want to be present to this process.
i thought. she started meditatively, which was something i appreciated, as i often find myself trying to catch up to my body in yoga. muscle memory pretty much shifts me into position and i land in the posture, but where is my mind, and my breathing never quite seems to be right.
the one time i blew out my shoulder, all i could think about was breakfast and what i'd order when class was over. i was completely fixated on the meal to come, not the moment i was in. shoulder paid.
i couldn't attend yoga for about six weeks, just to allow my shoulder to recover, and i had to get some work done, but ultimately i learned, i have to be mindful in yoga, i can't just shift positions and multitask.
i am a legendary multitasker. i am of the opinion, as don aslett has written,
the more you do, the more you can do.
and more i do.
mercifully the mechanics yard across the street just turned off the semi engine they are trying to fix, and i hear krishna das' hanuman chalisa sounding from my kitchen. my cup of tea steams in the sun, and a car darts by on the road.
there is one thing i have learned in yoga, a teacher from whom you can learn (and for me that involves submission and unity), is priceless. i miss my sophie.
so we crouch down between our knees, with our hands at heart's center, at the end of class, and i realize, i had been present and only in that room the entire time. my mind was on my body and the posture the tilt of the pelvis, the angle of the hips, heart opened to the sky.
how long has it been since i've had a class like that.
too long.
too long, indeed.
so i will begin a journey, which has the serendipitous feeling of having been planned for me all along, and i will try to do my yoga teacher training. we shall see what will come of this.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

what to say

when there is nothing to say, and silence pervades the house. an uneasy silence, like the chill of winter, that saps strength and energy. i would rather not have that be my truth, but sometimes it is. sadly, sometimes it is.
and still. and silent. there is nothing to say.