Friday, March 30, 2012

Sonnet XXXXVI--Wild Thing—You Made My Heart Sing

For years, I’ve thought it was all the men’s fault;
They couldn’t settle down and make a life.
Early today, a thought made my mind halt,
None of these three really wanted a wife.
The Poet, Actor, and Imagineer,
Were anarchists with mad lives unstable.
But I tried to cling out of female fear,
None of us should have come to the table.
I hate that I lacked the basic courage,
To know when to laugh and then move along.
And taken my talents out of storage,
And concentrated on my woman’s song.
Wild men children are not meant to be wed.
And neither was I, let the truth be said.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Sonnet XXXXV - A Cynical Moment About Aging

I’m tired of words of inspiration,
Telling us to be ourselves so proudly.
Sometimes, it’s a kind of desperation,
A plea for notice by shouting loudly.
Mere men don’t fall for brains, wit and essence,
Unless they come with an attractive ass.
Or they’re both long past concupiscence,
And can laugh about flab and sags and gas.
Men don’t like cripples and women want cash,
At least just enough to split the bills, Kid.
Nothing personal, just daydreams’ clash,
We can’t let people make us flip our lid.
Stay in the moment and live in the Now,
Maybe I’ll find my bull and you’ll get your cow.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

She's Back and She's Rusty

Here we are and we’re not a we
Nobody on this raft but me.
Old, fat, and sick, I must admit,
I can’t force men to give a shit.
All that I’m good for is right here,
Just hope the writing brings me cheer.
Taxes to do and pay the bills,
Learn to live a life without thrills.
Get my ducks into a neat row,
Accept that Love is now a “no.”

Monday, March 19, 2012

Shameless Metaphor

Once it was beautiful crystal, now it’s broken on the ground.
You can see the Art of the master craftsman who made it.
There is no repair possible—it is now just glistening shards.
Once it flew on blue skies and swam the ocean’s depths.
Now, on land, shattered on the rocks, it will never be the same.
It will cut you as you blindly walk upon it or try to pick it up.
And it will have no mercy as your blood falls on the ground.
Sweep it away, handle it carefully as it takes its final trip.
And keep the picture of the perfect vessel in your mind.
Still tasting the sweet wine that it carried to your lips.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Bad Free Verse Theater Presents

I’m as inspired
As the Rumi dripping
Buddha spewing
Want me to be.
But then
There are days
Like this
Where all the Breyers
On Earth
Wouldn’t help.
Tell me
Why the Hell
I want what’s bad
For aging female
Like me.
It’s just
Springtime allergies
Fucking up
What’s left of
My mind.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sonnet XXXXIV - Disney Cartoons and Me.

Disney cartoons often have a princess,
And one evil, envious, older broad.
Because movies make us into grinches,
Who have no chance to ride the Royal rod.
This day my friends are urging me to try
And see the beauty in my weary face.
My almond eyes and Ukie cheekbones high,
Wit and brains burning though I slow the pace.
The profile pictures never show my gut
Or puffy legs that the medicine makes.
I am glad to escape the dating rut,
(And both definitions the word “rut” takes.)
Here I am, neither evil nor jealous,
Ready to age as both wise and zealous.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Essay TIme, Part II -- Cookin' and Sewin' and I Might Be Mine

It’s strangely amusing that the talents like cooking and sewing that used to be considered important to a woman, have been completely replaced by sexuality and youth and that the ad world is calling it Feminism. We’re in a world of “Real” Housewives who have married for money and laugh that they eat all their meals in restaurants.

Today, I got out the needle and thread and worked on clothing repair. Last night, I spent an evening chopping and mixing and reducing and blending and sautéing and…well, making a meal from scratch. I’ve always been a good cook since I was forced to start learning at he age eleven when my Mother was forced to get a job and refused to lift a finger in the house.

I did study Germaine Greer and go to college and I did work at a job for forty years and considered myself a Feminist. However, just like my Mother told me I had to clean and cook because I had no worth, I continued to do it for both my husbands while they helped themselves to the money that I had spent forty hours a week earning. Both my husbands were deeply troubled, but both were clever enough to withhold love and remind me that I was lucky that any man would have me around. The second husband also had constant sexual demands and he was very good in bed, but he also offered it to other women, and I later discovered that he had propositioned a gay male friend “just to see what it was like.” Robert, bless him, was appalled and responded with a firm “NO!”, but I lost his respect for me in the process.

I gave up men in 1993, realizing that a.) they were doing me more harm than good and b.) younger men were really lousy lovers as they didn’t study the bedroom arts like Hippie men and were starting to be spoiled by the new generation of women desperately trying to please men. (Come now, did any one ever hear one word about Bill Clinton trying to pleasure Monica Lewinsky?) The business world, realizing women spent billions on unneeded makeup and clothing, continued to push them away from Feminism. And our mothers made it very clear that if they didn’t see the wedding they dreamed of, with the children and the house, they would weep and moan and die till we gave in.

But after I went through a 10 year depression, beginning in 2000 with the MS diagnosis, I discovered that I had spent no money unwisely. And the minute they started raising the credit card charges, I had cancelled them. I was laid off in 2009 and got straight on to Disability, which was a risky venture, but I pulled it off. I had also kept my savings and 401K and now, I am more comfortable than any man who felt superior to me, with the second  husband possibly dead or living in a shack in the Park.

Now, I am alone, but free to cook and sew and write when I choose to. I’m getting used to the quiet and the freedom. I am amused that people thought I was recently willing to sacrifice it all for a man whom I never intended to see again, but was merely concerned that he was alive, which he is, and is prospering, which he is. And he does it all on his own. Good for you, Kid…it’s what I wanted. May you find the girl of your dreams...and may she have health insurance!

As for me, I do not want to support another man who judges me on my fading looks. I do not want to wear an inch of makeup and spike heels and have an unformed and untrained mind to appeal to him. Been there, done that, got bupkis for it. That’s why I can cook and sew and not worry. It’s all for me and that makes it Feminist. And if a crippled old lady can find a friendship with a man who has a philosophy and a mind and accomplishments and a life, I might throw another shrimp on the Barbie for him and sit down to a good meal with fun and laughter…but he’ll have to sew on his buttons for himself.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Essay TIme -- No More Drama Except on Stage

I am working at, or rather, relaxing into, keeping life livable. The politicians and the advertisers don’t like that. They want you nervous and paranoid to control you. Are others going to take my money? Is my breath offensive? There is the need to create doubt and stress in order to lead you down the path they have chosen. Now that I am realizing that their only goal is money and power and they have no idea what they are doing, I am finding myself as free as I will allow myself to be.

And one thing I notice as I free myself from guilt is that many people have a much more difficult road than me. Things like Schizophrenia, Bipolar, or Borderline Personality disorder are not the fault of the victims. Bad wiring in the brain or trauma in childhood are unsought challenges and anger at them is totally misdirected. I’m learning that, while I must be strong and assertive and not let others abuse me, I can also be strong enough to listen. Now, when someone says that I am doing something that bothers them, I can block the perceived criticism and get down off my high horse to figure out whether or not it costs me anything to make their lives easier. Why have I wasted so much time in dissuading them and defending myself? They are not asking for money or time. They are telling me what they need and if it’s no loss to me, why not? And believe me, I think we all have learned that it’s nearly impossible to change others. When we let go of the responsibility of changing them or fixing their lives, we have become more free.

What I am struggling with now is learning compassion. And if you are not honest, that means you are acting out of pity or judgment and taking responsibility for things that you have no control over. Sometimes, this leaves you saying nothing rather than cheerleading or reinforcing destructive behavior. Sometimes people in trouble don’t need a reaction, they just need you to listen. And sometimes, you have to walk away and not look back. They need to move on and find their own answers and you do more for them by setting an example and finding the joy in your own life.

What I need to add to my life are people who are doing something, be it simple or elaborate. People who are participating and learning and enjoy the input of others. They are looking for reinforcement of positive ideals. I spent my life involved with men whom I thought were desperate and troubled enough to need a loser like me. It’s time to stop thinking of myself that way. Maybe, at my age and condition, I’m not “good” enough to date a successful man (especially with 2 million more women than men and a cultural obsession with looks and sex), but I’ve handled my life well enough and have accomplished enough stability and comfort to be a friend. I’m going to turn off my negative expectations and maybe stop thinking that I’m only good enough for the self-destructive, especially the ones who blame others and can’t look at themselves.

And finally, with the country going mad and the world becoming poorer, I want to fight for the rights of people to have medicine and therapy, so that professionals can help stop their pain. I have too many friends in pain that I can’t fix. I don’t know why people are born and what our reason for living is. I do know that we can make the ride more pleasant and I want to give up daydreams and fantasies and be in the moment because that’s the only way to find contentment.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Sonnet XXXXIII - That's me in the Spotlight News

Photoshop lifts my face from the graveyard,
I laugh at the lie of the pretty girl.
My lifetime has been too long and too hard,
To stay on that merry-go-round’s mad whirl.
All I am is human and that must be first,
And time and passion must be to save lives,
And keep this world from becoming the worst.
Even if I’m not the one who survives.
Never been arm candy, it’s too late to start.
The love I’ve given was never returned,
To most of my men, I was less than a fart.
I have too much scar tissue to be burned.
So now, I am at last androgynous,
Freed from the romantic preposterous.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Sonnet XXXXII -- Only a Friend Need Apply

What I look for in a partner isn’t much,
Just have a handle on your problems, Bub.
Admit that you don’t have a Midas touch,
And laugh about the times you’ve been a schlub.
Don’t blame others for miscalculations.
Accept my interest and encouragement,
But don’t expect financial donations.
And I won’t demand that you spend a cent.
Yet, I am forced to one futile demand,
That is pushy for a wrinkled old broad.
Despite M.S., I can’t offer my  hand,
E’en tho’ the world finds me ugly and odd.
He must like my art and jokes in the end,
And most of all, he must be my damned friend.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Essay Time -- We're SUPPOSED to be a Playwright

Getting back to the original intention for “reinhardrites”; it was supposed to be about writing plays, no matter how futile an effort that might be. This is not a great economy for not having a script that rehashes an old movie or television script. This is not the time in my life to start back at this because I’m not in college nor am I a professor, i.e., no one is paying to put up the first production and get me some buzz. I’m too weak to go into a NYC Workshop, and besides, those exist basically to pay the theater’s rent, with a one day night of readings to keep you churning out the cash. However, that said, I have nothing but time now, with the bills all paid and the i’s all dotted on my paperwork. I’ve put a new opening on the big play “Amour Americaine” that says flat out “THIS IS A FEMALE ‘Cyrano De Bergerac’ and explaining the changes as brightly and most theatrically as I can. I’ve found a terrific group of actors to help me develop it. Deborah (Siriana), Laura (Chrissie),  Jeri (Ceci and The Brit), Chuck (Raganno), Michael (Lee) and Thom, who plays Roxy with the same joy and humor as my real life inspiration, and therefore eases my guilt. Thanks, guys. I can only keep entering it in contests and with no agent, I don’t have much of a chance. But I have no chance if I don’t try. Then, I am going to finish “Bulldog”, “Siren Tears”, and “Ohio Finale”, and then, damn it. I will be retired and trying to relax into whatever MS has in mind for me.  What else can I do? Maybe it’ll feel so good when I stop.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Sonnet XXXXI - Margaret Wanted an Upbeat One

I’m lighthearted footloose and fancy free,
I’m using my cane for the odd soft shoe.
When you’re ready, your teacher you will see,
And you’ll look at this life with eyes brand new.
Sanity returns as Limbaugh explodes,
Our fear is replaced by prosperity.
The hate and anger cease making inroads,
And we regard nature with clarity.
I may not be alive to see this joy,
I will do what I can to give it life.
Greeting each day with a laugh and an “Oy!”
And love will be what sees us through the strife.
I vowed  a funny piece for Margaret.
I hope that this one is on targaret.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Sonnet XXXX - Forty Already?

Winter winds down sleepily, draped in fog,
Not unlike a well fed but useless life.
A windy chill warmed by a fire’s log,
Still somehow cuts the body like a knife.
Let go of unreal hope and fantasy,
Dot all the i’s and put papers in order.
And accept that my dreams are not to be,
As my life is ten years from Death’s border.
Go out and live, my handsome Baby Bro’,
Fill your perfect hands with wine and women.
Sing songs and immortalize wolf and crow,
Dive into oceans I can’t now swim in.
I’ll sit in my house, watching with a smile,
Just try to wave to me once in a while.