Bio Note: Although I’m a homebody and a hermit, this time of isolation is a bit much. I’ve used this great pause to write more and to read books again, as well as submit more of my work. My poetry has appeared in Valparaiso Poetry Review, Prairie Schooner, Poet Lore, and The Nation. I live in rural central Virginia in the woods, alone, with one difficult cat named Sestina.
I always say, Salute! when someone sneezes, have trained myself not to say, God bless you, since I’m a non-believer in anything supernatural. Still, I know I’ve brought woes upon myself by toppling too many salt shakers to count, have broken hand mirrors inside my purse, and petted that black cat who crossed my path in NYC in 1961. My mother was foolish to open umbrellas to dry inside our home, couldn’t accept rust and mold, sure cause of her misery and cancer. Or was it malocchio of a neighbor? I write this wearing my lucky hat, which I pull down to cover my eyes before I fall into a blessed sleep. Rabbit, rabbit! I got up on the right side of the bed with thirteen things to do. Today’s a good day! Knock wood. Kina hora!
A Man of Strong Opinions
Harry doesn’t like jazz that’s splashed with red and yellow. It makes him want to withdraw with a bowl of rice and beans. He complains Stravinsky doesn’t rinse the slime off okra, leaves enough in his music to make Harry want to climb a mountain to hide out in a cabin where he can listen to Gershwin’s royal blue chords carry the harmonies of hot asphalt after summer rain. In politics, his choices run toward those whose voices soothe like flannel pajamas, satin, and woolen quilts, not the shouters who promise fairness feasts, even when he shares their hope. A volunteer, he arrives early at the polls on Election Day, brings goodies for his fellow workers. He’s the one whose hair smells like brownies. Ask him for his opinion on any subject and he’s ready with the one he’s simmered on the back burner, tasted and corrected with a little salt, a dash of red pepper.
©2020 Joan Mazza
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