Friday, March 25, 2016

Anne Tibbitts writes

   stoking the woodstove 
with maple cherry fir and 
pine cedar shingle shack
filled with very old guitars

clothes made of colored
velvet and books stacked
up like corn silos all over the
woodfloor living room
warmed by the fire you
tended to, warmed by the
fires you stoked and
tenderly tended to

I took care of you when
your head got cracked
open by the side of that
log cabin when you’re
the planets all lined up
against you. I laughed
when I saw all that plastic
medical stuff sprayed to
your bloody matted hair,
but I washed it all off with
warm water and
Peppermint Soap and
Almond soap and when
you cried in the sweaty
nightmares for weeks
after the mishap, I'd bring
you tea and make you
wake up and drink it and
then I'd kiss your closed
eyes and you'd fall asleep
in my arms and snow
would be piling up out the
huge glass window by the
pond where in summer
we would always go
swimming in the morning
afternoon and at dusk.

You drove a huge car to
pick me up from my job at
the bookstore where I sat

at a big oak plank table
tutoring women how to
write resumes so when
they had to go back to
work after getting
divorced they’d know how
to convert their housewife
work into job market
mumbo jumbo.  We’d ride
for an hour facing the
setting sun, me and you
in the huge Oldsmobile,
and if the radio worked,
you'd say no—turn it off,
and then you’d sing made
up songs and roll down
the window to let bugs in
and flowers in the wind
would surround us and
sometimes you would pull
the car over and wed just
lay in the backseat taking
a nap and dreaming.....!
remember how you'd
wear your favorite faded
old farmers overalls with
no shirt in the really hot
summer thick with
humidity and my hair "was
so hot youd tell me to cut
it but I said no.

That time when you felt
your self slipping into
darkness, remember how
the answer was to eat
pork roast and
homemade biscuits? I
don't know how many
times we saved our
selves from each slipping
into bad places by just
scrubbing the wood floors
till they gleamed and then
making a meal wed have
to sleep off for days.

I loved you since the
moment my first life
began in this universe. I
knew I was supposed to
mingle with stars and
velvet and harmonicas
and you were part of my
blood when I took my first
breath. There has never
been a time that I did not
breathe for you on this
earth. And even when
we are apa every tree
that produces fruit stands
testimony to our destiny.

When you fall into a
raging river, I will bring
you back up through
foam and current. When
you burn your fingers on
hot toast, or you slurp tea
and spill it on your
tablecloth, I'll be there to
help. I want to slide
beneath your skin and
nestle against your
capillaries. I want to live
in the follicles of your
beard growth, I want to
listen to your ears hear
the slight sounds of gnats
buzzing by in autumn

Every time you have set
foot in  a canoe,
I have been making
Roast beef samiches for
you to eat at lunch time. 
Every time you
have heard the hoot of a
far off owl, that has been
me reminding you why

blood is red. Your heart
has been sewn together
and made strong by the
silk threads of my
thots of tenderness
toward your every injury.
1957 Oldsmobile Fiesta Station Wagon
 1957 Oldsmobile Fiesta Wagon


  1. Anne says: Here is an example of a writing I did a few years ago. I started out with the first few lines. It was based on my having a crush on a poet I knew and then I just made it all up. But I don’t think I could have written the "I took care of you" part unless I started freewriting with the opening 5 lines. That’s how the writing process works...sometimes when you start writing you don’t even know what is going to evolve out of your brain. Some of what comes out of freewriting can be turned into final draft material and some can just be thrown out, but keep in mind that you might not come up with the final stuff without the junk.

  2. Oldsmobile was formed in 1897 by Ransom E. Olds, who sold the company to General Motors in 1908; the firm produced its last car on April 9, 2004. (After selling his name to GM, Oldsmobile used his initials for his next venture, another car company that produced a truck named the REO Speed Wagon.)
    In 1949 GM's Oldsmobile introduced the Rocket 88 5.0L V-8, an overhead valve engine (one with the valves placed over the cylinder head -- this was an improvement over the older flathead engine, where the valves were placed in the block next to the piston). By 1956 the 5.3L version was producing 240 horsepower -- needless to say, the Rocket 88 was the engine of choice for most of the era's hot rodders. It was also the engine of rock and roll. Nineteen-year-old Ike Turner's Kings of Rhythm, credited as Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats, recorded "Rocket '88'" in Sam Phillips' Sun Records studio in Memphis, Tennessee, on March 3 or March 5, 1951. Released by Chess Records, it reached no. 1 on the Billboard R&B chart on 9 June and stayed there for five weeks, becoming the year's second-biggest rhythm and blues single. Brenston, Turner's sax player, wrote and sang the song, based on Jimmy Liggins' 1947 "Cadillac Boogie." But Turner made the style rawer than the usual jump blues and swing combo music, superimposing Brenston's enthusiastic vocals, his own piano (his intro was later used nearly note-for-note by Little Richard in "Good Golly Miss Molly"), and tenor saxophone solos (performed by 17-year-old Raymond Hill, who later became the father of Anna Mae Bullock's first child before she married Ike and became "Tina Turner"). Willie Sims played drums. And, besides introducing rock and roll to the world, the song also featured one of the first recorded examples of distortion ("fuzz"), played by Willie Kizart. After rehearsing the song at the Riverside Hotel in Clarksdale, Mississippi, the band was driving on Highway 61 to Memphis when they got a flat tire. Kizart's amp became damaged when it fell out of the trunk while they were taking out the spare. They tried to hold the broken cone in place by stuffing the amplifier with wadded newspapers, but this merely distorted the output. However, Phillips liked the sound and insisted on using it.


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