Friday, April 6, 2012

Day Six ... NaPoWriMo / Poem-a-Day


Hello, everyone! Today, Robert Lee Brewer's prompt is "a hiding poem." NaPoWriMo.net guru Maureen Thorson suggests "a poem about an animal." In my poem for Day Six, I try to satisfy both "assignments" at the same time.

My Wife Mary Ann Tells Her Good Friend Emily About Hidden Treasure
— a true story
So today the washer-dryer repairman found this walnut inside the dryer. And also pulled out this squirrel-cage fan with chunks out of the vanes, ripped out by the walnut, he thought. Well, Emily, I told him I didn't think so. Look at the fan, right there. See the edges of the gaps? Aren't those little bite marks? Funny it's called a squirrel cage, isn't it.

You'll never believe what I found in the vent later between the dryer and the outside. Right here, three big ball jars full of black walnuts! I clamped an old swimming pool hose to the Shop-Vac hose and made it over eight feet long. Then I fed it inside the vent until whoop! it snagged a walnut and then I would pull it back out and do it again. Over and over for two or three hours.

Chip and Dale must've been stealing into that vent and smuggling in nuts for winter. I'll bet they were tickled to find such a great tree . . . our house! Ha ha. You remember how we were live-trapping the chipmunks last summer and relocating them because there were so many and they were digging holes right next to the foundation? Maybe the vent filled with walnuts was their revenge.

You know, Emily, one time we were at my mom and dad's and when we were about to come home and had the kids packed into the van it wouldn't start. We had it towed into town and when we picked it up the mechanic asked me, you live at Glen Flora's old place, don't you? And I said, yeah, my parents do. And he said, we used to see this in Glen's cars all the time. What? I asked. Well, the squirrels have eaten the insulation right off the wires in your van. That used to happen to Glen's Chryslers and your Caravan is a Chrysler. Those squirrels must eat only Chrysler insulation!

Another time, back here in Iowa, we heard strange knocking noises when we would turn on the heater. Come to find out it was full of walnuts. Next time the van was in the shop for something else, I rented a car and told the guys at Enterprise about the walnuts and they laughed and said that was crazy. Until I returned the car and they also found walnuts in that heater. Who's crazy now, I thought.

Well, these chipmunks are like pirates, I guess. They're burying their gold in our house and our vehicles. No telling what kind of amazing whatever God buries in animals, you know . . . in all of us, really. Just incredible, don't you think, Emily? Just beautiful.

—Draft by Vince Gotera     [do not copy or quote ... thanks]

And here's Catherine's poem for Day Six. Similarly incredible what beauty we all find hidden in our kids, in ourselves.

What Is In A Name

In two palms you held your lifeline,
covered in birth’s down, Mother’s blood.
You saw into the crystal
brown of my just-opened eyes
a future.
Gave me a name to come up to,
called me after queens and saints,
baptized me pure — Catherine.
You taught me how to form each character,
“Nothing worth having ever came easy,”
you said, as I penciled the longest name in first grade.
When some Bobby or Jill took my seat, shouted
“Doesn’t have your name on it,”
I monogrammed drab green plastic
With a shiny black crayon.
Lost recess, but gained my place.

—Draft by Catherine Pritchard Childress     [do not copy or quote ... thanks]

Okay, so that's Day Six, people. Can't believe we're close to finishing a week. Friends, won't you write a comment below? Catherine and I will be watching for them and we'll answer you right away. Take good care. Ingat.


POEM-A-DAY 2012 • Pick a day in April: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30


3 comments:

chocolateisaverb said...

...the wily critters...the fronds of the spruce outside my office grow in tight, spiky layers. Pulling weeds beneath it, glancing into the dark thickness of the shrub, I notice a peanut. A couple of layers above it, another, and then another. Not mason jars full, just the few a steller's jay had stolen from a neighbor's squirrel feeder (!) and stashed here in his blue dashes through the garden. Thanks for your wonderful story.

Vince Gotera said...

J.I.Kleinberg ... many thanks. I love your story and the pace of your "reveal" ... layers, another, another. Just checked out your found poems. Tremendous. I'll comment there later today. Arugula and pistachio ... tasty. And green!

Vince Gotera said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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