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Showing posts from February, 2011

RESCUING GRACE

by Jennifer Froelich The sun was too low on the horizon by the time Corey Porter jumped out of his pickup and hustled through the gravel toward base camp.  DPS officers and the Red Cross were already onsite, setting up first aid and communication hubs next to the ranger station at Slide Rock State Park.  Tracking should be easier at this time of day, Corey reminded himself, but it was small comfort.  Ten-year-old Gloria Chee had already been missing for three hours and temperatures in Oak Creek Canyon would drop quickly after dusk.
... “Gloria!” Corey’s voice echoed from the walls of Oak Creek Canyon two hours later.  His team stilled behind him, expectant.  Only the creek interrupted; bubbling, splashing.  Even the trees were silent, as if they too were listening for the cries of a lost little girl.  Corey was beyond hoarse, but he waited ten seconds then called her name again.  When he heard no answer, he took a quick sip of water then returned to the trail, picking up his pace, ignoring…

I love thee with the breath, smiles, tears of all my life!

I’m going to set an unsustainable precedent and write about poetry again this week. Why? Because Valentine’s Day was on Monday, and while it’s not my favorite holiday, it reminds me that love sometimes swells in a heart to the point that it must burst in expression. Sometimes it bursts in a flood of chocolate or jewelry. Sometimes theater tickets, a hand-crafted gift, or a specially-prepared dinner with chocolate lava cake for dessert (ahem).

I’m good with all of that – but I’m really horrible at writing sentiments in cards. I mean train-wreck bad. If you’ve ever gotten a card from me, you know this. I’m stiff, bland, clich├ęd. My grammar is like a fifth grader's and my handwriting is worse. My thoughts seize up, my hand shakes – it’s very similar to the feeling I get when I try to speak Spanish out loud. I’m going to mess up! That’s what I’m thinking. I’m usually right.

Give me 90,000 words, I’ll show you love. I can work with 2,000 – just don’t ask me to rhyme. But…

Wake of Echoes

The heart of a woman goes forth with the dawn... In the wake of those echoes the heart calls home...
--Gloria Douglas Johnson I love novels; the depth and length that allows me to reside, for a while, in a world far away; the pace that I often feverishly rush, the tone that can fill my insides with heartache, pity or hatred. I can linger in a novel. There, I am gently led to the truths in my heart and then given a soft place to sit and ponder. Revisited, it will show me new surprises, hidden alleys, secret gardens. But poetry is different. It doesn’t allow me to hide within. No lush summer vegetation that produces crates full of nouns and verbs; lexicon bushes, etymological trees. Instead I find a stark copse of winter Aspens, each chosen carefully to cut and sting. Poetry doesn’t meander. There is no sight-seeing along her paths; instead I am led quickly to my own reflection. There she says, “look, see what’s inside.” I stumble, and the seat she offers for respite is often on…