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A compilation of literary works by local women

October 17, 2007


by Michelle Cunningham

You made me very angry, mom, leaving me this way.
How dare you let me all alone? You know, it's quite risky.
I'll have a temper tantrum and tear around the house,
chew the cat like he's a toy, and get up on your couch.
I'll rip the paper all to shreds, enjoying every minute,
jump upon your new-made bed 'cause I know you won't permit it.
I'll howl as if I've lost my head and scare the mailman witless;
I'll eat your shoes, and there's no excuse except I'm mad and did it.
I'll tear the rug then steal the cake from the counter where it sits,
and pull the curtains down because I'm in a royal snit.
Of course, I know I'll get in trouble, but it's really quite OK - you won't be quick to leave me here alone some other day.


by Jane Edwards

This morning when I woke up, I planned each thing I'd do;
I staggered to the kitchen and poured my cup of brew.


Threw in a load of laundry, packed lunches junk food free,
Put on my grungy tennis shoes, made beds up perfectly.

I gathered mop and dust cloth, bathroom cleaner spray,
Windex, sponge, and paper towels to aid my work this day.

The dust clouds whirled like sandstorms, they floated 'round my nose;
Clumps of dog fur everywhere, jumped up to greet my toes.

I wrote my name on tables, pulled cobwebs from the walls,
Cleaned hair from bathroom sink and floor, then vacuumed up the hall.

I scoured grubby toilet bowls and cleaned their dirty rings,
Then tackled next the kitchen floor and scrubbed off cruddy things.

Washed the dishes, dumped the trash, de-cluttered with all my might,
Unpiled the desk, washed windows too, 'til they were shiny bright.

I did the ironing, sorted mail, hung wet clothes out to dry,
Swept garage, went to the store, baked cake three layers high.

At 3 o'clock a hurricane came roaring through my home.
It dropped a coat, a backpack, too, and a case with a slide trombone.

A lunchbox here, papers there, shoes and socks to spare,
My heartbeat raced, blood pressure soared, how fast could I repair?

But then God's quiet voice was heard speaking from within,
"Relax and smile, give thanks a while, next week you can do it again."


by Julie G. Shenk

A slender cord
A thread connected
So delicate yet strong
Lifted me beyond myself
Held me safely
While I became strong
While I became ME


by Kelly Truman

With youthful eyes
the days seemed to last;
now I wonder how
all these years have passed.

At that time,
I was so passionate and free;
Are these traits
still inside of me?

Maybe they are hiding
behind locked doors;
where did you find
the key to yours?

Was it always within your reach,
or did you have a friend
to guide and teach?

It's this secret
I wish to be revealed;
So that I too,
can fly like you.


By Pamela Templin

As I pulled another tick off Baxter's nose, I couldn't resist the inclination to comment on local climate and weather conditions - observations generated from a rather unusual perspective.

When I moved here from Colorado five years ago, no one thought to warn me of the natural and ecological realities of the mid-Atlantic region, dangers and discomforts for which I was ill-equipped and wholly uninformed.

There is, for example, this inescapable humidity, cause of most other maladies visited upon all creatures who live here. It is clearly a villain out of control, associated with mold, mildew, rust, rot, gnats, ticks, fleas and an assorted (the word "sordid" comes to mind) variety of vile players. And there is little remedy or relief from any of the above. I have been a Realtor in three other states. In this one, I needed to familiarize myself with an additional document in the already overwhelming real estate paperwork: a "mold disclosure." I was quick to inspect my own house to look for the nasty culprit.

Then, of course, as anyone who has lived here for some time already knows, there is the constant and ongoing search for ticks, any one of which could carry the dreaded Lyme disease. I have yet to figure out how to avoid them, since once they are discovered affixed to their victim it is too late. Clearly at an advantage in size, numbers and motivation, their indiscretion at choosing intimate and inaccessible places to plant themselves causes additional distress.

Fleas, gnats, mosquitoes, flies and stinging insects all add their own brand of discomfort to the general daily state of things, and no amount of human intervention seems to have much of an effect. They fly in the face of our advanced technology.

Colorado has virtually no humidity. Most of the water in the streams and rivers originates from snowmelt, and the summer rainstorms usually move through the high mountains and valleys in a few hours. No one there owns rain gear - you simply wait out the storm. Everything is cleaned up and dried out quite efficiently - hence, no rust, rot, mildew, gnats, etc.

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