Do I look 5,360 miles older? I sure feel it. Roger does, too. We know we will never drive cross-country again. We’ve gotten too old for that crap. Just know: It feels sooooo good to be homebodies again.
But, oh, my, what an adventure we had, a journey in contrasts. For example: “Taos Window Study 1” and “Taos Window Study 2”, the photographs illustrating this long-overdue post, provide a metaphor of contrast. open and shut.
We ate in contrasts, one night in Las Vegas, NV, a Caesar salad so succulent that it made me cry, to a one-skillet Knorr ready-mix dish on a camp-stove at the Las Vegas, NM, KOA. We showered in marble, we showered in wooden stalls.
We explored marshes dried to dust by long-lasting drought and followed the tumbling wet course of the perennially flowing Frijoles River (Little River of Beans).We also strolled the Old Town of Albuquerque and the old-old towns of Anasazi ruins. I read some poetry. I wrote some poetry. Roger listened, Roger heard.
And now that we’ve returned, are more or less settled in, and trying to keep track of our calendar of medical appointments and social gatherings, I’ve managed to put our wild-west vagabondage into this brief reflection, along with a new photobook with its high-contrast technicolor front cover. (Details below for viewing.)
It is very late. I can feel my insomnia abating. It’s time to crawl into bed and listen to Lake Ontario crash into shore on a stiff norther. Mmmm. Coolest night in days upon days. Mmmmm. A sticky-free cuddle in store, soothing to the soul no matter your age. But, first this, a variation on the old Persian poetic form, the ghazal:
I remember the numerous sleeping
arrangements of mythic journeys
undertaken by an aging hippie
and her octogenarian husband.
That would be us. In cosmic sleep.
Sleeping around New Mexico,
seeking enchanted dreams
on canvas cots in nylon sleeping bags,
in king-sized beds on sumptuous linens
with embroidered pillows galore.
Like a minor poet and her sleepy muse,
like a lesser Anasazi god and his consort,
I want you to recall how we roughed it in Santa Fe
in a dreamy blue Eureka! tent. Recall how we
rolled over luxuriously, in closer, in Taos –
su casita e ma casita. We did, we did—
and we slept under dream-claiming Chaco stars.
We slept by Bandelier moonlight. We fell fast asleep
and we dreamed all kinds of sweet fearless dreams.
O, how we sleep together. Wherever. Whatever.
Signed KLM #27 Library, Ed Rose Shores 7/12/13
For further reading:
· View my newest Shutterfly photobook, Southwestern Enchantments, at https://karlasphotobooks.shutterfly.com/. If you’re new to my photobook page, you’ll need to send me a request to join my group– just a click away.
- · This anthology, Rust Belt Rising, is a must-have on your bookshelf. Sure, I was perfectly delighted to have my “Ballad for August 12, 2012” included – along with sheet music for the chorus – but the book is an amazing assemblage of poetry, prose and art that addresses America’s rust-belt history and provides hopeful glimpses into its future. Hats off to editor Jaheymus Joyce Zeit-Geistman. To find out more about it and to order, go to http://www.theheadandthehand.com/
- The first published review of Lithic Scatter and Other Poems appeared in the Spring 2013 issue of Wild Goose Poetry Review at http://wildgoosepoetryreview.wordpress.com/2013/05/13/melissa-hager-review-of-karla-linn-merrifields-lithic-scatter-and-other-poems/#comment-4697. Many thanks to Melissa Hager for her kind and supportive words about the book.
- I invite you to jump over to http://miriamswell.wordpress.com You’ll find three poems from Lithic Scatter and Other Poems, published in July by poet-par-excellence Miriam Sagan in her Miriam’s Well blog.
- If Hager’s review whets your appetite or you like what you see at the Miriam’s Well, and would like a copy of my collection of Western poems, send me an email to request a signed copy of Lithic Scatter ($16.00, no shipping) or go to http://www.amazon.com/Lithic-Scatter-Other-Poems-Merrifield/dp/0988227991/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1374417828&sr=8-1&keywords=Karla+Linn+Merrifield
- In anticipation of my reading/workshop in Albuquerque in June, Duke City Fix, the top what’s-happening web site in the city, featured my poem, “Be Now My Anasazi,” in its weekly “The Sunday Poem” page. Thank you, DCF maestro Jon Knudson, for the publicity boost, and for calling the poem “wonderful.” Read it at: http://www.dukecityfix.com/profiles/blogs/the-sunday-poem-karla-linn-merrifield-be-now-my-anasazi
- Ends of the Earth’s “Feathers & Fish-tales” edition included my poem, “Reeling in the Truth,” which will take you into the Everglades for a short spell. While you’re there, don’t miss Wilda Morris’s, William Doreski’s and A.J. Hoffman’s poems. Kudos to editor Anna Brock. See: http://www.h2m.myzen.co.uk/EOTE_201306_61204842.pdf
- Thanks also to editor D.M. Hornbuckle, editor of Steel Toe Review. He included two of my poems and a photograph in the newest issue, found at http://steeltoereview.com/2013/06/01/two-poems-by-karla-linn-merrifield-2/
- What a treat to have two of my Amazon poems appear in the inaugural issue of Up the River: A Journal of Poetry, Art and Photography out of Albany, NY. Congratulations editors Jill Crammond and Keith Spencer for a successful launch. http://uptheriverjournal.wordpress.com/issue-one/karla-linn-merrifield/?utm_source=Up+The+River&utm_campaign=49c5ffe0f9-Up_The_River_Issue_One_Update_and_Preview5_31_2013&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_0faee0df67-49c5ffe0f9-144735089
- Attaining Canopy: Amazon Poems, my newest collection of poems and photographs, published in May by FootHills Publishing . To order your copy of the book, go to http://foothillspublishing.com/2013/id63.htm
- “Speaking of Québec,” a tongue-in-cheek poem that I’ll be including in my next collection of Canada poems, what I think of as Godwit, the Sequel: More Poems of Canada. http://www.yourdailypoem.com/listpoem.jsp?poem_id=1483
- I am perhaps proudest of all to see both a poem and my regular book review column appear in the new issue of The Centrifugal Eye. Also: don’t miss the insightful “round robin” interview with poets featured in this “Punchline First” issue that explores communication (and miscommunication!) styles. Turn to: http://www.centrifugaleye.com/ Editor Eve Anthony Hanninen has published quite the tour de force with this provocative edition.
- Eyes a little tired of all this reading? Then hop over to Lip Service Journal to listen to three of my poems recorded at the invitation of editor Maurice Oliver, poetic innovator nonpareil. http://lipservicejournal.tumblr.com/
Thank you, dear readers! I hope my return to Vagabond Poet will be soon. Meanwhile Roger and I turn our eyes toward Africa, departing September 16 for Kenya, Tanzania and Zanzibar!