Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Of father, fathers, and Father

Sometimes, perhaps I am just reading a poem by Mary Oliver "Now is my father / Walking the wind, / Sniffing the deep Pacific / That begins at the end of the world." and his face bursts into my mind's eye. And grief's knife twists in my soft underbelly. To know that I can never again cup the cheek of his nubby face or feel him pat my back -- how do you live through this?

How do you learn to be fatherless in the world, after carrying him with you for over half a century? Is it from the same strength that breaks open the spirit of a man when he learns that finally, finally, he will have a child? The same desire to stretch forward into the forever of life? The same joy of vicarious accomplishments? The same fierce protectiveness?

I cannot walk this world alone, so I am glad he showed me how he talked to his father. How, long after my grandfather was dead, my father would point to a flower in his yard, a tomato in his garden, a fish in his net, and say "Ahhh. What do you think of that, Cap?" pronouncing "think" as "tink," the way the Cajuns, his people, do. I am glad he talked with me about his journey with his Father, who walked with him through the dark times he knew we both shared, who showed him how to concentrate on that tiny speck of light at the other end of the tunnel, and keep moving, keep moving, just keep moving: this darkness, too, shall pass.

I will carry my father with me, as I will all fathers, and my Father, such that I have, asking Great Mother to make him room, make him room, for I need both as I go forward from this, and each day from here on, without his booming spirit on this earthly plane.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Mz. Romanz' Guide to Valentine's Day

Please pass along this email to your husband or other significant other, at your discretion, of course.
(LyP completely acknowledges (and apologizes for) the teeth-gnashingly flagrant sexism (which apologies will undoubtedly be likened to the spluttering apologistrophe that followed the Snickers-incited-two-men-kissing and subsequent chest-hair-pulling commercial) not to mention (but she will) the unremitting gender bias, but she posts this for the same reason as the Mars company ran the commercial: even if you don't like/agree with it, most of you will probably chuckle at some point, even in spite of yourselves.


Husbands and Other Significant Others:
Make This a Great Valentines Day!

It’s I, Mz. Romanz, and I’m sending along this Guide to Husbands and Other Significant Others. To make this Valentine’s Day the best ever, Mz. Romanz recommends the following:

  1. Write her a poem consisting of at least three lines.

    • Each line should consist of six to seven words of one to three syllables.

    • If you exclude the words “babe” and “football” it’ll be a winner.

    • If you mention something like “can’t imagine how I ever survived without you” or “you make my heart sing” you may even see welled tears.

    • If you mention something you remember about her, you’ll see the tear trail, or as we call it in the biz: lovelines!

    • It can be anything. Really. So this would work [feel free to use this as a template it you wish]:
      / From your darling <husband | lover | your_name> to my dearest <wife | lover | sweetheart’s name>:
      / I remember your <face | hands | feet | eyes | other body part> on our <first date | wedding day | other important anniversary>...
      [Note: Do NOT use “breasts” or “butt” or derivatives of same. At Valentine's Day, these are not considered “body parts” per se. Tip: Using “eyes” is almost always a good bet.]

      / You were <freezing | burning up | fainting | worried about your <drunk Uncle Ned | crazy ex>>
      / I couldn’t have imagined how <wonderful | fantastic | amazing> our life would be together.
      / With hopes for many more Valentine’s Days to come.
      / Your_name [written in the best script you can muster]

  2. If you can’t bring yourself to write a poem, draw a picture with crayons. Tell her you’re trying to recapture youth, yada yada. You’ll figure out something.

  3. Hold her hand and look into her eyes longingly.

    • To create a longing look, think of how to spell “magnanimous.”

    • Count to three or four.

    • Really, that’s all there is to it!

  4. Do something for her that you don’t usually do.

    • Rinse off the dishes.

    • Take out the trash before she asks.

    • Refill her tea when it’s half full.

    • Take off your shoes and socks in the bedroom [I know this can be quite a stretch for some of you, but try it!].

    • If you don’t think this will win you points, you’re wrong. It will. I mean it!

All of these things work best when accompanied by a sincere feeling of love, but (unfortunately or fortunately, depending on whether you’re the woman or the man) they work whether you mean it or not.


OK, that ought to do it.