Posted in Rituals

Plain – spoken

In the 70’s, becoming the 80’s,
after Our Bodies Ourselves
after International Women’s Year
after Indira Gandhi,
Golda Meir
and Margaret Thatcher
they introduced themselves
as Dr, Professor and occasionally Mr.
they referred to their fellows
as Dr, Professor, or Mr
their title earned
not to be shelved
to be worn, to be burnished with use.
Accidental informality quickly revised
familiarity frowned at and corrected.
Except two women –
full professors both,
they weren’t entitled to title
even the service staff called them Jane and Carolyn.



Most of my life has been spent on the bench, occasionally called into the game by extravagance or attenuation. Waiting has turned a loner into a recorder - nondescript and inconsequential, more not noticed than overlooked - the non-vantage point of children not yet considered old enough to understand. Orphaned Islands (Un)poetry is a lifetime of picking anecdotes up and not throwing them away. Stories collected like odds and ends placed in a box in the basement, the garage, the garden shed - uncertain as to what their use might be but knowing that one day there might be one.