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Terri Guillemets
Archives — 2020




This is the archive of my publicly published writing from 2020 — the good, the bad, the active and the retired.  It includes content written for The Quote Garden as well as personal journals and writings.  —tg

SEE  ALSO 2024,  2023,  2022,  2021,  YOU  ARE  HERE,  2019,  2018,  2017,  2016,  2015,  2014,  2013,  2012,  2011,  2010,  2009,  2008,  2007,  2006,  2005,  2004,  2003,  2002,  2001,  2000,  1999,  1998,  1997,  1996,  1995,  1994,  1993,  1992,  1991,  1990,  1980s,  ARCHIVES  HOMEPAGE







minutes bloom
hours flower
seconds vine
through the hands
of time —
days hustle
weeks speed
decades scatter
in confetti’d years


      TITLE:  Growing old
      DATE:  2020 Feb 8
      AGE:  forty-six







Sun coaxes life
      from the earth
      with its warmth —
Grow, thrive, breathe
      green things of the land
      wake from your
      winter's nap and
      joyously reach
      for the spring —
Colors burst
      into vibrant being —
      fresh fireworks
      on verdant stems of life


      TITLE:  Waking welcome
      DATE:  2020 Jan 2
      NOTES:  revised







Stumbling over all those little moments of grief is just a part of moving forward.


      DATE:  2020 Jan 21







There is no timetable for grieving —
      Grief is a snail
      It's a shooting star
      A walk around the lake
      It's eternity
      Or frost 'til bloom —
Memories coursing through the heart
It lasts as many heartbeats as it takes;
      sometimes all of them.


      TITLE:  It's personal
      DATE:  2020 Jan 21







If your armor against the world is laziness and excuses, you're not protecting yourself from battle and injury — you've trapped yourself inside with them.


      TITLE:  Your battle
      DATE:  2020 Feb 8
      NOTES:  revised







a shrug, a hug
touchdown, letdown
waving, curling, sprouting
disco, vogue; praise, prayer
bird-pecked, green-specked
skeletonized, or multiplied
flower and fruity fingered
flipped, frail, or fallen off
perfected, nested, crested
 



      TITLE:  Saguaro arms
      DATE:  2020 Mar 25







Damnit!  I  binged
again  II day
IV  life was hard
and so  I
VIII  my stress away.
O why do  I  so  of X  gorge?
Since turning  XL
I’ve been extra large.


      TITLE:  Losing count
      DATE:  2020 May 16







come scarlet leaves and falling light
this time of year — October-blood
runs through the veins of autumn —
slowing heartbeat and longer breaths
shorter daytimes and chilling nights
warm hearts and sanguine thoughts


      TITLE:  October-blood
      DATE:  2020 Oct 26
      NOTES:  revised







early February in the desert—
the sun is springtime warmth
the breeze, winter’s leftovers


      TITLE:  Desert winter departing
      DATE:  2020 Jan 28
      LOCATION:  PҺoenᎥᶍ ArᎥɀønα
      NOTES:  revised







late winter and early spring blend and blur
in pleasant days and chilly nights
penetrating sun and gentle cool breezes
with stirrings of life, subtle and green —
mornings that light ever earlier rouse us, but
sunsets that still come in evening's youth lull


      TITLE:  Blend & blur
      DATE:  2020 Jan 28
      LOCATION:  PҺoenᎥᶍ ArᎥɀønα
      NOTES:  revised







Morning golden hour is the warm glow of the day's potential.
Evening golden hour is nature's afterglow to a day well spent.


      DATE:  2020 Jan 31







dried crackling leaves
though dead
are never quite still


      TITLE:  Feuille morte
      DATE:  2020 Apr 3







Guilt, grief, regret
cut deeper than
the dimensions
of the soul itself


      DATE:  2020 Mar 7







Standing in a silent still-dark February morning
Cool dewy grass grazes half-bare sandaled feet
Lo! Saturn arrives as Jupiter saddles Sagittarius
Mars burns red near the glowing crescent moon
Serpens slithers against a vaporous galaxy border
Antares winks green and gold, crimson and rust
As Scorpius swings its tail at the southern horizon
Libra starboard and upward of the crowded scene
Balancing askew over the poor impaled lone wolf
Ophiuchus a bystander in the busy celestial show


      TITLE:  Galactic gathering
      DATE:  2020 Feb 17
      LOCATION:  PҺoenᎥᶍ ArᎥɀønα







cracks in poetry
are not ruins
but gaps to let
meaning breathe


      TITLE:  Flux
      DATE:  2020 Apr 15







Fear of death
is fear of life—
and fear of life
is fear of all that is.


      DATE:  2020 Apr 23







Hummingbird mama
abandons her nonviable eggs —
but keeps checking back
a few more times, just to be sure.

An arm falls from a sickly saguaro
and breaks open on the ground
like a prickly green eggshell —
after decades of desert still-life
a few seconds of death-motion.

But the night breeze is so beautiful
those breezes are — so beautiful
it’s hard not to get swept away.


      TITLE:  Death lights heavy
      DATE:  2020 May 22
      NOTES:  revised







snakes and worms
squiggles and sperms
phantom insects
crawling, free-falling


      TITLE:  Eye floaters
      DATE:  2020 Jul 12
      AGE:  forty-six







These things sift through our minds, with the years, like sand, and find their way out in ink.


      DATE:  2020 Sep 9







Earth tilts toward Winter
my heart goes tilty too
the summer-fever cools
to a more reflective hue


      TITLE:  Tilted
      DATE:  2020 Nov 14
      LOCATION:  PҺoenᎥᶍ ArᎥɀønα
      NOTES:  revised







tortoise clouds
barely crawling across the sky

hare clouds
drifting swiftly over our heads

chameleon clouds
changing every moment
borrowing colors from the sun

dragon clouds
breathing fire into the horizon


      TITLE:  All kinds
      DATE:  2020 Jan 26







Aging is closer to ashes
— but also to stardust.


      DATE:  2020 Jan 28







Now that I’m over the hill
I can see it’s just made of
skeletons of dead monsters
that were never really there.
But that past is no less high
and no less there, and I am
no less on the other side of it.


      TITLE:  Real eyes
      DATE:  2020 Oct 28
      AGE:  forty-seven







I eat bad poetry like a goat — and
eat good poetry like a gourmand.


      TITLE:  Edacious
      DATE:  2020 Apr 15
      NOTES:  revised







entire continents of grey-white clouds
hovering serenely in an enormous spring-blue sky
a soaring raven calls, out of its element
why are you this far south, beautiful bird?
then all is quiet but for a distant plane
heading to who-knows-where —
what a gorgeous afternoon!
way too beautiful for negative thoughts —
listening to subtle sounds of nature's energies
oooh, sudden chilly-breeze goosebumps
coolness swirling through sunlit seventy degrees
a day of sensation and eerily silent excitement —
winter and spring overlapping at the seams


      TITLE:  Oh amazing desert, let’s rejoice together!
      DATE:  2020 Mar 2
      LOCATION:  PҺoenᎥᶍ ArᎥɀønα
      NOTES:  revised







We have now entered the birds-chirping-all-night season.


      TITLE:  Mocking my insomnia
      DATE:  2020 Apr 28
      LOCATION:  PҺoenᎥᶍ ArᎥɀønα







Prayer to the middle-of-the-night gods:
      please let me sleep —
thank you for the beautiful moon
      and winter silence
but please let me fall back to sleep —
      no offense.
                        Amen.


      TITLE:  At two-fifty-nine
      DATE:  2020 Jan 14







Privilege lets you have struggle for a bargain.


      DATE:  2020 Jun 18







wishes come
wishes go
life is trapped
between


      TITLE:  Hindsight
      DATE:  2020 Jul 11
      NOTES:  revised







Owls are hunters
Humans are mechanical separators —
separating by metal machines
      meat from bones
      life from death
      fat from essence —
but in Nature, where Man used to come from
a long time ago — remember it? —
none of those things is separable.
      BRAIN  from  SENSE


      TITLE:  Talons
      DATE:  2020 Apr 30







Our bodies are meant
for the sun, the rain
the gusty winds
starlight and moon baths
fresh air and seasons —
so why do we trap ourselves
      in indoor cages?

If we can't hear birds sing
or feel invigorating breezes —
how are we to be refreshed
to heal, to know the world
beyond the borders
      of our bodies?


      TITLE:  Enclosed
      DATE:  2020 Nov 14
      NOTES:  revised







my eyes can’t see as well anymore
but my heart sees all the better

my ears have begun to fail me
but I hear the quiet budding of success

I move more slowly now
but have learned to be still with myself

my aching body is stiff and sore
but my spirit has never felt so fine

my memory is slipping
but I’ve got a firm grip on what it is to live

my head is going gray
but I have found all my true colors

I get out of bed earlier
but still have plenty of dreams

I live more softly
but don’t back down from doing hard things

my teeth are getting artificially replaced
but my soul is real and all my own

my bones are brittle
but my resolve is strong

I no longer bounce back
but continue to look forward

I tell the same stories over and again
but become a new me every day

I’m nearer to the end
yet I have only just begun


      TITLE:  My heart sees all the better
      DATE:  2020 Sep 22
      AGE:  forty-six
      NOTES:  revised







We need rests called naps
      and rests called play,
We need little moving rests
      called getting away.


      DATE:  2020 Nov 20
      NOTES:  revised







often a mountain decision
is a molehill in retrospect—
and sometimes vice versa
upon further examination


      TITLE:  Mountainous
      DATE:  2020 Oct 30
      NOTES:  revised







NATURE the beautiful
Nature the harsh
Nature the teacher
Nature the warrior
Nature the destroyer
Nature the creator
Nature the protector
Nature the fierce
Nature the indifferent
Nature the ancient
Nature the new
Nature the vast
Nature the minuscule
Nature the awesome
Nature the ugly
Nature the dying
Nature the perpetual
Nature the resilient
Nature the diverse
Nature the mysterious
Nature the artist
Nature the colorful
Nature the swift
Nature the PATIENT


      TITLE:  Nature, the patient
      DATE:  2020 May 20







my youth is caked over
with heartache and pains
regrets and inflammations
and sudden calcifications
of ligaments and spirit
not-bothers and defeats
that went to my head
and bruises that take
too long to heal
cracked teeth and
why-tries and i'm-tireds

that which galloped
now rolls in ruts
my blonde has passed
to mousy and gray —
everyone i know
looks tired and frayed
sagging from the weight
of time and overbusy
and too much stuff
in too-big houses —
it's too much life
and too little living —
no vitamines will fix this


      TITLE:  Battery
      DATE:  2020 Sep 2
      AGE:  forty-six







At a certain point, age becomes a triumph of spirit over loneliness.


      DATE:  2020 Nov 9
      NOTES:  revised







canceled, isolated, distanced
dazed, befuddled, harried
rationed, washed, disinfected
zoomed, homeschooled
furloughed, fired, scared
impoverished, subsidized
learned, helped, sacrificed
inspired, respected, thanked
hospitalized, intubated, died
lied, gaslighted, denied
masked, tested, untested
endured, abided, accepted
annoyed, outraged, protested
anticipated, waited, voted


      TITLE:  2020
      DATE:  2020 Aug 21







America 2020 is a bad dream —
      with woke citizens and
      an asleep government


      DATE:  2020 Oct 3







2020 is quicksand—
Keep calm and try
to make it out alive.


      DATE:  2020 Oct 2







age creeps into our bones
it slips through our fingers
age brings us to our knees
it crawls inside our heads


      DATE:  2020 Oct 25







there is a big hospital nearby
there are several, fairly nearby
fortunately, I don't need one
right now —
but I'm grateful to be close to them,
that they're close to me, just in case

so are the firefighters
and the grocery stores
and post offices
and best of all, libraries!

and
a whole lot of people —
for better or worse

all because I live in a big city

it's convenient —
and it's annoying

It's 4:47 a.m.

three hours ago, the windows vibrated
under a circling police helicopter

a few minutes ago
the clattering A/C
that needs to be fixed
jolted me awake

I dozed back off —

this time it was a stray cat
there are so many of them;
I know them all by name —
Old Lived-In Orange Tom
Marked-Ear Kitten Gone Fat
Dirty-White Tuxedo Guy —
some of them like to jump up
on the sill, be loud, cause trouble

this morning, interrupting my dream,
it was Scraggly White Gray-Heart-Nose
yowling, prowling, howling, meowing

That's it! just can't get back to sleep
may as well get up, even though I've only
had maybe 5 hours — five disturbed hours.

it's still dark out, and for the first time
in several months it's noticeably cooler
outside than inside, even with the air on
and the just-past-full moon is up
she's bright and snuggling with Mars —
Venus, Sirius, Orion, all shining for everyone
and for no one in particular

I step out of my front door, lock it,
and am not even out of my own driveway
before a car speeds by, knocking me over
with its noxious old-car gas fumes
and buck-the-system black exhaust

I look up at the sky, what I can see of it —
nearly every house has bright lights on
shining directly into my eyes, and the
street lights — piercing, glaring, persistent

I've made it almost next door
someone is out smoking, I can't see them
but I smell the strong nasty smoke
and cover my nose with the COVID mask
from my pocket — odd, in my youth
I used to love breathing in the scent
of cigarette smoke — thought it was sexy
now it chokes, it offends, it irks

onto the next block, another smoker,
invisible too — do tobacco lovers hide
in the shadows on purpose?
my grandmother used to do that;
after she told everyone that she quit
we accidentally caught her smoking
on the dark side of the house, but
we didn't let on — it's hard to let go of
our addictions — shadows let us hold on

second house in on the second block
a big way-louder-than-legal motorcycle
leaving its driveway, its rider doesn't see me;
I stand aside and wait as it roars out & away

it's not even freakin' 5 a.m., folks. on Saturday!
I came out here for quiet, fresh air, skygazing,
a pleasant walk in cool early-morning "solitude"
but the air stinks, there are so many lights —
oh, and did I not mention all the irritating
sensor lights that pop on unexpectedly
into my face, just when I think I've found
a nice dark-house reprieve — bam! — they're like
the damn ads and email newsletter pleadings
on nearly every modern web site —
catching you unawares, blocking the
entire screen, at the cursor's slightest
sign of movement — blinding us
like all the sensor lights, blocking
our enjoyment of whatever else it is
that we were trying to do

third house in, second block
the rooster. someone's backyard city-rooster:
I look at my watch, a 5:00 crow on the dot.

I try to stop being annoyed
try hard to focus on the positive
try to figure out which dim little star
is above Venus, it must be one in Leo —
that's my husband's sign

my husband, still sleeping. heavy sleeper.
sleeping 8–9 hours straight through
nearly every night, it's his superpower
I kinda hate him for it —
if I get more than 5 to 6 hours, and
waking several times at that, it's a
miracle. light, light sleeper, I am.
I want to sleep, I try to sleep. I can't.

my husband, who even though he's sleeping
I already know exactly what he would say
about my quandary, my HSP city annoyances:
— Sleep in later.
— Just stay indoors.
— Join a gym and walk on the treadmill.

he just doesn't get it. never has.
Flash! another sensor light in my face —
Screw it. for the first time ever,
I've given up on my morning walk.
it's only been a few minutes
and the weather is gorgeous!
but I am going back inside.
How can people live like this?
with so much constant noise
and so many bright obscuring lights
and so damned much artificial stink

heading back around the corner to my house, I hear
the mini-siren warning bloop of a mile-away ambulance —
did I mention that I live close to a hospital?


      TITLE:  Slam–bang
      DATE:  2020 Oct 3
      LOCATION:  PҺoenᎥᶍ ArᎥɀønα







i hurt every day remembering
that i wasn't there for you
the hardest day of suffering
— i left you painfully alone
when you needed me most
so damn close, but not there
which is the farthest away —
i was a fool, oblivious numbskull
a frozen hearted ragdoll zombie

            i'm sorry


      TITLE:  Vanished
      DATE:  2020 Oct 10
      NOTES:  revised







so he copyrighted death
and then when she died
he sued her for infringement


      TITLE:  IP
      DATE:  2020 Aug 16







Bread –
fresh baking
Butter drawn
Yeast and memories
Childhood, fond


      DATE:  2020 Jul 11







YEARLY  ARCHIVES 2024,  2023,  2022,  2021,  YOU  ARE  HERE,  2019,  2018,  2017,  2016,  2015,  2014,  2013,  2012,  2011,  2010,  2009,  2008,  2007,  2006,  2005,  2004,  2003,  2002,  2001,  2000,  1999,  1998,  1997,  1996,  1995,  1994,  1993,  1992,  1991,  1990,  1980s,  ARCHIVES  HOMEPAGE





Terri Guillemets
Archives — 2020






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