The Three Tomatoes’ poets, have new poems that cover a range of emotions that will make you think, make you laugh, and pause for just a moment.
When I’m upset and holding back tears,
I hesitate to admit my innermost fears,
Holding back, perhaps with clenched fists,
Doesn’t allow for unexpected twists,
Life, my goodness, as we all know,
Can change on a dime and will eventually show,
The sadness we feel now will evaporate in time,
The answers come without a whimper or a whine,
Have confidence, have faith with decisions made,
All the sadness will eventually fade,
Remember, a sense of humor makes all things lighter,
Not always necessary to be a fighter,
You will survive,
It’s good to feel alive!!
~Carol Ostrow, author of Poems from My Pandemic Pen
Til Death Do Us Part
I had a death dinner
with my oldest friends
the other night.
We gathered at Vicky’s.
Inside the grand breadth
of her Jonah and the Whale
boned Tribeca loft,
our voices echoed and bounced
as we discussed thinking about our wishes
for what ifs
and paperwork to be considered,
while we ate curried vegetables
with napkins on our laps.
The pressed linen and lace squares
had escaped and unfurled
from colorful elephant napkin rings
once belonging to Belda, Vicky’s mother.
I brought 4 pints of Van Leeuwen ice cream
we scooped on to pretty porcelain floral dessert plates,
eventually to be divided
among Vicky’s daughters.
Death is a trending topic,
one of the many items the 21st century
is trying to de-stigmatize.
The piece about ancient Jewish rites
of burial and mourning surfaced.
A Jewish body is never alone.
It is carefully cleansed,
dressed in a simple shroud
and watched over
around the clock
until it returns
to the ashes of the earth.
We discussed sitting in shifts
for each other
to protect us from desecration.
This is the image from the other night
that I cannot get out of my mind.
Some of us will sit next to
the essence of a true friend,
in some fluorescent lit institutional basement setting,
softly singing, reminiscing
and probably sharing a pint
of that body’s
with tissues in our laps
instead of napkins.
~Nicole Freezer Rubens, author “The Long Pause and the Short Breath”
Why am I feeling all this great emotion?
Perhaps I am thinking of poor Mary,
Moving away after so long living
In a quietly familiar and convenient place.
Mary, audibly rocking and rocking in the
Same chair above me as she aged into invisibility…
And soon I too will leave this same place.
For how long did I live with illusions,
Locking away all transitory possibilities
And realities and choosing instead to
Dwell inside mercurial fantasies and
Interior delusions and then grounding a still life?
Now the fading obstacles hardly matter.
The grey heavy details carved and set in stones
Have been kicked away by newer shades
Of sharp pastels that do not even belong
To me in my particular smallness.
Fog is moving in from the Hudson River,
Passing over yesterday and all the
Layered stories and everything
That came… before.
~Marjorie J. Levine, author of “Road Trips”
Ringing the Bell
For beginnings and endings
For Excelsior, Onward and Upward
For honoring and remembering
For new stars in the galaxy
For marking time and place
Ring them long and loud
Ring them strong and clear
Ring them as you mark your personal victory as a survivor
Ring them so friends and family can cheer
Ring the bells and and let the chime carry you through
So you do the very best you can and more than you thought you were capable of
Ring the bell and listen…..
~Madlyn Epstein Steinhart, author of “Put Your Boots on and Dance in the Rain”
When the move takes place
I will be alone again, a state chosen
But one with which I have
Very little experience
I went from sharing a room with my sister
To sharing a room with my husband
Trips don’t count
I always knew he would return
For now, we fit together like
Two pieces of a puzzle
Both having been in
Long, happy marriages
~Stephanie Sloane, author of “Dear Me”