After the party

think i prefer urban ugliness
to sunsets over candy-coated landscapes,
mainly because it feels familiar and it fits
the stage i‘m in, a life pinned
to a fallen world, wearing borrowed dresses &

i leave the christmas party late– in the bagnio
opposite the road, peak period, they try
to buy what you can‘t really sell and
in the clouds, blown into night air i

still see them, even if it’s hours back,
eight hundred employees, giving tribute to
the founder’s widow, sitting small & humble
in a wheelchair and i‘m close enough to
see her tears, maybe she‘d love to
trade our long applause for a ride back
on the time machine, to the moment
when their eight child started walking,
the first kiss or when he said, he’d start
this business, brought her scarlet roses
& i’m wondering

how many of the real important things
in life happen on stages or in board rooms,
parliaments and wars– and how much in the
places no one sees except the actors,
lying bent into each other– passing

empty windows, nightly roads shine winter wet,
my feet hurt badly from the heels i wear, one hand
on my sax, the other on the steering wheel,
(just metaphorically) i am frozen to the core

& reaching home i find a yellow post it on
the bedroom door, saying „you can wake me
if you want“,  i pause a second– & again i see
her eyes, empires built with blood & sweat
on human flesh, then

slowly let my coat glide to the floor,
place the sax case next to it, countless threads
weave odd, unordered patterns in my head and
stepping from the shade, i cautiously undress
into his warmth


smiles.. i was really wearing a borrowed dress…had no time to go shopping because of hours & hours of practicing the sax – so i asked my daughter…smiles.. well poets…it’s OpenLinkNight again at dVersePoets – the time when we blow our poetry like sax tunes all over the place… join us at 3pm EST – joy ann jones aka hedgewitch will be tending the bar tonight


55 responses to “After the party

  1. Claudia- I love the tenderness here and how the widow touched your heart, made you slow down and appreciate your loved one.

  2. This stream, these thoughts, your music, your poetry, your adorableness … all make up for the fact that you can fit into your daughter’s clothes… ahem. =) A merry, blessed Christmas to you and your fam, Claudia. =)

  3. Claudia,
    Learning the ropes on sax, this is fun! Sax music is mesmerizing, enthralling to the wandering soul. Go for it, have fun! And Merry Christmas Ma’am!


  4. All that wailing on the sax sure didn’t make your verse lax. But I want candy canes and rainbows. Not all that ugliness that flows. Because you know there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow right? That would be a much better sight.

  5. Loved this write up, Claudia. So real and down to earth. Say, you actually play the sax? Cool! And I loved the yellow sticky on your door … I got a text message once from someone, it said: “I’m in bed if you want me” … cute 🙂 Love, cat

  6. that was some walk home claudia….love the progression of it the vision of those that came before …and their thoughts to your arrival home and the warm invitation…def a tender write…loved it…smiles.

  7. So many touching parts to this poem, Claudia. Most touching for me — thinking about the founder’s widow and that she’d probably trade the applause for a ride back on a time machine! So very true…and I bet there are times that this is true for all of us. So true that the ‘most important’ things are probably the simple things! And …. glad you had a good night and enjoyed playing your sax!

  8. So many little every day things make a life, and all the important ones are inside those doors, def not the boardrooms and stages where the spotlight is hot and phony. I like how this poem meanders, just like walking and thinking in cadence and message. Excellent poem, Claudia–and I hope you kicked off those heels first of all. :_)

  9. Claudia, this truly is beautiful…the whole scene is easy to visualize…you are a painter with words. Which reminds me I hope you will consider sending me an email about what you are grateful for to add to this year’s gratitude word quilt. It will be posted on my blog on Dec 31st. I am collecting expressions of gratitude from around the world.
    Gentle steps,

  10. Really nice write Claudia. Really flows well throughout, nice thoughts conjure as the piece touches tenderly. Yet you layer it more, by discussing how many of the really important things….that stanza is outstanding, love how it fit in with the rest of the piece. And a great ending as well. Great read. Thanks

  11. What a wonderful poem, Claudia. I can sense the tiredness, the heightened senses from hours of momentum, and the comfort of being home (in your heart); a place where you can surrender to tiredness, and where coats may glide off of one’s shoulders …

  12. No candy colors required; you make your urban landscape (inner and outer) as beautiful as any sunset. The walking, the thinking, the poem meanders as Brian says so naturally. Real life always happens “offstage” and behind doors labeled with post-it notes 😉

  13. I like your reflections on the widow and your coming home from the party. It is interesting to see how their life and our lives are not so different after all.. if we can trade it to start anew with our young ones, I think most of us would want that.

  14. Grand riff, dear lady, like Dexter Gordon
    in ROUND MIDNIGHT, like Gene Hackman
    in THE CONVERSATION, like Robin
    Williams in MOSCOW ON THE HUDSON,
    your poetics croon, cry, scat, growl, and
    philosophize. This poem works on at
    least 3 levels, maybe more, as the word
    notes shred our metabolic apathy and
    pierce our thin skins; loved it.

  15. You have identified the source of true happiness in this piece, I think — the sharing and caring that goes on between people behind their doors at home.

    Unfortunately, the things that are done in board rooms and parliaments all too frequently crash through those doors, too. We ignore what goes on in those places to the great peril of ourselves and those we love.

    May you be safe always. The world outside seems to grow only more perilous each day. It’s time to cherish those who love you, but stay alert to the abuses of economic and political power out there that seem bent upon destroying us all.

  16. give me more of the mundane moments of your life. these are the events of life. the fallen world itself is falling. the spirits are so alive at your authentic human interactions.

  17. Claudia this is you writing with everything you’ve got… love, wisdom, joy, sadness.. it’s a beauty.

    From this:

    they try
    to buy what you can‘t really sell


    trade our long applause for a ride back
    on the time machine,

    to here:

    into his warmth

    This is a gift..thank you…peace and love to you this season x

  18. This is so real, so sentient, Claudia…the borrowed dress, the tired feet, that sax…the compassion for the widow, and the little post-it ..all tender, sweet, without being sticky. A lovely piece Just love it! :))

  19. I like the way the poem moves–from the crowded event where you imagine the widow in her own retrospective intimacies, to the nicely settled ending where you enter your own. This is very thoughtful and rewarding.

  20. Oh, my! Chills. My senses love this:

    slowly let my coat glide to the floor,
    place the sax case next to it, countless threads
    weave odd, unordered patterns in my head and
    stepping from the shade, i cautiously undress
    into his warmth

    Best part, really! And as others have said, it has the sound of the saxophone behind it. Excellent, as always, Claudia.

  21. You convey here, Claudia, an in-the-moment awareness and appreciation that few experience and even fewer can articulate. I felt it. My feet hurt. My heart saddened, I yearned to hear the sound of a sax…

  22. This is my favorite: “one hand
    on my sax, the other on the steering wheel,
    (just metaphorically) i am frozen to the core”

    And I loved “cautiously undress into his warmth.” What meaning rests in that line.

  23. I always enjoy your day in the life snippets, Claudia, thou this one sings a bit more for the sentiment is so pure, so “yes!”. You are a such a wonderful narrative writer; the close is a warm hug after a hard edged look at what will be and what might have been ~

  24. oh, i agree the truly important things in an individual’s life are often quiet and private.

    “i cautiously undress
    into his warmth”

    so much feeling in this line, claudia! i really love this! i hope you and your loved ones have happy holidays and that 2012 brings you what you desire. ♥

  25. I think a couple of things could be tweaked, but I like how you’ve chosen to end your stanzas, and you have some lovely, poignant images in this one. What would any of us do for a time machine, eh?