the grass was man-high friday night

my lawnmower :-)

painted this in the shack this morning barefoot and in my sleeping gown… oy… lawnmowers don’t get painted enough me thinks…smiles


still in my business clothes
i mow the lawn
& clouds pile like huge whales
against the evening sky

wild strawberries&moss
islands of buttercups
i make my way around

cable strings wind up my legs,
my black pants smudged

“are you mowing in your good clothes?”
hubs asks
i’m too busy though to answer
“so what happened?”

and he grabs a broom
as i move bikes out of the carport
“we can load the rubbish in the trunk” he says
“to get more space// get rid of–”
an old hoover,
broken plastic stand,
a soaked and moldy chipboard

i take it with two fingers
“mom” my daughter says
“imagine that your house would look like this//
on the inside– and you had no money
to refurbish”

she’s still sick,
a thick scarf wrapped around her neck,
nose running, carrying
piece by piece out of the shack,
“you should go back into the house” i say
brushing her cheeks,

“in bolivia, i’ve seen things like this”

sweat and dustwebs in my hair
i hold her
“it’ll rain soon” i say
&at night i dream of trains in england

“the trip’s a nice idea” my husband says
while Walter White is cooking meth
somewhere in a laundry in new mexico
“so you’re not angry?”
“no” he smiles
“i go and shower”
&both clock hands fall// drunk&tired
towards midnite


smiles.. my fam fears my “this-has-to-be-done-that-very-minute” work &other attacks…. yet they bear with me….somehow…smiles…
shared with PU


38 responses to “the grass was man-high friday night

  1. For some reason I was not surprised that you were mowing the grass in you work clothes…to do otherwise would be to conform to others’ expectations…you are a total delight my friend.

  2. Claudia, again I am awed by the way you use conversation in your poetry. You bring the situation alive. I would guess things would be a lot different in Bolivia. And those trains in India…I wonder to myself how much different they are from trains in France. (Probably a lot.) Smiles. You definitely have a way of capturing a moment in time. Kudos to you for that.

  3. I enjoyed your family scene, Claudia. Your daughter’s words are a crude reminder that we are lucky to have much more than a shelter to live in.
    The mention of your good clothes and grass reminded me of my first trip to England. On the first day, I played cricket and got my pants green at the knees. Then I lived in terror of ruining the only other pair I had.

  4. Oh, oh, oh. I so am there with you. It’s got to get done – someone has to do it – they see you doing it DESPITE, and pitch in. I was trying to decide what vice to indulge in tonight and I do believe it’s Walter White…
    Nicely done, Claudia.
    Tina @ Life is Good

  5. I had to look up Walter White. But the rest I recognize–that burst of do this now and the getting away and the family helping and ducking … busy poem.

  6. Excellent window into your life Claudia – as a lifelong procrastinator my “this-has-to-be-done-that-very-minute” happen little. But sometimes they do, of necessity – as in Friday gone – and so I can appreciate the urgency.
    My grass still requires mowing – looking at it now – wish I had done it sooner…
    Anna :o]

  7. You capture so much here.. I love the reflection on your storage.. imagining on how it would be to live there — your daughter is very wise… still we clean so can free up more storage (I do relate to that a lot).. and you know how to use conversations so well…

  8. Beautiful poem. Been there, too, with the cooking. Come in through the door and straight into the kitchen. With my cycling gear on, though. :-0

    Greetings from London.

  9. I like family conversations, smiles ~ My family also goes nuts when I am also in my clean the house mode but I don’t do it in my work clothes, ha ~ A trip would be a good idea ~

    Happy Mother’s Day to you ~

  10. I just love the opening of the dialogue here – are you mowing in your good clothes?, what a wonderful invitation in… Beautiful.

    Be well~

  11. i remember my mamasita getting angry with us, with me when i would not change out of my ‘good’ clothes before chores or playing. as a single parent, she worked very hard to buy our one good set of school and church attire. nice conversational write Claudia. keeps the reader grounded

  12. Wonderful and most interesting conversation in this has to be done now moment. Sometimes that one little things leads to more things and that no sense in stopping now finish it.

  13. Mowing in your business clothes–you make me laugh! I hear you…sometimes the moment of urgency to get something done just strikes. This poem exemplifies what you do so well…conversation, family tenderness and a just right ending.

  14. I love it. I dressed up today for Mother’s Day and want to go pull the weeds that took over while we were away. But, I’m using the clothes as an excuse. They will still be there tomorrow.

  15. Claudia, your art is very wonderful – so colorful, cheerful and whimsical. I adore it. I love this peek into your lovely loving life, my friend………and I am the same way – when things Must Be Done!!!!!

  16. Love how you paint with words…probably a couple of drawings/play too there are possibly to make out of this story with conversations between characters…very fun! The last line – ah, very close to Dali clock :)xx

  17. Sometimes it is best to get things done while on our minds. I could use some of your determination in my procrastination.

  18. great piece you got here my friend. last Thursday I mowed my brother’s front lawn and I had to change into good clothes to mow it cause I hate my shorts and my sandals in case the weeds get into my toenails. lol, your poem made me smile as I think back to last Thursday. 😀 Jamztoma

  19. sometimes i need something like cutting the grass to get my mind off things…
    and mold will def grow when we leave things unattended…and the meth line just kinda jumps off the page at you..ugh….i need to go cut my grass…

    happy moms day today…smiles.

  20. Of course your family has to accept your quirks. That’s what makes you you.
    I like the scene you invoke of family being family and understanding when you let off steam in your unique way.