on the margins //of myself

the driver calls from zürich airport
where he’s waiting for a russian group
as i fry mushrooms on a sunday
in a big pan//in a bath
of olive oil and ginger garlic

“there are four guys from sudan,
they saw the company sign &–”

“ok, let me talk to them” i wipe my hands
the connection’s pretty crappy
&i try to get the details
while the mushrooms shrimple, half their size
turning this and that way

i stir ‘em, chop up salad leaves,
blue grapes, tomatoes
&pour vinegar on top of it

“ok” i nod “let’s do this”

“no big changes with the newest IOS” my daughter says
loading picture frames and hundred little boxes
in my car
“it takes forever though”

my phone rings– moscow
“is the transfer paid for?”

i take the field-glass
check the meadow, mountain, sky
and cannot find myself

which is weird&frightening
so i read poetry instead– thumb firmly on the vein along my neck,
ear on the verse’s chest

you know, it is like boldly drawing in
just everything you see & then–

i take a worn out coffee pad &place it in the bin
capturing the lines that balance on the edge,
the small notes
all that’s getting lost
so quickly

&my phone still
loads, & loads, & loads


Marina has us write poetry along the margins at dVerse today, poetry that happens while we’re busy with the important things in life and maybe almost miss the small but really spectacular and life-changing things going on around us… pub doors will open at 3pm EST…


38 responses to “on the margins //of myself

  1. Oh… once again you’ve taken the theme …in this case ‘margins’ and made into a perfect poem that captures the essence of the topic.

  2. The trials and tribulations of a working professional woman. Thank goodness for poetry, where not only can you find yourself, but more importantly, you can get lost in it.

  3. Interesting, it reads like a journal entry!

    I already use garlic with the mushrooms now I shall have to give ginger a try. Merci beaucoup!

  4. lol. you so sound like james bond…or the like…the secret life of claudia…keeping all the nations in line and moving in the right direction…cool look in on several of your roles and how sometimes they mash in on each other….mmm would love some sauteed mushrooms…

  5. Sure those mushrooms didn’t go to your head and it was all a dream? lol keeping the peace while cooking away, a multi tasking you can surely to at your bay

  6. I bet your mushrooms were delicious…but so hard to have to cook something when talking to a driver at the Zurich airport. But then again you seem a person who can multi-task well. Smiles. I also liked using field glasses to check meadows and mountains looking for self and deciding to read poetry instead…another way of finding self, I think. And I can feel the frustration with the phone loading and loading. Enjoyed the slices of life as much as I would have enjoyed a few tasty slices of those mushrooms, Claudia.

  7. Now you have made me hungry for fresh mushrooms. 🙂 Doing many things at the same time, especially on a Sunday morning, can feel very frustrating in the end as we are left with the feeling that things are not done quite as well as they might be. And the loading of the phone reminds me of a similar episode with the iphone a year ago when I left the house not sure whether my phone was still installing and afraid of what might happen if it had not.

  8. Wondered how you would approach this prompt; & it seems that your multiple-imaging, your homogenous mix of real & imagined (impossible to tell apart), your several tasks, memories, plans, events happening in the same moment, rock the prompt per usual, but also key us into the overlap of perceptual universes that are your day, your moment.

  9. What multitasking! The focus for me was on the mushrooms and the poetry, with all of the other things creating a buzz in the periphery – but who are we say what is centre and what is periphery?
    A great chunky slice of life pie!

  10. Love the way the poem cuts in and out of conversations and the way that you relegate those important things to orbit round the central theme … frying mushrooms! Great stuff!

  11. ..when the focus turns from business and restless stirring of mushrooms, you then toss a pad in the bin..here, it seems, your focus changes to the simple, mundane, yet real goings on behind the commotion..through the binoculars and .thoughts turn to observing and being still, (like the finger on your vein) note…your response to the overloading in those minutes is an intricate web of poetry.

  12. Oh, how easy it is to get lost in the busyness of life. I like your write – paying attention to so many things, it is easy to lose track of the little things. 🙂

  13. Ahh.. the fried mushrooms..catch my taste..it’s been a long time.. perhaps my wife.. will have a new mission after this..:)

    And Oh! dam that iOS.. first it was 8.0.. then 8.02… and filling up my iphone.. with operating system.. to the point of leaving no room.. to actually do something with the phone.. like taking pictures… so i delete what is not needed and move on…

    Until Apple sucks me in to an iPhone 6 with at least 32MB of ram..

    next time.. but nah.. there ain’t no going back.. after ya bite the apple..

    the snake devil is most definitely right about that.. per the lessons of Job.. STEVE .. that is..:)

  14. What a wonderful journey! You had me in your kitchen salivating over mushrooms, you had me looking in a dictionary for the word “shrimple” and you had me laughing at the end!



  15. This does have shades of an international-intrigue movie, Claudia. The progress of the frying mushrooms interspersed with phone and personal conversations, salad ingredients and the interminable “Loading” symbol spinning round and round. Great tension deriving from ordinary activities.

  16. oh my Claudia! publish a book and I’ll pre-order 🙂
    you words always take me on a pretty pretty trip. I am not a big fan of mushroom though, but I would like to try it your way.

  17. I like the image of “thumb firmly on the vein along my neck, / ear on the verse’s chest.” it’s nice to know that life settles down enough for you to find poetry.