Thursday, May 14, 2009

Meeting the Neighbors in my Nightgown

Meeting the Neighbors in my Nightgown

It wasn't fire or an earthquake that brought me outside
in my nightgown; I went only to fill the backyard bird feeder
so that the early risers could fill their tummies
but glanced up at a quiet whine from Nelson
as Frank yelled, "He doesn't bark at you,
anymore; he's decided he likes you," and they
came across the street toward me, Frank
in his wrinkled Madras shorts and unbuckled black galoshes,
though it wasn't raining and there were no puddles
or even sprinklers running.  His chartreuse shirt
with the giant Mickey Mouse clashed with the ragged
pink and orange shorts.  I was embarrassed
to have no bra, worried my breasts would giggle,
held my arms carefully over them until I bent
to pet Nelson and saw the hairy grizzly-bear heads
peering up through Frank's open black galoshes.
Eliana from next door was beside me then,
arms folded across her chest, bra-less, too,
wearing her son's high-top basketball shoes
and in a too short nightie with a man's shirt clutched
about her until she, too, bent to pet Nelson.
She giggled, I giggled, and suddenly we all laughed,
laughed and laughed until tears ran down our faces.
Nelson yapped at us and all the neighborhood dogs
set into howling and the mailman, coming around
the corner with his arms full, handed us our mail
with only the slightest flicker of a smile, said
"Top O'the Morning to you," and tipped his cap. 
He bowed, danced a little jig, clicked his heels together,
and continued down the street, while Frank, Eliana
and I retreated quickly back into our separate homes,
wiping away tears and snorting softly to ourselves.

Mary Stebbins Taitt
090514-1639-1b(2), 090514-1225-1st


Anonymous said...

very sweet!

wonderful moments make life all worth it..


Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Thanks, Shradda!! :-D

I guess we take the good with the bad! :-D

Or vice versa!

Jacob said...

Wonderful, Mary. Full of fun and by the time I finished reading this I had a big goofy smile on my face.

I'm going to try to spend more time here...but I'm a bit harried at the moment!

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Thanks so much for stopping by, Jacob. I'm writing LOTS of poetry--I'm taking a class right now, but haven't had time to post it all yet. Please don't worry about coming by if you're harried, take care of yourself, first. I'm quite harried myself at the moment!!!

Not all my poetry is funny--in fact, much f it is dark or sad.

Montag said...

I like this a lot. I am going to try something a bit like it...maybe at a later date...

I know you give yours a light and whimsical note as it ends, but the more I think about it, the more ominous it becomes. (You mention much of the poetry is dark...perhaps you also meant this to be blackish humor.)
It's one thing to dress extremely casual in the suburbs at the right type of occasion - like a touch football game; it is quite another to dress with random pieces of meet by surprise dressed like homeless people.


Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

You're absolutely right, Montag--it is definitely a bit ominous! Sort of scary and creepy. Funny, too, I laugh when I read it but am not eager to repeat the experience.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

If you do do something like this (only different), let me know--I'd be interested.

Batzapper said...

Mary : I love your art and lively attitudes from the hitch hikers era... I am lucky to have had the hitch hike life I love your art I am a friend of Erica Chappuis and saw some of your poetry on her site...keeping the birds fed here also in Oklahoma country...Gary Brumley

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Thanks, Gary--yeah, I hitchhiked all across the country several times!

Glad you enjoyed it! :-D

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Why are you called Batzapper?

I can't listen to yourmusic until later, as we have a rule no music or anything when others are in the room.

I'll come back.

Crooked Beak said...

Such a sweet story. You create and write so well.

I've subscribed. Looking forward to new posts of your prose.

Meilleurs voeux,

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Hi D,

thanks for your kind comments.

I'm a slow writer. You could check out my blog called half-formed where I post my drafts. I am working on a new poem there, but probably won't post it here until I feel more secure in its doneness. M.

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