Sunday, October 14, 2007

Peace, love, and here's my phone number.....

I had just gotten off the bus, my patrol belt, neon orange, wound into a wad in my right hand, and my denim notebook covered in blue inked grafitti (And a book cover because it was private school) tucked under my left arm, when he threw it out the window. The tiny football of blue lined paper thunked me on the head and pelted out into the road. The exhaust fumes from the bus camoflauged it, and then the next 17 cars whisped it flying, invisible quarterback at work. The love letter.

I opened it carefully. I wasn't crazy about this kid. In fact, I barely knew him. But his words were inked so carefully, so thoughtfully, and, well, who was I to read it carelessly? His heart, tossed out a moving window. Gangly legs flying, I wadded it up in a ball and hid it in my room...I never responded, in fact never looked him in the eyes again, and no, I didn't dial the number laboriously etched at the bottom. I hope he forgives me. Richard Hill.


I learned to write love letters well into late life. I wrote them to lovers, strangers, voices on the other end of the phone. And I wrote them well, but it was years before I ever recieved a love letter the likes of the one from Richard Hill.


He left one here. Propped up against a temple of all our keepsakes on the porch. I tore the envelope open and sped-read the words. "Chicken F'n Noodle Soup!" I belted. Stomping in circles, flailing the card. I showered and stewed, and put on my make up, made my mind up to never respond, when he showed up all gangly, skinny legs and arms smiling, "Wanna sit on the deck and have a beer?" "Are you kiddin' me?"


But we did, and he was devasted, his first and only love letter penned at 43, trashed and lonely on my kitchen table...."Save the last dance for me" he cliched at the end.....


And I was apalled,
that was apparent
and we clinked to even my
dismay because he's like
that and knows that
he doesn't know
what I'll
do
next

but the last dance
is the last chance
and i wasn't about to trade it

for prose.....

or promises

44 comments:

eric1313 said...

Strong lady. Strong sense of self.

That's another sweet feather from the wind directly to your indian head dress peace-bonnet.

Shame on the young me who "cliched" all over the place. No wonder I was once a lovedovey-bumbler. Good thing I was. I would not have had the time to develop the personality that I do have.

My first love letter was in fourth grade! Could you imagine? I remember it well. Danielle, the rich girl and her peurple silk scarfs and designer sweaters, me the poor boy with more words than all the rest, even then, even cliched little 4 ever 4 life. I had no idea what either meant, but thought I did.

I've been crushing on girls since I was seven. My first kiss was at eight (good ole '84) with my nine year old neighbor, Wendy of the red-red locks...

I saw her two months ago, working at the grocery store in Port Huron MI, red hair with grey streaks and she smiled and yelled me name. Talked about who we loved now, her about her hubby and three kids, me about writing and going to college and poetry and world-wide friends whose faces I don't even know (i know yours, but thats just a couple pics). Different lives, but in a way we were on the same page still. Love was then and love is still now, just in different springs, different veins.

God, you are just as prophetic as you call me. It's as though we always knew each other.

Hope we alwayys will
the circle
is made forever, for life
no numbers just raw words
as our friend Beerspitnight would say.

Clink! (x a zillion)

singleton said...

Clink ya back! Oh, my first little love is recorded on these pages somewhere....he with the giant velvet poodle on the valentine as big as half a poster board, and the beatle haircut!....and my 1st true love, a thousand languages he spoke, and the only one I understood, ours....

Love grows, we fall into it from different heights at different times for different reasons...

connected.....

Maithri said...

How wonderful it is to live in a world of love letters. Of old romantic cliches, first dances and last dances to be both saved and spent.

Some of us spend our lives waiting for love to write to us.

And then there are people like you sweet friend. Who spend your life writing love's name whereever you cast your eyes. On every lonely side walk and dusty lamp post. On the houses of friends and strangers, kings and queens.

You sing it from the hills and bring it down, clasped gently between your hands like a captive butterfly, to give to those in need.

You feed it it to the hungry and whisper it on bended knee to the broken hearted.

And love grows, and leaps and dances and sings in your heart.

And each morning when you awake, the sun writes your name across a reborn sky. To thank you for all the love you give.

My love to you dear friend,

M.

singleton said...

maithri....
and that, my friend, was a beautiful love letter....And to be here now, on the curb, just in time to catch the words flying...free...
and open them up....
a kaleidescope kite....
is priceless....
Thank you my friend....
you share the love, spread the love, and it grows rampant in your shadow....
if only the world at large could
follow....your light....into the darkness...into the sunshine waiting to rise,
scoop it up on bended knees...
if only the world at large,
could learn to love again.....

peace~love, my friend

karma lennon said...

No love letters for me but love emails. Words of passion delivered daily to my inbox. Miss those. But it'll happen again, the real thing I know.

singleton said...

oh, Karma... emails, cards, skywritings, tink-you thoughts....yes, they'll happen again....and how blessed are we that soul mates are everywhere....not just once, not just twice, but until we get it right.....Peace~love my little one

Shimmerrings said...

Wow, thanks for the memories, sure brought back some. When I was in the 9th grade I was attending a private school... but, my boyfriend was in public school. I always got home before he did, and so everyday when his bus passed by my house, he'd toss out a football folded love letter... and I'd be down to the road to fetch it up. I kept them for years, piles and piles of them, in an empty John Romain box. I can't believe that I actually, one day, threw them away, but I did. I guess when he married someone else it seemed appropriate, eh? Lol... how I'd love to read them again... words to and from such innocent hearts.

skinnylittleblonde said...

Lol...I love his paradox of a box drawing. I too wonder if I have my box of love ltters from Greg, not the first boy to write me, but one of the more artistic ones...'Wild Thing' ILY

Skinny

Mavin said...

Love is like the moon, at one time it will be out and about and another time it will be shaded from our eyes til one day love is out and about again.....

The moon is wonderful and so is love.

Peace :)

Shrink Wrapped Scream said...

A heart healed by scar tissue is so much stronger than if it were left unbroken. An unbroken heart only shows a life lived too carefully.

skinnylittleblonde said...

(Shrink) Love those words of wisdom...I should add them to the list!

The Electric Orchid Hunter said...

I've got a couple of those - hastily written in ball point pen, with little drawings of hearts and flowers around the sides. And I've kept them in a box for all these years. I never look at them, though. They remind me of all the many mistakes I've made.

sandykessler said...

ah nothing like taking that chance - so young steal a kiss out behind the barn play spin the bottle,thanks for recharging me ...

karoline said...

i've written many love letters to the wind...

who knows where they are now..

much luv to you girl..

k:)

singleton said...

shimmerings...Of course we can't keep everything, and some things are best kept in our memories, where they remain perfect, exactly the way we want to remember them, but how cool is that that there was a time in your life when you were showered with footballs of love? In our youth, we are so free to love.....too bad, it so often becomes such a challenge with age! Peace to you, and remember the love....

skinny, you, like me, will be surprised to find what you still have.....I had to dig through the trunk to find this one, and that was like climbing into a pandora's box of the past....and by the way, it made me smile....a lot! And yes, Shrink is talking the wise stuff here today, you gotta take chances, bleed a little, to know when something really is good! I love you, sweet child!

Shrink...there isn't a word I can add to that except for from the pews.....Amen! You rock!

Peace~love to all, and write it down, love letters are free, you know!

singleton said...

Mavin....perfect comparison....And I thought today for some strange reason that lovers are like babies.....you can plan and pray for them all you want, but the truth is they just show up when they're meant to....

Electric Orchid....Or maybe now that you're a little older, they might just remind you of how much you've grown. I've never ever thought of a lost love as a mistake, but a season....just part of the big butterfly effect, and for that, each one, no matter what the torrid ending, remains important and somehow special. And sometimes, even lost loves, are the best.....

sandy...and that's not just for the young, if we ever stop dancing, stop loving......stop spinning the bottle, where we would get laughter from, goosebumps from..... :)

karoline.....Ahhhh, me, too girl. I don't know where the wind carried them, but I'm sure somewhere, they are wrapped up in a faded memory....and what better place for them to be stashed....

peace~love my friends,
and may we all write on......

eric1313 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
eric1313 said...

Blue Ink
E1313

A life of love letters
written on blue jeans
ten years old, faded,
love-worn by Venus--she
of every dream I own.

Love's words etched
on the palm of my hand,
on my head board
carved into the table
under the willow tree
weeping for the ways
love used to dance
under its sweeping bows
the memories flood
the rains caress
drop by drop
rivulets to rivers
to the heaving ocean.

A sea brimming life,
our thousand bottles
bobbing, clinking--
and each one home
to little blue lines
lots of blue, hot ink
tear-drops and runs,
with forever-for-life
sized hearts pierced
by arrows we thought
were only imagination,
writing love's letters
on every dream we own.

eric1313 said...

Clink!

You doing OK, Sing? Hope you got some rest.

Peace and love.

singleton said...

Eric....
for once I am without a comeback
a chainletter
an RSVP
a PS
an
"and"......
that was~is beautiful
in
blue ink.....

peace~love, in the wind....

Mary said...

Reminds me of my first serious valentine card I ever received when only in the 4th grade. A seal holding a heart. It said "Let's seal it with a kiss." I was scandalized. Then on the back it was signed with love. I wanted to die.

SpongyBones said...

Mushy Hippies! No love letters from me. Just kept it to myself. Now I know better.

Rhea said...

Oh, yes, crushes. Hey, baby boomer, let's trade links. I 'collect' boomers.

kj said...

i am speechless from this post. it's all feelings and longings and tender moments wrapped in tissue paper by one exceptionally fine writer.

and eric: this woman's inspiration is a gift unto itself. and this last poem of yours leaves me equally speechless. way to go, you two....

singleton said...

mary...but did you "seal it with a kiss"? :) I love it.....and I hope you've had a zillion more occassions to be just as blushed! Just as washed with that "feel the love" thing......


spongy....Ahh, little one, you have no idea what you might have been missing.....There's really nothing so romantic as love scribbled on a napkin, a menu, blue lined paper, hell, even Hallmark will do....there's something so poignantly commital about writing it all down, even if it changes in the wind....it's the now that's captured...and isn't that what we're all about anyway! Peace and little love letters, my friend....

rhea....It would be my pleasure! I collect windchimes and words:) Nice to meet you, by the way!

KJ....well I know you know the ballad of the pen....the heartfelt way words become the greatest bouquet ever tossed..... He's on a roll you know, and it's a rockin himalaya of a ride!

Peace~love my friends, and tell it in a love letter.....

singleton said...

We were there
in the rain
our name
ten down
from the
"We can seat you now"
and passed up six times
waiting on
"smoking"
even in the rain
and so we made out on the
park bench
We knew we would eventually
if they left us there long enough
and we plucked holly
leaves from the
sculptured shrubs
upside down
their twills
ball point pens
on the bench
we hid the words with skinny legs
and hands spread wide
like paper plates
and then I saw it....
architecturely folded
sopping wet
on the side walk
and you knew
when you saw my face
that I was going to dart out
between the running people
afraid to get wet
and so hungary they couldnt
bask in the rain forest,
and snatch it....
The love letter.....

"Its someones's tab" you said,
shaking your head,
"But what if it isn't?"
"What if it's a loveletter chucked over a shoulder,
by somebody so pissed they couldn't even read it
and later on
tonight
or next month
they're going to ache
to know the words?"
"It isn't...."
"What if someone dropped it and it was meant for me to find it? What if the words are random, but mean the world to me?"

And so you smiled
and I carefully unpeeled the words
from the wet cocoon
and ironed them flat
beside us....

justacoolcat said...

A beautiful barley pop waltz.

eric1313 said...

I finally made it home and what do I see?

Beauty. Nothing out of the ordinary. Only a little bit divine and a little bit cosmic, just I always see here. We expect it from you, Singleton. And we love it no less because of that.

iknowyouknowiknowyouknow


She told me she could fly
and I so believed her--
because the first time
my eyes saw her,
she was a butterfly
just wanting a little
bit of peace
and maybe
a beer
but peace
was her flower
of choice.

She was a butterfly
and I thought I
was the silver moon.

I followed her
through the trees
to a place where
they ran free up
and down and up
the beach in
hand-me-down Levis,
finding treasures
and granting wishes.

And I was enchanted
by the words hanging
in the salt air
I could not believe
that jewels shined
so bright
and the butterfly
turned into a mermaid
telling me about what I saw
and listening to me
babble on, laughing
waiting for me
to ask her to dance...

And we dance every day
and we dance every night
on the porch, in the trees
and she said cinderella's
dance was only the made
for TV kind
but she left a glass slipper
and I found it
and now I wonder
what will I do with a glass shoe
that can only fit
on a butterfly's sun kissed leg?

singleton said...

suchacoolcat.....Smiling, smiling,smiling.....barley pop waltz....I love that!

Eric...
"but she left a glass slipper
and I found it
and now I wonder
what will I do with a glass shoe
that can only fit
on a butterfly's sun kissed leg?"

in yourfingers the tiny
glass slipper
a sudden light show
and butterflies
will swoon
and fall from grace
to swirl there
hover in the air
their shadows
disco dancing in your palm...

Clink!
Peace~love my friends

JustRun said...

Good on you, girl.

And I like 'cliche' used as a verb. :)

singleton said...

justrun....LOL! he is a verb!

eric1313 said...

You are really something else, my friend. Please be awake. I'll be back soon. Running to the store.

Running like the wind...

singleton said...

eric....go slow....like the summer wind... I'm on the new porch, hangin' windchimes....

eric1313 said...

I'm there, sitting at the bar...
Warm shot in hand...

Words in head and heart
welling up from the depths
of my own inner beyond.

Meet you there...

singleton said...

k....

Gillian @ Indigo Blue said...

If we ever finally get to really meet each other, no one will get to hear anything for all the bloody clinking and tinking going on. We'll all fall down. Literally! It'll be fun.
Anyhoo love chops, I have never ever written a love letter. I would be much challenged to do so I believe.
I don't even know if, oh wait. Yes, I have received a letter of amor. But I never requited, hence my not ever having actually written one.
But I did kick some girls ass in a bar once.
I'll tell you about that sometime. It was quite unexpected as I am a tad petite, and she was, well, full figured. I think, I surprised her. And him. That was a love letter, Gillian style.
xo
Gillian !

Gillian @ Indigo Blue said...

Yeah, I got the guy.
How cliche, but he really adored the fact that I went all Spartan on her ass.
xo
Gillian !

Gillian @ Indigo Blue said...

That night, I dined in Hell!
xo
Okay, I am done now. Getting a little worked up...
(STill with him. 17 years later. True love, is worth fighting for.)

singleton said...

blue....As the Beastie boys would say "We gotta fight for our right to partay!" And yes, little one, sometimes we gotta show 'em what we're made of! Oh Lord, get you and me and Skinny in a house of ale and rock and roll and........
clinkety tinkety tango tangle tattle rattle shake and roll! Too much damn fun!
Psssst....But still, you should try a love letter!
peace~love wild one!

eric1313 said...

Ha! That's one party I'd be jealous of missing. You guys all rock.

Gillian, that was some of the funniest and sincere writing I've read from you.

Singleton. Glad to see you home.

Peace~Love.

david mcmahon said...

Wonderful work. The only reason I've been an infrequent is that I have a novel to hand over in less than two weeks ....

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Ah. Fabulous. This made me all wistfull. Perhaps, when Heinrich's story is done, I shall write a love letter and post it on my blog.

Anonymous said...

ILY
slb

singleton said...

Eric...
Blue was on a roll last night, Gillian Style! Don't you know that girl can party?
And now it's morning, just a moment after midnight....
and 7 hours of the new day born...

David...oh, I hope it's coming along wonderfully and no need to apologize, I've hanging out in my own backyard a lot the last few weeks myself, a little hurricane has been hovering here....Wishing you the words you need, and want, and love....to finish the last page, the last line just the way you dreamed....

Ultra....Wistfull....That's a beautiful word I haven't heard in a really long time. I have a feeling you could post a mighty love letter.....

slb.....oh if the night were endless and miles were moments! ILY2sweetsib!