places in the world

I am thinking of the phrase “Places in the world a woman would walk.” I know it’s by Grace Paley. A short story? A line in a story?

Do you feel safe walking in your neighborhood? Or on a beach near you or in a forest? If you are male, do you thinks it’s safe for a woman to walk alone in your neighborhood? Do you feel differently about a male? And the same questions to woman.

And is there an age limit? Is it safe for me to walk the beach alone because my hair is mostly white? What about my son and daughter, both in their 20s?

Safety is relative. One of the unsafe things about our beaches is the warnings about an earthquake and tsunami. We have sand cliffs that will most certainly collapse. I walk the beach and eye the cliffs. There is some luck involved and I accept that.

And she’s walking as if her feet hurt

For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: crepitus.

I wrote this poem thinking about my sister in 2009. I was writing on everything2.com and they had a “masked poetry ball”. We put up a second identity and part of the contest was guessing who was who. My brother in law and my sister had been on the site for far longer than me. While I was masked, my brother in law sent me a message that the poem reminded him of his wife. Yes, I thought, that poem worked, because I wrote it about her.

And she’s walking as if her feet hurt

And she’s walking as if her feet hurt
Each first metatarsal hits the dirt
Each joint feels like it’s full of grit
Bone on bone and all that shit

And she’s walking as if her feet hurt
Each first metatarsal hits the dirt
It’s no surprise, in fact it grates
To know she carries all those weights

Please rest your feet sometimes my dears
Those silly joints must last for years
One of the many dark deep fears
To walk in pain for years and years

And she’s walking as if her feet hurt
Each first metatarsal hits the dirt
I wish that she could go on home
And put her feet up all alone

I took the picture, of my sister and my son, in 1993 in Portland, Oregon. My sister injured her knee fighting fires when she was 22. Her knee worked after the surgery, but with crepitus within ten years. And her feet started to hurt.

zoom

For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: sublime.

My daughter was home from noon Saturday until 3 pm Sunday. We took two beach walks in between her spending most of her time studying.

I zoomed in with my cell phone trying to figure out what the tiny gold boat on the horizon is. We thought either a light colored boat or a barge of sawdust…. It rained all Saturday night and some of Sunday and some of the time on the beach. But we had sun too.

This is looking north from North Beach, towards Vancouver Island.