Sunday, June 12, 2016
The novelty intrigued at first -
A gray hair! Yanked it out. Examined.
Coarser than the brown. Crimpy. Like a pubic hair
That lost its spring, and way.
As they filled my temples, I thought, Distinguished.
I thought, Salt and pepper, but, little by little,
My temples were all salt,
My sideburns pillars of it. I thought, Old.
And then a good friend - who else? - said,
You've gone gray so fast!
I leaned forward like an old silverback
Gorilla, pressed my weight onto my knuckles.
Grunted. Slipped off into the jungle.
Went home and broke some pencils.
In front of the mirror, clear as a stream
Above the mist, I think, How vain I am.
I'm considering dyeing my hair. It's summer;
If it's a disaster, I won't have to endure my students'
And colleagues' undisguised contempt. I'll stay inside
Until it grows out.
I decide to wait until I return
From seeing my dad in Florida.
When I pull into the parking lot
At the assisted-living home where he is dying,
A few old men are walking the perimeter, exercising,
Gray heads down, watching their steps,
One man smiling for no apparent reason.
I run my hand through my hair,
Check myself in the rearview. I think,
This is what happens. If you're lucky.
~ Eric Nelson
Sunday, May 29, 2016
Longtime "What's the Diehl?" readers know that I used to post poetry on Sundays - hence the title of "Sunday Poetry" - but stopped when I ramped down the amount of time I spent on this blog. However, my friend Deb Gelep inspired me to post some of my favorite song lyrics today, which are not only poetic but among the most moving and beautiful I've ever seen or heard.
Glitter in the Air
Have you ever fed a lover with just your hands?
Closed your eyes and trusted, just trusted?
Have you ever thrown a fistful of glitter in the air?
Have you ever looked fear in the face and said, "I just don't care."?
It's only half past the point of no return
The tip of the iceberg, the sun before the burn
The thunder before the lightning and the breath before the phrase
"Have you ever felt this way?"
Have you ever hated yourself for staring at the phone?
Your whole life waiting on the ring to prove you're not alone
Have you ever been touched so gently you had to cry?
Have you ever invited a stranger to come inside?
It's only half past the point of oblivion
The hourglass on the table, the walk before the run
The breath before the kiss, and the fear before the phrase
"Have you ever felt this way?"
La la la la la la la la
There you are,
Sitting in the garden,
Clutching my coffee,
Calling me sugar
You called me sugar
Have you ever wished for an endless night?
Lassoed the moon and the stars and pulled that rope tight?
Have you ever held your breath and asked yourself will it ever get better than tonight?
Saturday, May 28, 2016
It's been a while since I've asked readers to kick in a few shekels in order to show your appreciation for the noteworthy, provocative, earth-shattering essays and posts here at "What's the Diehl?" so I'm asking again. I promise not to ask again for months. I promise not to plan and execute any fundraisers with craft beers and t-shirts. I promise not to solicit auction items or carve the names of my donors in stone. Just click on the "Donate" button at the upper right hand side of this blog to ensure that I can maintain internet access and buy some groceries.
Thank you for your consideration.