Carpe Diem Summer Challenge 2019: On the Porch

The back porch area at the Grover Hotel

Much work to be done
Before we have a good porch
For relaxation


This was not a classical Haiku--sorry! But it is where my mind is. Mike from Construction Guru starts his work tomorrow. Then the electrical work begins, then the plumbing. At that point, there's still a lot to be done, but we can start moving in. I will be happy about that. 
These 250-mile round trips to go to the site and then come back to Lakewood are very stressful. I'm seeing myself coming and going and feel like I'm neglecting other areas of my life. This starts to make me feel very critical of myself, and not very good at all about my creative work. More about that later.

Even though this poem failed as a classic Haiku, it has earned the Cactus Clem seal of approval. In fairness, Cactus Clem doesn't know the first thing about classic Haiku. As Clem says: "I ain't know much about poem writin', but I know what I like, and this here is a poem I like!"

Ghost Town Grover says: "Can't say as I know nothin' about writin' poems neither, but I reckon this here poem is purty good."

Carpe Diem Weekend Meditation #94: Crow

Photographer Unknown

as evening comes on
a crow pauses on a branch
contemplating night


Inspired by Matsuo Basho 

Carpe Diem Summer Challenge 2019: Ice Cold Beer (With Grover and Cactus Clem)

Image Source

When the contractors
Make the old place livable
We are moving in
My son will brew his own beer
We will enjoy with new friends


The stars are finally right and the contractors are going to be able to start working to make the Grover Hotel ready for our move! 

My son is going to help the excavator pull down this rickety extension which a previous occupant erected on the property. It has no real support, and the excavator needs it out of the way to be able to expose the foundation for the structural engineer.
Once we are able to get settled in, among other projects such as growing both outdoor plants and indoor salad greens using hydroponics, my son wants to start brewing his own beer. Fortunately, we already have a couple of volunteer taste testers!

Ghost Town Grover was a miner during the Colorado Gold Rush. He was born in a covered wagon on the Oregon Trail on the fourth of July, 1840. He settled in the Grover Hotel in 1910. One night while he was out exploring the prairie grasslands with his shovel, inspired by a bolt of White Lightnin' to start a new gold rush, Grover was sadly mowed down by a train as he stood on the tracks gawping in awe at...

Nobody knows exactly where Cactus Clem came from or just what he is aside from, in Clem's own words "a cactus man, or maybe a man cactus," but the words "mad scientist" have been tossed about regarding his origins.

Image by ErikaWittlieb from Pixabay
A mural featuring Dr. Schitz graces the Research Laboratory at Hell's Pass Hospital and Research Center on the outskirts of Nightmare Heights

Although he was three sheets to the wind on the night in question, Grover distinctly recalls hearing "what I thought was a train with engine trouble," and then seeing "a blue box-lookin' thing set down next to the track, and three fellas got out. One of 'em had on a white coat, one of 'em had on the craziest-lookin' getup I ever seen, and I couldn't quite see the other one in the shadows."

The Story of Cactus Clem
Ghost Town Grover
So there I was, standin' there starin' at the weirdest sight I ever did see and swearin' off the White Lightnin' for good. The feller in the crazy clothes was English or somethin', and he said: 'are you sure it's all right to leave your experiment here, Dr. Schitz?'"
The feller in the white coat said: "ja, ja, it is desert and he is cactus. Not to vorry." This feller sounded a lot like my old friend Slim Svensson from back in the gold rush days, but it wasn't him. Slim wasn't no scientist, though he sure did like to blow things up!
So then them two fellers went back in the blue box and I heard that weird noise again and the box disappeared. The third feller was standin' there across the track, and he said: "Howdy, Partner! My name's Clem, and I'm real thirsty. Do y'all have anything fer a feller to drink?"
Well, I said: "c'mon back to the ole hotel with me an' I'll git you somethin'. I don't trust this here white lightnin'. It makes ya see weird things."
I started to cross the track, but then I got a load of Clem, and I stood there gawpin'. That was all the time it took fer a train to run right over me. When I come to, I was standin' on one side of the track and my body was layin' on the other. Clem was swiggin' down the last of the White Lightnin'. He looked at me and grinned.
"This stuff is purty good!" he said. "It really hit the spot!"
Well, I didn't have much to do fer a long time, 'cept haunt the ole hotel and hang around on the lone prairie with Cactus Clem. I learned that he was some kind of scientific experiment made by that nutty Dr. Schitz feller. Clem don't eat nothin', but he has to drink a lot. So I know he's gonna look forward to tastin' the homemade beer when the Ornery Old Lady and her son git moved into the Grover Hotel! Iffen y'all stop by sometime, you might be able to have yerself a beer too, and maybe play some cards an' recite some poetry!

Yer ole pal,
Ghost Town Grover

Carpe Diem Summer Challenge 2019: Outdoor Shower

Image by Ambady Sasi from Pixabay

outdoor shower
bathed in sun colors
of hot water

outdoor shower
a little bird looks out from
the branches of home

bathed in sun colors
its black and yellow feathers
so like clouds and light

of hot water
heat of summer relentless
even for a bird

slipping into the pool
naked divides the night
sun-warmed waters
slipping into the pool
comes a nighttime visitor
a stealthy raccoon

naked divides the night
those that hide in the daytime
appear bold at dusk

sun-warmed waters
a pleasure as it paddles
silent in shadow

Jane & Cie

I was honestly stuck with this one. Then it came to me, like flash--like a vision! I just wrote it down.
The "sleighs" of these two Troiku were written by Jane Reichhold (1937 - 2016). The unruly "horses" were led to water by me.

Real Cie Reviews: The Way We Were Before

I received a free copy of this book for review purposes.
The following is a duplicate of my review for this product on Amazon.

Rating: 5 of 5 stars

This well-written autobiography tells the story of Rico, a 13-year-old Romanian Jew growing up in post-World War II Israel. Rico is, for the most part, left to his own devices. His parents are absorbed in their own lives. His mother enjoys playing cards with her friends. His father is a merchant marine who sometimes drinks too much and has a bad temper.
One day, Rico's father takes him to the Kibbutz Sha’ar HaGolan and introduces him to his half-brother Natan (Nelu), who is two years older. Rico learns about his father's previous relationship and meets Nelu's relatives, who welcome him.
As he grows up, Rico learns many lessons about life, love, and betrayal. He learns to box, a skill which will serve him well, but combined with his own temper also briefly lands him in jail at base camp for taking on a bully. Throughout everything, Nelu remains a steady and constant force in his life.
From moments of youthful joy to unimaginable loss, the author is honest about himself and his experiences. This powerful story about a time gone by is well worth reading.


Tanka Splendor: White Flowers

Lily of the Valley

Pretty white flowers
Remind me of promises
Broken over time
Flowers crushed in fits of rage
When one expects betrayal


Carpe Diem Summer Challenge 2019 + The Tuesday Platform: Beachcomber

missing the malls
on the ocean beach
she gathers shells
what is there to miss in malls?
beaches are so much better

high tide
the beach leaves a mark
in her book
she will always remember
this new home away from home

afternoon wind
all the beachcomber's words
blown out to sea
words written on the shoreline
she hopes that he could see them

cold beach walk
on sun-warmed car seats
two sweatshirts
one for her, one for her son
the one who means everything

a special beach
I put a pebble in my mouth
before leaving
wishing to taste the ocean
one last time before going

smelling the light
on her tanned shoulder
home from the beach
this home away from her home
in her memory always

~Jane & Cie~

The Hokku of these Renga were written by Jane Reichhold (1937 - 2016). The Ageku were created by me.
The sum total is a story poem about Pepper Baiij, the protagonist in Team Netherworld's long-running WIP, Fetch. These story poems help keep the WIPs we aren't able to work on as much alive.

Carpe Diem Summer Challenge 2019: On the Porch

The back porch area at the Grover Hotel Much work to be done Before we have a good porch For relaxation ~Cie~ Note: ...