Monday Morning Musings:

“The purpose of theatre is to bring into public that which is kept offstage. . .”

Paula Vogel, The New Yorker, May 12, 2017.

“We have a story we want to tell you . . .About a play. A play that changed my life. Every night we tell this story—but somehow I can never remember the end. … No matter. I can remember how it begins. It all starts with this moment—”

From Paula Vogel, Indecent


About that breeze

carrying the scent of flowers

in the rain—

now rust-tinged with blood–

does it haunt you?


the sound of ghosts walking

through ashes, whispering, whispering

the sound of pain

the sound of love and desire

carried through time



We walk

(through, around, over


steps echoing

a city filled

with art and history

there a bridge

named for a poet

(who lived in Camden)

who celebrated history

and nature


human bodies and love

(he spoke of that

which was not spoken)

indecent, some said

unnamed the fear

of love

is love is love is love is love


Celebrating Walt Whitman’s 200th with homemade pizza and Auburn Road’s Eidolon wine


We walk after

seeing my mother

her body dimmed,

no longer so electric

but still pulsing light


generates the warmth

the air, the sky

on a beautiful spring

we eat outside

where souls once gathered

celebrating god and man

and new beginnings

(blinks of time)


the ghosts gather

telling the story

over and over

knowing how it begins,

never knowing how it ends


the play begins with ashes

that later return

but remember the rain scene

(that rain scene!)

that glorious love

passionate and innocent

that shocked—

indecent they said,

that play, and this play

about it–

this love song to Yiddish theater,

to theater,

to the light within us

to memory

to time


so relevant the themes again

immigrants demonized,

and we more polarized

and there is fear

all around

(like ghosts)


twelve more dead,

we shake our heads,

go on with life

(with thoughts and prayers)

but the dead stay dead

and the ghosts whisper,

remember. . .


Yet, we create

and generate

(our bodies electric)


art, and poetry

channeling muses

and spirits


(the rain scene)

the scent of rain

the light through the trees

Sylvia Schreiber, Giverny Sketches

and love–

there is love

all around


and friendships

that stay true

through births and deaths




this moment

to the next


always how it begins,

but never how it ends–

the lights go down,

the lights come again,

the ashes fall,

the ghosts whisper,

remember this moment,

remember this


It was a busy weekend: another mass shooting, a celebration, visiting my mom, seeing Indecent at the Arden (I love this play), walks, a bridal shower. We also saw Book of Mormon, the Broadway touring company, but I couldn’t fit that in. We’ve seen it before, and it enjoyed seeing it again.







33 thoughts on “Remembering

    • Well–we do plan some things, Marian–but our theater tickets are part of a series, so it just happened that we had two on the same weekend. And then the shower that I was invited to happened to be that same weekend. . . No, I didn’t get that visual art gene. 🙂 It’s from a sketch book of my mom’s that my daughter found. Thank you!

  1. I love the drift of your poem and how the ghosts never leave it. I imagine them whispering “remember”; why else would there be ghosts? And, yes, it’s the moment to remember. Not to be morbid (but sometimes I can’t help it), when we’re lucky we can keep a moment long past its time, like a voice message from my mom that I won’t erase even though it’s over a year old. Even though I can call her anytime, I like having that voice message to listen to. It was special, a moment I want to remember.

  2. Thanks Merril – re-membering – all the members re-membered, and put back together again, yet still trailing ghost-like whisps. (Not sure ‘whisps’ is a word; maybe it should be whispers ..) Lovely post.

  3. Your life is so full! and yes the ghosts always linger.
    What a wonderful sense of color and texture in your mother’s painting. Did she always paint? (K)

    • Thank you, Kerfe.
      My mom was always interested in art. She took lessons when she was a girl, but her parents wouldn’t have allowed her to go to college or art school. I remember her doing a little bit of painting when we were growing up, but she mostly returned to it later in life. Her first show was when she in her 80s, I think. 🙂 This was from a sketch book my daughter found the other day in my mom’s apartment.

      • What a treasure! So much unrealized potential in our parents’ generation of women. Well, my parents wouldn’t let me go to art school either. (How are you going to earn a living?) I still think about it wistfully.

      • That’s sad, Kerfe. Yeah, they paid for her to go to secretarial school, but then the war came, so everything changed anyway. Her brother became a psychologist–perhaps the GI Bill paid for that, since he was in Korea.

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