Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Resolutions



She smoked the long and thin ones—
The brands with smiling women
Living carefree lifestyles
In women’s magazines. 

When I picture her,
It’s always with a cigarette in one hand. 
Mornings, the other hand cradled coffee. 
Evenings, the other hand caressed a cocktail.

Her voice, low and raspy from decades of tobacco,
Didn’t stop her from slurring, screaming,
“Happy New Year!”
And crashing silver pots against lids
Out the window at midnight.  

I sunk into the couch cushions,
Wondering what the neighbors thought,  
As I stared at the ashtray graveyard
Of discarded cigarettes
And wished I could fix her.  


Try to write a picture-prompt tale: http://magpietales.blogspot.com/


I wish you all a wonderful 2013.  
For some of my writer-friends, 
2012 was a difficult year filled with sorrow and loss.  
I hope they find peace.  
May we all write more, love more, live more.  xo


I read 70 books this year.  My list is  HERE.
I'll keep track of my 2013 books on this post.

Books Read in 2013:

1. Seven Sorcerers, Caro King
2. When You Reach Me, Rebecca Stead
3. Chocolate Fever, Robert Kimmel Smith
4. Son, Lois Lowry
5. From Stage Door Shadows, ed. Jodi Cleghorn
6. Splurch Academy: The Rat Brain Fiasco, Julie Berry
7. The Garden of Eve, K.L. Going
8. The Robe of Skulls, Vivian French
9. Dead End in Norvelt, Jack Gantos
10. Once Upon a Marigold, Jean Ferris
11. How to Eat Fried Worms, Thomas Rockwell
12. Liar and Spy, Rebecca Stead
13. Ordinary People, Judith Guest
14. The Underneath, Kathi Appelt
15. Archers's Quest, Linda Sue Park
16. Kira-Kira, Cynthia Kadohata 
17. The Chronicles of Harris Burdick, Chris Van Allsburg
18. A Single Shard, Linda Sue Park
19. Angel Burn. L.A. Weatherly
20. The Herbalist, Niamh Boyce
21. From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun, Jacqueline Woodson
22. Dave at Night, Gail Carson Levine
23. Wonder, R.J. Palacio
24. Ghost Knight, Cornelia Funke
25. Good Omens, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
26. The Ocean at the End of the Lane, Neil Gaiman
27. Thanks, But This Isn't For Us, Jessica Page Morrell
28. Unnatural Creatures, Stories Selected by Neil Gaiman
29. Juniper Berry, M.P. Kozlowsky
30. Missed Periods and Other Grammar Scares, Jenny Baranick
31. The Center of Everything, Linda Urban
32. Freckle Juice, Judy Blume
33. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, Mark Haddon
34. Fortunately, the Milk, Neil Gaiman
35. Hercules: The Twelve Labors, Paul Storrie and Steve Kurth
36. The Capture, Kathryn Lasky
37. Storybound, Melissa Burt
38. Hold Fast, Blue Balliett
39. Zorgamazoo, Robert Paul Weston


77 comments:

  1. Haunting and beautiful imagery -- I loved this poem. Happy New Year, Theresa!

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  2. Smoking is stupid.
    Seventy books is impressive,
    Happy New Year!

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    1. Alex, I agree. I smoked in high school and quit when I was nineteen. Now I hate the smell of cigarette smoke.

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  3. Lovely and sad poem. My kids have asthma. I hope that stops them from starting.

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    1. Tonja, I'm glad smoking is less popular than ever. Nasty stuff.

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  4. Love your poem!!! And so apt for resolutions and goals on new years day too!!!

    Wishing you and yours a peaceful and beautiful and even more creative 2013, lovely Theresa!!! Take care
    x

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    1. Old Kitty, I wish you all the same things. It's wonderful to see how many accomplishments you had in 2012. I wish you even more in 2013.

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  5. Tis a beautiful and sad poem Theresa.

    Anna :o]

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    1. hyperCRYPTICal, after reading your poem, your compliment means even more.

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  6. Stellar writing ....

    Happy New Year

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  7. Beautiful & sad...haunting, really. Happy New Year! I have a great feeling about 2013 xo

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    1. Kathleen, I have a great feeling about 2013 too. My motto is: 2013 or bust!

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  8. Oh wow! You write so well, my friend! Absolute genius. So moving and unforgettable really.

    I smoked when I was young. Thank goodness I stopped.

    Happy New year. MWAH!

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  9. And I forgot to say, Yes let's write more, love more, live more. *hugs*

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    1. Robyn, you are too nice. After my "was" fiasco, I needed an ego boost!

      I'm glad you stopped smoking too. Hugs back! It's OUR YEAR! : )

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  10. nicely written indeed....thanks for sharing this

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    1. Wayne, thanks for reading it and leaving a nice comment.

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  11. The end is fantastic and really pull sit together. I really love "ashtray graveyard".

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  12. Oh, Theresa, what a lovely, wrenching piece. I can so identify with that cringe. Here's to the healing power of writing! And wishing you a terrific 2013.

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    1. Hannah, it is indeed the "healing power of writing" that has made me move on from so many memories. I wish you a creative 2013.

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  13. Beautiful writing. I love how the character is looking back and remembering.

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    1. The Golden Eagle, thank you. I'm glad you noticed.

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  14. Many women I know were drawn to the long, thin ones. Clever advertising, that and the Marlboro Man. I agree, 70 books is impressive!! Happy New Year.

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    1. Yvonne, yes, that Marlboro Man was iconic. Thank you.

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  15. Great poem, especially the line about the ashtray graveyard. It's very vivid. 70 books in one year is very impressive. I'd like to read that many this year, particularly fiction books that I read for fun and not the scholarly books that I have to read for school.

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    1. Neurotic Workaholic, it's been easier to read because I'm not working on a thesis! I don't miss reading all those scholarly books on demand.

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  16. I love this poem, Theresa. It's a bittersweet I can feel in my chest.

    70 books is a great accomplishment! I read 57 this year.

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    1. Brooke, 57 is really impressive. You're in school, so I'm always amazed at what you accomplish.

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  17. Happy New Year Theresa!
    I read just over 70 books last year.. I've decided to cut my reading back a little to get more writing done this year.
    xx

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    1. Michelle, I think more writing with less reading is a good choice. Happy 2013!

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  18. Great poem, and fantastic imagery. Happy new year's wishes to you!

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  19. That's great! I;m inspired to do short writing this year. Looks like a lot of fun.

    Happy New Years to you and yours!

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    1. Stephen, good like writing short stories. The more I do it, the more I love it.

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  20. The last line was the grabber! Beautiful.

    Here's to more lovely words in 2013, Theresa.

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  21. It's amazing how much the cigarette has infused itself into pop culture despite it's cancerous by product.

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    1. Michael, I agree. That's why I liked this prompt--it lent itself to the darker side of smoking.

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  22. Beautiful poem.

    Happy New Year! Seventy books is awesome! I got to 63, which was 11 over my goal of 52. :)

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    1. Cherie, not too shabby! According to Goodreads, I reached 55 because I don't bother putting in rereads. I reread the Harry Potter series and then some of them were rereads at school or audiobook rereads, so my daughter could hear them.

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  23. I love your poem.
    Happy New Year, Theresa. May it be a brilliant one!

    Lyn

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    1. Lynda, thank you. I wish you brilliance as well. : )

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  24. Yeah, she's broken but I like her!

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  25. what an entry! depth and voice!
    and hopeful happy new year to you too!

    i'd like to hear your thoughts on some of those books!

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    1. Tara, thanks! Email me if you want any info on those books: tmilstein at gmail com.

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  26. Yes, I think we wrote about the same person! Very vivid description-and haunting. Thanks for visiting!

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    1. Lolamouse, thank you. Glad you liked my version of your person... or is my person?

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  27. Great poem - there are many women and men with raspy voices of a certain age - I like the beating pans touch, perhaps they had collard greens as well

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    1. Moe, interesting you see the character as southern. I can see it!

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  28. Reminds me of many I know--aunts, even my own mom whom I barely remember having lost at 7. But I do remember her Chesterfields, and the leather and tobacco smell of her purse. Some people might "need fixin'" but others just are who they are. Thanks for sharing this.

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    1. Ginny, you have a good perspective on that kind of person. Thanks for visiting.

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  29. Nodded in recognition all the way. We would like to save them, but we have a full time job saving ourselves! Have a great 2013 and thanks for the visit.

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    1. Stafford, it is a full job saving ourselves. You're right!

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  30. Love the poem. You create a searing portrait. Hope 2013 is a good writing year for you too.

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    1. Kim, thank you so much. Hope it's a good writing year for you too.

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  31. Geeze, and I thought I read a lot by getting to 54 books (julianalbrandt.com/blog) Beautiful poem. Cheers to an inspired 2013!

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    1. Juliana, if I don't count the books I reread, my # is right around yours. For a # of reasons, I wound up with a lot of rereads. Cheers to you too!

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  32. You work, you write, you have a family. Didn't you move this year? How did you fit in 70 books? You never cease to amaze!

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  33. Missed Periods, I have off in summer, read when I brush my teeth, listen to an audiobook in the car, and much of my list are middle grade and YA (read, low word count), so it's not as spectacular as it sounds. And those kids of mine are big, so I put them to work.

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  34. Theresa, that was beautiful and so tragic! Happy new year to you!

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  35. Thanks for the poignant prose, Theresa. Your comment about peace and love take on a deeper meaning after the tragedy over the holiday. Happy New Year to you!

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    1. Victoria, my last two posts are in part a reflection of what happened in December. Thank you.

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  36. Loved your poem! I quit smoking many years ago and truly hope I never have that rasping voice. (The things we do when we're young to look cool!)

    I was impressed by your book list. Happy writing and publishing in 2013!

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    1. Elizabeth, I smoked for a few years. I hope I never have any repercussions from it.

      Happy 2013 to you!

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  37. I enjoyed reflecting on this one Theresa--thinking about several people in my life who made that life long choice and regretted it.

    On a brighter note, congrats on the 70 books. Impressive.

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    1. Slamdunk, I agree, smoking leads to other nasty problems.

      Thanks for commenting. I don't know how we lost touch. Great to hear from you!

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  38. 2012 didn't allow much time for much blog reading (more's the shame) but whenever I take a peek at your blog I am always blown away and wonder why I haven't visited in a while... This poem is no exception. You have such an amazing gift and I truly hope that 2013 is amazing for you.

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    1. Ellembee, thanks for visiting. So good to hear from you again. Do you still have a blog? I couldn't find the link. I hope 2013 is an amazing year for you. I hope you find a steady gig.

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