Tag Archives: Best Preteen Memories

Touching Boys

Touching Boys

Blushing cheeks and fluttered lashes,
cotton frocks with satin sashes.
That first dance, paired with a boy,
equal parts of fear and joy.
Sweaty palms and faltering feet.
A different style, each boy you meet.
Shyness, then––a major dose.
Terror he’ll hold you too close,
then, affronted when he doesn’t.
Wrong when he was and when he wasn’t
romantic in that pre-teen way,
as forward as that time of day
permitted, with your parents there.
Beaded foreheads, scraggly hair.
School dances never missed.
Holding hands, but never kissed.
Except one time, when cheek-to-cheek,
that butterfly kiss, furtive and meek.
Eyes met for just a moment, then,
to celebrate your mutual sin.
Oh the terrors and the joys
Of school dances and touching boys!

For: https://lindaghill.com/2020/02/14/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-feb-15-2020/

Sweet Clover

Getting ready to leave for Minnesota in an hour, so I’ll rely on a poem written two years ago that meets the demands of the prompt word today, which was “honk.”

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Sweet Clover

Before our dad told us its real name,
we used to call it wild mustard.
What did we know about sweet clover except for its color
and that summer smell, cloying in its sugared perfume.
It filled the air and smothered the plains—
bright yellow and green where before
brown stubble had peeked through blown snow.

On these dry lands, what flowers there were
tended to be cash crops or cattle feed.
Sweet clover or alfalfa.
The twitching noses of baby rabbits brought home by my dad
as we proffered it to them by the handful.
Fragile chains we draped around our necks and wrists.
Bouquets for our mom
that wilted as fast as we could pick them.

Summers were sweet clover and sweet corn
and first sweethearts parked on country roads,
windows rolled down to the night air,
then quickly closed to the miller moths.
Heady kisses,
whispered confessions, declarations,
unkept promises.
What we found most in these first selfish loves
was ourselves.

The relief of being chosen
and assurance that all our parts worked.
Our lips accepting those pressures unacceptable
just the year before.
Regions we’d never had much congress with before
calling out for company.
That hard flutter
like a large moth determined to get out.
Finding to our surprise,
like the lyrics of a sixties song,
that our hearts could break, too.

Hot summer nights,
“U”ing Main,
cars full of boys honking
at cars full of girls.
Cokes at Mack’s cafe.
And over the whole town
that heavy ache of sweet clover.
Half promise, half memory.
A giant invisible hand
that covered summer.

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The prompt word today was honk.

First Steps

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First Steps

Blushing cheeks and fluttered lashes,
cotton frocks with satin sashes.
That first dance, paired with a boy,
equal parts of fear and joy.
Sweaty palms and faltering feet.
A different style, each boy you meet.
Shyness, then—a major dose.
Terror he’ll hold you too close,
then, affronted when he doesn’t.
Wrong when he was and when he wasn’t
romantic in that pre-teen way,
as forward as that time of day
permitted, with your parents there.
Beaded foreheads, scraggly hair.
School dances never missed.
Holding hands, but never kissed.
Except one time, when cheek-to-cheek,
that butterfly kiss, furtive and meek.
Eyes met for just a moment, then,
to celebrate your mutual sin.
Oh the terrors and the joys
Of school dances and touching boys!

This is the second poetry challenge that resulted when Carol from the Relax blog posted a poem about her kittens that had an opening two lines I loved. Her poem veered off completely from those two lines, so I challenged her to write a new poem that centered around the opening lines. I did the same, but one of her images prompted a new prompt. This time I “dared” her to write a poem about butterfly kisses. She accepted the dare but said me first, so here it is. Carol, your turn. Post a link, please, after you’ve written your poem. When will this end?  If anyone else cares to join in, you are most welcome. The prompt is “butterfly kiss.” 

Orderly

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Fulfilling Order

How does one get orderly?  I fear I must confess
the only way to get  there is by first making a mess!
Since I have put this off for years, the fault is all my own.
Procrastinatiion is a fault for which I must atone.

I sort the photos into piles by topics or by years––
photographs of family and landscapes and my peers.
I wish my album stuffing were not in such arrears.
They’ll take a month to organize, or now it so appears.

I locate half-filled albums  and plastic sleeves and pages.
It seems I haven’t filed a single photograph for ages.
I try to be most organized and get them into line,
then fall into reflection of the lives of me and mine.

I have company coming and a meal that I must cook.
I’ll find the table easier to clear if I don’t look,
but oh that slumber party that the boys decided to crash
and all those tame adventures where we thought we were so rash.

Who knew that all this sorting would lead to this great mess?
and yet I am enjoying it.  Who would ever guess
that sorting under pressure would still lead me to this?
Memories of parties, of camp and that first kiss.

Sixty-seven years of life all spread out on my table.
I’ll clear them all by nightfall, then cook if I am able.
Too bad the nearest Colonel Sanders is so far away,
or I would save the cooking for another day.


One “find” in the thousands of photos I have yet to stow away in the headboard filing cabinet of my bed that has been recently cleared of poems was these photos of the night John Kuckleberg and Doug Tedrow raided our slumber party.

This was not as racy as it looks. The fellas were there before the shortie pajamas were donned, and by the looks of it, boys danced with boys and girls with girls.  The fish, by the way, were plastic ones from my dad’s den in the next room. There has been some progress since the 7th and 8th grade party. Looks like I’d tiled the floor, my sister Patti and I had painted the walls and she had painted a somewhat strange mural of a man leaning against a cactus to take a siesta. I think this was my junior  year. The ceiling had not yet been installed by my dad and me! It must have been Rita’s birthday as we seem to have been giving her a spank for each year.

The prompt for today was “Orderly”   https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/orderly/

TAKING THE LONG WAY HOME

Taking the Long Way Home
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Class Reunion

Since we know where we are going so well,
let’s take the longest route there,
out past England’s Hill and that dip in the road we kids called lover’s leap.
Silly the traditions we tried to pretend––as though our histories weren’t long enough
to have attracted real ones. Now all of those old newnesses
are curling with age, discolored, cracking at the edges––
their roughness catching realities and dreams
and mixing them together so none of us
can remember the difference.

The Prompt: This Is Your Song–Take a line from a song that you love or connect with. Turn that line into the title of your post. (My song was “Long Way Home” by Tom Waits.)

Best Preteen Memories

Best Pre-teen Memories

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Please post your best ten memories of your life before 10 years old. Mine are:

  1. Going to first grade parties in Mrs. Sandy’s room from the time I was two until I was 6 and old enough to be in the first grade. (I lived across the street and first attended when my sister Patti was in the first grade.)
  2. Decorating the Xmas tree with my mom and sisters and sitting up late with the lights off, admiring the lit Xmas tree. Xmas morning, coming down to find all the presents under the tree.
  3. Going out to the ranch with my dad, sitting in the back of the pickup and hanging my head over the side with my mouth open to let the wind parch the inside of my cheeks until they were like beef jerky, then driving fast over the dam grades and herding cows, getting a long freezing cold drink from the well at the Millay place.
  4. Making May Baskets with my mom.
  5. Going to visit my sister Betty in college and getting to sleep in her dorm room.
  6. Getting to go to my older sister Patti’s birthday parties and playing with the “BIG GIRLS!”
  7. Staying at the “Deer Huts” in the Black Hills and getting to go to the outhouse in the middle of the night.
  8. Getting to participate in my sister Patti’s summer plays in the backyard.
  9. Getting to go to Aunt Mabel and Uncle Herman’s ranch with my older sister Betty and getting to stay with them once when my mom was out of town. Watching Mabel operate the cream separator, feeding the chickens and eating her ever-after-unsurpassed apple crunch!!!!
  10. Swimming in Johannsen’s stock dam during summer afternoons, closely watched by the self-appointed lifeguard, “Pink” Sandy.

Now…please post your ten favorite pre-ten memories to your blog with a link to mine. To form a link, go to that page in your blog and select and copy the URL. Then come to my blog and in the comment box, make a comment if you wish and paste your URL. Then you can see each other’s lists via the hyperlinks on my blog.

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