“My Joints Hurt And Other Fascinating Topics Of Conversation” By Margaret Crocker

 

MY JOINTS HURT
AND OTHER FASCINATING TOPICS OF CONVERSATION

So.

This is what it’s come to.
You
and me,
green tea
and a free association of maladies.

You cannot know how sick I am,
the pain I feel,
the woes I have.

But, hey,
here’s a dirty joke to make it better.

All laugh.
I cough.
You sweat.
We both sigh,
and limp
ever closer
to the finish line.

 

About the Author: Margaret Crocker is an artist, writer, wife, mother, daughter, sister and thief. She collects stray animals and has this weird fantasy of being on The Great British Baking Show, despite the fact she uses a bread machine. She knows little but proclaims much. There is much we don’t know about her.

 

More By Margaret Crocker

“The Art of Acquiescence”

“Earth, Air, and Lynda Carter”

“Mental Health Portraits”

 

Image Credit: “Dance of Death: The Doctor” Hans Holbein (The Cleveland Museum of Art)

 

The Art of Acquiescence

Paula Modersohn-Becker “Die Klagender Frauen” (1902)

 

The Art of Acquiescence

By Margaret Crocker

 

THE ART OF ACQUIESCENCE

To be a woman
in this world
is to bend and curve and slip around its corners
like a snake in the river.

The river has always been there,
the current
and the rocky banks,
the tangle of roots,
a snapping turtle,
a stray foot
or fish just larger than you.
Your role is not to disturb, no.
Look at you!
You have no bones to do so!

All you want is a bug,
a minnow,
a stray lizard,
sunshine
and a warm rock.
But the foot is there,
the current
and the hook.
And you will contort yourself
to meet them all.

.

About the Author: Margaret Crocker is an artist, writer, wife, mother, daughter, sister and thief. She collects stray animals and has this weird fantasy of being on The Great British Baking Show, despite the fact she uses a bread machine. She knows little but proclaims much. There is much we don’t know about her.

Earth, Air And Lynda Carter

 

Earth, Air And Lynda Carter

By Margaret Crocker

 

Earth, Air And Lynda Carter

I first remember flying.

Flying

with the ceiling’s 70’s popcorn textures
at my cheek.
I could touch it
if I’d only stretched out my hand.

I was a superhero then,
in my first moments of life and memory,
with my Wonder Woman Underoos,
Lasso of Truth
and the bad guy in the background
for seconds,
long particles of seconds,
an eternity of nanoseconds,
in Million Dollar Man slow motion,
with the Bionic Woman smiling at my shoulder.

“Forget Lee Majors,”
she whispers,
“and fuck the Army.
Let’s leave it all behind with our invisible jet.”

And then I land,

Remembering landing for the first time,
as I remember no other landings before now.
The Underoos ruck up to my armpits,
everything explodes,
the house explodes,
sound and sight explode,
the air, Lynda Carter and Lindsay Wagner are sucked from my universe,
the villain is there,
and the ultimate final twist–

That our heroine
could never fly,
after all.

.

About the Author: Margaret Crocker is an artist, writer, wife, mother, daughter, sister and thief. She collects stray animals and has this weird fantasy of being on The Great British Baking Show, despite the fact she uses a bread machine. She knows little but proclaims much. There is much we don’t know about her.

 

Mental Health Portraits

Portrait of Stephy Langui By Rene Magritte (1961)

.

Mental Health Portraits

By Margaret Crocker

               

MENTAL HEALTH-PORTRAIT 1

Offices are silent
and locked at night.

And bland doors upon doors
and myself,
white and nervous against the glass
broken with chickenwire.

The pads of my shoes are quiet.
The elevator’s shaky hum is quiet.
The shadows of the dining hall are quiet and long.
The dust on the carcass of a water beetle,
the saw that does not move,
the razor behind the lock,
the fingers,
stained with marker,
the fingers clenched in state blankets.

The voices
are silent
while a reflection of me
smokes in the yard.

.

MENTAL HEALTH-PORTRAIT 2

Cee Cee
smiling in the hall.
She rubs her forehead back and forth,
her fingers back and forth,
the air twisting
her knuckles back and forth,
flies rubbing.

Cee Cee
taking a shower.
Her tshirt is hung
empty on the door.

Cee Cee in line
waiting for that Red Cross tshirt,
a souvenir of another life
of outside
and pursuits she sleeps away here,
of a time she had something to give.

Cee Cee in line
with a Dixie cup of orange juice
and that crazy, crazy blood
pumping a hole through the universe,
her head
bumping softly at the wall
again
again
as she stares past the door.
A sticker, a lollipop and a smiley-face on the board,
this is what she has now.

Cee Cee
carrying a cheap comb in a paper bag.
Cee Cee watches the bored nurse
and today’s discussion
“To Cope or Not To Cope.”

That is the question.

.
About the Author: Margaret Crocker is an artist, writer, wife, mother, daughter, sister and thief. She collects stray animals and has this weird fantasy of being on The Great British Baking Show, despite the fact she uses a bread machine. She knows little but proclaims much. There is much we don’t know about her.