If you just smile…

                               “You’ll find that life is still worthwhile, if you just smile.”                                                     – Sir Charles (Charlie) Chaplin

 –

If you just smile

 

If you know him

At all – through old

Black and white

Silent screen film

You may know he was rich

Knighted by the Queen

 

But it wasn’t always so

He made other people

Laugh – his gift

The bootstrap to pull

Himself from poverty

From deep insanity

 

Learning to read others

A vital defense mechanism

Served him well

Distract, divert attention

He mastered it all

Survival of the keenest

 

Reaching deep inside

His darkness – producing

A smile, then another

They became easier

They were natural

From deep inside his pain

Rescuing others from theirs

 

All the while, he smiled

Made others smile, laughing

Till they thought they would burst

Slapstick – a special gift

Self-taught, an avid reader

The common man related

Core smiles don’t lie

 

Eyes that twinkle and 

Tell his secrets – little tramp

 

 

Bisous,  

 

Léa

Hemingway – advice for a writer

While reading Hemingway, again, I stumbled upon the following quote and couldn’t resist sharing it. Though Hemingway was addressing writing and writers I believe it applies to all creative endeavours. 

 

“In going where you have to go, and doing what you have to do, and seeing what you have to see, you dull and bend the instrument you write with. But I would rather have it bent and dulled and know I had to put it on the grindstone and hammer it into shape and put a whetstone to it, and know that I had something to write about, than to have it bright and shining and nothing to say, or smooth and well-oiled in the closet, but unused.”                                      

– Ernest Hemingway, from his Preface – The First Forty-Nine Stories

Bisous,

Léa

Theo’s Golden Ticket

“You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child.”                     – Dr. Seuss

“A book is like a garden, carried in the pocket.”  – Chinese Proverb

“Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading,  to make reading one of his deep and continuing needs, is good for him.”  – Maya Angelo

                                                                         *

Theo’s golden ticket

       –

I hear plastic wheels clacking

Crossing the kitchen floor

From ear to ear he’s grinning

A surprise he has in store

          –

Struggling his passage

Now carpeted terrain

Seizing grandma unaware his goal

His eyes have taken aim

       –

Theo aims his vessel

Stories to behold

Hungry for some cuddles

Possibilities he’s trolled

             –

The treasure at last

Their prize is now in sight

Observant from the mast

Grandma’s arms ready

To seize this impish mite

     –

The treasure’s in sight

Stories the prize he’s won

Love of reading – will he take the bite

Learning has begun

*

Bisous,

Léa

GIGI ET LE CHAT

IMG_4174
Le chat

*

“I cannot interest myself in anything that is not life.”

“Look for a long time at what pleases you, and longer still at what pains you.”

   Sidonie Gabrielle Colette – Gigi and The Cat

*

Bisous,

Léa

TBR: A poem of book titles waiting to be read

“A home without books is a body without a soul.”  –   Marcus Tullius Cicero

” If you can only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.”        –  Haruki Murakami

“Books are the plane, the train, and the road. They are the destination and the journey. They are home.”                                   –   Anna Quindlen

 

Over the years of blogging, I have seen a few poems built from book titles. Perhaps it is time to try one of my own. To be honest, these represent a tiny tip off the old iceberg and are one of several much larger TBR piles. Please understand, these are only emergency piles that have places of honour about the house and have nothing to do with my library… but one should always have something to read nearby!

 

TBR
TBR

TBR

THE ESSENTIAL KAFKA

A trial by fire leads us to

RUMINATIONS

ON CATS

LE PETIT NICOLAS écrit

LETTRES DE MON MOULIN

ANGELA’S ASHES lie

UNDER MY SKIN

CONFESSIONS OF AN ENGLISH OPIUM EATER

 A prelude to THE DARWIN AWARDS

SAILING ALONE AROUND THE ROOM

Before READING IN THE DARK

THE PARASITES, I won’t mention names

But SOMEBODY LIKE YOU

*

Bisous,

Léa

alas…

Oh, I just want what we all want: a comfortable couch, a nice beverage, a weekend of no distractions and a book that will stop time, lift me out of my quotidian existence and alter my thinking forever.” – Elizabeth Gilbert

I must say I find television very educational. The minute somebody turns it on, I go to the library and read a good book. – Groucho Marx

alas…

each journey into

a library or

bookshop

for that book

I must read

NOW

always culminates

with arms filled with

books I couldn’t

LIVE

without – must

have them

IMMEDIATELY

and the eternal list of

TBR’s

has grown significantly

is it a sickness?

my sons don’t understand

it takes another

book lover – the

WORDS

have me under their

SPELL

i shall endure this

ADDICTION

for the rest of my days

my magnificent

OBSESSION

bisous,

léa

blocked

“Ideas may drift into other minds, but they do not drift my way.
I have to go and fetch them. I know no work manual or mental to equal the
appalling heart-breaking anguish of fetching an idea from nowhere.”

– A. A. Milne

“When asked , ‘how do you write?’ I invariably answer ‘one word at a time.”                                                     – Stephen King

blocked

will tortured lines appear
stuttering fingers tremble across
the keyboard
an exercise in hit and miss
the empty mind hopes
perhaps the laws of probability
would be kind
smiling in verse

fingers shudder, spasm and freeze
from a distance, grey matter bounces
thought and metaphor
till they coagulate
in cerebral jelly
synapse arrested
white pages glare
laughingly at me

Bisous,

Léa

cuddling oblivion

Inspiration comes from all around us. On several ocassions, I have been inspired by one or more of the blogs that I follow. The following poem was inspired by a title on a post by Lotta Wanner. If you are not already following her, stop by and see what she is up to!  http://lottawanner.com

*

There are perhaps no days of our childhood we lived so fully as those we spent with a favorite book.” – Marcel Proust

*

cuddling oblivion

the image stolen –

poem of a friend

but i’ve cuddled

oblivion more times

than I could count

squirming children

plucked from their bath

dampness of freshly

shampooed hair

leaves its mark

upon chest and soul

in jammys we snuggle

sofa rather crowded

to one end

the scent of them

lingers in perpetuity

like the softness of

freshly bathed arms and legs

stories and poems

before slumber

voices I didn’t know

I possessed

telling tales of the ages

so many years passed

voices deeper

no longer interested

in childish stories

oblivion safely tucked

in the corners of my mind

oblivion –

who knew you

could return?

Bisous,

Léa

Today’s plan of attack!

“Hold fast to dreams for when dreams go life is a barren field frozen with snow.”   –  Langston Hughes

“And so we remained till the red of the dawn began to fall through the snow gloom. I was desolate and afraid, and full of woe and terror. But when that beautiful sun began to climb the horizon life was to me again.”  –  Bram Stoker

               *

Today’s plan of attack!

Despite my efforts

Making friends with

L’hiver

Cold melds to my body

Like plastic wrap – suffocating

It permeates flesh

Seeping into bone

La neige menace – caché

Masking the landscape – j’adore

Lovely to look at

Cuddled up by the fire

Infinite cups of café

Perhaps a drop of cognac? – medicinally of course

Plunging into my book – du jour

Hibernation of the finest kind

Happily remaining till spring

 

*

Bisous, 

Léa

WE ALONE: by ALICE WALKER

Alice Walker is an American Poet/Author. Born to slaves in Georgia she now resides in Northern California. She has said that  “My poems – even the happy ones – emerge from an accumulation of sadness, when she stands again in the sunlight.” After reading the poem below and others in the book, I read an article on Genetically Modified Foods. Between the two I moved on to create yesterday’s post. I do hope you enjoy her work and you can find much comfort and courage in her words. She has been recipient of an American Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize for her book THE COLOR PURPLE  which was later adapted into a film and a musical. For those unfamiliar with her work, I have posted one of her poems.

 

“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.”  –  Alice Walker

“We have to wake up. We have to refuse to be a clone.”  –  Alice Walker

“This is a wonderful planet, and it is being completely destroyed by people who have too much money and too much power and no empathy.”  –  Alice Walker

*
WE ALONE

We alone can devalue gold
by not caring
if it rises
in the marketplace.
Wherever there is gold
there is a chain, you know,
and if your chain
is gold
so much the worse
for you.

Feathers, shells
and sea-shaped stones
are all as rare.

This could be our revolution:
To love what is plentiful
as much as
what’s scarce.

–  ALICE WALKER: HORSES MAKE A LANDSCAPE LOOK MORE BEAUTIFUL

*

Bisous,

Léa