Thursday, March 27, 2014

Crusty Lena (by Denise Janikowski-Krewal)

Crusty Lena from the Pizza joint
thought that all sailors were her heroes.
Not for obvious reasons

Didn't give a rat's patouti
about war games and politics;
didn't think that
their woven blues were hot.
Her desires leaned more to worn,
mussed up messes

A sailor once saved her day,
when she accidentally locked her purse
(and Ramone's tickets)
in her Dodge Omni.
While her girlfriends
swore at her in 15 languages
they they tried to learn at Berlitz,
the wholesome shore leave
picked her locks,
saving her face.
Another bluecoat danced
with her plain and shy friend
in a bar.
Even though he was flammable,
the anchor-tattooed arm
made her perpetually sad
girlfriend smile.

Lena remembered
her aunt telling her
to always treat a sailor
to a drink or a meal
because they were away from home
and lonesome.

So Lena gave the drunk sailors
a ride to their hotel and dropped them
into the hands of an understanding concierge

As she waited
her last table of the night
the boys in blue politely placed their order
with the middle-aged woman
who was weathered,
but still had a twinkle in her eye.

“2 pepperoni and one with everything...

on the house tonight, boys,” she said.

by Denise Janikowski-Krewal, February 2014

Friday, March 7, 2014

Denise Janikowski-Krewal, Poet. 1959-2014.

I can't write any poetry as of late, it seems.

Regular readers know that Denise died just two weeks ago today, and there has been a quite noticeable vacuum in my creative life.  I have every reason to believe that with time things will return to "normal."

Denise was my cousin, and as I said before, she was the sister that I never had.  In the last three years we had become so very close and our writing developed together.  We were on the phone every week, sometimes every day. We would email drafts of our work to each other and demand answers for what the other was trying to say, all the while helping to shape each other's poetry and fiction into something that we hoped was respectable and worthwhile.

My writing partner is gone, and I almost feel like I don't know how to put words on paper anymore.  I know it is just fear, though.

As soon as I post this, I am going to close the browser and find myself staring at a blank page of Libre Office on my desktop.

What I do with it might just well determine where I go from this point on in my writing.  I watched one of my favorite movies, "Slacker" on YouTube last night, and was reminded of one of my favorite themes - that with each of our thoughts, the universe splits into another universe that we chose not to inhabit, while we go on in the one we did choose.  Things from other universes sometimes pop up in our dreams, and so we might have contact with all the other things that might have been.

What a hoot.

If I could dream Denise alive again, it would be the first thing I would do.

On the paper is the memory of the choices we never made, perhaps.  Or maybe it is just a dream.

Memory eternal.