Thursday, January 29, 2009

Spiders Ball- Poetry Prose

Spider Pictures

Just after dark when human life quiets down
In the darkest corner, rural life to city shed
A most amazing site
past tools, trash, and bike

Instruments of the smallest proportion
tables, drink, food, all vegan of course!
Making moonlight dance to the nuttiest
most swingin’ of sounds

Violins, piano, harp, a set of walnut drums
Crafted from human discard
Tiny spectacular mounds

At springs new day, once a year
With intention to dance and play
Not so true as we have all been told
All sorts of creatures will gather
in friendly fold

Tired, hungry from the cold’s long plight
Ready to eat, drink, laugh until morning light

The band starts warming up as guest start to call
No one gets in unless they have been invited
To the craziest of gatherings…The Spiders Ball

Outside many wait in line
Mr. Beetle tells jokes
A lizard dressed in a Zoot suit
Bright yellow, matching hat and white shoes
Mrs. Mole as scolds Jr. as he is...
blowing spit wads at the others behind

Old wise owl, Mr. Barr, whoooooo never misses a beat
Or any party, brought the best dancers,
Suzy Snake, because she is so light on her feet

Betsy and Bailey Bunny were summoned to the party
they began rounding up the family
As all ten bunnies are hopping about

Others had come from as far away as you can imagine
Country mice, birds, two to four legged creatures
and many of their kin
Many, many small creatures
in no way will harm or offend

In the highest of places
waits the their host, Maestro
with the silliest of grins
Honored to be the big grand daddy of them all

If any wonder why a spider started this ball
Then listen in closely as I explain

From the beginning of time, Mother Arachne
the first spider to grace this earth
worked from morning till night
developing fine webs of beauty and inspiration
never stopping except to have a bite

Generations of her kind came into this world
One, two, three, four to hundreds on the wind set flight
Once all eight legs touched the ground
With the rhythm of the wind
mixed with earths great sounds

Spiders were natural born dancers
Eight legs working, bouncing with rhythm and grace
Making homes for a family
catching a meal without hast

If you dare...just after dark
Follow your ear to the deepest corner of rural life or city shed
You might find a grand party
But if there is no signs of dancing, laughter or bright yellow suits

Then it cannot be... A Spiders Ball!

E, 2000 © all rights are owned by the author, and is waiting to be published as a children book, so please do not copy or duplicate this piece under any circumstances

My daughter Anelisa and I wrote this together. She was a great lover of any life that was created and roamed this world, and the first thing she would ask is "Do you have any pets, and what kind...".

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A look into someone else's artwork...

I look about trying to find inspiration for my days work, a meaning to go on, for words to flow onto the paper from my pen, pencil, or keyboard...and I come upon sites through your comments, leading to an interest in what lay waiting...

This photo from 365 to 42 lay dormant in blog sphere, and moving from site to site it awakened my curiosity through a dragon from PoetryPicturesProse; that had turned to stone from antiquity and imagination leading to the land it once roamed...a journey down a road to places with borders, and to a place I had been...a world without fences that does not exist anymore...

No Fences...

Remember back in the day, roads and streets, filled with children, soccer balls flew with hats of joy and running laughter, across yards, into backyards. Children had no boundaries, no fear of unknown grounds or unseen rituals. Houses remained the same, filled with love and anger, touched by law of belief, full of their own truth. There was no such thing as a stranger, or unseen danger. Standing out back you could see clotheslines and trees, and on a good day you could see far, clear and through. Listen as a mom calls out for the son or daughter, or parents who loudly shared their cares till dawn, broken bottles and promises, trees that counted the days, months till it was blanketed by what was apparent, keeping the silence until spring.

Walls five to ten feet tall soon replaced open space, endless playground for innocent spectators, and neighbors have become strangers. Sisters and brothers in danger sun up till darkness hides no fear, only becomes a weapon for televisions and radio reports, as young children die under its cover. Dawn and its playgrounds give way to grave yards, the traces of things long gone remain to be seen…

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A look into my artwork...

Not only do I cook, clean, work, write poetry and short stories, I also dabble in acrylics with mixed media...I have sold a few paintings, and was commissioned to recreate a large version of one small canvas piece. Just thought I would share a few of my 'French Can-Can leg' pieces...

A few of the first pieces I finished looked a bit naughty on the 'splits', so I toned it down by adding a frilly undergarment skirt which they did where on stage to fluff out the skirts while they danced in places like Moulan Rouge...

HISTORY/ORIGIN: Originally, the word Can-Can in French meant "Scandal, " or Edge , since they usually danced on the edge of the stage. The Can-Can is said to be the start of public nudity, because of the bare legs above the stockings to the frilly panties, which at the time was very indecent. Eventually the Can Can costume consisted of sporting fishnet stockings, high heels, bustiers, feathers and frilly skirts. The word Burlesque first came into use in the 16th. Century in an opera of the Italian Francesco Berni , who called his works burleschi. American stage burlesque (from 1865), often referred to as "burleycue or "leg show, began as a variety show, characterized by vulgar dialogue and broad comedy, and uninhibited behavior by performers and audience.

Later the public tolerated the dance and it became very popular around 1830, mainly because the ladies would wear long black dresses and kick their legs up in the air, thus the men could see the knees and legs of the ladies (at the time was "Oo-La-La!). The Popularity lasted till around 1844, after this time the dance mainly was used in revues and musical comedies, especially in France.

In 1845, La Princesse Celeste de Mogador (Morocco?), Introduced the Can-Can Eccentrique at the Bal Mabille, Bal Montesquieu, Bal de la Citb dAntin and the Bal Valentino. It was performed by all walks of life. By 1848, it was frowned upon by the police as being to risqué.

In the 1890's the Can-Can was done to March and later Ragtime music. The Can-Can was originally a group (Line type) dance done by both sexes with the Tiller Girls and Rockettes as an off shoot of the Can-Can. Leading dancers would eventually perform the Can-Can for audiences. The ballet by Massine (b.1894) was an excellent example of the Can-Can, titled "Gaite' Parisienne " (1938), which later was made into a movie, "The Gay Parisian ".

--While both sexes originally danced the Can-Can, now however, the French Can-Can is now danced only by women. Most Americans are familiar with the Can-Can as portrayed in many Hollywood Westerns. Michael Jackson can be seen using a variation of the Can-Can in his dance routines (Lifting the Leg and circling it around).

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Storytelling- Picnic With A Bear- For Hannah

Hannah, I heard you like to read, and decided to share with you my love of telling stories. Did you know telling a grand story that will change day-to-day circumstances is nothing more than releasing your imagination and pushing it to your emotional limits.

To tell a story with so much heart that we can feel every nuance of our words is nothing more than the ability to dream out loud without fear of criticism, shame, hopelessness, despair, or even impatience.

In Storytelling, you tell yourself a story in the tone and warmth of a bedtime story, playing the the worlds of make-believe. As you begin telling your story, remember that you are living for now and that it is a real situation. Put yourself into each characters shoes and do what you think they would do and write it that way.

For example, is their something that you want to try, or have done that you would like to share with your readers? Write it with all the passion you have or felt while doing this like riding a bike with no hands, falling backwards into the ocean, diving into the fish tanks at the aquarium and swimming with the fish and mammals you have seen. How about slithering across the hot dessert, past all the rocks and cactus all the while the hot, hot sun is beating down on your body...

What if you were a flower and what it might feel like when the morning dew collects on your petals and a morning bee is buzzing around you...what would you say? Describe the whole experience in your own words, with every detail of your surroundings...sights, sounds, colors, and environment...

Did you know it is easier to make up a story, Fiction, than it is to write about our own real life stories? Why, because we have a hard time telling the truth, so we embellish, or just leave out stuff we might now want others to know about us.

Try writing 100 words about something that really happened to you, or about something you want to have in your life...combine the two...reality and imagination...non-fiction and fiction can be combined, but then it becomes non-fiction...see I told you it was easier...

Become a story my story below...

I have always wanted to have lunch with a bear. I think they are cute and cuddly, but I have not met a bear I could get close to. They do not come out unless you promise them lots of yummy delights to eat. Many people think they like to eat most anything, but I know for a fact that bears are very particular about what they put into their mouths.

Once I left a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on the hood of my parents brand new tracker SUV, three bears were in plain site, but not one of them ever came over to ask me for my food. Silly situation I know, but the smallest of the three bears did turn back towards me and placed his little wet nose right up into the air and sniffed. Then I think he muttered something to the second biggest sized bear who was possibly his mother, and off they turned moving quickly into the clump of trees off to my left.

That sandwich sat on the roof for at least an hour, and no other bears were to be seen. They have quite a good sense of smell, and are often referred to as dogs. I think because they run in packs, have a great sense of smell, and can run as fast or faster than any other animal like many dogs who are used to heard other animals.

I finally figured out what would catch their particular taste in food. Sweet berry pie. Yes, my grandmother makes quite good pie. She goes out in the yard where many wild berry bushes grow, and picks enough to make three or four pies. Wild raspberry, and elderberry grow easily in her part of the country. She actually lives not far from where I go and wait for the bear.

One day she called me and asked if I wanted to help pick berries and she would teach me to make her famous mixed berry pie. My grandmother was an excellent cook. I ate there at least twice a week with my parents, and often they would leave me in the summer for a whole week. My mother dropped me off and I was so excited to finally learn her secret for making those wonderful and tasty pies. When I watch her cut into those pies, I see the filling shimmering in the light of the kitchen lantern, and then watch as it oozes over the sides of the pan, and she drops a piece right onto my plate. All that is left after minutes is my purple teeth and lips as I smile back at her.

I watched as she took out the flour, eggs, and butter. Grandmother made a nice neat pile of flour, broke open two eggs into the hole she had made in the middle, and then cut up butter pieces and they landed all around the flour heap. Then she dropped a few drops of cold water into the heap and with her hands she began to bring all the ingredients together. Outside into the middle, rolling it over and over until it became a ball of dough. She began to push it down and roll it, push it down and roll it until she just knew when to stop. Placing it between a folded sheet of plastic she placed it into the dark corner, and said we had to wait.

Grandmother said "Let's go collect some very special berries for the pies". I hopped off of the chair and ran after her with my very own basket she gave me to use. We spent at least half an hour collecting all shapes and sizes of berries. She pointed and told me which bushes I pick from. Also telling me that if I picked the wrong ones we might get sick. I was very careful in following her instructions. Grandmother knew what she was doing, and had been doing it for a long while.

When we had gathered enough berries, we went back inside and rinsed them. Now she three all of them into a big pot that was already sitting on the stove. I helped her place some wood into the stove, and we waited for the pot to begin heating. We added some sugar, and a small amount of cider that she makes from her very own apples out back. I find grandmothers house is a good place for healthy fruits. I wish we could grow a fruit tree in our yard. My family lives on a smaller property and my father takes care of the owners milking cows. So we have plenty of meat and milk, but I miss the fruit.

Once the berries were finished cooking, they had become what she called filling, I helped Grandmother roll out the pie crust. We dusted the old wooden table with flour, and she brought out her old wooden rolling pin. This pin was heavy and almost as long as one of my legs, so I let her do most of the rolling. Grandmother then placed the filling into the pie crust and place another round piece of dough on top, carefully pressing down with every turn of the pie pan. To seal the crust she told me, so the filling will not dry out from the hot fire of the old wooden stove.

We finished making four pies that morning. I was tired and really thirsty. We had some lemonade and she looked at her watch to see if the pies might be ready. The pies in the back of the stove were getting pretty golden brown, so she took those two out and set them on the window sill. That was a good place for them to cool. Grandmother got a good cross breeze coming in that window in afternoon.

She suggested that we go into the living room and sit in the rocking chairs. I asked her to read me a story, and she said we had enough time on the two pies left in the oven to read me one short story. So off we went. Grandmother sat in her rocker and I climbed into her lap and she read from her poetry book. I picked out a poem about a silly duck that would not go south for the winter. As she told me the story she began to make quacking noses that made me laugh so hard we dropped the book. Suddenly we also heard a loud growl coming from the kitchen.

Grandmother threw me off her lap and ran over to the fire place where her old shotgun sat leaning up against the wood pile in the corner. She told me to stay right where I was sitting on the floor and off she went into the kitchen. I was too curious to just sit there, so I crept up to the kitchen door and peeked through the crack between the door and frame...and to my surprise I saw a big black bear with one of her pies in its mouth and as she banged a pan with the end of the gun it ran off.

That is how I know what bears really grandmothers berry pies!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Freedom (A Poem For Aaron)

Once there were screams of terror as I left you behind
When returning tears of joy greeted us

You ran and sometimes fell, I helped you get up
And we ran together, know you have helped me get back up

Jokes rang out, yours so silly, mine sometimes mean
But we both still laugh, and your wit matured

I embraced a little boy, blonde hair, big smiles
You embraced my teachings, and now I smile

I taught you to love, hug, to easily say your thoughts
Your son will learn that a man can be soft

We walked the valley of death together, and cried
She watches as we both continue that walk

Together we win and loose a few battles
Together we are stronger than apart

Today we woke up and felt freedom
And that freedom feels good.

© E Stelling, 1/09

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Real Beauty


Beauty apparent
defined by what is seen
a trait more valuable
than a heart of gold
half a century ago
Grace Kelly, Ingrid Bergman
or perhaps
Elizabeth Taylor
highly revered
treated as a goddess
beyond a beauty queen
working for your love
pulling herself together
facing many lights
magazines and counters
lipsticks and perfume
can only describe
what she will reveal
sexy bikinis and lingerie
barely cover
for a short time

- © E Stelling, 2000 All Rights reserved and owned by author

Friday, January 16, 2009

A Mother's Hear Speaks Volumes

Last night I got a phone call...Veronica's only son, only 22 was killed in a car heart sank...but my thoughts went to her...

She would-

journey down a path of disbelief
hoping that the fear would fall away
as she saw her child walking towards her
as always, had done years before
walk into a room, only shadows for warmth
see her child laying an angel
want to hug them, hold them,
as they had before, and hugs returned

they are slightly warm, possibly cold
dead weight hangs in your arms
she will pull away and cry out
"my baby, my baby, is gone"

days, hours, months, a year go by
the pain lessens, worsens... dissipates
the journey has only begun...

Memories flood the mind, words occupy
others have shared come back in pieces
sad stories on the news become water over fingers
until the heart repairs... for now...

A Mother’s Heart Speaks Volumes

Early morning hours bring
my daughter; again
to my bedside
complaining of sleeplessness

Her heart
once again
S H O U T I N G discomfort

Hours of her
in my bed, crying
tossing in, tossing out the racing moments

I am naked, helpless
her fragile body
begging me to make it stop
I offer prayer; soft arms
a tangible mom against the shadow

Fourteen this woman child
more beautiful than could hope to be
She-my youth incarnate-
my blissful fantasies

how can her diseased heat
escape its chamber,
beating on its walls
S H O U T I N G…

Tears collapse onto her shoulders
before sleep can steal a soft reprieve

Moments, months, hope, now fear…
I do not see her older
I will not share her first kiss
I will never hold my grandchildren
I will only share what she has told me-in company with that secret smile

Her laugh now stilled
is heard by all that knew her
Her pain opened my eyes
set flight to my selfish anxiety

Early morning hours deliver
Ane’s memory to my bedside
Now my weary heart escapes its chamber,
beating on its walls
S H O U T I N G …for all that it misses

-E, 2002

Sunday, January 11, 2009


Usual Night

Could not sleep
went downstairs
watched TV
washed dishes
keeping my mind
Lay on the couch
familiar pillow
blanket await
fan blows
empty noise
Starring at the dark
keep things locked
up inside
not seen sunshine for days
heard it snowed,
feel its cold

Pain has brought me to the end of a road, now
I have to take myself the rest of the way

I am going to break my rusty cage...and run (Rusty Cage- Johnny Cash)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009



new or used
possibly mean
rough cut
often lean
if you see
bright orange
or green
watch out
it might

What do you see in my picture?

Johnny Cash- "I'm gonna break my rusty cage and run....."

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Texas Skies

Clouds dot clear skies in Texas like mesquite and tumbleweeds blowing along old highways. Taking on shape like when a woman catch’s a glance from a tall and lanky cowboy who smiles and tips his hat. Leading to a conversation laced with flirtation, becoming a date and a beer down at the local bar.

Maybe a scoot across the old saw dust dance floor, where he pulls her in close giving off a hint of wanting more, as his face leans into hers, now cheek to cheek. Loneliness, a moment bring on a kiss that may or may not be what either were looking for at the night’s end.

All that is left is a scene of rustled blankets, musty bed sheets, an empty room filled with vast memories like Texas skies dotted with pretty white clouds that can take on shapes that remind us of so many things.

E Stelling, 2008 All content is owned by CookAppeal, LLC and its owner

Friday, January 2, 2009 the fast lane...

Photo courtesy of Photonuts

Many country back roads hold treasures to the naked eye, and I never miss the chance to take a turn down one of those paths. They can lead to mystery and stories untold.

Can you imagine the day when these vehicles dominated the road? The men and women we see in our parents old photos who got all dressed up to go out on a Saturday night...grandpa's slicked back hair, short sleeve dress shirt over his new white T, or even maybe a freshly ironed T-shirt with its sleeves rolled up with a pack of Marlboro reds tucked in tightly...along with freshly shined shoes and pressed trousers...hop in the driver side and they are ready to roll...cruising avenues...watching the chickies in their clinging tight sweaters and matching poodle skirts, bobby socks, penny loafers, and lipstick smiles.

Daddy's car was ready to attract some excitement on a Saturday night. Plenty of hot chickies out there waiting for them...maybe even a group of young girls at the drive-in gawking over all the beautiful cars rolling in...the smell of burgers and fries...sodas and shakes sitting on the door window sill. Maybe a drive up to the nearest hill top and lovers over look, and the chance for an arm over the shoulder and even a good night kiss as you look out into the night filled with city lights.

All innocents of their era in many ways...but the true story of this car has been hidden for the past century. Buried under the heat and winds of Oklahoma's tornado alley. Following up on the identity of this cars owner we might find it belonged to a local raised and wanted gangster of the twenties. Depression and prohibition had made it hard to make a decent buck in those times. Running with the elite of the bad ass bootlegger wanna bees.

The beat up Chevy truck you see, just up to the left was once a jewel of its time as well. This beauty could have been owned by the bootlegger's side kick and partner. Growing up together in that dusty old town the two decided to run booze and out run a few lawmen on the way.

At the ripe age of sixteen and seventeen they were chased down by the law in over six counties. Get away cars of their time were big and fast. Engines like...well they just do not make them anymore. Life in the fast lane..that is until they both were caught. One wrong turn off the main road near town they were arrested by their own cousin who just happened to be the local and honest sheriff.

Long jail terms for the both of them...the city impounds their vehicles and here they are in this back road junk yard...names and details changed to protect the guilty...and all the rest is up to you...

Writer~ E Stelling 2008

Photo~ Donna Kay 2008