How to Age Gracefully (Maybe)

(This morning maybe because I am Getting Older I got two emails from Experts Explaining how to age gracefully.  They did NOT say what follows here:)


Eat as much ice cream as possible.  Remember Klondike bars?

They still sell them in the supermarket.   As good as you remember.

Read books. There are  infinite options.  Even books with unfortunate titles like

Online Marketing for Busy Authors by Fauzia Burke can be interesting

though not as good as a Real Book.  (I am reading Three Women by Lisa Todaro

about sex lives of three women. ) Listen to podcasts.  Good ones are like

old fashioned radio plays.  Meet your friends for lunch or dinner.  Breakfast

isn’t as good a time to meet.   You don’t have to cook

if you don’t feel like it.  You can just make salad or soup.  The whole world

likes soup.  Most people  like salad.  Listen to as much music as humanly

possible.  Aretha Klezmer Dylan Bach Lyle Lovett’s Closing Time.  All music

qualifies.  Dance if you feel like it.  Even if your knees hurt.  Buy a big bag

of pistachio nuts and eat as many as you want.  Call someone  on the telephone and

talk for hours the way you once did.  Or just listen.  She’ll want to talk I’m sure.

Volunteer somewhere:  library hospital homeless shelter.  Don’t think about

body parts.  They’re just parts after all.  Go to the movies in an actual

movie theater with a friend. Listen to Mel Brooks 2000 Year Old Man.  Buy some fruit.

Look up when you’re outside.  Wear at least one bracelet.  Don’t forget to sing.



Visiting Blair at Amsterdam House and My Mother

Happy to see Blair reading a Good Big Book as always

he has a new hip a new Hawaiian shirt I who have been trying to avoid

turning into my mother my whole life instantly became my mother

at the Amsterdam House a rehabilitation place nice enough

near St. John the Divine when I walked in people in wheelchairs were singing

Good Night Irene with a professional singer in the lobby Blair was

upstairs reading his Good Big Book my mother was a volunteer for many years

at a nursing home I asked Dennis at the desk if I could be a volunteer

are you single he asked me and smiled and I smiled too just like my mother

and then Blair and I sat in the outside garden not a garden really but they

say garden because it’s on the street and there was a man sitting by himself

smiling at us so I brought him over to us wheeled him over he said his name

was David Levene three e’s no i’s  90 years old he hangs his hat there

he said even though he has no hat and he laughed and Blair laughed

and my mother would have laughed too.

Last Night’s Dream was about Beryl Goldberg (What Does It Mean)

Beryl Goldberg (I haven’t seen her in a while

a good photographer) said I could use her

washing machine so I did. But then she called me,

angry, afterwards to say Not That This is a Big Deal But

you left a big piece of cake on top of the

washing machine and I had to throw it away.

Packing (Real Meditations)

Breathe In.  Driving to the city.  It doesn’t matter what you pack.  Breathe Out.  Forget about what to bring.  You have an apartment full of stuff.  Breathe In. But what about clothing?  Breathe Out.   Apartment full of clothing too.  Breathe In.  Your white clothing is all here.  White is good for July.  Breathe Out.  Black’s good too.  Plenty of black.  Breathe In. What about books?   Breathe Out.  You’re kidding if you think you have to bring books.  Breathe In.  But you just got the new book about the three women and their sex lives from the library.  Might be good to read this weekend.  Breathe Out.  Forget that too.  Breathe In. What about the farm vegetables in the fridge?  And the good eggs.  Breathe Out.  Crazy to take food to the city.  You always bring back food from the city.  Olives bread etc. Breathe In.  Vitamin D?  Do you still have some left there?  Breathe Out.  If you don’t you can walk to Zen Medica in two minutes.  Breathe In.  You should be able to just walk out the door.  Breathe Out.  You can never just walk out the door.  Breathe In.  Maybe make a sign for going back and forth.  Don’t Worry About What What You’re Taking.  Breathe Out.  That won’t help.  Breathe In.  What about meditation?  Breathe Out.  That won’t help much either.

Real Meditations: Peter’s Cousins Came to Dinner

Breathe In.  Peter’s cousins are coming to dinner.  Once a year for 95 years

they’ve met at Christmas time.  Never in summer.  Breathe Out.  They came yesterday.

Breathe In.  Getting ready is always part of anyone coming over. Some people have

visitors all the time and some people never do.  Most people are not in-between.  Breathe

Out.  We have people all the time.  We always have pistachio nuts and my favorite Ritz

Cracker potato chips.  No one believes they’re actually Ritz Crackers. Breathe In.  We

Get Ready.   Most beautiful day.  Breathe Out.  They arrive.  Light is hard to

describe.  Summer light doesn’t do it.  Neither does Golden. One day I can tell you.

Breathe In.  Everything doesn’t have to be described.  Some things just are.  Maybe

that’s one of the points of meditation.  Some things just are.  Breathe Out.  I’ll try but

still.  I’d like to tell you as much as I can. About this . About this.  About this.

Toni Morrison and Robert Mueller and Words

Toni Morrison movie last night too long too PBS but still

Toni Morrison not just because she

is brilliant beautiful not just because of the sentences she writes

amazing books courageous strong one of those women

you want to see you want to hear    Robert Mueller today

early morning TV we listen differently than we did to her

nervous cautious even afraid

we wait for words he may never say.

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