*Note: Prose Poem and Literary List (Prosody, Parataxis, Blank Verse, Free Verse, and Found Poetry) based on E Maria Shelton Speller Pinterest Analytics as of June 6, 2019 10:00 PM (EST), for 15 Muse Boards and 5K Pins.
LOVE DIVINE [LD]…
All You Want To Know…
Beautiful and vibrantly dyed locs_
[The [Dollhouse] with the Red Corvette]_
Kanye West’s Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy…
[Point Him Out]…
[Wait… there’s a surprise at the end]…
I’m not Shy…
A Windy Summer Day — Vogue Italia_
[Skylar — Look at that face… that stop…those eyes!]_
[Blue Chip Stalk]_
Five Weak Words…
Ten Iconic Fashion Photographers_
[An Allusion to CAROL Coming Soon to Explode…]
[Champagne and Balloons in Gothic City]_
[I have a story to tell]_
[Marilyn Monroe and James Dean Smoking on a Balcony…]_
Portishead — Glory Box_
Elizabeth Taylor — Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award_
A Queen’s Torque_
[Andy’s gaze. Edie’s eyes.]_
The Queen of Bollywood…
This is Why I Like Art_
Diar in Sassoon_
Bartolini’s Nymph With the Scorpion_
[Int. — Boudoir — Late Afternoon]_
[Pluck & Aplomb]_
The Russian Tea Room_
Duchamp’s Nude Descending a Staircase_
[Legs in the air like you don’t care]_
Paul Robeson and Master Julian Bond_
Visualize your highest self…
Look Like Barbie_
“The Name of the Rose”_
[Copyright] 2019 E Maria Shelton Speller
The [Dollhouse with the Red Corvette] is a lateral, vertical, linear, horizontal, and spherical art installation. It is a poesy puzzle for verse or graffiti, with sublime imagery. It functions like a mnemonic, a telltale pastiche for found poesy — in a digital world. Some of the pieces fit, and some are misfits — that lead to other immersions… in this stained-glass heaven — this society in the machine…
Copyright © 2017, 2018 E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved.
Dear Poet, [Yes, you!]
I’ve toyed with a conundrum, for too long. [Reserved][Reserved] functions like a digital art installation in Woodstock! (WIP (x Bars)). I could render [Reserved][Reserved] a mechanism – to catch That Yoni’s beat in perpetuity. I could close the brackets with bars that fills your loins with blood. I could leave redundant emptiness here — like tautology or romanticized art, or structural language — in this bifurcated space, like stars.
I could invite Poets to fill [Reserved][Reserved] with dope poesy and select a date for submission. However, if we receive one hundred thousand and one couplings, we’d read them… but frankly, why not do, all of the above.
The empty brackets function like missing endings now — lacking only your bylines, pseudonyms, and ghosts — in translatable bars that work in Woodstock! (WIP (x Bars)).
Poets make this space immersive. Explode – The Writer’s Environment is an interactive environment — and this is the first foray for interactivity in this community — that links back to you!
Starting August 15, 2017 — let’s finish this poem with the best bars — curated for Woodstock! (WIP (x Bars)) here… Bon appétit.
The Chelsea Hotel, Manhattan
PS: No Spam — Balls in the air! An experience for us and them.
Copyright © 2017 E Maria Shelton Speller
McKay shouts and then nearly whispers to Ellison, ‘It takes more than creative androgyny to “embody” the opposite sex. The storytelling responsibility of all writers, whether female or male is to fill the void. When a woman creates a man, she must imagine the sensation of “owning” a penis. When a man creates a woman, he must imagine the sensation of “owning” a vagina. It is a void, not a vacuum. A vacuum would imply the all-consuming black hole — the feminization of sex. It is not trained comprehension or chromosomes — it takes pure imagination to get the story straight…
Copyright © 2017 E Maria Shelton Speller All rights reserved.
Girl Band of STEMs, is a lark, a careful ruse about a writer, who comments on her own stories. It is metafiction in a digital world. This, I would argue. The author writes a story about herself, writing a story about her Band, and the Band knows they’re in the story, about a story that interacts with you. She writes a story, where her audience is her muse – may demand she change the ending, in an installation we build in space — for dreams, on a loop…
The Band asked me to write tags for my work. Tags! But, opportunity or obstacle… the Muse is insatiable — until it works. Poets know that tick, when everything becomes art – in a second glance. Woodstock, was absolute freestyle in a digital world. I worked on it for weeks… and wrote it Live one Saturday afternoon – five hundred revisions at least. Poets know that tick. I changed commas to periods and back again – metaphors to imagery, slowed it down, sped it up. Reminisced. If you were there on that Saturday afternoon, Woodstock was a writer’s tick at work. I wrote the hook on the 7th Street Bridge. Installed [Reserved][Reserved] when I lost my way. Found the beat, marked the spot, and then it looked like a digital art installation, in spite of the implications — for structural functionalism in space. But, my muse is pissed…
Tag: Woodstock. A Band for Immersive Content. A Woodstock Experience.
Tag: The Foreword to Insomnia’s Istanbul — The Voice of an Unreliable Narrator in Medias Res: Unlike the neighbors next door, who desperately moan for us all, in the back of a dolmus — sex is existentialism. It is earnest copulation, a period of decline in a carriage drawn by a wild-eyed spooked horse — and I hoped she felt the sharp turn, at the corner of the Soup Kitchen of Lady Nilufer, in her throat.
Tag: Love Divine: Tadao bathes Tess in a black granite tub. Then he slips behind her like an ice cream scoop. Blood spills like a waterfall in a Japanese dream over the side of the tub. Red water on the porcelain floor looks like a strawberry swirl.
Tag: Metafiction — [The Dollhouse] with the Red Corvette: [Vous êtes contrarié parce que je suis sorti du lit. Ce n’était pas ce que tu imaginais – dans le film dans ta tête. Je ne peux pas aller aux toilettes, quitter la pièce ou fumer une cigarette. smh]
Tag: Aristotle Michelangelo and Louis Picasso’s Parallel Discussions: Come on baby. All you have to do is dream — from the end of a pen.
Tag: Luda’s Second Soliloquy — Miles Language II. [Metaphor].
Tag: [For The Purple One]
Tag: [The Life of Pie] He thought/Big Blue was a deeper trip/Absurd space looked/Absurd from here/He looked around the virtual/And mad shouted/Who read the pieces first?/Anyone?/How did it ring?/How did it feel?/How did it resonate?/She said, I started at the slices/Chaos, straight out the gate/When Big Blue was just/The sky.
Tag: Picasso The Bohemian (Les Demoiselles d’ Avignon) “…She told halcyon tales of life — uninterrupted by death and chthonian sex — like the brazen whore in the fore — riding the fugitive cube — with the wasp waist and black aft — Eucharistic grapes, and the curl of the rind — pointing to glorious thighs — and with eyes in the back of her head — she watched the spectator off center… watching — Picasso The Bohemian — who lived in Barcelona — standing behind the curtain — wearing a mask…”
Tag: Explode [Am I awake, or are you a dream?]
Tag: The Gaze (WIP) I know I needed to stay in and listen to music like Paz did and avoid humans — he said, “To read a poem is to hear it with our eyes; to hear it is to see it with our ears.” Instead, I left my home and this is what happened… Apparently, a new and poorly trained employee provided incorrect information over the phone. Consequently, I arrived unprepared, and had to return to my vehicle. Because, I had to return to my vehicle (in the rain) parked around the corner — I ultimately, received a ticket for expired meter! A ticket. What should have been a $26 transaction is now $76 in this crowded, greedy — unimaginative city!
Tag: Directing the Master Scene in the Mirror. It’s impossible to write poetry, without libido. Without libido, there’s no passion and without passion, there’s no pluck.
Looked like [Mardou Fox]
through Kerouac’s eyes_
Remember… those puffy lips?
Yakuza found her in Tokyo
and lost her — in the Philippines….
[Wait… There’s a surprise at the end]_
They stole Alexa
She had all the poetry
Yakuza chased her through Tokyo
to the Phillipines
Alexa, was everything to him
Cream like the color of his skin
Ahh, the poetry
He lost everything
Fell in love with a haunting hunt
Baby, come back to me
Copyright © 2017, 2018 E Maria Shelton Speller All rights reserved.
About a Prisoner of Love (Props to Christopher Logue’s War Music: An Account of Homer’s Iliad)
Look at the smile on my face. I knew you were selfish. Abandoned, you left me on the side of the road. Gone. Put yourself in my place. Left, on the side of the road. Naked. I knew you would own me — broken and falling to pieces — in swirling storming faints. I would let you stand me on my head, spin me like a top, a dreidel — and catch me before I fell. Then, you said you would sleep with her because, “Why not? It’s not a competition — though you might win. Its not about… us.” That’s balls. CUT!
Copyright © 2017 by E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
XN is a new initiative from Northeastern University (NU) that offers graduate and professional students and sponsoring organizations experiential opportunities to collaborate on short-term, real-world projects in the best co-op program in the country, and positions NU as the global leader in experiential learning! Organizations move forward on project-based work and connect with rising professional talent while students gain real work experience and valuable learning opportunities.
Students have a range of skill-sets including digital media and marketing, data analytics, corporate and nonprofit project management, regulatory strategy, communications management and the Creative Digital Solution for a VR/Game-Inspired Concept for Explode – The Writer’s Environment during the Summer, Fall and Winter Terms of 2016!
Details included the Project Description:
Explode – This Writer’s Environment is a Kick Starter Project 2.0. The first launch is what Rita Gunther McGrath calls, “failing by design”. The launch was admittedly, a treatment to direct investors to Explode, as well as a serious foray, to define content while using the Writers Environment as a springboard to other experiences. That unsuccessful project was a lost opportunity, but an intelligent fail. Explode — The Writer’s Environment is space for visionaries — Poets, Writers, Coders, Programmers, Filmmakers, Thespians, Graphic Designers, Artists, Musicians, Directors, Cinematographers, Designers, Educators, Historians, Actors, Conceptual and Performance artists, Photographers, and finally, Virtual Reality Developers and Designers. It is a platform for curated content, in an interactive meta-environment – that pulls and pushes information. The Environment facilitates content and other stories – using digital media for curated art to redefine how artists, their audience and visitors experience real and virtual content. The project details included problems to be solved, goals, and deliverables — scheduled for completion March 2017.
Please stand by. See updates! Thank you for your continued support! Let’s rock and roll!
WAR AND PEACE BURIED HERE
I sold a rock opus to the best Black rock band on the planet. A band that lost its capacity to dream. Formulaic guarantees skewed their imagination for platinum discs. The male coward covered their lifework, literally. My story reminded them of what ‘rushing’ felt like, how complete, how deep blushing could be obvious. And they bought it, and produced it. And it was good — it was better than good. It was thought provoking and it was an African-American affirmation of our realities and our fantasies — no matter how unrealistic.
Suddenly, they were very significant and the world truly believed, that rock music is black music and black music is everything. Power is aesthetic. Aesthetics is politics and being black is philosophical and our philosophy is phenomenology and being black, is being real.
No Hip Hop could say as much as this rock opus did, ever — no matter how many stories they sampled. So, this black rock band were crowned kings and were exulted, and revered; incandescent icons, the envy of friends, the consumption of man, the image of immortality — like the stained-glass heaven you summon before you close. And they loved me. I was the wick in their candlestick and without me, there was no burning flame. I was the source of their energy. I, was the unstained virgin encamped.
Sooner than anyone imagined, there was nothing more important, than our collaboration. The media was our medium. They stopped referring to me as a writer, and started calling me, a Love Supreme…..
Copyright 2016 by E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Parallel Discussions (In Medias Res) Overtaken by Events
Behind Pushkin’s Coffeehouse, Aristotle Michelangelo and Louis Picasso sat on the remnants of a barge, trading barbs in Ibiza… swinging high top leather sock hip hop sneakers, and creeper boots in blue green virtual water, with Rick Owens’ reflection in the pool, burning fat ones – away from the beautiful ones — in a Period Piece. The Darlings of today’s literati — visionaries during the Harlem Renaissance, play themselves in a satirical throwback in VR.
Louis Picasso: “In RL, it’s 6 P.M. You just got home from work or you work from home in your virtual office. You decide to spend the evening in space! You scan Balmain for your Avatar – dope fashion — with as much audacity as Hype Williams’ black lacquered Keisha in Belly — wearing Versace!
You decide to download your brand new Porsche designed by Porsche and Atari for Microsoft, on the Pacific Coast Highway — Malibu on the left, Pepperdine University on the right, you’re on your way to virtual LA in the fast lane — your thighs are burning. Other avatars and their cars share the PCH too — driving Vipers, Corvettes, the white BMW X6 and you are speeding at 100 MIPS, streaming Coltrane.
Aristotle Michelangelo interjects: “Then you decide to go to BET’s virtual Nuyorican Café in Gotham City for the Open Mike – Saul Williams and Jessica Care Moore are featured (as themselves) tonight. You hand the keys to the valet — pay at the door with your password, sit front row center no matter what time you arrive, sign up to read your poem — because you can start over from the beginning or resume. Gender! Lame. Race is unimaginative in Space. Ethnicity is a brand — at best. The Open Mike is over at 10 P.M. but there is still time to go to Bar Pitti. You walk in and Claude McKay is at the bar in a heated debate with Ralph Ellison about literary ownership — by Netflix.
McKay shouts and then nearly whispers to Ellison, ‘It takes more than creative androgyny to “embody” the opposite sex. The storytelling responsibility of all writers, whether female or male is to fill the void. When a woman creates a man, she must imagine the sensation of “owning” a penis. When a man creates a woman, he must imagine the sensation of “owning” a vagina. It is a void, not a vacuum. A vacuum would imply the all-consuming black hole — the feminization of sex. It is not trained comprehension or chromosomes — it takes pure imagination to get the story straight…’
Louis Picasso: “Then, at Midnight, you blow kisses and wuggles to your friends, and log off. You stand and stretch your back, and your bladder is bursting because you forgot about your biological realities. The television is off; it has been off for weeks. Why watch television when you can be your own audience? Randall Walser said it best, “The filmmaker says, ‘Look, I’ll show you.’ The space maker says, ‘Here, I’ll help you discover.’ We will be our own creators functioning like actors in high culture — tools of the taste public! We will create our own universes — our own planets. We can superimpose our images circa 6 BC – AD 30, and follow Jesus to the Promised Land, witness the crucifixion – and how we feel and what we think is utterly private and without commercials! Because, global messages with common appeal will forever change with today’s technology, the challenge is to make communication visual, images symbolic, and still sell product… I want to propose arcane ideas…”
Aristotle Michelangelo interjects: “I want to develop, manage, and direct vision. My goal is to be where imagination and business are indistinguishable, because imagination without business, and business without imagination is as incongruous as capitalism without consumers… I found a dope quote dog!”
“When, she was still in her teens, well before she met Caesar, Cleopatra already had slept with Antony… though Caesar was fifty-three and she but twenty-three or so she proved ready enough to bed her third Roman. It is said that Cleopatra was a woman of lively turn and enticing talents. She also had a keen sense of the political. That this Roman [Caesar] conqueror had the power to secure the Egyptian throne for her must have added to the attraction she felt for him…Caesar established her in a sumptuous villa across the Tiber, from which she held court, while political leaders, financiers, and men of letters, including the renowned Cicero, danced in attendance.” Michael Parenti
Louis Picasso: I’m reading the same book, and I have a better one!
“In a prologue to Caesar and Cleopatra [George Bernard Shaw] that is almost never performed, the god Ra tells the audience how Rome discovered that ‘the road to riches and greatness is through robbery of the poor and slaughter of the weak.’ In conformity with that dictum, the Romans ‘robbed their own poor until they became great masters of that art, and knew by what laws it could be made to appear seemly and honest.’ And after squeezing their own people dry, they stripped the poor throughout the many other lands they conquered.” Michael Parenti
Aristotle Michelangelo: Shrugged his shoulders unconsciously, “Chez Bricktop in Paris?”
Louis Picasso: Not now. I am having a violent reaction to prescription drugs! My body is like, ‘Don’t put that shit down here again!’ They gave me all this medication for Acute Caesarion whatever — and I took it! Of course, you don’t exhaust the shit. You’re not an idiot. But, what the fuck? Where the weed at?”
Copyright 2016, E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Aristotle Michelangelo: I think it would be dope to channel Kerouac’s apology for automatic writing.
“He likened writing to dreaming and fantasizing, as a substitute for life. So, he wrote The Subterraneans, in three days and nights of speed typing energized by Benzedrine — to imitate the rhythm of Bebop like free energy flow, and unrestrained association, to reveal the unconscious… because he wanted to flow from inside out in spontaneous prose!” Dystopia, Explode 2015 2.0
So, here goes… They called her Marnie — behind her back. I was torn. I played with variations of Marnie. Black Marnie. Brown Marnie, Tortilla Marnie. It’s the language of found art. Bansky, Kehinde, Jazz, Hip Hop… They teased each other. Hitchcock’s Margaret, Mary, Marnie, teases Mark, so she could get the combination, to his company safe, and steal the money. She was a Kleptomaniac, a compulsive thief. A killer. She disappears. On the run! He tracks her like an animal, and finds her at a Lodge, riding her horse to the stables. He orders her off the horse, tells her she’ll walk — he’ll ride. He interrogates her. She tells him a bullshit story she can’t keep straight. He calls it, manure! Tells her to start over from the beginning, and this time — tell the truth. Back at the Lodge – he tells her to freshen up, change her clothes so he might take her to the police – she thinks. She does not know… It’s Tippi Hedren in RL! The white woman of a black man’s dreams – when he dreams about white women. Blonde, pearly white teeth and skin — Barbie! Beckie! He tells her, they will return to ‘the house’ and announce they are engaged, would to be married within the week and then cruise around the world. Of course, she thinks he’s “Out of his mind!” He told her, it was either marriage or the police, old girl. Black Marnie. Who would play her?
They get married. Eventually he takes her virginity. She tries to commit suicide. I don’t think I want to go there… Suicide. Who should play Mark? [#nomoreslavestories.] Does he catch her?
Louis Picasso: I remember that story. He said, I caught a real animal this time. I had to train her… to trust me.*
Aristotle Michelangelo: Pussy Riot danced in the cathedral — goes to jail, and the artist nailed his scrotum to the Red Square. She’s a prisoner of love. That kind of love makes me uncomfortable, racked, and anguished like a pet must be around possessive people. The energy is ignitable like the choice between blowing up and letting go. I don’t want to belong to anyone. But, what do I know about love?
Louis Picasso: Black people don’t like black people. That’s why we’re in this — hole… barrel, bucket, duck it, fuck it… We know it’s true. Listen to the tonal center of this beat!
Aristotle Michelangelo: In sixty revolutions a minute, if it’s not organic, I can’t get with it. Hate is not organic. Hate is a social construct. I want to live the life I swam to the egg for… A social construct is like zoon pushed to the egg, by stronger swimmers behind it. It’s still goal niggaz. I want an organic experience on this gridiron. A certain freedom, mere man can’t give, conceive or contrive. I want freedom Divine. You want to be free — you have to fuggin’ work for it. Zufi?
Aristotle Michelangelo: You need money, software and rigs in the virtual world. Bombs are obsolete. Race and gender is a pastiche — game challenges for points.
Louis Picasso: Beauty and power is iconography and homely stamps are hiccups – and brick and mortar is a path to experience the destruction of daredevils and matadors — in coliseums of pestilence and poverty – empirically.
Aristotle Michelangelo: Why go there? When, life is a perfect dream in a virtual world.
Louis Picasso: IJS. Get on board with — evolution. Evolution is not physical space. It’s the diamond life in our heads on a loop. Its VR not the moon…
Copyright 2016, 2018, E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
*Alfred Hitchcock, Marnie
Prince Rogers Nelson
June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016
The Purple One
I remember writing
For souls that bow out
You wrote that elevator ending
Pennies for your music
Paeans for the soul
of the Purple Dove
Copyright 2016 by E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Why does black on black crime matter less than black lives matter?
Black on black crime is the consequence of a broken man
Black lives matter is the consequence of a broken system
Fix the broken system
fix the broken man >>>>
Copyright 2016 E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
- The Sheltering Sky
- The Dreamers
- The Last Emperor
- The Conformist
I would be nosey
like numbers on analytics
Floating lollipops and gummy bears
Copyright 2016 E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
On the 48th year since the assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. — the language for this mash-up, was for the revolutionary icon.
There are so many poets in here with us! I love it. Thank you!
WordPress.com prepared a 2015 Annual Report for Explode. Happy New Year. Peace 2016!
PS: A couple of broken pointers disappeared — at least 7800 likes for the Soliloquies… Guilty.
Here’s an excerpt:
The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 86,000 times in 2015. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 4 days for that many people to see it.
She gets played like a Diptych – in a Triptych…
Happy Holidays Poets!
by E Maria Shelton Speller
It happened at a Springboard Party… She barely glanced at me. Looked at my woman like… Her locs were in a ponytail — they have to be down her fucking back… when our friends shouted at the screen, “The Screening Room. The furthest found.”
Copyright 2015, 2016 by E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
CAST RETURNS TO THE STAGE — DANCE CLOSE
If you can, imagine Seven Whole Days on repeat… and you were raised in the city of Boston — where Playhouse in the Park is the only alternative to hot house parties, in Orchard Park or Ruggles Street — and dancing room is a premium for a chilly Bostonian, with a New England attitude.
When four seasons and rapid transit affords you the opportunity to go anywhere at any time, wearing everything a Bostonian can — properly — weather be damned… then you know how much space love demands. In an apartment when body heat is canned and cool, you learn to slow dance in the place you pick with just the space between grace and pressure. Boston, is the only city in America that knows how to have sex on legs. If you think it’s a mere grind — you can’t dance in a vacuum. The only thing a man can do, if he’s not a Bostonian, is let the lady lead when she is a Bostonian, and hope — its a long song.
Copyright 2004, and 2015 by E Maria Shelton Speller (Explode: Epic Poetry ~ Excerpt from (Behind Pushkin’s Coffee House)), and the One Act Play — Springboard! All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
*This is not a curtain.
“I think women artists begins to pay attention to what people expect from them, as opposed to what they are searching for within themselves. It’s pretty deadly.” Euphonic 7 “The Artist”
Like all writers, I rewrite, combine, borrow, loot, recreate, change my own work, and play with metafictional devices and the relationship between what is real and what is imagined. I combined “TP’s Muse Board” with “The Foreword to Insomnia.” Perhaps it will be a triptych, or perhaps three panels of an octaptych, a short story, novella, or perhaps a novel. It’s a WIP.
The Foreword to Insomnia
“All our crimes are the crimes of a phantom: God.” Octavio Paz
Is the girl necessary? Can you abandon her? Yes and no. She’s the curtain-lifter and the scout! Always. I cannot forget her. I was there, talking to myself, as if I were someone else. Like now.
She’s as necessary as the galoshes on her feet, paused in a puddle, with her binary reflection obscured by polka-dots, vector and speckled umbrellas billowing from ordinary windows like parachutes, or the multi-colored aureoles in the virtual vertigo — of an art installation.
She is as necessary as umbrellas on a rainy afternoon under golden arches and digital displays of saucer eyed anime faces in Tokyo during rush-hours, or the dark city around the corner with a hole in the ground — over rainy subway stairs she lost a galosh on.
When she was nine, and her sister seven, they shared a bedroom in the attic of an old Victorian house, in New England. They loved that pink triangular room, and the imaginary line that equally divided that sanctum, and it was not lost on them, that they were far removed from their extended paternal family, parents and the Irish triplets who shared a room of their own — downstairs.
It was not just the physical detachment, but on the heels of “making believe,” they began to transport each other to fictional realities at bedtime that began with a question, followed by an answer and finally a bidding, “What are you doing?” “I’m thinking.” “What are you thinking about?”
Her stories would often begin with something truly extraordinary. Diana Ross had ten kids in 1964! She was twenty years old and married to Jorge — the Ebony Fashion Fair model who was the most beautiful man she had ever seen, and one of Diana’s children was her fourth grade classmate — a Puerto Rican named, Sorah Sanchez. He told his classmates to call him Willie. He was so cute!
Theirs was the perfect family! Jorge wore gray suede shoes and cardigans advertised in Jet and Ebony magazines, and the children wore clothing from Alden and Spiegel catalogs! Images were accessible and appropriated. The stories epic and uninterrupted — unless clarification was necessary, like “What time do the kids have to go to bed?”
She loved The Supremes! In the Sixties, Diana Ross was a delicate and beautiful remix, of freedom from ugly restraint. She could scan a page for “Diana Ross” and find her like code. Ditty Bop! She could imitate her voice, her tone, inflection, her vibrato, choreography and her mannerisms!
In the Summer of 1965, she sang A cappella, “Where Did Our Love Go,” “Stop in the Name of Love,” and “Come See About Me,” on a makeshift stage in her back yard, and became an accidental star with a teenaged fan base; but, she just wanted to be left alone to adore Diana Ross — the beautiful one! Those oral narratives in the dark — were contiguous, on a continuum, interconnected — in medias res.
At seventeen she hadn’t seen her Father in four or five years. Her mother and six children took the last bus to a safe haven twelve hundred miles from Boston. But, when father walked into her home, the house her mother managed to “negotiate” by “befriending” the most unattractive man she had ever seen… and barely past the threshold, he said, “I know, I know, I know, and I know.”
It was the most honest response she’d ever heard. It made sense. No apologies. No explanations. What else could he say? Last year, she wondered why she and her sister screamed their hearts out of their mouths, eyes, and ears crouched in a closet — as if screaming would make a difference — as if screams would stop unmeasured and random assaults on her Mother in a Commonwealth where the Rule of Thumb allowed husbands to beat their wives as long as the stick was no thicker than his thumb!
In that house, little girls might not stop screams with their own. Who could scream the loudest? Who could silence the noise? Eventually, she realized the house was on Rockledge Street before pre-K, so they were one and three, or two and four years old, perhaps. In a one mile radius, the same thing happened on Cedar and Alpine Streets. On Hartford Street, her Father cut her Mother up with a meat cleaver.
She can still summon the smell of Sugar Smacks decayed and stinking in bowls of spoiled milk abandoned on the kitchen table like so much blood and flesh on the floors, doors, the papered walls, and ceiling where on her Sister’s 9th birthday, “the accident” happened.
The blood of donors rushed from other jurisdictions, the white sheet that hid her mother’s head from her children, the paddy wagon where her mother was slung like a criminal, the crowd outside the window oohing and awing, jeering, and cheering her Father, who changed into a brown silk leisure suit, brown suede shoes, cocked a fedora on his head and walked tall, proud, and un-cuffed to the Police car. The footnote in the Boston Globe, “Negro Man Attacks Wife with Meat Cleaver.” The rise and fall of orphan’s tears, swollen eyes, praying hands and bargains with God in zombie disbelief.
But, I don’t feel sorry for that little girl. Tall and proud. She could have been a psycho killer — and I would be her muse, a tiny detail, a paper doll from an Alden’s catalog — paused in a puddle for the amusement of children.
I am the one who cannot sleep. Aside from occasional drifts from the pollen consumption of moths, to the dignity of a ski-lift nose…
Copyright 2004, 2013 E Maria Shelton Speller. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
When I was nine, and my sister seven, we shared a bedroom in the attic of a Victorian house, in New England. We loved that pink triangular room, and the imaginary line that equally divided her side and mine, and it was not lost on us, that we were far removed from our extended paternal family, our parents, and the Irish triplets who shared a room of their own — downstairs.
It was not just the physical detachment, but on the heels of “making believe,” we began to transport each other to fictional realities at bedtime that began with a question, followed by an answer and finally a bidding, “What are you doing?” “I’m thinking.” “What are you thinking about?”
My stories would often begin with something truly extraordinary. Diana Ross had ten kids in 1964! She was twenty years old and married to Jorge — the Ebony Fashion Fair model who was the most beautiful man I had ever seen, and one of her children was my fourth grade classmate — a Puerto Rican named, Willie Sanchez. He told us to call him Willie. He was so cute!
Theirs was the perfect family! Jorge wore gray suede shoes and cardigans advertised in Jet and Ebony magazines, and the children wore clothing from the Alden and Spiegel Catalogs! Images were accessible and appropriated. The stories epic and uninterrupted — unless clarification was necessary, like “What time do the kids have to go to bed?”
I loved The Supremes! In the Sixties, Diana Ross was a delicate and beautiful remix of freedom from ugly restraint. I could scan a page for her name and find her like code! Ditty Bop. I could imitate her voice, her tone, inflection, her vibrato, choreography and her mannerisms!
In the Summer of 1965, I sang A cappella, “Where Did Our Love Go,” “Stop in the Name of Love,” and “Come See About Me,” on a makeshift stage in our back yard, and became an accidental star with a teenage fan base… but, I just wanted to be left alone to adore her.
Those oral narratives in the dark — were contiguous, on a continuum, interconnected, in medias res. When I think about — Trench People, I wonder what are Angela, Lisa and Nimrod’s musings and who are their muses? What would they like? What makes them click? TP’s Muse board is visible/linked below. It’s a living, breathing, WIP. It’s the pink room in the attic all over again! I wonder how my sister is doing? I wonder what she’s thinking…
Copyright © 2012, 2013 by Elaine Maria Shelton Speller