Miz Quickly’s Various Degrees of Green

Various Degrees of Green

I hope that I am never
disappointed in spring,
that medical grade neon green
stripped of its mortality

it’s noisy and brash, and yet I painted green on the wall to reflect calm and quiet, bring outdoors … In. But spring green is anything but quiet. It’s a noise that pops and pulls at your ears like too many words thrown at your feet. Spring laughs and laughs and laughs. And then it dissolves into summer.

my father keeps dissolving.
nuances. fragments. his scent.
he died fifteen years ago today.

should I light candles.
pray for him.
I wonder who will pray for me.

I have learned to self-soothe,
to balance on a pinhead.

my father,
he’s the sunlight on grass

and when he died, for that moment, the world stopped. But the sky didn’t fall, and robins still tugged at the soil, and thankfully January and February with their shortened days crept toward spring. The thrushes returned. Snowdrops and daffodils pushed up into sunlight. Everything comes back for spring.

did I mention that
I name trees.
it makes me feel connected.

three of them, in particular,
the most beautiful trees
I’ve ever seen.

I have a childhood tree,
named it when I was ten.
I knew its leaves,
the feel of its thick bark.

I still remember its name,
although Dad chopped it
down many decades ago.

is that why we name things,
so that we remember,
after all those years,
and in spite of everything

Grandpa said, Don’t make friends with a crow. They’re psychotic, demanding attention. Tapping on the window at all hours. There’s a tree outside my bedroom window that does that when the wind blows. Tap. Tap. Tap. On the window. In the rain. In the moonlight. Just like a crow. We all have our moments.

I inhaled one of those headaches
that tips you forward into a toilet.
it chips off pieces of your skull
into little broken shards of ice

and as I knelt there, staring and wrung limp, I noticed the grey and amber and violet veins in the marble tiles on the floor. Like stiffened tree limbs. Or scorched nerves. I saw the aftermath of a forest fire that looked like that. I remember a voice deep inside me whispering, oh my god.


This is my attempt at Miz Quickly’s Day 6: Discovering a place/scent/memory – and then find something there. I’ve found all sorts of stuff in the process. The image is mine, watercolour (April 2018), the road behind my house that leads to Paddockwood Forest.

9 responses to “Miz Quickly’s Various Degrees of Green”

  1. We had a tree at the end of my childhood’s street (Southwood Rd, I wrote about the other day) that my father dubbed The Giant Oak and, when I visited there (about a decade and a half ago, I think) the people who live in my old house told me that it was still standing there when they move in in 2001, but the city deemed it a menace to some nearby powerlines & came out to remove it.
    I bet if my father was still around (thank god he’s not- he’d be about 103 & we never got along anyway) he’d have been out there protesting its removal.
    But I do go on. Let me just say that (as usual) I’m totally blown away by your work. esp the characterization of him as sunlight on the grass.
    And the artwork: AWESOME.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I read your piece the other day, and I loved it. Perhaps it was a little anchor for what I wrote today. Truly delighted that you took the time to read the whole thing. It’s longer than usual. Thanks again, Ron.


  2. This is fantastic. Blown away.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Like I said, you bring out the best. Thank you, on both accounts.


  3. Brilliant. This is a long post for you, and the quality of it reflects the effort you must have put into it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Have you traditionally lit a candle for him every year, Misky?



    1. Every year. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. This is wonderful, Misky. Quite a journey.

    Liked by 1 person

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