Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Letter about Ed Galing from Philadelphia Poet Janice Jakubowitcz

What should a productive writer do on a snowy homebound afternoon? Write stories, edit stories, send away stories? Recently on a quiet snowy day, I decided to purge some of my files. It’s like the avoidance of studying for a test as a student; I’ll get the writing jitters so cleaning helps to relax. I keep articles from newspapers or magazines that are useful to character development and writing hints. I came across a golden one. It was a Letter to the Editor of my city newspaper written by a 79 year old poet. In this short piece he eloquently explained why he wrote. It touched me again. I didn’t have a date noted and decided to Google his name. I found an interview with Doug Holder and contacted him. It turns out that Ed is now 91 and I had that clipping for 11 years! Doug gave me Ed’s phone number and I called him yesterday. We had a wonderful conversation. He offered to send me books of his poetry but when he found out that I lived around the corner from one of his favorite restaurants, (Jack's Deli) we agreed to meet for lunch when the weather gets better. Also in this incredible connection, I learned through Doug about an ezine that is published locally. They host a poetry reading once a month a block from the train station that I take every day to my job in the city. And it gets better – another poet that I met on line has known Doug and Ed for years! Ah….I love the writing life and the wonderful surprise connections that can occur in this small planet that we live on.

* I agree. The Small Press has provided me with wonderful, interesting, people to talk to you and become friends with. I am not getting rich and I ain't a poet/laureate, and there is a lot grief connected with it, but: "don't change a hair for me, not if you care for me, stay little small press stay,... ( Thank's Cole Porter)--

Doug Holder

Saturday, February 7, 2009

At The Deli: Waiting For My Son

Waiting For My Son

it will take him about
two hours to get to
jack's deli, where i am waiting
he lives in maryland
says he can't get a good corned
beef sandwiches there.

so he is coming to meet me
here, and i sit in a booth
and wait and i am holding an
old album,
full of pictures from the old days.

one is when i bought him his first
bike, oh, how he rode around and
around, waving his hands happily.

it was the first bike he ever had, and
we lived in a housing project, very,
poor, but somehow, i was able to buy
him the bike.

i had never seen a happier boy in my life
i want to show him these pictures when he comes.

so much time has gone by since those days
for one, my wife has died, and
i am alone, and the album is about the
only thing that keeps me thinking young.

my wife once said: why do you keep the
pictures so long?, she couldn't understand how much it meant to
be able to see the
past, when we were young and happy.

he should be here soon...i keep thinking
now he is seventy years old, and i'm
ninety one... it's hard to believe so much time
has come and gone... so many tribulations.

wait till he sees this album, i think...
and there he is, just walked in, he sees me
and waves, and for a moment I can't believe
this is my ten year old son...this is a man...
who is slightly bent over, has a moustache, limps,
and is headed my way...no, there must be a mistake...
but here he is now, smiling and saying, hello, dad,
but the traffic was awful out there... now let's eat
some of the good cornbeef.

hello son, i reply. be my guest.

i don't think I will show him the album.
that's a different story, a different time...