Friday night I did get to go out, and attended a play. Well, more of an educational one woman show really. It was at a small theatre in my neighborhood and it was about the life of Celia Thaxter. I was excited to see this show because Celia has been a strong influence on me, and I was studying her work long before I made the decision to become a writer. Here is one of her poems, followed by one I wrote about her influence a couple of years ago.
by: Celia Thaxter (1835-1894)
- HE lilies clustered fair and tall;
- I stood outside the garden wall;
- I saw her light robe glimmering through
- The fragrant evening's dusk and dew.
- She stopped above the lilies pale;
- Up the clear east the moon did sail;
- I saw her bend her lovely head
- O'er her rich roses blushing red.
- Her slender hand the flowers caressed,
- Her touch the unconscious blossoms blessed;
- The rose against her perfumed palm
- Leaned its soft cheek in blissful calm.
- I would have given my soul to be
- That rose she touched so tenderly!
- I stood alone, outside the gate,
- And knew that life was desolate.
- Crossing Over
- I remember my other life
- though it seems like a dream
- about another woman;
- when I was Goody Gordon.
- We bought the rundown
- little white house in Maine,
- as close to a seaside cottage
- as we could manage.
- On moving in day
- I nursed the the first baby
- in the backyard and happily
- planned our forever there.
And for the next decade
- I tried so very hard
- to be Donna Reed
- making a wonderful life.
- But it was Celia Thaxter
- who kept calling to me;
- come and smell the sea rose,
- tickle your toes in the tidal tow.
- Dance away dainty days of
- rock hopping and inking poems
in our prettiest penmanship,
but I ignored her until
- we became riddled with tumors
- the wallpaper unfurled, and
- our little house and the twin towers
caved into smoky soot and sadness
- and there just wasn't any point
- in being Goody Gordon anymore.
- So at last I lay you and Donna to rest
- and took Celia's slender hand.
- Skirts flapping in the chilly winds
- we walk the beach, creating
- a new imperfect life that is
- filled with wonder.