Hosted by Kath Abela Wilson

      It was a family stew. My Maltese grandmother was the head of cabbage. She hardly cooked anymore but left her rocker for this. She insisted on a hambone. The soup was “minestra”. No pasta needed. Simmer gold onions, olive oil, chunks of pumpkin, squash, garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, parsley and thyme. Better the day after. My father was a fava, mother a cauliflower, the kids red beans. I, the oldest, was grated parmesan stirring it up at the end. If you’re vegetarian don’t tell nana just leave out the ham. Add a little more of me, and extra pepper, sprinkled fresh to taste.

      family picnic
      the salad
      too big for the bowl

      ~ Kath Abela

      Ο Ο Ο

      wheat leaves over yellow and orange sunset

      Sunset Cattails, Pastel Nagomi Art by Christina Sng

      Christina Sng

      My Happiest Childhood Memory

      Dad and I
      on a double decker bus
      on the way to ride bumper cars

      my happiest childhood memory
      I tell him, holding his hand
      by his hospital bed as we wait


      all the secrets
      hopes and dreams
      I shared with you
      childhood lovey
      still with me


      always home by 5
      not a word in sight
      plonked onto the couch
      pop and I watch football
      peanuts in mouth


      only when I was sick
      could I sip 7-up
      from an a&w straw
      and curl up to sleep
      beside dad and mom


      mom always read me
      a story before I slept

      before the monsters
      under the bed emerged
      to rear their ugly heads

      I kept safe
      by carefully tucking myself
      inside my blanket


      shadows aren’t
      so scary after all

      they remind you
      you’re alive and strong

      especially when
      you’re still small

      Ο Ο Ο

      red flowers and green leavse

      Ioxora flower (a bee’s breakfast) (Photo – Gillena Cox)

      Gillena Cox

      One day, a child enters my home. We are meeting each other for the first time. He asks “do you have a TV?” I answer “no, only toys and books.” An aura of love enlightens this child, so he walks in with trust and selects the toys he wants. I unfold and set up a table for him. He chooses a stool high enough. I sit on a bench. And we start to mold plasterscene according to his little God mind. Creation. When time to leave, its raining so I hold an opened umbrella over him, as he climbs into his dad’s car. “Bye, get home safely.”

      next day

      created and stored
      orange tints in azure sky
      early morning light

      contemplating paradise
      birds in formation fly by


      I use my kitchen shears
      to clip ixora blooms
      I place them in a bowl of water

      what i have brought
      to my table really
      is a bee’s breakfast


      the cakes are beautiful
      they all want to take photos
      boys as well as girls

      even more beautiful
      she in her mermaid costume

      eating her slice of birthday cake

      Ο Ο Ο

      Abstract art

      Prickly pear cactus photo art by Pat Geyer

      Pat Geyer

      printed page
      waving with age…

      yellow cacti
      still pricks my heart…
      I remember
      the path to the house
      where my happiness once grew

      mom’s recipe
      turning yellow now with age…
      tarta de maize*

      *corn pudding

      My mother, who loved to cook, planted prickly pear cactus up and down the path to the house where we lived. As we cooked and baked, we’d often take a moment to look out the window at the yellow “pears”. When I moved into my own house I tried to transplant a few. Sadly, the cactus didn’t take. Happily, I still use all her recipes.

      Ο Ο Ο

      a checkered colored giraff

      Carousel giraffe – 1890, from Pasadena Museum of History’s exhibit on view till Oct 13 (Photo – Kath Abela Wilson)

      Sigrid Saradunn

      The circus arrived by train in Northern Wisconsin. I can still see elephants helped do the heavy work. The fierce look on horses faces didn’t appeal to me. I’d enjoy the ride listening, enjoying the calliope music.

      A friend’s husband treasured the old craftsmanship restoring in his home by the ocean, the treasures of the past. I learned to appreciate the stories behind the different styles.


      horses with wooden teeth
      their scary grimace frightened me

      graceful and sleek giraffe stole my heart
      ’round and ’round we’d go til time to leave
      mesmerizing music remembered to this day


      Dark shapes of bare trees over white

      Into the Woods Digital Ink art by Christina Sng

      Childhood Memories: Quotes and Credits

      Christina Sng is an award-winning poet and artist who lives in Singapore. She draws strength from happy childhood memories to endure the tribulations of her life, and finds peace in painting and writing. Her book, A Collection of Nightmares, won the Bram Stoker Award in 2018. Forthcoming in 2020 is its follow up, A Collection of Dreamscapes.

      Gillena Cox lives in Trinidad, one of the twin islands of The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. She’s a retired Library Assistant, mother, and grandmother. She has published six books through Authorhouse. Gillena says: “I love my online connections in poetry groups and blogs.”

      Pat Geyer lives in East Brunswick, NJ, USA. Her home is surrounded by parks and lakes, palaces to find the scents and sometimes tastes of life and living. Published in several journals, she’s an amateur photographer and poet.

      Sigrid Saradunn says: ”Down East Maine, where I live now, reminds me so much of Northern Wisconsin where I lived until I was ten. Grand-Dad’s Bluff, on Bliss Road, is in La Crosse, WI, on the Mississippi, six miles from where my grandparents lived and I can still remember looking out. Times were different then. We could roam and play all day. You may not not lucky to have been a child when I was or old enough to remember back in the day of summer fun for children. Take a step back in time and see what you remember from your childhood days of summer.”


      A note from Kath Abela:

      > My introductory haibun was originally inspired by a call for family stories… by Zee Zahava in Ithaca New York. Please, poets, send some poems and stories soon, to Kath Abela about your childhood dolls and toys. (email to poetsonsite[at]gmail.com) for an upcoming feature! Include photos or paintings of your dolls if possible, and little stories (haibun, etc) and bios that reference your childhood dolls. Try to wait 6 months from your last appearance in our Poets Salon> Sigrid concludes her story, Gillena, and Christina also, highlight their memories with the six-line short story form called a cherita> A historical carousel exhibit is on view at the Pasadena Museum of History until Oct 13, 2019. Please see it before it disappears!

      > We welcome and encourage your response, especially in the form of a short poem, by leaving a comment below.

      End of article

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        • Kathabela Wilson

          Kathabela Wilson is a local poet/writer/artist and musician. Her Poets Salon has become an international respected must read in the poetry world. She's the creator and host of the Pasadena-based group, “Poets on Site.”

          Colorado Boulevard is your place for enlightening events, informative news and social living for the greater Pasadena area.
          We strive to inform, educate, and work together to make a better world for all of us, locally and globally.

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      1. diannemoritz says:

        at Riverside Park
        games relieved all aggression
        as bumper cars crashed

      2. Alex Nodopaka says:

        Selecting the feast according
        to its plumpness and positioning
        the fowl’s head and throat on

        a butcher stump she whacked
        unceremoniously its neck
        letting the rest run to bleed out.

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