Like Those Times

Tammy Setting up Supersonic Wind Tunnel Experiment

Like Those Times

It’s like those times
You dig your fingers into the wall
And pull yourself to the corner
Just to let your essence
Seep into the ceiling crack
Propitiously cut there
By the most recent rainstorm.

It’s like the time you crashed
Into the bathroom, only to use
Your robe as a rope, to climb
Down through the heating vent
Just to find yourself surrounded
By the energy generating
Bowel of your house.

It’s like that time you
Threw everything out of the closet
So you could crawl in
Under the empty hangers
And sit there, in fetal position
Like a stow-a-way to an alien planet
Where they wave magic titanium rods
And cure your aging and your breath.


Today’s prompt, by @bmiller007, was to write a poem about 1999: So what were you doing in 1999?  Which experiences do you recall vividly?  Well, that’s easy, I got to MY DOCUMENTS/POETRY/1999 and pick something.

I was just getting separated from my x-husband. I had two teenage boys, two dogs, two cats and a horse. I was also going to University of Washington majoring in aerospace engineering. For summer vacation, I had my shoulder replaced in 1998 and my knee replaced in 1999. I did this the day after the last final, so I could have the whole summer to heal. Fall of 1998, I was stupid enough to take Aeronautical Engineering, Astronautical Engineering, Advanced Calculus and Modern Physics all at one time. I could not handle that load with all the other things going on in my life.

As for the picture, aside from classroom, homework and regular things students do, rocket science requires you do some cool lab work. So literally, that picture, is what I was doing in 1999. I loved those zebra sneakers!!

I did not edit this. Obviously, I don’t write like this any more.

Posted on:

Poetics – 1999

About zongrik

For those of you who do not know the handle "zongrik," that would be Bat-Ami Gordin. Most people call me "Tammy." Bat-Ami means "daughter of my nation" in Hebrew. It's a heavy name to carry around. I answer to either name. I also answer to "mama." Some Basic Things about me: Animal lover, mom, poet/writer, dramatic soprano, photographer, teacher/tutor, CERT/Technician and, oh yeah, aerospace engineer. I consider myself "The Astro-Poet." To learn more about the origins of the word "zongrik" see whats-a-zongrik?

Posted on March 10, 2012, in D’verse Poets Pub, Poetry and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 25 Comments.

  1. wow that second stanza gets a little crazy…down the air vent eh? by the robe…quite the fantastical journey there…have though played in the closet, esp at my aunts house….and probably to a few alien places…smiles.

  2. so from there to here…we find it almost necessary for growth…sure hurts sometimes though…..I am trying to remember what I didn’t forget about ’99…

    Peace ☮

  3. goodness…no wonder you crawled in under the empty hangers to catch your breath with that program going on…sounds like a crazy time in your life but also like a time with lots of things happening and carrying great potential…

  4. Filled with images here. Yes, you were definitely busy in that time period. Sounds like a challenging time, but also one which brought rich rewards.

  5. “Just to let your essence
    Seep into the ceiling crack” … Wow. I feel that.

    By the energy generating
    Bowel of your house” … Wow X 2. I feel that.

    “And cure your aging and your breath” … [whistle] That line is phenomenal.

    What a great response to the prompt, choosing something you wrote in ’99. Excellent idea! Loved it.

  6. wow! to the writing… sounds like one of those years everything hits at the same time

  7. those are some pretty psychodelic shoes in the pic…rocket science eh? seriously that would be a lot of fun…have a friend that works at the collider…would love to see that again…

  8. An interesting piece of your life…whew, I will not be able to cope up with all of those either ~

  9. This is awesome! Kind of gut-wrenching, but beautifully written. Love the story at the end, too. Well done post!

  10. This was one awesome poem.
    I love the gut-wrenching honesty.
    Lots of images going around my mind now.
    P.S I’ve done that closet thing…

  11. Very heavy, and so well written. Each line evokes the time, the place and your place in them. These were terrible times and the poem reflects them, pieced together no doubt from the scars that the times left on your heart/soul. The last stanza is outstanding.

  12. An aerospace engineer who writes poetry?!? Kinda cool…

  13. You’re amazing…every step of the way. Loved the poem. Loved it even more after I read your notes. And what do you know, poetry can be rocket science. 😉

  14. Yeesh. What a year. I like the way this is written–though no doubt at the time you were writing it wasn’t about it being liked or disliked–very original images, and looking at oneself from the outside, not to mention the last lines are genius. Excellent trip back to a distant planet.

  15. Phewwww… and, I would never have noticed the zebra sneakers if you hadn’t mentioned them…cool…. smiles.

  16. I could really relate to this write. enjoyed it alot. and yes, those experiments sound very cool (not as cool as the shoes, though 🙂 )

  17. It sounded a bit like a time in my life…it must have been a real pressure cooker for you.

    Also, it was interesting to read a “different you, in a different time” and see how you have chan ged and grown. As with art, no change, no groweth…and my how you’ve progressed.

    Thanks for sharing …
    Siggi in Downeast Maine

  18. A strongly told tale indeed. A good read.

  19. So cool that you could pull this out of the archives, and the photo too. So much going on for you then – what strength you have! Thank you for sharing this as it was written, you passed up the temptation we have to ‘fix’ our older work. Great share.

  20. Thank you for sharing a poem from back in the years – it makes it even more meaningful. You didn’t make that up from your recollection, that’s what you were living then. Great images of escapes – and destroying your house at the same time? Well, at least, leaving marks, prints.

  21. Powerhouse poem. Thanks for posting. Also thanks for sharing. The story behind the work makes it evocative; brings out empathy in this case. Gives us the readers the raison d’etre. It’s always amazing how we weather through these storms; writing seems to work as a kind of self therapy, I think.

  22. Wonderful opportunity to glimpse an individual’s history and their writing journey. Wish I’d done my 1999 now as it was a watershed year

  23. Wow, that was some heavy time you were going through…so much. I was separated at that time too from my ex-husband but my children were already grown and independent…much easier than still having teenagers. You definitely were making a statement with those shoes…love them!

  24. What super human coping abilities! I have a highly developed empathy component whereupon I will now retire to my bed with a duvet over my head for a least a week to recover from your trials:)

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