31 May 2009

fool! don't you see now
that i could have poisoned you a hundred times
had i been able to live without you!



30 May 2009


carla coulson photo

during an unexpected detour {i still haven't arrived anywhere that even remotely resembles what i thought i'd have found by now} i tripped over a lot of things lying in my path to.... wherever i thought i was going...

for instance, a month or two ago i was looking for a challenging poetry lesson for one of the young students that i tutor in writing. the idea of haiku crossed my mind and five seconds after she complained about the constraints of 17 mere syllables, we were both hooked on the complex simplicity, the lull and force of writing haiku, of capturing moments in the same rhythm and a completely different light. flashes of light. glimpses of what i might otherwise not have told you, honest, courageous, brief, touching, strong, gentle, funny, poignant, subtle breaths of what was almost overlooked and whispered words of longing lost, held, found...

i've been writing haiku and sharing here and there, mostly on twitter, and in the meantime, have met some amazingly talented, creative, inspiring, supportive, fun and generous poets, writers and all-around interesting people, thoughtful and funny, i love funny, i need funny... and with some gentle encouragement that sincerely touched me, i've created a sparkling new blog to catch my fallen words shattered hopes scattered thoughts exhaled pieces together and molded into 17 syllables. 17 syllables that posses the potential to-- well-- you fill in the rest--

because the experience of haiku is personal, unique to each individual who reads it and different in the next moment if you choose to read it again. and haiku is accessible. anyone can find a laugh or a smile, a pause in a hectic day, a moment of peace, reflection, perspective, as your own thoughts echo in the deceptive depth of a single haiku.

most of you just haven't tried yet. i intend to change that. this is my effort. so please stop by ::chandeliers::on::the::floor:: and introduce yourself, and come back..often.. i'll post haiku and short poems {maybe some longer ones...who knows, go crazy!} throughout the day. i love getting to know all of you and your work. find me on twitter and we'll play #haikuwordgame together! i'm kinda shy so you might have to say hi first haha. i will start a list of twitter poets on my new haiku blog to keep the conversation moving.

so please enjoy the charming and charismatic nature of haiku poems that wink at you just when you think you're not looking. don't just read the few collected on my blog-- read as many as you can find. moments of your lives will forever be reflected and changed. {repeat if necessary}
x chantal {aka @inotherwords_c on twitter}

how everything turns away

© Eni Turkeshi Photography

About suffering they were never wrong,
The Old Masters; how well, they understood
Its human position; how it takes place
While someone else is eating or opening a window or just walking dully along;
How, when the aged are reverently, passionately waiting
For the miraculous birth, there always must be
Children who did not specially want it to happen, skating
On a pond at the edge of the wood:
They never forgot
That even the dreadful martyrdom must run its course
Anyhow in a corner, some untidy spot
Where the dogs go on with their doggy life and the torturer's horse
Scratches its innocent behind on a tree.
In Breughel's Icarus, for instance: how everything turns away
Quite leisurely from the disaster; the ploughman may
Have heard the splash, the forsaken cry,
But for him it was not an important failure;
the sun shone

As it had to on the white legs disappearing into the green
Water; and the expensive delicate ship that must have seen
Something amazing, a boy falling out of the sky,
had somewhere to get to and sailed calmly on.

w.h. auden’s musée des beaux arts


28 May 2009

:: blue sweater haiku :: {.....and another sapphire remembrance}

:: the bright blue sweater
lightens my dark exterior
then hang it back up

i have this bright blue cardigan that i wear often because i love the color and it's a nice contrast to the consistently black wardrobe that hangs in my closet. the other day with my sister {when i was in santa barbara} we somehow got on the topic of my blue sweater, i was wearing it that day, and one of us {i don't recall specifics} or perhaps both of us decided that a blue sweater haiku might be in order. so as she scurried around her apartment doin' something {again, i don't recall...} i scribbled down this blue sweater haiku, and in my usual indecisive nature, created a series of final lines for the haiku that i liked and i couldn't narrow it down to just one, thus i decided to create a blue sweater haiku series, because with the simple altering of the last line, each haiku meant something, signified something completely different. this is the first in a series i'll continue... and, as always, i adore the challenge of finding the perfect images to go along with each one.

and now, i'd love to stay and chat but i've got to get dressed and ready to go! i got a new yellow sweater the other day... perhaps the next installment...? we'll see.

and ps please if you haven't yet check out my sweet friend eni's photos you can see them all right here
i often use her images with my writing. they're so colorful, capturing moments of life... she has a great series of images on istanbul that i will share soon {where she lived for many years} and also on tirana, albania the beautiful city she calls home.

bonne journee

x c

26 May 2009

a sapphire remembrance is all i own--

Five miles above the Atlantic,
you fall into dreaming.
Somewhere between Paris and San Francisco,
the sky turns the color
of sapphire.

by a fellow twitter poet {sam} who wrote this for me last week.
{encore merci sam!} to see more of his sensitive and inspired writing
check out his blog or follow him on twitter @semaphore

image via jerry yoon photography

like waves

© 2009 Guy-Vincent

a poetic soul--

a blessing? or recipe for disaster...

i'm gonna go with both


25 May 2009

this is me......

image by {one of my favs} carla coulson

they can't understand
doesn't make it easier
to realize---


to realize---
doesn't make it easier
they can't understand

21 May 2009

cleverly disguised

© Eni Turkeshi Photography

ink-stained hands word-stained
pages rustle with the breeze
can't get you--
--out of my mind

20 May 2009

what i was going to say--

grab my pen and write

mundane things interrupt my--

stare off-- where are you


19 May 2009

a hush falls... on rue mademoiselle

rough day. been meaning to write for the past few days... in fact, i've been doing so, been writing so much, just not posting recently. i will. the haiku have been flowing..... i will also be back to communicating with all of you, i haven't forgotten. but i'm writing this late night post {in lieu of sleeping off this headache} because i received some news just now that saddens and slightly startles me, despite the fact that i knew.. one day.. it would happen. the beautiful sophie marie of mon bon chien in paris who touched something in us all with her devoted eyes and perfectly manicured paws has passed on in search of greener grass, more squirrils to chase, and walks with cedric that never end. i miss her presence already. and in heavy-hearted haste, tried to capture her sweet, gentle, patient, loyal spirit in this poem:

though i knew
one day it would arrive--
still my heart--

skipped a beat
sweet face tender eyes
baby in her paws
resting her chin
patiently attentive
as she'd sit waiting
for the next adventure

ears alert to the sound of
biscuits dropping on the floor

or the infamous sliding door--
gentle loyal soph soph sniffing the air with curiosity
found her way into our hears and smiles
{as well as the biscuit cabinet, the kitchen..}
and into her french
quartier and our laughter
the golden

pink painted paws touch softly
the sidewalks of paris
now only in our sweetest memories

and every time we pass
the window of her shop

somehow we know
she's still there
crunching nostalgic dreams

and squirrels yet to chase
and on occasion {though cleverly disguised

as only a diva so artfully can}

tapping her tail on the floor over
her next mischievous but ever harmless trick
her next meal her next hug from harriet

daily caresses of small eager hands
who come from all over paris
to pet her soft {shedding everywhere} fur
on rue mademoiselle
and her next steps

into the forest she knew one day

she'd run through once more
in our bittersweet dreams

from squirrels in seattle to tempting baguettes and birthday parties on rue mademoiselle, the infamous, almost 14-year-old golden retriever with pink nail polish has retired from her position as princess of the boutique mon bon chien paris, leaving both joy and emptiness in our hearts. we still expect her to awake out of the deepest sleep and come out of nowhere just to sneak another biscuit. from all sides of the world, we remember her sweet eyes, her silly ways, her eyebrows that told stories of their own, and her devoted owner harriet, who started her doggie bakery business so that she could spend every day with sophalina. sending love and peanut butter kisses to you both, and dearest diablo {soph soph's rascal of a little brother.}

my puppy poulet {the one jumping here in the picture} learned his best tricks from sophie marie, he grew up in her sparkling shadow: how to guard the treats and how to sneak extra, patience and fidelity, guilt and begging as well as pouting to get what he wants {ok, that last one he may have learned from me}, his kindness to other dogs and feisty guarding of the bone, how to dress to impress and confidently wear pink, and soph's trademark move he does every morning that makes me laugh and think of sophie, the rollin' on the back with the legs flailing about it the air move.

you guys are the best thing that ever happened to us....
can’t imagine where we’d be without you.

i will write more mon bon chien stories soon {and please check past mbc posts here.} images: from the mon bon chien site where you can order biscuits online shipped all over the world, and from my camera last summer when i spent some quality time with soph. poulet {my little guy} is performing his trademark move above in the photo and sophie is, as ever, begging gracefully by his side.

"sweets to the sweet, farewell!"

13 May 2009


some things can't be helped

you know you shouldn't but you--

and for a moment--

image via jerry yoon photography

12 May 2009

somewhere in between

tells me stories when
he's half asleep but all mine
awake in a dream

11 May 2009


{but ya, you're careless}

-- but you don't know
and you don't know what else to be,
so you're careless
maybe it's how they taught you
maybe it's what they didn't show
maybe you think it's the only way--
and you never know--

but what you believe--
whatever that may be,
don't really say--
the rest is suspect
only trust yourself
to save, dismiss, inflict-- the pain
and not know the extent--
but if only you could--
but you just don't know

so you're careless
in the words, in the actions,
in the brush of the hand--
the curve of the lips--
the shrug of the shoulder--
but not in your eyes

yet you're careless
quand meme
you're careless
maybe you decided long ago
maybe you think it won't hurt
maybe you think it's the only way
-- gives mask to the fears
don't let yourself realize--
of that i'm certain
and it takes courage to feel
and it takes another kind of strength
to give in, to show, to not walk away, to care--
but you've grown accustomed to your ways,

so you're careless
in all the moments
-- save the glimpses in between
when you see
and i know
but you don't know
and you don't know-- i know--
because you're careless

maybe you decided long ago
to be careless
in the words, in the actions,
in the brush of the hand--
the curve of the lips--
the shrug of the shoulder--
but not in your eyes

just-- careless
maybe you can't help it
and maybe i can't help it
still you're careless
but your eyes--
but i know--
but you just don't-- know, yet--
you may be careless
and somehow--
and maybe one day--
-- and in time
and with time--

and i'm here
to experience details of the world
and falter, and stand
the sadness, fear, and you
in all its intricacies
somehow i've the courage to endure
and i will, and you'll find the way--
i believe you've the strength to care
and so i withstand, at times impatient
and mostly i believe
and i don't care--
and i don't care, any less

{but ya, you're careless}

images: jerry yoon photography

10 May 2009

remember when....

image: elle moss

i found the perfect card for my mom today, it said:

mom remember when i was a kid and you wanted me
to grow up and be something?
...you should have been more specific

my dad laughed out loud in the store when i showed it to him.
and my mom LOL'd when she read it, because
fortunately or unfortunately this card basically says it all, that's me.

{aaaaaand yes, that's me, below there,
trying to be something..}

i also wrote her this haiku
{hey, a haiku from me, imagine that!}

when there are no words

just your smile, your hug i know--

yes, i know-- me too.

hope you all enjoyed the day with moms or memories
or at least some laughter......

now, i've got to go and be 'something'
......any suggestions??

wrote another poem today,
will share it in the morning. bonne nuit x


ashes and wine

been a bit
ailleurs this week {ie somewhere else} was literally supposed to be in santa barbara visiting my sister... and then the jesusita fire started, and everything got...smokey, so to speak. so i didn't go to santa barbara and instead kept my eye on the fire, the evacuations, the devastatingly captivating images of the fire in the mountains and streets of a place i'd once known as home. beautiful and nostalgic images in my mind of my years spent in the gorgeous town of santa barbara were dominated, more than anything, by my constant concern for my sister's safety. and i twittered a lot. and i don't mean anxious chatter or jittery fidgeting {though restlessness abounded} but i mean literally twittered about the fire, read constant updates on twitter, and got way too much information for my overly active imagination that proceeded to run away from me.

anyway, during the worst night of the fire, sometime well after midnight as they were still evacuating people, i needed distraction but couldn't look away long enough to find one. and my dad, lost for any way to really help me calm down, said in a serious-bordering-on-exasperated tone "why don't you, just, write some poems or something." alas it's not easy for an engineer integrated circuit designer dad to have an overly creative, imaginative, emotional, sensitive {etc..} daughter, but he tried. and in fact, about a half an hour later i found myself absorbed in turning the verbose, redundant thoughts that were overwhelming my mind at a furious rate, into simple, sleek, perfectly shaped haiku poems.

if you haven't noticed, i've been a bit obsessed with haiku lately. it all started just with me attempting to find a fun form of poetry to work on with one of the girls i tutor {hi olivia ;)} and then i got kind of hooked.... because the challenge of streamlining my thoughts into seventeen syllables became fascinating, and rewarding. and helped to clarify, and speak louder than i'd anticipated, and set these thoughts to a new rhythm. then i worked on haiku with another one of my students {hi abby :)} and we were all hooked. at times the rhythm lulls me into..something...somewhere else...

and especially on this fiery night, it soothed my fears a bit. and took me away. i posted the haiku on twitter each time i wrote a new one, one after another, hoping that anyone else who was worried about the fire, might too, find some element {other than fire :)} of comfort in the brief words. and how gratifying to hear from readers that in fact, they did.

here are some of the poems i wrote during those tense days in the beginning of the jesusita fire in santa barbara, and a few of the spectacularly calamitous images of the fire. the flames were all along and above the 101 freeway, and my sister said that while driving on the freeway beside the fire, it was hard to look away {though dangerous, as she was driving} from the dramatic view.

and all along, the song ashes and wine by a fine frenzy has been playing in my head... {santa barbara is known for its vineyards} and in fact, funnily enough, it's playing on my sterio as i type this. 'don't know if our fate's already sealed. this day's a spinning circus on a wheel ... there is nothing left to say but is there a chance, a fragment of light at the end of the tunnel, a reason to fight? is there a chance you may change your mind? or are we ashes and wine. the day's still ashes and wine, or are we ashes..'

it's the not knowing
and knowing what you know won't
stop fire from burning

a sky so dark, thick
air, smoke hard to remember
yesterday's calm blues

we sit and wait, i'm

here on twitter while she's there,

watching fire and news

it's the little things
you want to hold on to when
it's time to let go

she sees fire light the
mountains, sky, smoke in her eyes
close mine, i see her

ash falls from the sky
gentle like snow nothing's as
it seemed anymore

you don't feel until
it touches you, don't see 'til
you look in their eyes

images via latimes and noozhawk

05 May 2009

train music

© Eni Turkeshi Photography

wow, i wrote this poem years ago on a train {imagine that} going from bordeaux back to paris, i scribbled it down on an old piece of scrap of paper in my purse..... at the time it meant something completely different to me than what it whispers to me today as i read it over and over after having found it tucked away in the files of my old laptop. it's startling how much it still relates to my life in yet a completely different way... almost prophetic.... big thanks and teşekkürler to eni, it's your gorgeous albanian train photo that reminded me to look for this in the first place. the way past and present, future and memory all blur together - suspended - speeding past in slow motion, through an air that's both very much the same, familiar and yet transformed - changed - leaves me sitting here perplexed, yet i can't help but feel some breath of hope. and this image, this photo, inspires another poetic sentiment within me, which i will share another time. perhaps that whisper i heard was destiny, or maybe just a haunted whistle of trains past.

train music

empty parking lots and street signs
my reflection and reflections
looking out looking in
music and time melt together
not sure how fast we’re going
empty words and broken dreams
looking forward
signs in the distance
going back
not sure how fast we’re going
music and time melt together
looking out looking in
my reflection and reflections
empty parking lots and street signs

04 May 2009

dizzy glimpses

image here

my mom said something about a whirling dervish the other day
and suddenly i couldn't hear anything else she was saying
because i was struck with this thought, this image, as my head spun
with the realization. how better these days, than to stand back
and watch my situation from a far, to equate it to a mere dance,
one that others don't often understand but continue to watch
because they wonder what will happen and can't seem to look away,
all at once perplexed, paralyzed, skeptical, transfixed, confused and captivated.

and thus, here i stand,
a whirling dervish of headaches and anxieties
dressed up in flowing prescription medications,
swept up in occasional blurry glimpses of hope,
downward spirals of despair, with a restlessness
that leaves me questioning how i'm still standing,
a caress soft and warm, a gentle breath of air
and deliciously dizzy spins at desire....

or in other words, in the more concise form of haiku that seems to be
twirling about {not to mention twittering about} in my head these days....

a whirling dervish
of occasional dizzy
glimpses at desire

01 May 2009

happy 1er mai and bon week-end

ahhhhh the days when i was young and free in paris {haha, uh...about two years ago} i loved 1er mai. it usually rained {hey paris in the spring} but everyone had the day off which meant that the night before was an extra night to go out to some soirée until the wee hours when april turned softly {or often, not so softly} into may........

then in the morning {when i was on my way home, ahh to be young again...haha} and all day long, vendors would sell {they still do, i'm just not there, so i'm using the past tense to capture the bitter..sweet... nostalgia that sets in for me...and in case you didn't sense it, that was purposefully overly dramatized, perhaps on account of the amount of coffee i've had thus far today...but nevertheless...back to my musings..}

vendors stand about the streets selling small bouquets of the precious lily of the valley {en francais: muguet} that friends and family exchange on 1er mai. {certain people close to me at the time weren't french and were rather oblivious to this amazing tradition, and thus every single year, i'd have to nudge and hint and finally say, "get me some of those flowers on your way home" well, it always worked, quand meme}

so anyway, just wanted to quickly post these longings before running off to press the coffee that's been sitting in the pot for far too long already.........yes, more coffee.

et s'il te plait, get me some of those flowers on your way home. merci.

bisou bisou ♥c