“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan



A painting that never was.

Well, it was for a little while, not true I guess that it never was, else how could I be showing you? But I got frustrated and painted over it and I even think I glued stuff onto it; I'll have to track down its poor bones and see.

Lots of things in life that never was. You know? Never was time/opportunity/want-to-enoughness for my first real boyfriend to ever buy me flowers, he said he couldn't find any exotic enough, I think about that even to this day, a million years later, and wonder why I just didn't laugh at him cause I knew he was lying, knew I just didn't matter enough for him to take that time, knew it then, and know it now and it still pisses me off because it jumped to my mind very first thing when I thought about never-was. And funny how when I think about never-was, I think only of regrets or bad things or hardness. Never was enough money for this or time for that. Surely there has been a good never-was or two. Never was a cat like Maggie who curled inside my heart and just took it over - that's a good thing. Never was an ever-wonderful like the ever-wonderful Michael who keeps me in pens and cokes and gasoline and feeds me daily and watches me not eat half of what he's paid for and never complains about it - a very good never-was.

But mostly that's like trying to prove a negative, those regrets and missed phone calls and bad decisions, and not all of them are true regrets, now that I really ponder this, a lot of them are never-wases I just thought I should feel sad about. And they are all in the past, which makes me wonder if the ever-wonderful Michael is a never-is but no, that just brings up a whole different train of thought cause he never is on time, which is not a secret to anyone so I can say it right out loud. No, I guess he is a never-was cause it's the comparison to others that I'm thinking of, and that is the past, so I'll let it stand. This is confusing stuff - never was such confusing stuff.

From the past.
Never was taught to swim as a child and
never was a cereal box I didn't read while eating the cereal and
never was expected to do anything but
grow up,
get married,
have babies,
but never was marriage and never was babies,
and never was ever an occasion to wear a floor length dress.
Never was able to whistle and
never was much of a cartoon fan and
never was tall
until the summer between 9th and 10th grades and
never was a loser when playing Scrabble and
never was scared of driving stick-shift cars and
never was concerned
about whether the windows were automatic either and
never was shy about wearing bikinis and
never was comfortable at parties and
never was there a front porch
as wonderful as my grandmother's.

In the summer, in the evenings, surrounded by silence and stars. Never was anything better to me then. Now it is those same summer evenings, under those same stars - never was a night the stars weren't up there, even if hidden by clouds - but a boat instead of a porch.

That is an is, though, there just is nothing better.
Never was a season like summer
to set me to silliness and dreaming.


  1. Never was a painter with words like you to take me there and make me see it, all of it, every detail. You made me laugh and regret and wish for and smile and sigh and smile some more. Never was anything like this life, was there? This is a gem. You are a gem.

  2. sheesh, you made me do so much thinking and wishing and dreaming and wondering with this post tonight...and the porch as wonderful as your grandmother's porch.....oh me too....mine too !....oh, the memories are still so brilliant in my mind.

  3. art is like that ... so are old boyfriends ... and the memories holding all of our "never was's"

    i would relish a scrabble game with you (relish is big score ;000)

  4. Never had a sister; just 3 brothers. All great, but no sister who could look up at the stars & talk about everything, to look at each other & go "WTF?!" in our heads at the same moment; eat chocolate together & lick our fingers, read Alcott & compare our favorite parts of Jo & Amy...
    Then your sister embodies far away on the map & ya just gotta smile...
    Gotta say "hell yeah" to the whole ride or none of it at all.
    *happy sigh*

  5. Never was a post of yours that I didn't enjoy reading.

  6. Never was a day where I didn't appreciate silliness and dreaming. Indeed food for thought, but never was is a good thought to think.

  7. you seriously painted over that wonderful painting with the little boat (at least to me ) house in it? seriously?! why? I LOVED that painting...if I knew you were going to do that I would have bought it, didn't know it was for sale. Kind of feel like I was too later picking up a puppy at the shelter and they put it down...and I know I am being harsh, but that is just the mood I am in, so sorry already.

  8. Michelle - You are so kind, but no worries. The boathouse painting is alive & well & intact & still hanging on my wall. This painting, the one I covered over, was being worked on at the same time, so you felt the similarities. I kind of like that actually. This one, the never-was painting never got any further than what you see at the top of this post. Almost a tree.

    Thnak you for being so protective of my little boathouse.


  9. What part of you does this writing come from? If only you could bottle it...I would buy the whole caseload.
    I love the way you play with words...it's like a stream of consciousness that flows out of you without any effort. We get to catch little glimpses of how your mind wraps around a concept, and it is always fulfilling in unexpected ways...just never know where you are going to go.

  10. Never was a better time to have found your lovely blog -- pleased to meet you!


  11. Your writing is on the plate I feed my soul from ~ thank you

  12. never did I dream that I would meet so many wonderful women who can mirror my feelings and my soul so well .... you are one of them.

  13. Oh, I love this. It makes me want to pen a never was list of my own.


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