per usual,
my winter art is solitaire
the queen of hearts comes first
followed by diamonds &clubs
then spades
spades are always last
that’s just how it goes
when there’s an absence of green
&because the heart knows
it’s a red &black world,
it chooses queen

Gerda Wegener for Real Toads


20 thoughts on “Queen

      1. Today, this is what strikes me:
        “per usual,
        my winter art is solitaire”

        We can’t help but feel a certain level of melancholy and loneliness this time of year.

        This cracks me up every time I read it: “the queen of hearts comes first” … No matter how sad you are, you’re going to get yours, so to speak. 😉 Only after you get what you need physically can you begin to tackle this: “followed by diamonds &clubs” … The diamonds are on your wedding ring, so you’re saying that you can’t do what you need to do to take care of your marriage unless your body is sated. (It does keep everything balanced, doesn’t it?) The clubs belong to your kids … sports, events, extra-curricular activities … the same applies; you have to take care of Momma before you can (nicely) do what you have to do for the kids, including driving them around to all the places/activities they have to go.

        This is sad: “spades are always last” … This is a gardening reference. It’s what you love doing most. Where you find peace and rest. But it’s the last thing on your list. It’s also a metaphor for tending your garden, which can be personal, familial, or spiritual in reference. Basically you’re talking about “digging” in a general sense; it could apply to any number of areas in which you’d like to “go deeper.” (Hey, maybe it’s even sexual!) Also, spades are used for digging up weeds. But you’re barely staying afloat. You hope to keep a few flowers growing out of your garden (you as a person, your head, your heart, your “fruit” so to speak), but you definitely don’t have time to really work on the things that are holding you back. The things that are getting in your way and keeping you from really flourishing at an optimum level.

        The absence of green line is about being strapped financially.

        “&” is a necessity (whatever that represents to you); it keeps your heart alive, despite all these other challenges.

        I love that the world is red and black, not black and white. I feel like you just reinvented everything for me. Red, of course, represents blood. I think you’re saying that when you’re as weighed down by life as you are, there is no sweet and pretty “white.” You certainly can’t feel/find the “good.” All you see, at the moment anyway, is bloodshed and darkness. That’s why your heart chooses Queen. It’s a blast from your past and reminds you of a simpler/happier time in your life. Perhaps when you were a teenager/young adult. Besides, music is ALWAYS the answer. It’s the ultimate healer. And sometimes, the louder and screamier, the better. 😉 Am I right?!

  1. This reminds me of Stendhal– honestly I don’t remember the book very well but it makes me think of the kind of politicking one does to survive– especially women in everyday life. K.

  2. These pics really seem to ask for rhyme, don’t they? I have noticed that everyone I’ve read so far has used rhyme and strong meter–I think they have that charmingly contrived feel of a period satirizing itself, and rhyme suits that stylistic sort of approach very well–anyway, you’ve certainly done that here, and your lift-off point on the cards is perceptive and personal, both. Solitaire is a tortuously frustrating game–one may as well fancy oneself a queen. Really enjoying getting to experience your work and point of view.

  3. I love the tension between chance and choice here — this is solitaire, but the player chooses her cards. There’s something sadly fallen about the progression — hearts, diamonds, clubs then spades (spades always last, digging the graves). Could be a Bessie Smith song, swigging the queens. Loved it.

  4. In absence of green–in a world of red and black–choose the queen (of hearts). it reads like a double narrative, telling of the solitaire-player and then about the queen as if she has her own story, too. Thanks for such engagement! I hope your new-year start so far’s been grand.

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