Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Lulu The Cat

I wrote this for an online blog called I'll Write Your Life Story on a Postcard back in 2007. The blog doesn't exist anymore, however, here is the text about my sweet cat who just recently passed. She was definitely a trooper moving from place to place with grace and the willingness to follow me wherever I landed. My dry sense of humor doesn't quite do her justice, but her story needed to be told. She is surely missed....RIP my feisty one... 

Lulu The Cat

Lulu arrived on a whim. Her brother Pierre was snatched away from his mother two days before. When Pierre left, she didn't seem to notice and didn't care. 

In the new residence, Pierre appeared lonely as his eyes had a solemn glow. The new mother made a decision. It didn't take that long. After all, Lulu was just as fluffy and scruffy as her sibling. They belonged together and the new mother had no doubt that this was the right thing to do. When the new mother brought Lulu into the household, the two seemed to get along fine in the ground floor apartment with the balcony that faced the courtyard and a hot tub.

As the two settled in, they had their moments. Sometimes they got along, but most often Lulu ignored Pierre especially when the friend of the new mother put him on a skateboard and he skated away. She was not happy with this shift of attention, so she decided that all would be best served if she grew at a faster pace than Pierre. She out-ate her brother two to one and her fluffiness expanded rapidly.

The eating paid off. Lulu was pegged the “powderpuff princess” and she accepted her new stature as any French kitten would do. Pierre scoffed at Lulu's new status and began his retreat which would eventually end with him leaving the family.

Confirming her royal status, Lulu strutted around not wanting to be picked up. She only wanted to be stroked on demand, and for the longest time, she kept her distance, avoiding visitors that entered the flat. 

Time went on and Lulu’s attitude began to change. As the new mother's belly got bigger, Lulu had a breakthrough. She started sleeping with the new mother, curling up beside her. This new behavior perplexed the new mother. She thought perhaps the catnip that she placed in lonely socks was finally paying off.

Lulu was growing up and their relationship grew stronger until the baby appeared and took Lulu's place in the bed. Lulu, once again, kept her distance, which saddened the new mother. The family coexisted in a workable way with the baby keeping Lulu at bay.

A few years went by and Pierre decided that the house was too crowded so he moved out. Lulu was fine with this as well as the new mother as her hands were full with a sprouting baby whose cat-like tendencies kept her on edge. Lulu had an influence.

More years went by and while the new mother was attending to the child, Lulu was dealing with a few new residents. Dante and Bullet moved in, but they were eventually snatched by the cycle of life. Lulu didn't have a problem with this either, as she liked being the main attraction.

Lulu had a deviant side. When no one was looking, she managed to catch and kill an entire family of groundhogs, including the big ones. Although French in demeanor, she had a few Thatcher-like tendencies. 

A few more years later, a new kitten joined the family and the child, who was now school-aged, named it Ocean. Lulu kept her distance for a while but learned to co-habitat with her spunky younger sibling, who everyone swore was half-bunny.

Today Lulu remains the princess of the household, showing off with a dance or two at the door while the whole family beckons her to come inside. She once again cuddles with her mom, curling up on her lap while she works.

Sometimes Lulu even shows her affection to the child who is now a lot bigger than her. As far as Ocean goes, their relationship remains mixed. Sometimes love, sometimes anger, and sometimes indifference. 

When Lulu reached 17, her adventurous spirit began to wind down, and in November of 2016, the cycle of life took her back to rest on the throne in the sky. 

Thursday, May 26, 2016

South Ledge - Song Lyrics from the 90's

Song Lyrics from the 90's. I wrote this after reading a story in Smithsonian about an island off the coast of Massachusetts I think....I imagined myself being there sitting on the ledge in the picture of the wall that surrounded a lighthouse. 

Lyrics by Julie Gengo

A picket fence
A daisy chain
We walk on through
In a dream

Your hand to touch
A masquerade
Of the same old scene


But now
Just you and me
We’re sitting here
Watching the sky go by
On our south ledge
The world stands still
And the angels wait
For the by and by
For the by and by

This old place
Still remains
Somewhere sits
In my dreams

You said so much
I remember now
My memory
Has consumed me

(Chorus x2)

But now
Just you and me
We’re sitting here
Watching the sky go by
On our south ledge
The world stands still
And the angels wait
For the by and by
For the by and by

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Ode to 976

Written circa 1998 in Pacific Beach, CA at a wonderful cafe called 976. I think it's still there....

Ode to 976

by Julie Gengo

In the midst of madness
I stop to shudder
What wonders beneath
The bread and butter
All lies on tables
So taught and clever
In morning arise
The first endeavor
To unite the airy wisps of rain
With roots that bring
The first of Spring
In red & orange
& violet-blue
All eyes amazed
Upon the hues
As passion flows
Between the feet
In droves of tantalizing
That rests inside
This field of dreams
Surrounded by
Bright color schemes
That you or I
Had nothing to do
Except to marvel
At the view
& the lips of lips
So succulent
& the bells that ring
In unison
& blades that tickle
The best of men
Save but a minute
To embellish them
As sensuous
As the river let
& storms that come
Without regret
A serenity
Not to forget
This Spring that brings
All happiness

Tuesday, May 24, 2016


Written sometime in 2009 in Cardiff by the Sea, CA on Cambridge Street to be exact. Ocean view....

Julie Gengo 

Sweeping away debris from excerpts of happiness
Past experience plays note to moments of now
All the while tripped up by images of incompetence
Holding on to a dream and reasons why
Like trying to catch raindrops on your tongue
One by one

Where to now?
A harbor of pieces of not wanting to do this
Acceptance feels like being stranded in desert sands
Under scorching rays of energy
Hope sinks asunder
Where rainbows exist only in the oasis of the mind

The trees lend unwitting solace between branches
And leaves flicker bouncing light through window pains
Glass separates the colors of wash-away footprints
Stuck in stone
Over time

And Now is diminished as angels flee
So fast
So vigorous
Their ephemeral nature dissolved forever

Sometimes you look up
The sky begins to show signs of surrender
To circumstance and reason

Why we hold on to these days
Is blistering thunder on its last clash?

A serenity of where we need to be

Monday, May 23, 2016

Time - Song Lyrics from the 90s

By Julie Gengo

Time, few moments in which I distinguish
Time, of destinies half made
Time, in the echo I relinquish
Time, thoughts slip and fade
Time, in the amount of time that it takes to rearrange
The words on this page
Time, I could be gone forever
Oh Time, before thee I pray

White linen strew across the floor
Invading my mind
The less there is the want is more
Measuring our measuring our

Time, I savor not this moment passing
Time, such a disgrace
Time, wish it away forever
Time, so many mistakes

White linen seems to suffocate me
Invading my space
Oh how it seems to confiscate me
So many so many

Where are we without our savior?
I could be gone be gone forever
Oh time

White linen strew across the floor
Invading my mind
The less there is the want is more
Until the end, until the end, until the end of, until the end of
Oh time
My time
Oh time


Another short poem written some time in 2012

by Julie Gengo

celebrating solitude in the midst of forgiveness
sleepy eyes close as the voices continue
blessed by the riles of willfulness
and sanctity of corners where pockets bear abundance

Friday, May 20, 2016

Jeremy and Beatrix by Julie Gengo

Here's another one from a few years back....I wonder what I was thinking back then and who about???? Enjoy...Listening to Parquet Courts while I post this....

Jeremy and Beatrix

By Julie Gengo

As she usually does on Saturday morning, Beatrix was pulling up the weeds with vigor. She liked to make a contest of it all, challenging herself to uproot an entire section with one try. This made her happy and at times, prompted her to shout “YES” out loud.

This time, her yes was particularly loud, so loud that it caught the attention of an unexpected visitor.

“I heard that,” Jeremy said as he turned around to say hello.
“Hello. It's Beatrix isn't it?” he shouted back as he leaned his bike against the fence that encapsulated her garden from the rest of the world.

“Hi,” she said as she peered up from the brim of her hat. “What can I do for you?”

“I was just on my way to town to pick up some tickets for this band that I hear is really fantastic when I heard you shout. I thought you might need some assistance.”

He didn't wait for her to reply. “I'm Jeremy and it's lovely to meet you,” he said as he peered over the fence, closer to where she was working. Jeremy had wanted to do that for quite some time, but his nerve always got the best of him.

In a normal day, he just looked up and smiled as he passed by, but today was anything but normal. He had woken up with a good feeling about everything. There was a buzz in the air that warmed his fingers, turned off his doubt, and kept him from riding on.

“Can I come in?” he said, without hesitation.

“Yes, by all means, she said, "but no, I'm fine.”

Beatrix stood up, wiped her hands on her dress and reached out to shake his.

“Town? Aren't you taking the long route?” she said.
Beatrix was curious. She had seen him before, passing by on this bike. He always seemed to be smiling. She liked the idea of smiling back but usually just kept on gardening as if she didn't notice.

“Well, it's more scenic this way and besides I was interested in what you were growing there next to that bunch with the small white flowers,” he said.

“Turnips,” she replied.
Beatrix had a thing for turnips. Their round onion like body had a splendor that made her happy and they also worked well in her soups.

“Perhaps you would like to try some sometime? Turnips make my soups a bit sassy,” she said as she smiled.

“Okay then.” Jeremy lifted his eyebrows in anticipation. He liked the idea of soup with turnips, but her words took him by surprise. After all, she had always been a mystery. He imagined her to be rather reserved and he thought she was pretty, yet completely unknown.

“Can I call you B?” He said.

“You can, if you like,” she said. “I mean not to be rude, but Beatrix must remind you of...” She interrupted. “The Potter stories? Well it’s not like I have friends that are mice running around and a pet rabbit named Peter. The cat takes care of the mice and...well.” Beatrix laughed. Jeremy amused her.

Jeremy on the other hand felt very stupid for ever bringing up the subject. His words were losing their way and his face turned a blush rose that matched the flowers behind her.

He did muster up enough of whatever it is he needed to ask Beatrix to join him to see the band that was playing the following week. She thought about it for a moment and told him she would think about it and let him know soon. “I have to check with Mrs. Puddle Duck to see if she can keep an eye on the soup,” she giggled.

“Super," Jeremy said as he hid his face in his hands. "I'll pop 'round in a few days.” He then made his way down the road and in a few moments he was out of sight. The idea of turnip soup and Beatrix kept him smiling the entire way into town. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Other People's Wishes - by Julie Gengo

Artwork by Blu Gengo
It's been a while since my last post. This is a flash piece from a few years ago. I'm working on a new series about music and some new lyrics with vocal melodies that you'll have to imagine, I imagine.....stay tuned....


With no commitments, meetings or appointments pending, Celia slipped into the park through the side entrance. Clouds were meeting in anger. Carefully choosing a time when strollers were off to indulge in lunch, and lovers too consumed to notice, she sat down on the edge of the fountain and paused. The cherubs were smiling as she dipped her hand into the brisk water. The wind tensed her body.  She could feel the chill rising up her dress.

Celia took a long, full breath, then reached in. Her slender fingers moved toward a penny. She clasped it in her palm, moved her hand out of the water, then up to her ear. She closed her eyes.

This penny spoke to her as they always do – others people's wishes echoing in her head. Some reeked of love and marriage while some resembled a desire for someone or something to work out.

She remembers one coin, a penny from 1983 that was embedded with a double request. A precocious boy who lost his father to a strange disease wanted a replacement – a dad who would take him to the park and play with his other request – a dog. A dog with no specific measurements or color or any distinctive markings. Just a dog.

His mother couldn't afford a dog now that her husband wasn't there to make things work out, the way they used to. Her lifeless job also came without enough money for the two of them, and a dog to live on. All of this in a city where people move in circles that are closed and void of sensation.

Another wish she remembered was from a tall thin man who yearned for his long lost love to reemerge and walk into his arms; the place he thought she belonged. She left him for another man who had a direct path to a prestigious future; a man who wouldn't take no for an answer. The moment the other man saw her, he couldn't let go and did whatever it took to claim her even at the expense of another's heart.

This other man didn't care that she was involved with the tall thin man, and she, she was caught up in the whirlwind of life. For her, it was the easy thing to do.

The tall thin man thought he would grow old with her as that is what she said while lying next to him, one night, when her supple rose-colored body was pressed against his in a small bed that barely fit the two. The tall thin man was now growing old with another woman; a woman who wouldn't take no for an answer.

Today the wish caught Celia off guard. It came from a shinny penny so new that she turned her head to see if the wisher was still around. A splash of light emerged from the clouds. This didn't distract her. She listened closely. This wish was different. Instead of hearing the wish directly from the wisher, she felt its violent nature; as if she were struck down by a dagger. She saw a women scurrying for her life. She thought she was seeing something that may not have happened yet. Her hands began to shake. She felt helpless, as though life was fleeing and she couldn’t catch hold of it.

Celia knew the woman was in a hopeless situation and for the first time, she added on to the wish in an effort to double its strength. She wished that the women would be cleared from danger and the attacker removed from her life. She wished hard and threw it back into the water then walked away in silence as the clouds began to part. Hints of sunshine followed her. She looked up and smiled.