Linda Studley

Can't Put the Pen Down…

Archive for the tag “history”


Does the scent of the rose garden, aflutter
with wayward petals,
waft  through your open door?
Does it bring back memories of wild roses in June?

You stand silent in the historical village,
a transplanted log cabin complete with furnishings,
a lonely anachronism waiting
for familiar footsteps at the back door.

Few tourists will climb your steep stairs.
Some whisper of a face they’ve seen,
peering from the second story window, curtains twitching.
Ghosts may linger in this house
but I feel only peace.
Peace with a touch of sadness.

I imagine seeing my life, my home,
through an outsider’s eyes as they shake
their heads at the wood cook stove,
the gas lanterns, and the crank telephone.
“ How did they live like this” they ask each other.

And I hear the ghosts cry back “Well.
We lived well.
By the strength of our own hands
we cleared the land, built our home, grew our food.
We worked, we sang, we danced.
We cried, we laughed, we loved.
All else is meaningless.”

And I smile and nod as the silence flows
back into the corners of the room.
Be content ghost.
I hear you.

Human History

They say “we must learn from history”,
but what is history but the victory song
the minstrel sings to placate a new king
and gain a coin or two?

What is history but the ancient twittering
of vested interests?

Has it ever been possible to report without bias?
Has the manipulation of truth been the means
by which our evolution has been steered to this end?
Were hunting stories daubed onto cave walls accurate
or were they padding their count?

They also say “the truth will out.”
But perhaps the only thing we can trust
humanity to do consistently
is to lie to achieve cherished outcomes.

Single humans may be noble where
humanity seldom is.


A Morning a Hundred and Twenty Four Years Ago

My grandmother was born a hundred and twenty four years ago yesterday to a world where the light bulb was still a new invention.
A child of the industrial revolution, she unwittingly rode a wave of technology all her life.

From a horse drawn world where steam engines
puffed and clanked, revolutionizing industry and transportation, 
to the slow motion moon walk on our black and white TV.
Technology walked along side of her.
She never learned to drive.

She was born the same year barbed wire was invented.
She was born before the gramophone, zippers, and the internal combustion diesel engine.

She was born before teabags, the theory of relativity, and airplanes.
Before cornflakes, cellophane, sonar, automobiles, tanks, Lifesavers, crossword puzzles, radio, stainless steel, fortune cookies and pop up toasters.

She was born before bubble gum and penicillin, before canned beer and the Colt revolver, before ball point pens and computers, before Silly putty, the Slinky, and the atomic bomb.

She was born before jukeboxes, drive in theatres, and the pill; before Superglue, Teflon, and credit cards.

She died around the same time Ethernet, Bic lighters, and gene splicing were invented.
And I wonder if any single life will ever span such an era of change again?

Happy birthday Nanny.



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