Dear Kandace,*

Your latest post has gotten me to ponder my own “collective” musings. Including some quips regarding my most recent experience of buying and renovating an “as is” townhome I call t-Rex.

I had given away almost all of my thrifted and gifted furnishings, art, etc. from my previous condo, for practical reasons and not to carry history with me. Imagination moved me forward.

My new home has been quilted together from Craig’s lists purchases (meeting the most interesting sellers), and shopping several different thrift stores. After the tearing up of carpet, washing walls and cupboards and every niche and cranny of 1200 square feet, I was left with an emptiness to fill.

As far as art, and I refer to each and every item I’ve gathered as art–and lovely and
lovable, even if its main purpose is practical and necessary. The 40 x 40 picture of a magnolia that matches my comforter hangs in my dining room. When I first noticed it online, I knew I had to have it for the bedroom, but it wanted to hang against a red wall in the dining room instead. From the comfort of the bedroom one can glance thru the hallway and view a giant magnolia blossom.

The dining room where The Magnolia resides, is home to a fun, round, yellow table that came to me via Craig’s List and has blessed me with another woman’s story—a story of how she came by the table and why she was in need of letting go of it. (She also told me about her love of French doors and how her bathroom has a lock because the French door doesn’t fit properly, but it belongs.)

I could go on and on about each item found or given and I should but I’m typing with one finger on my iPhone.* Also, my septuagenarian self says my last book IS my swan song and don’t write anymore. And that’s okay. My septuagenarian future is about something else, something I have yet to realize. But I thank you, Kandace, for piquing my interest in things I’ve stopped being interested in. I have been collecting and dispersing of various collections since I was in grade school (the salt and pepper shakers, the post cards, Nancy Drew and Bobbsey Twin books, dolls, and so much more). Now I only collect memories, not to write them down or to save them (I am contradicting myself), but to acknowledge them and say goodbye.

*now revising on my computer
* and subscribe to


Minnesota is not compatible
to my growth, it is too cold.

The Ice Age made it clear
Magnolias, you can live
here in SE China, here in Georgia.

My ancestors oppose the heat.

Civil wars and death–or just a robin
traveling against the season–
tossed Black / tossed Chinese:

Here I am, a Minnesota mutant.

Like a magnolia, I am
not white. It is only light
passing through. Mama
cooked tuna noodle casserole
and Daddy ate it.

Like a magnolia
–whose sepals never fuse–
my life is disparate
here a Black

there an Asian
everywhere, white.

He who chops down Magnolia trees is
not a horticulturist
historian or

I am almost ripe.
Taste wintergreen.
Soon, I will unzip myself
shed pollen,


About Sherry

Author. Poet. Teacher. Mentor. Chinese/Blackbird.

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