Maiden Voyage

Hello out there!  Just an old-fashioned scribe, this is my maiden voyage into the world of blogging…Let me share my first online poem with you now…


Riding the bus

Fillmore 22

Jackson 3

On my way

Making the connection

Sitting in the shack

A little old lady walks up

takes one look at me and says

“Well not much excitement going on over here, eh?..”

And then she grinned a perfect grin, with perfect fake teeth

in a perfectly precision face, delicately lined

and framed with an old-fashioned chiffon scarf tied around her chin

A stemmed flower pin on her coat lapel

She had a big, beautiful lower hook nose

which set down impeccably into her features

And a twinkle in her eye, her face just glowed

She reminded me of someone

She looked like all of my grandparents put together, plus

an old friend or two

She sat down beside me and started talking

All of her 88 years poured forth in her wisdom, tried and true

Long-term observations, reflecting…

“Lived in the City all my life”, she began, “mostly in the Mission

but all over the City…

On New Year’s eve my sisters and me would go downtown and stay there

way past midnight–in dresses, mind you, girls didn’t wear pants back then 

In dresses we’d go out and stay out all night

They couldn’t do that now without trouble

We used to go downtown and see the parade

They had New Year’s parades on Market Street back then, you know

We could go there unhasseled, safely…

Yeah, I just came back from lunch at the senior center on Sutter

Back when I was young the Tenderloin was a classy neighborhood

The nicest places, classy clubs, there was a skating rink

and a really nice bowling alley

I used to work as a waitress in the bowling alley…

Yeah, back then times were nice, the streets were clean

No public garbage cans even, there was no need for ’em

’cause people kept their garbage at home…

Nobody had insurance and we never got sick

There were no people living on the street

not anything like today, nobody sleeping in doorways…

In the middle of the Great Depression, which I lived through, nobody

was sleeping in doorways, if someone was down and out

they knocked on the door and we brought them in and fed them

Mother left the door unlocked, and if someone was having a hard time

we’d take them in and feed them, that’s what people did…”

The bus came

We got on and sat side by side

Her stories ceased in the presence of other strangers

Her mind switching channels, perhaps

Back to the present and her intended errands

When her stop came, she said her goodbyes

and trucked on down the steps

with cane expertly in hand

like someone who could not be held back on account of

some age and lots of mean changes

She owned the streets because she was fearless

On the way back

Another woman

from another generation

Maybe in her 50’s

Waiting on the reverse connection home…

“It’s just the 3 Jackson now”, she informed, “the 2 bus stopped running at 8:00

on account of all the shootings up by the projects, you know

Up by Baker and Broderick, that’s where it’s bad, man, people getting

murdered, that’s why the 2 don’t run late no more…

I lived on Sutter for 33 years

In the Tenderloin no one bothers you

Down in the Tenderloin these days they just leave you alone

Not like the projects, they’ll mess you up there…

It’s the crack, it’s all because of the crack

That all started in the 80’s and just never let up

just got worse and worse…”

She then mumbled quickly about some personal association

Casually gesturing with her facial expressions and

shaking her head, wrinkling her nose, dismissing

Purposely blurring her words right then

as though it was not something she wanted advertised and

seemed to get lost in the traffic noises anyway

but must be included in this discourse

if only to show that she really did know from experience

Still shaking her head, rushing the sentence

and slightly waving her hand, signing it off, she said

“But naw…not for me…

all those people on the street

Crack friends, what kind of friends are those?

I’d call them on the phone and they’d always say

‘Can’t talk now, gotta go’

Gotta go, they gotta go score, that’s what

Gotta go find the next hit

And when they’re not high, they’re sleeping…

The rest of us are just waiting, have just been waiting it out for so long

for them to come back around

We’ve been waiting a really long time but it’s just not gonna happen

Too much damage, it’s too late

The damage has been done

It’s Satan’s candy, you know

The damage has been done…”

By then the bus had arrived and we got on together

When her stop came she told me God loved me

and then stepped off into the mean and beautiful

the eloquently ruthless unstoppable night


Most people grew up with numbers as a way of counting, measuring and keeping track.  Learning the numerical scale 1 through 10 is as much a fundamental learning tool in any childhood as the proud and noble junior achievement of reciting outloud the ABC’s.  When the child finally graduates into double digit territory, this also is a great and noble victory, and from there the possibilities are endless.  Numbers run the corporeal world through engineering, architecture, finance, censuses, ratings and just about any given material reference point.  Their logical properties are a major backbone to our very existence.  They make and break empires.  Numbers also skeletonize the natural world:  the amount of Earth’s rotations on its axis within a year, the length of the seasons, phases of the moon, formation of the stars, how long it takes for an egg to hatch or a tree to grow.  “There is power in numbers” is a statement commonly heard and, yes, there is some truth to that, which could be applied to many causes.  However, the power and magic of numbers goes beyond arithmetical calculations, far beyond our common dimensions and, in fact, symbolizes varying levels of the organic energy which holds the universe, any universe together.  Each individual digit (and its derivations) contains a basic vibration or principle of life and creation which stands on its own and underlies the progression of counting.  This concept is called numerology.

This numbers philosophy is rooted way back in ancient times, and its merging with our more conventional usage of mathematics exemplifies, on any plateau of knowledge or quest for truth, the merging of science and spirit.  It has been said that Pythagoras, the ancient Greek master mathematician who lived around the year 500 BC, was the very first recorded numerologist.  His mathematical findings blended the mystical symbolism of numbers with geometry, sound waves and the amazingly synchronized struture of the cosmos.  The insights of numerology are connected to and correspond with many other divination tools and findings, including the cosmic light rays (the rainbow spectrum), human and animal chakras (or energy centers), gemstones and other natural substances, astrological chartings and the mysterious language of the Tarot.

Numbers are everywhere, in the make-up of everything, and touch our lives on both basic and abstract levels.  They come to us in obvious forms as addresses and license plates; ticket, invoice, telephone, I.D. and other such randomly assigned numbers.  They also find their way to us in more subtle ways such as within the musical notes of a song, dimensions of a dwelling, significant calender dates, a noteworthy age or the passing of time, itself.  Everyone has their “lucky” numbers, ones they like and which always seem to follow them around and trademark their world.  Have you ever wondered why these numerical patterns keep spontaneously surfacing in your life?  What indeed makes them lucky?  There are generalized, “universal” interpretations of the numbers and then there are the more tailor-made versions, those that reflect who you are, where you come from and where you are going; very unique numeral combinations on very personalized levels.  And you can learn to corral those customized patterns through a numerology reading:  opening new windows on such angles of one’s life as character, personality, motivation, karma and destiny.  This, of course, is not to be confused with some sort of fortune-telling device, yet is for simply gaining a deeper wisdom and insight of your soul’s journey; its progression and development.  But first, it is important to hold some understanding of the individual numbers’ deeper meanings. 


The years just keep spinning on by

‘Round and ’round, that is

This great big merry-go-round of glowing dust

Spinning, spinning, and yet to be no more

Spinning off into the infinite nothingness of space

like rainbow nebulae

Spinning eternal

yet still always disappearing

from this wheel of seasons we have grown accustomed to

from our calender pages

our datebook schedules and common reality

Gone, gone, disappearing

from our everyday reckoning and maybe our memories

But pieces of the rainbow will always fall

like snowflakes of a storm in passing

scattered throughout each day

each moment of this life’s destiny

Decorating paths with little awakenings to the spirit

of something which remains

and exists apart from time, despite the way it passes

Tiny specks of dust, only to remind us:

An old woman’s garden

A tiny speck of dust

Forgotten walls of passage

A tiny spaeck of dust

An ancient toy on the shelf

tiny speck of dust

Ancient forest clearing

tiny speck of dust

The smell of rain on pavement

tiny speck of dust

Aroma of childhood walls

tiny speck of dust

That song on the radio

tiny speck of dust

Abandoned vine-grown farm

tiny speck of dust

Prehistoric houses

tiny speck of dust

Stained back alley streets

tiny speck of dust

Old backyard playgrounds

tiny speck of dust

Ghosts wandering ancient battlefields

tiny speck of dust

Cracked, lonesome highway

tiny speck of dust

Symbols behind the alter

tiny speck of dust

Ancient paintings on hidden walls

Just a tiny. tiny speck of dust

Bones surfacing in silt and sand

Only a single, tiny

speck of dust

The sun slants the shadows

on every fleeting afternoon

Littering the sidewalks of countless streets

with the endless debris of bantam sensory reminders

Tiny little pieces of revolving seasons

lost, and not recalled for so long

The years never stop and so the dust never settles

The glittering, floating residue of unspoken moments

the ones we thought were gone forever

Tiny speck of dust

drifting down

from a faraway star

Lands in the heart

Gets the senses all chaotic and reeling

Spinning out of control

like this system of time

which keeps us bound to a sense of loss


Exercises in letting go

Lessons in goodbye

First course:  the wind

Watch it scatter your still life

Carry away what you cherish and crave

It will bring it right back to your doorstep

It will blow in your heart’s desire

just to carry it off again, yet again

over some nondescript horizon

leaving you with a spectral’s variety

of promises, wishes and other silly tidings

Lesson number two:  the stars

Many a nightime’s shining gems

that you reach for and so desire

are really darkened, deadened nebulae

whose rays are still traveling through time

to show you the rarest shade of light

Lesson number three:  mind, body, soul

You may have touched all in another

but as they’re moving on, remember

As your path rolls on before you, always recall

faces spinning in and out of sight

like phantoms in the night

reside together forever in the house of spirit

Lesson number four:  belongings

Only take what you need

Only need what you can carry

Don’t hoard in fear, for if you give it all away

then your every requirement will be provided

Afterall, you belong to the universal collective

What you think are your personal holdings

is only an illusion

Lesson number five:  death

It’s inevitable

So live each day

like it were your last


About Unsungpoet

Life-long poet, numerologist, author of other previously unpublished works :)
This entry was posted in Numerology, Photos, Poetry and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Maiden Voyage

  1. Pauline Picchi says:

    The true intelligence, warmth, and high spirited Judi Kalinin shares her talented writing abilities with the world! Hurray for all of us!

  2. becca givens says:

    Congratulations on your Maiden Voyage ~~

  3. Samanthamj says:

    You are a very talented writer. I feel lucky to have found this blog, and to be able to read your words today. I especially loved the “Three Women”, and “Lessons in Goodbye” from this post… Thank you.

    • unsungpoet says:

      Thank you so much, you made my day…Those are two of my old favorites and they are buried deep in this blog. Thanks for taking the time to dig in a little, I am honored…

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