There are some truly beautiful people in this world. I could, sit here, tagging all of you, but instead, allow me a moment lacking brevity: there are some, so rich in spirit, they confess their heart openly; they pour out rich timbers that heal the soul, and caress the mind with thoughts tender enough to remove scathing memories, like the scars of legions we call the past; there are some so good to one another, race, creed, or color are only significant in sociological understanding; there is no contempt, nor are they disquieted by our pain, for that is what it is: “our pain,” as when one friend endures the trials of their faith, another friend is there to comfort the pangs of enduring; while they may assess the situation, they judge not the caliber in which the struggle was ascertained; nay, they count their blessings, just the same as some count stars- in a glance, for a pondered moment, or within a lifetime spent, occasionally, turning eyes towards the Heavens and praising the source of existence for the miracle of light and life beyond understanding- and they move, night and day, onwards with hope attained. My joy today is a wish that you all count yourselves as beautiful, because in my eyes, you truly are such as that. Thank you.
by Miranda Innaimo
It would seem by the contents of her luggage, the trip had been a success: there were trinkets obtained at memorial sites, receipts from extravagant restaurants, museum pamphlets, and a signed copy of a music album. Yet these things were tossed aside, and sorted garments of clothing brought swelling emotions to the woman’s heart.
A pale blue cardigan with a sleeve spotted by champagne: the woman could still recall the handsome man handing her the tall, slender flute, his eyes sparkling joy beyond the bubbly. They had sat near each other while upon the flight oversees, his elbow gently brushing against her own, her breath fluttering not only from the altitude. After sharing a bottle, it soon became obvious the woman would not use the services of a tour guide; the gentleman upon flight 403- with a relaxing personality, carefree poise, and with well-founded understanding of their destination- he suited her standards for exploration far better than whomever the travel agency had chosen as her guide.
A silk handkerchief, embroidered with his initials: attending an opera in a language neither could understand, quietly whispering their interpretations of the saga; the woman occasionally silently laughing to tears while the pageantry’s storyline unfurled in hushed giggles. He put his arm around her, the handkerchief slipped into her purse. Now, fingers tracing the embroidered letters upon the silk, and she bit her lip with the desire to be held like that again.
An evening gown, the shoulder strap broken at dawn after an evening of dancing: they had commemorated their final night overseas by swinging together upon a rooftop dance floor, the city lights shining upon them as they moved together. They were radiant, and the entire crowd melds together as a fading glow compared to their shimmering happiness. Held close, the woman felt his breath upon her hair while hearing him whisper sincerely, “I’ve never felt like this before.”
That morning at breakfast, the woman looked languidly across the kitchen table. “More coffee?” she asked. Her husband slid his mug towards her and continued scanning his business files.
After another moment of silence, she asked, “Would you like to go kayaking this weekend? We could go downstream, camp on the shore and see the stars come out.”
He lifted his chin from the manila folder, “We don’t own a kayak.”
“How about we attend a lesson Thursday evening? I’ve always wanted to learn swing dancing. There is a big band performing.”
Between sips of coffee, he casually reminded, “You know trumpets give me a headache.”
She continued, trying, “we could see the Hungarian movie playing at the theater tonight?” After he had consumed several bites of toast while putting a note in the margin of his paperwork, she nudged again, “the Hungarian movie, darling?”
He looked up, snapping close the file. “I’m working on a special account this evening, so I will be home later than I would like.” Her husband rose and left the table.
Bidding him farewell at the door, the woman placed the silk handkerchief in his breast pocket. “Thank you again for our lovely vacation,” she said, her fingers trailing the embroidery initials on the cloth.
“Hmm?” her husband gazed into the foyer mirror, adjusting his tie and straightening his collar. “Oh, yes, you’re welcome.” He smiled, “I’ve got to go.” With a hurried kiss, he was out the door for the remainder of the day.
The woman shuffled her feet into the laundry room: the clothes from their trip clean and dry without as much as a spot upon them; no lingering stain of adventure embracing the cotton, no scent of the exotic airs they gasped together in romance. It seemed that all residue of their experience was washed away, yet, she knew, the adoration unpacked would reside forever.
Flicking the light off, she carried the laundry away and went about her daily routine.
I pitied the public in my spare time. I felt sorrow for the oblivious when I remembered to do so. If I had a minute of downtime, I realized that our plan was happening plain in their faces while every day unfurled steady progress. The ordinary citizens were powerless, too busy technology-crunching or fast-food-munching to do more than pander their days away consuming. They didn’t have a clue what was happening, and it was my job to assure they never found out.
I considered myself special. I was on the inside. My people were quiet and our project was discrete. Coordinating the shuttle flights, I oversaw the team which worked the remote areas for departing and returning passenger crafts.
While I managed the flight logs, my buddy over in media saw to the meticulous care of blasting insignificant stories on repeat during news broadcasts; occasionally something (I considered transparent) would slip: a senator retiring without justifiable cause, a soap opera star leaving the set after years in the limelight, the highest ranking city officials not running for reelection.
Yet even these stories would never give us away.
Entire planes gone missing, the supposed assassination of key politicians, elite families abducted by recently-emerged terrorist groups: these things called more public attention and were assigned greater interest by news anchors; these stories trended seventy-two hours and then faded away in the blur of new stimuli dropped by the media.
Our planet was rapidly evacuating, and hardly anyone knew of it.
When the Vatican telescope confirmed the impending arrival of impacting asteroids- a confirmed thirty-thousand bits of galactic boulder heading our way- it was decided to keep the public unaware. No plan could be executed to save us all. The lists and diagrams were formed, week-long committees held, and at last, names were put on flight logs from our planet to Space Station.
While the public thought to mourn the loss of some over-dosed celebrity, I was shaking the starlet’s hand while they boarded the space craft. I saw all sorts of people come through: new money, old money, the famous, the brilliant, those afraid to leave, all afraid to stay.
Yet with every flight I saw depart, I should have demanded my way onboard. I suppose I always assumed one crew would be back in time to take me away.
You’d think that when I found myself unemployed, I would be full of the same pity I felt for the common citizens, myself now one of them; instead, I was lost in silent pandemonium, awaiting destruction: no true government in place, no entertainment stars coaxing us into a stupor. It seemed only a matter of time before civilization crumbled. You’d think I would have been beside myself with remorse.
Only, I was too busy laughing to feel sorry for myself. For weeks past, I saw the arrogant, the prideful, the money-hungry and the savage board their evacuation shuttles without even a glance back at the society they were leaving to die. I couldn’t help but laugh when the sky became dark, the light of the sun obscured by a field of asteroids; I laughed, and laughed, our planet unharmed, as the space station appeared as another shooting star, massive explosions, flying overhead.
I wish to wonder
yet to notation smartly
enriching the soil;
I wish for yonder
yet to sustain infinitely
beyond this self
permission to toil;
I wish to ponder
yet to battle principalities
conquering the foil.
The battle abroad
amidst the combat within:
fighting airs and errors,
and arrows of fiery whims,
like the murky death of
life uncontended; taking
no stance, a cause
worthy of defending.
Nay! Endure the war,
understand thine arms,
move forward and sound
the alarm; give notice
-what realms bursting
upon us?- spirits unleashed,
admonish! command them,
bind them, bond for service:
finish the story, and
onwards to glory.
Each of countless
ever moving toward
the gathered manifestations
of peoples. Names either
filed or forgotten;
countless of each.
to the gentleman
whom loves his wife-
his genuine nature
toward her; a powerful
against the world
to his fellows,
lifting her name
in praise of
to the goodly lady
whom respects her husband-
her honest nature
toward him; a passionate
exterior, conserving home
in the world
to her family,
and lifts his name
in grace of
As time ticks down
how to appeal?
To take every moment?
Alas, it loses zeal.
Not knowing the future,
yet certain of the end:
it’s the beginning
how to appeal
as time ticks down.
As time ticks down
what will reveal?
To own every moment?
It has a good appeal.
Still wanting the future,
certain beyond the end;
it’s the beginning
what will reveal.
as time ticks down.
This is 13/100 poetry challenge.
The Second Chance Thrift Shoppe of the Historic Downtown Village of Lemont, Illinois is one of my most favorite places to thrift. According to their facebook, Second Chance donates all proceeds toward the residential and vocational services for adults with developmental disabilities at the Garden Center Services facility. To me, this is incredible, considering their supply and turnover rate.
From the outside, Second Chance looks like a quaint little store; but step inside a moment or fourty and you’ve hit the best shoppe for thrifting that I’ve ever experienced in my life (and this is from someone who purchasedt her first banana yellow salsa skirt in Miami at sixteen, and still thought a Target-brand sweater was cool in Port Huron at twenty-seven; also, please don’t get me started on the notion that is Chicago city thrifting throughout the years).
It has recently become a tradition that my dear friend and shoppe volunteer. Vicky T. snaps a picture of me wearing one of my most recent outfits from the Second Chance. What you see here today are two such photos (Thank you Vicky)!
This week, I present just two pictures: one, my childhood-dream-come-true ensemble of appearing like Alice stepped through the Looking Glass to arrive into my very own Mangono: check out the full spread here:
Runyon Park | MI Mangono | Photography
The second photo should be accompanied by about eight more pictures, considering the haul my darling friend Sarah and I picked up yesterday before frequenting the Village Farmer’s Market.
Sarah is one of my most darling girl friends: her family and her soul are brilliant and beautiful. Don’t take my word for it though; check out her guest blog post here:
Go Grow with Me | Sarah Mech | Photography
If you ever find yourself in Lemont, Illinois, do travel off the beaten path and lose yourself in our Historic Downtown Village, I highly recommend visiting the Second Chance Thrift Shoppe. It is amazing, truly.
Have a lovely day, and happy thrifting!
Second Chance Thrift Shoppe
44 Stephen St
Lemont, Illinois 60439
Donation Accepted M-F 10:00am – 3:30 pm
Phone (630) 243-1279
LaKeshia Stigall of Livid Expression Designs, and I, stepped onto a very secret location today for 500+ frames photoshoot. Here is one sneak peek of the shoot we did this morning. Enjoy!
Learn more about LaKeshia Stigall and her beautiful Livid Expression Designs:
Livid Expression on Facebook
Livid Expression on Instagram
Check out some other work by LaKeshia which I have featured on my blog in the past:
Livid Expression on MI.com
Starved Rock Experience by Livid Expression on MI.com