Diane Vogel Ferri is a teacher, poet and writer. Her essays have been published in Scene Magazine, Cleveland Christmas Memories, Raven’s Perch, and by Cleveland State University among others. Her poems can be found in numerous journals. Her chapbook, Liquid Rubies, was published by Pudding House. The Volume of Our Incongruity was published by Finishing Line Press. Diane’s essay, “I Will Sing for You” was featured at the Cleveland Humanities Fest in 2018. Her novel, The Desire Path can be found on Amazon. She is a graduate of Kent State University and holds an M.Ed from Cleveland State University.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Post Secrets part 2

On May 1st I shared some entries from a book called "Post Secrets - Confessions on Life, Death and God." They are real secrets that are mailed anonymously to a man named Frank Warren and he compiles them into books. They come from all types of people from all over the world. Here are some more:(a little more light-hearted)

I'm an artist. Sometimes I give my pottery and painting to Goodwill in hopes that someone will fall in love with them.

When another woman steals your man the best revenge is to let her keep him!

My dad is my hero. He's dedicated his life to God and his faith, and made me a better person, So if there isn't a heaven I WILL kick some ASS.

I'm starting rabbinical school and I love BACON!

Seeing happy families doesn't make me sad anymore now that I've joined yours.

If my dog were human I think he would look like Brad Pitt.

Sometimes I text the "wrong" person..on purpose, just to start a conversation.

When I cook alone I always pretend I'm cooking for the Food Network.. audience and all.

I had an entire fake conversation on my cell phone so that I could brag about my kids to the snotty neighbor who I know was listening through the fence.

I make purposeful eye contact with men as they leave the "adult film" video store. I find it amusing. They don't.

I hate my living room couch so I let my dogs pee on it to force my husband into buying a new one.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

What's Your Idea of Heaven?

I recently read Keith Richards' memoir called "Life". I didn't read it because I was ever that much of a fan of the Rolling Stones, but I love to read about how people came to be who they are and do what they do. Always fascinating to me. Well, in this particular book I learned more about drugs than I ever needed to know and I do wonder how this man is still alive. It seems all successful groups break up at one point because of personality conflicts and usually one member tries to take over and be the star. (I just saw the musical "Jersey Boys" the other night. It's the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons - many similarities. And what a great, entertaining show - I highly recommend it!)

I digress. There was one passage in Keith Richards' book that I found interesting. At no point did he profess to have a faith, but apparently he married into a religious family and therefore has had to do some reflection. This is what he wrote about heaven. Since none of us really have a clue about it this might be as good an explanation as any other. I kinda liked it.

"I've never found heaven, for example, a particularly interesting place to go. In fact, I take the view that God, in his infinite wisdom, didn't bother to spring for two joints - heaven and hell. They're the same place, but heaven is when you get everything you want and you meet Mummy and Daddy and your best friends and you all have a hug and a kiss and play your harps. Hell is the same place - no fire and brimstone - but they just all pass by and don't see you. There's nothing. No recognition. You're waving, "It's me, your father," but you're invisible. You're on a cloud, you've got your harp, but you can't play with nobody because they don't see you. That's hell."

The reason that makes sense to me is because A) I don't believe that my God is a punishing God. He made us, He loves us. B) I believe we are on this earth to learn to love each other and to love God. Period. That's what I believe. And if we did not take the chance to love those around us, if we ignored the presence of God all the days of our lives then maybe we deserve to just be alone. And that, indeed, would be hell.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Battery Life

by Dane Zito

(This was written by a high school senior and friend of my late step-son Louie, who passed away in February at the age of 27 from muscular dystrophy. We have all been touched by his maturity, writing talent and profound compassion. He gave me permission to share this with you.)

The sun illuminated the landscape ahead as we approached
the neighborhood lake, your wheelchair bulldozed
the blades of grass.The wooden bench comforted me,
the branches above protecting us,but your body
still becoming weaker. Yet, you always made me laugh.
The battery on your wheelchair glowed green; full power.

The clouds cart wheeled in front of the sun, the air
becoming colder,as you grew old. Your brittle fingers
struggled to text as we sat staring at the water.
We observed our friends swim and play but I always chose
to stay with you. The eye of the birds stared at us,
as if they were listening to us talk. The battery meter
on your wheelchair flashed yellow, losing power.

The sun battled the clouds, the rays narrowed through the sky,
the grass accepting the light the sun provided. You were hungry
so I fed you,cutting your food into bite size pieces you could
manage to eat. The straw pressed to your lips,
the liquid washing down your throat.The battery meter
on your wheelchair flickered orange, power halfway gone.

The sun jumped behind the lake sliding down the sky,
painting the sky red. Darkness nearly won but you kept fighting.
You had no energy to do anything but I would still see you.
The Xbox controller exploded when it hit the ground but I helped
you placing it back in your hands. The battery meter
on your wheelchair has now turned to red, low power.

Darkness painted the sky, the sun disappearing,
the clouds choking any light that was left. I cried.
My palms crushed my face not knowing what to do.
I miss you already, and now I understand what it is like to
be alone. We no longer could see the lake.
The battery meter on your wheelchair shows no color, no power.

Monday, July 4, 2011

July 4th 2011

You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism. ~Erma Bombeck

This, then, is the state of the union: free and restless, growing and full of hope. So it was in the beginning. So it shall always be, while God is willing, and we are strong enough to keep the faith. ~Lyndon B. Johnson

There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America. ~William J. Clinton