Grandma Blanche, Ruth’s mom, and Ruth, “back in the day”
Rasslin’ and Roller Derby with Ruthie
She’s two glasses into
Dad’s homemade saki
and it’s only noon.
Auntie Ruth, banging on her tray,
rocking her wheelchair with
with fearsome might, and she’s
pretty tight. Saturday Rassling.
“That fight, we shoulda had
money on it, Amer,” she smiles.
I’m 12 and her best companion
since she moved in with the family.
“Where’s the National IN-quirer?”
I wave it and remind her, “First,
Roller Derby, then, the world news.”
Time for Joanie Weston, Amazon.
Old-school roller derby, women
big as fridges scooting, scrapping,
scraped up and bruised. Unlike the
rassling, these girls are out for blood.
“That Joanie must be hell on her husband,”
she snickers, clicking her false teeth.
“One more snort, Amer.” I fill her
punch cup with Dad’s toxic moonshine.
“Ruthie, something tells me Joanie Weston
isn’t married,” I offer. “You remember
Aunt Frank?” Frances, the loner sister in
cowboy boots with a femme friend.
“Yup. You think it’s that way with
Joanie?” I nod assuredly. “Well,” says
Ruthie thoughtfully, “then I hope she has
a nice girlfriend, like Frankie did.” Wink.
Roller Derby ends; Joanie and her team are
victorious once again. “And now,” parking
my sneaks on a table, “The evening news.”
ALIEN MEETS NIXON AT WHITE HOUSE
© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
Image from Amy’s collection; please do not copy family photos.
Another from Mom’s side of the family, the irrepressible Ruth Stoll, sister of Grandma Blanche Laughlin. Auntie Ruth moved in with us after her 98-year-old mother died. Ruthie would get so potted on saki that all the wooden baseboards were scratched up from bad steering! She was a pistol and kept the whole family hopping, especially on penny-ante poker night (we used the same pennies over and over again and put them back in the cup when we were done).
For ABC Wednesday (R) and my two poetic roller rinks, Poets United and Imaginary Garden With Real Toads.
May 15, 2013 at 1:36 am
Could picture here well as she seemed to here saying all that loud and clear! Glad to have left the link on my page and well, it works good for sometimes, I do tend to miss on posts of the 100 odd linked up! This is a good way of catching up!! 🙂
and yes tks for the warning! I am wary of them and off late, there are too many of them hobnobling my page!!
May 15, 2013 at 4:25 am
sounds accurate re the inquirer. and nixon.
May 15, 2013 at 5:30 am
I used to love roller derby. It was always the San Francisco Bay Area Bombers against some team sent to be fodder for them. Even as a little kid, it was clear to me that the women were the reason to watch it. You didn’t have to smile and be nice. You could knock somebody over the rail!
May 15, 2013 at 10:59 am
I learned something new! I had never heard of rassling and the roller derby, but I think it is very interesting. You also created a really great atmosphere in your poem.
May 15, 2013 at 1:06 pm
Reminiscences of early childhood days are always fun to think about years later!!
My Post is here
May 15, 2013 at 2:13 pm
That was such a delightful and fun read…could just picture it!
May 15, 2013 at 2:31 pm
She sounds a card. Nice to have a photo of them all together.
Joy – ABC Team
May 15, 2013 at 3:21 pm
You can surely tell a good story. Your family sounds fascinating.
May 15, 2013 at 3:30 pm
Sounds like a fun time was had by all – with the saki probably as an added bonus!
May 15, 2013 at 5:41 pm
Your extended family is exceedingly colorful and utterly entertaining. Oh… I see where you get it! 🙂 Loving you, Miss Amy!
May 15, 2013 at 5:43 pm
I love the photograph and story too.
I HAVE A VOICE
May 16, 2013 at 1:10 am
This brought me happy memories ~ you captured such vintage uniqueness !
May 16, 2013 at 2:14 am
We can’t help but revert back to the good old days for those pleasant memories. Nicely Amy!
May 16, 2013 at 4:41 pm
Amy, you have one colorful history or should I say “her-story?” 🙂 Love these women! Nice to know you have some great longevity in your genes–looking forward to reading your poems for a Long time ❤
May 21, 2013 at 12:21 am
Oh this is a lovely poem reminding us our good days and fun filled days, sometimes they may annoy us but then later it is always fun to remember.
Kay, Alberta, Canada
May 21, 2013 at 12:37 am
Oh, Amy, this is fabulous, and I love the comment from my dear friend “Reader Wil” in the Netherlands, who is never too old to learn something new.
This poem reminded me of Grandma who, although she didn’t drink, and didn’t drive a wheelchair, wouldn’t miss “the wrestling”!
When I was living with her, when she could no longer live alone, she always wanted me to watch with her because I had once seen a wrestling match in person, so that made me a fan, in her books.
I miss the older generations so much: my parents and their parents. I’m now the eldest in my immediate family, and I’m sure I’m not very entertaining for the youngsters.
May 21, 2013 at 5:03 am
Our Frankie was Brenda. She liked her drink, too. Hilarious and kind to us, kids. I wish I had realized when I was younger how good I had it with so much family and gatherings like this. Thanks for taking me back.
May 21, 2013 at 8:10 am
Here is history, of a family and an era. Some family members are the stuff of novels and poetry!
May 21, 2013 at 12:18 pm
She is quite a character, love the family snapshot Amy ~ She reminded me of my aunt, who is the life of any parties as her love life was very interesting, ha ~
Have a lovely day ~
May 22, 2013 at 6:03 am
I came back for another read- and enjoyed it just as much the second time. 🙂
May 23, 2013 at 1:00 am
You told it well, Amy. Now you have Mrs. Jim and I wondering whose family we know that their daughter skates with he Dallas Roller Derby team. She is married and has three children if I remember right. But we cannot place her family.
I can just see those ladies drinking, watching, and cheering for their heroes.
I am sorry I am so late in returning your visit to my poem blog. Thank you for leaving your nice comment.