Tuesday, May 3, 2011


I am happy to announce that I have started a new blog, which will be a place to post all the poems I have written over the years (some previously published, some not).

It is called
Why Not This Paradise

and it can be accessed at http://barbarariddle.blogspot.com/

I welcome your comments.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Is hope a wood stork?

Waiting for my bus, sitting on a bench in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Across the road, by the side of a pond, stands a grumpy-looking wood stork.
He is hunched into the unseasonable January chill. His large pink feet are hidden (but I know they are there). I feel drawn to him, his scary prehistoric beak, his stoic stillness.

He stands there, not quite waiting. He's got an atttude problem. Is that his weakness or his strength?

He is a teenage boy whose cell phone has just been confiscated by his English teacher.
He is a guy whose girlfriend has just dumped him outside a dive bar
on the Lower East Side at 3 a.m.
He is me, waiting for something Big to happen. (At my age!) Waiting for the bus,
in a new city, going to a new job, trying on a new life.

Sorry, Emily D, but Hope is not a small feathered bird, it is a huge wood stork with skinny pink feet, suddenly spreading its wings and scaring the fish right out of the water.

I board the bus and leave fear behind.