Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Changing Calendars

For several of the last years, it has occurred to me as I found a new calendar for my kitchen counter (choosing from the assortment of free nature ones from organizations I have been cajoled into donating to) that this whole New Years thing is arbitrary - what happened to the Aztec calendar - at least each day would have a name. I have an affinity to the Aztec world; almost every year I get into the habit (albeit short lived) of naming the day after something noticed, such as broad shouldered hawk over the chicken yard. Or two snake day. I fall into silliness or lose imagination after a month. I like the idea of a painting every day - or a poem. A poem a day got me through much of last winter - certainly some poems were only fit for wood fire fuel, but it was kindling to the rest of the day. I like the notion of making something of the day; it could be a meal as well as a walk. Anything from keeping the days from running away, as they tend.
My possibly deeper connection to the Aztec people is my past life as an Aztec warrior. This was the first life I connected with while doing past life regression; I felt my whole body changing into that of a large, muscled man (no, I didn't go so far as to feel that I had a penis). My family consisted of my twin as my wife and my mother and father were our children. I died by having my heart taken in sacrifice, my body rolled down the pyramid - it felt so very cold. I couldn't come up with a name while under hypnosis. When asked what I learned in that life, I said, "that you really can't hurt another." I sometimes dwell on what exactly I meant by that. I think that I am saying that we have to take responsibility for our pain, perhaps for our karma - I'm unsure. Perhaps, poppycock!
Heavy thoughts for the second to last day of the year; wintry mix out of the window, small piles of snow/ice in the grass, on the deck, in the crux of limbs.I told a friend on the phone, who on Pilot mountain got much more snow, that the snow here was just the crest of the waves.
Here are pictures of my day, new hoodie, new shoe day! A friend who takes qigong gave me a gift certificate to Fringe Benefit in Blacksburg; thus the hoodie; the shoes, I splurge on!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

the smaller day

I count the days until the winter solstice, to pivot towards the increasing light. This weekend the Geminid meteor showers peak, and then but a week to bear darkness at 5 pm. The sleep has been very good, I can't complain - but my spirit drags about the evening. Delight is the morning as the crows kack  and caw the day up as I walk to the chicken coop. 
I drove to Floyd with a friend to buy candied ginger for cookies; she bakes several batches of different kinds - they are delicious. I am toying with the idea of making ginger snaps; the smell alone is worth the effort.
Today I watched as Ezra and Jen unveiled Fia's Christmas present. By Skype, I saw Fia suddenly speechless as the kitchen was revealed. With glee she began to open every door, and there were a lot of doors: oven, washer, microwave and frig and I think another!  Jen had stocked some toy cans of food and a couple of pots. The little chef is now in business. 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

long distance hugs

we Skype
I look at Pearl, she smiles her gap tooth smile
and I remember the lost teeth which remain in my heart's photo of her
the one I look at to say goodnight to,
and True, he's grown, such a sweet face, I want to touch. I am at a loss
for words, just wanting to look and look
until I can't consume enough of the flesh and bone
to turn away.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Lotus' Hen Murdered

Some varmint, I'm thinking a racoon, pried partially open the small chicken door to the hen house. I heard wild clucking as I came to open the house this morning. When I looked into the darkness, all the hens and rooster were on the highest perch. Black hen (all black, even her beak and feet) was not in the corner on the floor; she is too heavy to fly up on a roost. I began a frantic count, peering thru the dim light. I counted again and again; I couldn't find the Americana hen - my youngest hen. Lotus' hen had survived a slaughter at her families house  and was given to me this summer. Lotus is the younger sister of a good friend of Pearl's. Lotus had made a pet out of the hen and was discovered eating chicken poo on several occasions (Lotus is only one). I found black hen in the yard clucking; I found Lotus' hen dead. Part of the wire fence was bent out; I guess the racoon or fox couldn't get the body out. The dead hen head was eaten and the neck, there was just a gnawing at the shoulders. I took the body to the pyre where I had tossed last months dead hen.
After talking with consulting detective and chicken affection-ado, Alma, it was agreed that racoon was likely culprit; she suggested baiting a have-a-heart with cat food and bracing the door shut tonight. Trap is set-up and I can use the shovel to brace the door shut. Here is a grim picture:

Saturday, November 29, 2014


The ground lingers in white, but weekend temperatures guarantee melt. Mojo and Mr. Lee and I walked down to the river yesterday, a bit more chilly down on the bottoms. This morning we'll go up the road to post mail. I have been watching the first disc of ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK. I realize at least some of my mind is sheltered by my upbringing watching scenes in the women's prison which easily enough to imagine, are assaulting when viewed by these older eyes. Assaulting may be too strong; however, I suspect that there is a point to having the viewer feel "assaulted." Prison is an assault to the inmate. My inner dialogue goes, "how the hell did they get actors to do this!" I am intrigued by the characters in this drama and the harshness seems real, if not lighter than reality. I applaud.

Monday, November 24, 2014

here comes Santa Nanee

For now this is my Christmas decoration; it is the most fantastic bright happiness this old house has ever seen (thank you Pink!). I'm undecided about Christmas tree - for just myself. I have hung my stocking and with my memory I could fill it and by Christmas be surprised at the contents! Best present I'm giving myself, is an early January visit to Dominican Republic to see Baldwin and all - so Santa Nanee will come late. May get to Houston in February or March, hiatus from the winter.
60 degrees today, dogs and I hiked around Red Bud and shook the apple tree in the field. Winking light through the trees, the river is high from last night's rain. Going to spend the afternoon piddling in the garden; want to spread some of the chicken manure around roses (Alma's suggestion). Brought Mojo's bed down from the blue house porch yesterday morning and put it in the green house. Hoping to train Mojo to sleep there so that Diane can sleep in when she comes. I am trying to make my schedule more like that of a night owl's; so far, I am failing. I am a morning soul; if I stay up late, I seldom wake after 7.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Valley Voices

Stuffed Pastries

It doesn't seem linear, this transit to nearly 70,
I am as old as the friends of my great grandmother,
bosomy flowery perfumed stuffed pastries,
calling out for a hug.
I ran from
as if they might capture vital particles of joy
or fatten the sleekness of my limbs.
Now I understand their summoning,
merely seeking commingling
of their spirits which were not pastries,
but vigorous still
and wanting out.

It was an accomplished group of readers and an entertaining afternoon! I must say, I enjoyed it! Stories by Lucy Adams, Tom McGohey, KT Torrey and Rob Neukirch were particularly fine. Rob's story had us all in stitches; New Floyd in the form of a middle aged massage therapist meets Old Floyd in the form of middle aged suppressed farmers wife. I liked Lucy's story of a high school boy trying to change the trajectory of a development and to honor the memory of his mother. And KT's story of a gay couple was very interesting and i thought masterfully done. Tom's was a literary description of bystanders at the death of a dog on the side of the road.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Dead Hen

When I opened the hen house this morning, all seemed OK; I cracked the ice on their water tub - nothing amiss. That was at 8; I had waited for the temperature to warm up from 15 degrees. By noon I brought scraps and checked for an egg. On the floor was dead white hen, not far from where she would have landed when she jumped off her perch in one of the laying boxes. White hen was consolation chick when the science experiment to incubate eggs failed miserably. She never seemed acclimated to life outside. She molted at the wrong time, like in November. She always seemed separate from the others - none of whom are white, except for the rooster. And she was low on the pecking order. I took her body up Red Bud to lie on top of an old and dense mound of pine branches - high enough to escape Mojo - but good for a sky funeral.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Rainy Day Leaky Roof Blues

Looking for a roofer! One has been out to measure, but not to climb up on the roof. One coming any day now who has good recommendations from two neighbors. One called today to say that he'll come out tomorrow. Even though this old house is 114 years enduring, I think this time I want to go for the standing seam double coated metal roof - life time roof. Over my life time roof; invest for the grand kids - whatever eventuality. I am hoping that I can get a new roof before the winter hangs heavy in the hollow. 
I love these morning clouds. But today there has been no blue, just drizzle. Not a good day for the Planned Parenthood outdoor benefit, nevertheless, a necessary outing. I have managed to use the inside weather to work on my schedule of poll workers, almost completed with a bit of luck. I only wish that we had a candidate running against Morgan the Republican. 


The Brightness in Day and Soul

Happiness - Here are the faces that spark and kindle my spirit!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Fall and Failure

Today while reading five minutes in the middle of a book sitting in my Prius waiting to see if someone would arrive to join me in qigong, it dawned on me that I associated Fall with failure. Having spent a good part of my life trying to avoid failure (not as successfully as the author of the piece I was reading), I was devastated by my second divorce. The first divorce could be rationalized a failure on the part of the other person; but this second divorce was at least half my fault. And the second divorce also revealed a dangerous aptitude of my part, the ability to fall in love with difficult partners. I had failed to find a suitable mate; I might have done better in an "arranged" match. I lost trust in my judgement. I imagine that someone else might say that it was my karma, or in my natal chart to have such "luck." And I would agree that failure should not present a crushing blow, but rather a lesson (a lesson too complicated for this heart).
But failure and Fall, well, the obvious fall from grace. The failure to maintain the laissez faire of summer. The work preparing for the winter to come which might present a failure to endure or even a fall on ice...the connections are facile. The one I fear is the connection I have to Fall and  to slow burning despair. In preparation for this winter I have changed the wattage in several light fixtures and stocked up on Vitamin D. I have begun writing a long piece of dialogue which is very raw at this point, but has been attracting my attention. I have hung a grow light and have lettuce, arugula and spinach sprouts in the green house. I aim to be occupied.And Mr Lee and I will continue to walk down to the river and stare at the continual fall of water.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Blustery Day

A fine day for walk, brittle leaves papering ground creek and sky in the wind. Monday morning with grand kids who joined my effort to pick up black walnuts in the yard for relocation - even T could throw them successfully into the wheel barrow. If I leave the nuts to accumulate under the large tree by the house, I will inevitably slip one cold morning. And if we should loose power, navigating the wheel barrow to the wood shed is nearly impossible through nut strewn lawn. With any luck, there will be no need for wood stove this winter. Stop such thoughts!
We had a heavy frost already on Sunday morning; gone okra, peppers, squash and marigolds. I regret not harvesting more marigolds, their fragrance reminds me of Mexico and of India (though India by photo, while Oaxaca I visited for Day of the Dead). The cool days have inspired me to clean the garden of dead stalks; I scattered volunteer dill seeds on several of the beds. I want to conquer the wildness on the periphery of the garden next summer! I began well this spring, but the edges got out of hand.I am thinking of making an iris bed on one side - I have the irises that need thinning.
Yippee, today is worthy of celebration: Gay marriage is legal in Virginia! I am hoping to have a marriage at my house soon for friends.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

ordered new Yaktrax today

Near end of September, Maple going red on the river side of Red Bud, so I've decided to order a new pair of Yaktrax as my old pair snapped last winter. Alma says that the forecast is for a milder winter than last; but she was alarmed that I would even entertain traveling in January. I am having doubts myself of trying to visit the DR this winter. Coaxing someone to stay in my house in the winter is very difficult, but I aim to work harder on the task. The chickens are relatively easy - unless there is snow that needs to be shoveled to reach their house. Their feeder holds enough feed for 6 to 7 days and the water, ditto - and if there is snow they won't want to go into the yard. However, if very cold, one does need to break up the ice in their water basin. Katrina doesn't mind hanging out in the green house. She and Mojo and Mr Lee do need to be fed daily; and the two dogs need a daily walk. The weather is what can put a kink in the duty. ah! Alma did say that she would be a back up for me; she does not drive in snow though! I am hoping that Diane can stay - and maybe Susan.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

a 2 snake day

From the looks of the first snake I caught in the act of swallowing an egg, his or her body stretched across all three laying nests, this was not the first stolen egg. I grabbed it behind the unhinged jaw with egg (squeezing slightly to expel the egg) and managed to pull it out of the nests. Back in the house after several attempts (snake did figure 8's and loop de loops, more contortions that imagined), I was able to get the six foot long strong body into a cotton bag with tie. Mr. Lee accompanied me on a drive down the road to drop the thief, far enough away that I don't think he'll be back soon. However, just a half hour ago, I surprised a smaller black snake in the act of closing its jaw around an Americana pale green egg (I know because I was able to expel this egg also). I suspect these snakes were in cahoots. But I did not drive this snake as far afield. I will have to be more vigilant. 
What was more disturbing today was an incident involving Mr. Lee and I am unsure what other varmint. On the way back from our walk to the river, Mr. Lee exuberantly ran ahead (his usual manner). But shortly after I crossed the last creek crossing, I saw Mr. Lee, tail down and limping. He was so distressed that instead of walking slowly beside me, he implored me to carry him! As soon as I got into the kitchen, I got out the tincture of Ledum and gave him a dose of 30C. He lay on the floor chewing at his front right paw. I looked at it to see if it was swelling badly as I remembered that Mindy had seen a cooper head in the same area of the path. There was some swelling, but I could not find a bite. Nevertheless, because of his restlessness and the heat of his paw, I gave him a dose of Cenchris (copperhead). Soon afterwards he jumped up on his chair and napped. He seems fine now. I can't imagine that it was a copperhead bite - but I am thankful that he has recovered from whatever did attack his paw. 
I had planned to do some other things today - none having to do with snakes...

Monday, September 1, 2014

one month - where have I been?

Celebrating the return of summer this first day of September; August having been the coolest on record. Mr. Lee and I returned from a luscious swim an hour ago, water salubrious. Happily musing on visit by my eldest son and his family. Nothing like a room with two two year olds: Fia savvy and articulate and Tru agile in all but words. They played in the sand and water at the swimming hole cheerfully; but with the doll house inside my house, relations were testy. Tru trying to befriend, Fia wanting no interruption. As Tru's mother pointed out, two year olds don't play together - more parallel play.
The food was extravagant with garden tomatoes at every meal and fresh eggs for breakfast. Steaks with fresh herbs, roasted vegetables one night; another evening kale salad (have to make soon again: kale with currants, toasted walnuts and vinaigrette dressing), jerk chicken and rice. Good wine. Good Good company. I am re-savoring the days and evenings. Memories to take me through the winter while sipping an espresso (exquisite coffee Ez brought from Houston).  

Friday, August 1, 2014


This morning on the edge of my road, a thin young fox
lay, near death,
I dripped watered Arnica in his mouth
he responded, front legs running
as a dog's might in a dream. I noticed
that one of the rear legs was bent
scarred, toes misshapen.
I called a wild life rescuer;
before she arrived, fox expired.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

sick dog

Mr. Lee has been sick, hang dog no firm back legs to stand on sick. I, of course, am tail down too. He apparently has survived a sudden bacterial infection which nearly took out his kidneys. His kidney function is now in the normal range (much to the vet's amazement). About a month ago I took him to the vet with a fever, trembling and straining. Signs I now learn are symptoms of back pain. Unsure of a diagnosis, we went home.. I tried some homeopathy and he rebounded - literally bounding. But it was short lived and 2 weeks later I returned to vets after he vomited several times. This time antibiotics were prescribed and a urine sample which showed crystals in the urine and blood cells and raging bacterial infection.
Treated with antibiotics and a few homeopathic remedies, again he rebounded. He seemed in great shape Sunday. Then Monday morning he wouldn't eat and his back seemed in pain and his abdomen was tight with spasms. We changed antibiotics and I brought in a new urine sample. But by Tuesday he was no better and I brought him into the vets for x-ray and ultrasound. The vet is convinced that he has a back issue and sent him home with two pain meds and a muscle relaxer. I am trying homeopathy and the medication - hoping to wean him off the prescriptions. He's sleeping at my feet. He ate very well this morning! But he can's stand up for more that a minute before his rear legs collapse. Nevertheless, I have to keep him from trying to manage stairs.
I suspect it is a good afternoon for a nap.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Rain come

Whatever hoodoo or undo, we got rain - almost an inch. What was parched lawn greens. The garden drinks deeper than my watering allows. It deserves a dance, though I have not. And my dear little dog is regaining strength after a bout of food poisoning - although my vet and I are unsure of the cause of his discomfort. Another cause for dance.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

just here

Ok, I'm trying to begin being here after a month hiatus I hadn't planned. My dog is sick from what I think was food from yesterday's 4th of July dinner - too many goodies from human plates? I'm blaming the key lime pie; though it was umptous, not, I suspect, good for a dog's digestive tract. I haven't taken a walk in this dry aching blue sky day. But since Mr. Lee is sleeping I think I will take Mojo for a walk since he is visiting and not suffering from stomach issues.
I've a broody hen. She is the grey Cooper Marans who lurks in the hen house, jumping into a nest with egg the minute it is vacated. She was nesting last night too. Finally the new Americana hen is venturing out and yesterday I got an egg from her.
I aim to work on my writing project, but am overwhelmed at the mental baggage slowing me down. Aim to proceed jumping the imaginary hurdles. Began reading my sister's diary for 1960; amazed at how skewed my memory is. More on that here. Later.

Friday, July 4, 2014

June somehow happened, but not here


progression lost to lulling waves I am
fashioning a castle – too close to the breakers;
Flamboyant long seed pods for bridge
coral for the windows,
I consider the poison apples of the Manchineel
for decoration, this sand
house will fall
and form
under the coconut palms.
My son with his daughter hugging on
rises and falls in the waves,
as I must have
and did
am now in tandem.
Delineation grows feeble with age I
the collapse of time.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Snake time

Black snake coiled warm in a laying box
of grass clippings and pine needles,
no tell-tale lump in your throat,
have you been here long enough resting
after disconnecting jaw, to digest an egg?
I snatch you quickly behind your head,
we set off for the river, your stink
of fear on my hands, in my nostrils.
As you writhe and twirl about my wrist,
I mumble bargains,
I know you will not keep.

Friday, April 25, 2014

leaving on a jet plane..

Below sea level

step on a crack, break your mother's back
I walk carefully to Dr. Thompson's office
in an ugly one story building
with a garage that flooded in the least New Orleans deluge
my mind fixed on a boy friend who lived nearby,
not on talking to a psychiatrist.
My mother catching me before I left,
wanting to know what I talked about;
I didn't tell her that the subject was her.
There was aching demanding silence
in his office filled with books,
I made up dreams to fill the space
that moaned inside. I know I lied
and tried hard not to say, fucking shit
or that I wished to die.


wanting to post something before I left! Had a wonderful day with rain storms and soccer between; for once I tied P. at soccer on the front lawn! Played so hard I fell on top of her - well, caught myself - but barely. flying to the Gulf coast to drive with good old friend to Houston to baby sit Fia while her parents take their first trip alone since her birth. When I began to pack, my dog, mr. lee, turned his eyes big and cruel with anticipated sorrow at me - it's hard enough to leave the spring hollow with out that look. I'm old and attached and comfortable, it is just such an effort! 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

summoning the last year of my 60s

OK, I suppose I am ready for this; a friend is telling people she's 70 before she's 68 - I thought of that. Decided to wait it out. The most challenging part of my 60s so far has been combating my urge to stay home and forgo travel. That and figuring out what to wear, or what you can wear, or how to abort the urge to dress in dots and stripes like my grand-daughter who has by far the most fun wardrobe of anyone. Come to think of it there are other challenges, such as deciding on a new computer - the decision  is made more difficult because the longer one waits the better the technology. Why decide? Well, because I want to preempt the possible slow down of my present model (don't want to jinx anything).
Several people have told me that coffee has been shown to stop the growth of melanomas; one person, with a PHD in biology, claims that can't be decaffeinated. So I made an espresso this morning - got a lot of work done in the garden! Even sanded and painted two metal deck tables I've meant to get to for a year!  Pruned the red buds, weeded - spread hay in the garden between the beds. Even found a dress that i could wear to Trinidad wedding if I can't find something new - that was a desperate matter. There should be a loan-outfit-for-wedding shop - especially for over 50 year olds.


Saturday, April 5, 2014

They're back!

Making joyful the hollow! Thanks to Big Sister's help, she and T. visit together a couple of mornings during the week - let their parents get some work done. Winter has lost its vise on my spirit. Buds ache on the limbs. The house is surrounded with daffodils - daffodils in vases along the window sills by the sink.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Snow Bound Hollow

Snow Bound Hollow

I have spent too much time detailing weather
as if it presumed my mood
and it did or dictated the need for color
living alone in a snow bound hollow.

While the canvas went blank outside
and in, apathy to life muffled
down about the throat, with only the tweets
of gold finch still dull green and titmouse.

Long intervals of nothingness punctuated
by jays and the high ordinance of cardinals.
So much is white or black or gray that brown
appears glorious as it seeps through snow.

I reconnect with slime.

The Count's Plate

The Count's plate

snow outside the window and door
looks like the white dinner plate
Sylvie Ann de la Gueronniere's father
set before me the time I spent the night:
mashed potatoes, boiled calf brain,
and milk,
I tried not to gag,
The Count was known to shoot pigeons
off of his roof
to serve as squab to guests
on retrospect, I think he liked
to see just how polite society
could be in 3rd world
New Orleans.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Dream of my Grandmother, born in the year of the rat

Dream of my grandmother, only wisps of remembering
I look at her picture this morning with a stab of familiarity
as if just hours ago I left her on vacation in Bermuda,
or fell behind as she fast walked up 7th Avenue on her buying trip,
or was it while I struggled to peel a peach for Grampse
she disappeared in the garden?
Her energy announced her
my sister and I her willing audience
or co-conspirators to surprise.
Every night a new story,
her back rubs cast out our nightmares.
The summers with her were hiatus
from the manic atmosphere our home.
Once she tried to charm a cornered rat
which bither hand offering food;
the only unbedazzled animal
she ever met.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014


it is raining heavily
raining on all these fields of whipped cream
raining on the roofs which still are mantled in white
now sliding faster to a fall
raining on deer deep treads to the river
I haven't seen in a week
raining on my ½ mile long drive heavy with foot traffic,
and on my sled course
which I relinquish
to a change of scene.

Saturday, February 15, 2014



Icing of snow now turning to rain, making slick my sled run
Yesterday the twenty inches of snow had diminished by one third
my high rubber boots now  tall enough to not be swamped
I tramped the hill over and over to make a passable track
and only managed two fair rides, with dogs frantic at my side
fearful their person was at risk, they nearly spoiled my joy.
Since the track was more a bob sled trail
the barking was at my ears, I nearly ran over paws,
my guardians fierce and obdurate.
Today I may leave them inside. But then my fun
might be swallowed by acres of snow and sticks of pines;
who would hear my shrieks or witness my run?
Who lick my face awake if I crashed?

Thursday, February 13, 2014

snow pictures

Wednesday night before going to bed:
early Thursday morning:

ah, s-n-o-w

The depth of snow is beyond my 12 inch ruler
all about the house are snow pyramids
topping grill, chair and table.
I dug a path to clear the compressor, mercy,
I have power.
My 11 pound mop of a dog is over topped,
camouflaged, only he's dirty, not pristine.
It will be a trek to the chickens
let alone the mailbox.

Monday, February 10, 2014

for fun

The 10th of February - yellow submarine

Nostalgia rains in the house, Beatles music blaring,
Paul and Ringo reunited
the heart beat of my college days
of my first sexual encounter.
Yoko dancing – very stylized motion –
big warm grin behind those big dark glasses.
We all live in a yellow submarine -
our denial machine
our ride thru dark matter that wearies our soul
our space ship survival cocoon
naivete saving us in colors everywhere
transports us thru the doughnut hole
to another dimension.
Who knows?
My yellow submarine swallows me and all I love
transports my heart to spring in winter,
to picnics on planets unimagined.
Sustains my soul.

winter pictures

the blue heron

Sunday, February 9, 2014

3 little poems


In dream the fence is 12 feet not 6,
no doors or gates work
I have to climb while
chickens scatter in all directions
as neighbor dogs pant and chase.
Only I occupy a superimposed maze,
can see and hear, but cannot
reach the fray, nor
stop the killing spree,
nor save a feather.


too cold to decompose or summon scavengers
the heron curls another week
I nod to corpse and tell myself again
better to let a coyote feast
or vulture come,
then try to bury
the ground too hard for shovel.

stuffed pastries

it doesn't seem linear, this transit to nearly 70,
I am as old as the friends of my greatgrandmother,
bosomy flowery perfumed stuffed pastries,
calling out for a hug,
I ran from
as if they might capture vital particles of joy
or fatten the sleekness of my limbs.
Now I understand their summoning,
merely seeking comingling
of their spirit which was no pastry,
but vigorous still
and wanting out.


Monday, February 3, 2014


Eagle at the river! I tell my son who happens to call
from the Dominican Republic; “the eagle” he says
to his wife nearby, at a beach on the island. They have seen
the eagle at the swimming hole on the river here. But today,
I wonder if the ice drew the expanse of wings, jamming at the bend.
The white shaggy head so distinct flying off down river.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

no Eskimo


Minus 5 this morning – still minus 5 at 8 o'clock
I burned the paper in the wood stove to boost the inside temperature
the heat pump at 57
the floor just warmer than a frozen lake
I turned on the oven and tea pot
bounced and shook
my fingers feel tickled by frost as I type, I am no Eskimo.
Cat left a tiny mole on the carpet
played to death.

writing thru the cold

No clones

On my mind the several worlds I didn't live
should I clip my wings as I would a renegade hen
who flies over the yard fence again and again?
Stay in one life, fill it with myself completely,
no break-offs, no clones living a parallel existence.
Shake off the could have dones,
not possible to out wit my suicidal twin.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

colder in Syria

The sun is edging thru the trees towards my house,
red bud is ablaze, the west follows in a slow wrap
compressing the almost zero air into the bowl
(the coldest time of day down here).

Families in Syria refugee camps
without enough blankets,
too many displaced, dead.
Come on world.

I imagine an octogenarian weaponless troop
marching thru the streets in bright colors
with masks of God
to die
until there
is justice.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Snow Listens

snow comes with daylight
schools are closed, I will stay tucked
inside my snow globe.

*                                     *                         *

Snow listens

I failed to listen to my sons;
shut myself into my room. Flurries at the windows
we were closed in.
Snow listens -
I ruminate, my sons say they miss their father;
I hear the sound of my voice snap:
"at least your father is alive."
I want to take it back,
I could not hold their sorrow,
closed my ears, suggested counseling,
and when they balked at that,
figured past life regression
might suffice.


Saturday, January 18, 2014

arctic air is back....

Bundled up to walk in wind chill negative,
I could not see my boots through the slit
between two scarves and two hats,
I felt disconnected
a roly poly down stuffed robot
floating up the road.


another dream

Silver Needle Dream

Last night Henry Clay Street warped
the triplex we lived in
a one eyed new facade.
I pushed a stroller down the pavement.
I and my sister cried watching from the old windows
as our mother went to work.
But by afternoon we hit the street,
running off in opposite directions.
I learned to ride a 2 wheel bike here,
the side walk not so heaved by root
tripping up the stroller wheels.
Many fevers in that house,
my mother sponging my limp body down;
was it measles or chicken pox?
One night the doctor came
with one long silver needle
for my bum.
the croup machine
the tent;
it all went down in that upstairs room
with the recurring dream of fire.
Who was this child I pushed before me?
I never looked
it made no sound.

1/3 – 1/15/14


Dreaming Skippy

My hands tangle in fishing line and wet
matted dog hair, where I loosen
it tightens elsewhere, Skippy quiet
shrinks under my care. I grasp
a ball of fluff, detritus and line
no beating breathing dog. It grows dark
I turn to see an unfurling tail,
darker form than night,
she runs through my dream and I call her
until I wake standing in a wood alone.


writing, dreaming, writing thru the cold

January 11th

the anniversary of my mother's second wedding
I remember the inside of the small church
my mother in a hat, unusual, with a veil even;
it was somber,
my twin and I on either side of our grandmother.
The marriage endured, a stubborn man
and insecure woman ensnared until death.
My mother cracked
on the one hand, obsessing on perfection
on the other, chewing on imagined slights
she made puppets
she made large papier mache figures.
Her husband became the keeper, the apologist
hustling her out of parties when he keyed into her rising voice,
a stray insult she'd pin, or a rant from the edge of guests.
He was slow, she often flew off,
hurling herself towards the river,
threatening to jump in.
Her magical world unraveled, one twin dead
He puffed a cigar,
declared bankruptcy, was home too much
the only target of her malcontent, her darts.
The bricks were maroon, the pews dark.
She married him to escape,
he loved a mirage;
they had good sex.
Can't ask a marriage to heal
a soul repairs on its own or not.

1/11 and 1/17/14