Saturday, December 30, 2006

More Of The Same Please

As I look toward the New Year - I hope I'll be 'Looking Up' - both literally and figuratively. I don't know who this entranced birder is, but I know what she's doing. She's (ahem) looking up and hoping for beauty, mystery and someone beside her to whom she can turn and with whom she can share the joy of discovery. For us blogging fanatics that someone is not infrequently a blogging buddy with whom we've made a friendly connection based on shared philosophy or the joy of exploration and learning or just the delight of a good chuckle. Yes, even a shared tear, now and then.

I missed my first blogging anniversary - December 29th. Wow that went fast in some ways and in others seems like a very long time.

At my age, looking toward the New Year - I really don't have large, elaborate goals - only a grateful heart for so much that is good in my life - and the quiet, hopeful request for more of the same - please. My warmest wishes to my blogging friends for much love, light and laughter in the New Year.

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Imperious Tree

Bev at Burning Silo keeps posting informative and whimsical pieces. Her latest about trees with interesting sizes, shapes and histories reminded me of a tree I photographed the autumn before last in our local metroparks. He really had an attitude that I couldn't resist. I had a little spare time on my hands so I dropped a bird on his cheek to give him something to pout about. (Long-time blogging friends may remember this :0)

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Friday, December 29, 2006

"If You Would Keep Your Spirits Up"

This from the December 25th entry in Greg's The Blog of Henry David Thoreau:

"Take long walks in stormy weather or through deep snows in the fields and woods, if you would keep your spirits up. Deal with brute nature. Be cold and hungry and weary."

That's the Cooper's Hawk a nano second after I took the picture I featured in yesterday's boo-hoo post. If you've not perused Thoreau's journal - do so. Beauty and wisdom and the big one: acceptance - of things as they are. I guess that includes dove-eating hawks. Sigh.

Addendum: Best info I've ever found on distinguishing Cooper's from Sharpies

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Mourning My Mourning Doves

Well I suspect that this Cooper's Hawk is the cause of the paucity of Mourning Doves at my feeders. Several had visited my patio and feeders all summer and fall. Suddenly - there are none. Don't, please, try to console me with the 'Circle Of Life' stuff. Intellectually I'm on board with that, but those gentle doves (yes, anthropomorphism operating here - big time) shuffling about and pecking at the spilled seed - made me smile. This fellow - doesn't. I admire his fire and beauty, but those red eyes say it all.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Snow - please.

Sure could use a little dusting of white today. After the intense socializing for days and days the post-Christmas blahs are settling in around me. It's damp and gloomy. My son and husband are discussing computer stuff. (Borrrrinngg ) I'd love to turn on the TV and lose myself in an old black and white fantasy, but my sweet heart doesn't love them as I do - and I am getting a foot rub - so I'll just sit here tapping away trying to conjure goose down snowflakes filling the air, covering the bare ground and giving my heart a happy, glittery song.

The painting is Claude Monet's The Magpie - maybe my favorite Monet canvas.

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Friday, December 22, 2006

Merry Christmas!

I leave my blog in the care of this kindly gentleman for the next few days as we travel to family. Certainly the spirit of Christmas as represented by Santa Claus in all his incarnations, embodies the best that is in us. Good cheer and generosity are the calling card he's left in the hearts of us oldsters who will always retain a bit of our youthful wonder and exictement during this beautiful season of giving and sharing. Safe travels if you're traveling and above all may you find peace and joy as you gather with those whom you Love. Merry Christmas. (That's my Christmas banner backlit by the Sun)

Spider Silk in December

In the heart of December - gossamer spider silk glittered across the lawn of the local gardens. It's been a blessedly mild December, but still it's December and one must ask why spiderlings would hatch and send their traveling streamers into a seductive late-year breeze. Mystery. Any ideas?

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Happy Winter Solstice!

Happy Solstice friends~ We did it! Now we turn the corner. Yes, we welcome winter. There may be cold and snow ahead (consider Denver, today) but - the days will grow longer with the promise of new beginnings as the New Year arrives. I snapped this picture of my snowman banner two weeks ago as it was beautifully backlit by the low Sun. That's the garden lattice making patterns on his visage.

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Mary's Snow Angel

This is that giddy time of year when little spirit incarnations smile from roof tops, Christmas trees, candles, greeting cards and in this photo - from my potted geranium and aspargus fern. My friend Mary made this pale, but sanguine snow angel.
If you celebrate Christmas look around you. Lots of glittery, fluffy, stitched and painted smiles, eh? Hmmm. Maybe over the millenia in these dark days around the solstice, our ancestors found comfort in creating legends and myths of helpful spirits to push back the darkness and the sense of isolation that accompanies it. Just a thought, but look around you :0)

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Knot Holes

Burning Silo
posted a funny piece about knot holes in a park latrine. The next day I was walking across a bridge in our local park. It's suspended a good 40+ feet above a ravine. The planks are narrow and not very thick and you can feel them giving under your feet. I looked down and saw that one of them had 3 knot holes through which you could easily see the ground below. Hmmmm. Maybe a little patch work in order here.

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Monday, December 18, 2006

Solstice Shadows

There is a kind of stark beauty in the woods this time of year. A sunny day like today with fairly mild temperatures, softens the sense of loss that can accompany these solstice days. The warmth of sunlight on my face was reassuring. Only 3 more days 'til the happy knowledge that the Sun starts north once again.

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Sunday, December 17, 2006

Venus Transit


This is our sun. It was no where in evidence in northwest Ohio today. So I'm posting this April 2004 photo in which I captured the silhouette of Venus crossing the face of our star. I used my binoculars to focus the event on a paper plate on my car's windshield.

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Saturday, December 16, 2006

Northern Lights

A John Vandehei took this picture of the Aurora Borealis in Galesburg Michigan on the 14th. I was in Michigan sitting on the edge of a farm field just like this. He got the photo I regreted missing as I forgot to throw the camera in my car after my son emailed me that I might look up since a strong geomagnetic storm was being reported. I saw skies very similar to this. Imagine a couple Geminid metorites streaking through it and you've got the effect - a bit of the wonder of our solar system.

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Light and Dark

This morning the sun struck this Great Horned Owl picture over my couch. I hung it there years ago during my owl phase. It occurs to me that when your body is vital and the far horizon is still obscure and life is mostly filled with promise - owls are exciting - dangerous. Perhaps like the poetry of Louise Gluck. (Couldn't resist this, Casey:0) Today, I wish I'd purchased one of Basil Ede's gentler canvases - a heron, perhaps - some gentle wading bird that feeds on mollusks and fish - nothing with fur and warm blood.

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Friday, December 15, 2006

Daffodil Bones

Ruh-roh. I'm praying for snow. If my husband comes home and sees what those rascally squirrels have done to his daffodil bulbs . . . . Oh, this could get ugly. He spent a good half day last week during a relatively mild afternoon getting these things planted - late, yes - but they were in the ground and he came in puffing and tracking dirt through the house and grinning as he folded me under his arm to come stand beside him and just imagine the beauty we could anticipate come April. Ruh-roh.

Addendum: Dec. 17 - My husband discovered the languishing bulbs. He came through the door muttering about a shotgun. He's mourning the loss of his dream of April blooms :0(

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Thursday, December 14, 2006

Light of Another Color

I was out till 9:30 tonight ( that would have been last night) watching the Northern Lights. My son called to say that a large geomagnetic storm was under way - so I headed into Michigan farm country and watched the green curtains roiling and the northern horizon glowing as it never does. Two geminid meteorites streamed through the apparition. I didn't have my camera. The picture above was a result of the ash that drifted east from the Mt. Saint Helen eruption back in 1980. How the years fly.

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Not So Fluffy

Today was my first return to the local gardens in almost two months. I didn't push the old body, but it was good to be out in mild temperatures moving ahead - (ahem) - "Looking Up". If I'd remembered to grab my camera I would have snapped a picture of the Red -tailed Hawk in the trees behind the formal part of the gardens. What the camera wouldn't have caught was his cry - rather eerie, a little foreboding this time of year along the quiet autumnal path. The fellow above was troubling the birds at my feeder this summer. It's a Coopers Hawk.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

A Little Fluff

Time out from light gathering to garner a little smile from my blog friends. I have the fattest squirrels in northwest Ohio. They've been on a peanut diet for months - it agrees with them. I forgot to toss peanuts onto the deck this morning so this fellow went foraging on the bird feeder.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Grandma's Crystal Ball

The year after Grandma Gladys died, Aunt Betty sent me this little crystal ball that I'd given to Grandma years before. It's been in my possession now 20 years. I've placed it on the shelf in the bay window beside the picture of her son, my father - gone now 15 years. I love the glitter it has borrowed from the sun to toss across the shelf, across my heart.

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Monday, December 11, 2006

December Rainbows


The Spectarc Prism which hangs in the south facing window with the Owl stained glass is making rainbows this week. Sir Isaac Newton described the way in which prisms refract light and in that bending divide it into its constituent colors (wavelengths). So much mystery. I tried to see the planetary alignment yesterday. Failed in that quest, but it was good to be up and out on such a mild clear December morning. I bought this 10'' curvilinear plastic prism decades ago - can't find them anymore. It hangs from fishing line and when spun in a patch of sunlight it fills a room with dizzying arcs of our star's fireworks.

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Sunday, December 10, 2006

Fence Snow Shadows

Look what the sun missed as it crossed low in the sky the last few days. Rather than a summer shadow, it gave the fence a bright frosty image of itself to reflect upon during these clear cold moonlit nights.

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Saturday, December 09, 2006

Mouse Shadows




We went out early for breakfast and in hopes of seeing the within 1' alignment of Mercury, Mars and Jupiter. As is typically the case in northern Ohio - the clouds obscured the horizon. The Bob Evans breakfast was ok, but the music sucked. Angst-ridden, yowling, vapid, dilute garbage. I almost left a note in the suggestion box, but considered that as an old fogey - the tide was against me and why bother.
As we walked in our front door the sun cleared the cloud bank and left this little tableau on my living room wall. Old age is . . . well, hmmm - interesting. Why? I can't remember where I got these mice - I only know they've sat on various shelves and table tops for years, watching over my comings and goings - receiving the drops of Christmas candle wax with equanimity. Like the owl stained glass in the preceding post - I really don't 'see' them anymore - except again this morning as the sun laid their silhouettes gently against the wall.

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Friday, December 08, 2006

More Light Effects

Really - I'm not wandering around the house looking for these. But I'll glance up and see such lovely gifts from the solstice dipping sun that I grab my camera - which I dropped this summer and now I have to wheedle it a little - and gratefully record the common surfaces seen anew.
I went through an owl phase years ago. This stained glass has hung in this window for decades and I forget it's there. The shadows on the hutch are holly leaves, appropriate to this advent season, this time of waiting for the light, for renewal.

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Sunlight On Mount Blanket


This time of year it's all about light: the lack of it - the want of it - the joy of it - when glancing up you view a sunbeam falling across objects that the rest of the year might never receive the direct touch of star fire. The buffering leaves are down. The sun is crossing the sky at a such a low angle that it sweeps through the windows and lands on objects and areas in the house that in other seasons remain in shadow. Today it fell across Mount Blanket (and robe). My photo doesn't capture the effect as well as I'd hoped. What an interesting time of year - when a patch of sunlight on a jumble of warmth retainers becomes an object of admiration.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

The Shortening Winter Day Draws to a Close

I found this picture on Bonita's Flitzy Phoebe Blog. It's sentimental - and I love it. The artist was David Farquarson 1747 - 1821. He was Scottish and therefore livied in latitudes well north of Ohio - he too was very familiar with long, cold winter nights. What draws me to this picture is the trust the gentle animals place in the approaching man as he carries their fodder to where they patiently wait in the wan light of a winter's afternoon - their faith in beneficence.

What might otherwise be a bleak canvas is illuminated not only by the diminished solstice sun, but by the connection between the stooped human figure and the beings in his care. For a more recent recording of that same late-in-the-year sun - check Casey's wonderful photo.

Emerging from a bit of a rough stretch I've been contemplating the concepts of connections and trust. They are as precious as the dilute but welcome December sun that streams low through the bare trees in my back yard.

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Thursday, November 30, 2006

Before The Snow Blows


The forecast for tomorrow indicates that the reprieve is over. The Thanksgiving holiday was warm and sunny (in Midwest terms) . The winds are going to start blowing. Thunderstorms will precede some serious winds. Chicago anticipates as much as 8 inches of snow. Several thousand radiologists will be trying to leave Chicago's RSNA convention to travel to their homes around the globe. One small group will be heading toward Toledo - talk about unfortunate timing. Before the snow blows I'm posting a picture of a July saltwater pond in Chatham on Cape Cod. The tide is out and the dinghies wait for the Moon and Sun magic to lift them from the mudflat. A little like I feel during the long winter months.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Sixty



Forty years ago my cousin took this picture of a young mother-to-be. Very young. (that would be the upper picture :0) Sitting here in my older but wiser self, it's a bit of a consolation to know that as pleasant as it would be to step back into that young body - there is NO WAY I would do it without THIS brain. At sixty - as of November 29 - it's a lifetime of learning the ways of patience, acceptance and love that softens the assault of age. Family and friends are the hearth, close to which the heart leans, that warms our winter years and reminds one of the Spring that may still be clasped in memory's timeless dream.

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Saturday, November 25, 2006

Webcam Up and Running

The Webcam in Loudonville is up and running! You'll find it in my sidebar under webcams. It's been down for half the past year and over his Thanksgiving visit our son, Jody, fixed it. It refreshes every 15 minutes and the view over this valley in north-central Ohio is, I think you'll agree - lovely.

I grew up in the small town of Loudonville over which our modest weekend home enjoys the benefit of a high perch. I'll be clicking on a few times a day to watch the flags for indications of approaching fronts - often you can see storms marching in from across the valley. I'll watch the first snow cover the hills and then look for the first signs of spring as the trees lose their sharp silhouettes and blur with the promise of new green.

We spent Thanksgiving weekend with my brother's family. His house is just below and to the left. We share a driveway and more love and history than my full heart could ever express.

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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Poetry - Phooey!



Dang- nab -it. How's that for poetic expression? Sadly, for me - the Walt Whitman Poetry Contest deadline was extended to November 30th. After a longer convalescence than I'd anticipated after a 'minor' procedure, I'd resigned myself that the contest's judges would be deprived of my great gift for yet another year.

Dang-nab-it. November 12th came and went and I was resigned and frankly relieved that I didn't have to prepare a package of 50 poems, all done according to contest guidelines.

Dang-nab-it. They've gone and pushed that deadline ahead to the end of the month and I've been losing my mind trying to locate all the dreck I've written. Oh. That's a killer. Spend enough hours ranging over 5 gazillion words of tripe that you once thought conveyed the wisdom of Solomon, Freud, all the great poets and philosophers from antiquity forward - Oh yeah: me -worthy peer of Frost and Dickinson - See! I can't even spell her name: It's - D I C K I N S E N. Arggggghhh. This is getting better! Anvil Cloud just commented that duh! my original spelling was OK. ARGGGGGGHHH. Emily Dickinson!

So, I'm not blogging - I'm ranting. I can hardly wait to get this garbage in the mail and return to the saner, for more enjoyable past-time of visiting with you all, on the internet.

Until then: ARGGGGHHHHH!


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Saturday, November 11, 2006

The Kindness of Strangers

This picture is what my radiologist/writer husband calls a 'hook.' It seems in concert though, with what will follow in my post, as it was an exchange between strangers, a Cape Cod fisherman and a mother and her little boy. This rugged 'man's man' was happily indulging a stranger's need - in this instance a need to smile shly and hug a cuddly dog.

After yesterday's post about Mother and our wandering through the hills of central Ohio in springtime to find the house my great-grandfather built and the cemetery where he and assorted ancestors rest, my mind is still meandering among the winding roads that fall sharply downward into shaded ravines and abruptly bank skyward requiring a firm pressure on the gas pedal as you climb up to next rise of uneroded glacial till.

Here's the memory that wandered in this morning. It was the early '50's. I think I was 5, maybe 6 years old. Grandpa Reiheld was at the wheel of a cranky old car that lurched and spewed gravel as we took a Sunday drive toward Glenmont to visit his cousins' families. While shifting into lower gears to get traction and still prevent stalling, the car would lunge backward and Grandma would grab the dashboard and suplicate the intervention of the blessed mother: "Hail Mary, Hail Mary!" I can still hear her, teeth clenched, ready to spring from the front seat in terror as the rest of us were sucked backward into the void. Grandma never learned to drive. She never learned to trust.

Then, the unthinkable. The car sputtered, grandpa cursed and the car stopped as he judiciously applied the emergency brake. Out of gas. The rest is a sad little blur except for this: I was terror- stricken, on a great graveled incline in a great wood, with two adults to whom today, we would apply the word 'dysfunctional' .

The crux of the story: A passing car stopped and offered assistance. One of the most tender memories of my childhood is the woman who saw my pain and stooped shelteringly beside me and reassured me that everything would be fine. Tears of gratitude sting my eyes as I write this and I rejoice in the goodness that lies at the heart of most human beings.

Decades later, when my other grandmother, Gladys, died, I tucked a note into the satin lining of her coffin that said simply: You were the gentlest, kindest light in my life. Your caring for us, the birthday cards that always arrived till the year you died - I will pass this on, Grandma - I will remember.

I've failed in so many ways to fulfill that promise. Yesterday, I made a few phone calls to the frail little women that I drive to a monthly macular degeneration meeting. We talked for hours. They think I'm kind. They tell me so. I try to tell them what they bring to my life, how I love their feisty, gentle souls. What is this miracle that resonates across time, distance, memory; between generations, strangers and friends? I hesitate to tell you that I know that it also resonates between brains - yes, I am refering to ESP. But, there, now you're probably rolling your eyes and I've lost the few readers who'd been drawn forward by the promise of a good dog story:0)

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Friday, November 10, 2006

Does Anyone Else See An Optical Illusion?


I guess you had to be there. A couple Springs ago, Mother and I traveled down a rural road toward Brinkhaven, Ohio, the home of her ancestors. As she walked away from the car to check out this outcrop of sandstone and ground water - she was like my incredible- shrinking-mother! I asked her to retrace the route a few times and by gum it seemed as though I were in one of those distorted rooms you find in science museums - things were all off -kilter. Maybe her figure receding over the distance and through time made it work. But, trust me: sitting in the car with no human figure visible - this grotto seemed much smaller and you'd guess that if a person were to stand there they'd occupy a greater part of this space. I just don't think these photos captured it, but we sure had fun trying.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Henry and I - A Short Conversation on Approaching Winter




Greg's The Blog of Henry David Thoreau records Thoreau's daily musings on nature and life. I generally find his writings uplifting, eloquent and always a bridge across time to my own memories of precious moments of transcendence experienced at the margin of a wood and pasture, the heart of a dew-drenched fern, or leaning tucked into a tree turning crimson on a cold October day. First, I quote his October 25th observation and then my rather less courageous response to the waning of the year and the coming of the cold.


Thoreau's journal - October 25 th, 1858

This is the coolest day thus far, reminding me that I have only a half-thick coat on. The easterly wind comes cold into my ear, as yet unused to it. Yet, this first decided coolness - not to say wintriness -is not only bracing but exhilarating and concentrating to our forces. So much the more I have a hearth and heart within me. We step more briskly, and brace ourselves against the winter.


The Robin's Autumn Song
- Catherine Wilson

A rose is not a rose
when offered in a wreath
beside the dead.

Pinioned there it's shorn of light
and the breeze that holds
the grief apart
from the tender heart
that holds the petals fast.

The robin's song is tarnished
when she sees the sumac
dripping red.

Her heart begins a minor key
looking north
at what may be.



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Friday, November 03, 2006

November Sun On Anna's Hair




After she finished cleaning my house, Anna came out to the heated back porch to visit before she went home. She sat with her back to the late afternoon November sky. The leaves are mostly off the trees now. For a few minutes the clouds thinned and the sun streamed low through the porch windows. Her dyed hair glowed as we turned from topic to topic.

She's seventy-three and has worked for me, in this house, for twenty-two years. I lay on the couch and watched her illuminated shape as she talked about her husband's suicide, the delayed grief, her children's pain. The feathery, potted asparagus fern I brought in ahead of the frost last week, glowed green beside her.

When Anna comes once a week we share a cup of morning coffee. I cooked her eggs, today. If I'm at home we share lunch. Over the past year or so we share this respite after she's done. I see the fatigue on her face. I see the way she slowly gets out of chairs. I know she needs the money and today as I watched her glowing in front of my bare trees and frozen birdbath I knew that I needed her. She is my friend. Though we are from different decades, different countries (she married a GI she met in the restaurant where she cooked), different educations, a different socio-economic class, she is my friend and she is growing old. I needed to say this today. As I watched her sitting there illuminated by a November sun, I needed to say this.

I probably won't have her read this. It would embarrass her. She grew up in a foster home in Germany where she can remember carrying firewood from the time she was five years old. She's explained to me that it created a stoicism in her. I've never seen her cry.

Why do I need to tell you, dear reader, that I pay her probably more than you would guess? And that she's told me that the day she has to stop working will be incredibly difficult. Anna isn't a joiner, a belonger. Oh, she is close to a friend's children and has daughters and grandchildren of her own who would never abandon her to poverty, but she is proud, wants to work and though we've never said it aloud to each other - neither of us wants to think of a time when she won't be coming through my front door, trailing a wiff of the cigarette that still lingers on her immaculate clothes, carrying her Meijers plastic bag of lintless, cleaning cloths.

Can you believe that after twenty-two years she doesn't know that I know that she smokes? I can't explain this mutual contrivance and maybe don't want to. I love her. That's enough. There's only this, then, that makes me want to weep: I have no pictures of her. Nothing to post on my blog. So I've selected a beautiful little flower, bent by the weight of evening dew.

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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Bunny Wabbit or maybe a Kitty ? Oops



This is my precious grandniece, Katie. ( I know, you thought her the most darling bunny rabbit ever - OK - now I see - the ears aren't bunny ears - well, still the cutest ever:0) This was her first trick or treat outing and from the looks of that pink little nose it may have been a bit nippy as she made her circuit with the other fuzzy ghouls, goblins, princesses and knights. Wish we lived a bit closer. Still, I can imagine the delight - hers and her beautiful parents on a late, moonlit, magical October evening.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Awwwww . . . .

Don't you just want to gently scoop him up and bring him indoors and feed him millet from your finger tips? The past several days the sparrows have been obsessed with bathing. I imagine they sense that before long the water is going to be hard and that their next bath might not be until the Spring thaw. Well, wouldn't you look worried too, if you only had outdoor plumbing?

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Monday, October 30, 2006

Talent Will Out - FIRST PLACE WINNER!




My son and his colleague, Joei, created this jack-o'lantern. This is what scientific collaboration can produce. My son gutted the pumpkin and she rendered this likeness of their boss of whom they say in the PR website for their department: " Michael thinks he directs our research group at the Center for Space Physics." UPDATE: They won first prize!

Happy Halloween




That's a Colorado moon and my first attempt at using Paint. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. Fifteen years ago, my dad, who was a genius at working with corrugated cardboard, fashioned an entire three dimensional graveyard out of sheets of corrugated. I painted them white and added appropriate limericks and faithfully drug them up from the basement for many, many years. I bring fewer up each year - they're a little unwieldy. I' place them around the leaf-strewn yard and then make a cauldron on the front porch with 12 pounds of dry ice. Then I run a hose out the window from the hot water tap in the laundry room. Oh, yeah! We have fog drifting mysteriously around all those tombstones. It's awesome. A lighted jack-o'lantern sits atop one tomb and a cute little witch with her broom sits cross-legged on another.
I've carved as many as 12 jack-o'lanterns and placed them atop the low stone wall beside which the parents and kiddies drifted to reach the front porch. The ooohing and awwwing was worth the effort. The smiles and glittering eyes beneath those little masks and fangs and furry faces were the reward.
I've always had a little ritual wherein I move the flickering squash visages to the back deck. It seems only right to allow them their one night of smiling incarnation. Sitting by the bay window I watch them gutter and blink out one by one.

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Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Kissing Corner


As they wheeled me toward the OR last Friday one of the nurses merrily announced: "This is what we call the 'kissing corner'." I guess my husband already understood the drill and I remember him leaning over me and honestly I don't remember in that Vercid haze whether he gave me a peck on the cheek, forehead or lips - and then he vanished and I was still moving smoothly forward and was so buoyed by the drugs running through a catheter from my arm to my brain that I said aloud: "Every Corner Should Be A Kissing Corner". Wow. Was that profound or What?! At least at the time I thought is was and I think I heard the nurses good-naturedly concurring.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Down Pillow


This is one of the two swans that float about the ponds at the local gardens. They nap like this, with their long beautiful head and neck resting gracefully across their back. Below the bank was a bit of litter that had drifted against the shoreline. On magnification, I realized it was the other swan asleep in the crevice . It seems it enjoys a water mattress.

Friday, October 27, 2006

I'm Just Feeling So 'Scroogey'

My husband is a complete stoic. I sat beside him in 1999 as he waited to be rolled into the OR for by-pass surgery. When I think about his composure, I'm still in awe and a bit envious of his ability to accept the 'is-ness' of his physical self. Maybe being a physician who has seen so much of the body's ability to heal - or perhaps, the inevitability, the naturalness of death, endows him with the serenity that I have yet to attain.

I, on the other hand, having had a physical concern - now allayed - am having an 'Ebeneezer Scrooge morning' after Marley's and the spirits' visitations. In the Albert Finney muscial, Scrooge throws open the window and learns that he's not missed Christmas Day and that it's not too late to do good, to make amends and to love. The tune going through my head this afternoon were the lyrics he sings, as he frolics through the town on his way to Tiny Tim and his nephew's home celebrating his epiphany:

"I will start anew.
I will make amends,
and I will make quite certain
that the story ends
on a note of hope
on a strong amen
and I'll thank the world
and remember when
I was able to begin again."

You know, being a little 'hyper', a titch neurotic, may have its up-side :0) How long this sense of 'Christmas epiphany' will last I don't know - but the 'concern' did light a fire under me to finish some projects, renew connections that I'd delayed for months. Maybe there's a nice medium between stoicsim and hysteria - well, why not?

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