Day Twelve, NaPoWriMo

At the Poetry Reading
(after Billy Collins)

Listening to his poems
and to the audience
laughing and giving that
singular sound of recognition,
I wanted someone to
read my poems so I
could hear that inhalation.
After, he took questions.
He said he searched for the
ending while he wrote
I noted that he mentioned
using pencils,
several times in fact,
but not what brand,
and I couldn’t bring
myself to ask.
He dispensed courage to
the roomful of folks —
poets and readers —
keeping a share to
take home in his pocket.

Mom and I leaving Palmer House this morning after hearing Billy Collins read his poetry last night.

Breakfast at the Blue Benn in Bennington:

and waiting for me at home, reassurance that it is truly spring:

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Day 5 NaPoWriMo

I remind you, gentle readers, that these poems are daily and pretty unedited.

this started as what might have been haiku-like:

Eye blue sky, clouds small
smaller smallest until they
pale to horizon

high hills and valleys
clouds pouring steadily east
glimpsed briefly, blue sky

looking up at clouds
we seek solidity where
water vapor rules

and ended as this:

Eye blue sky, clouds small
smaller smallest until they
pale to lavender horizon
pouring steadily eastward
valleys and ridged hills
sails across a weightless sea
bound to weather and sun
waiting for a wind
waving farewell to no one
throwing only shadows
at those who turn to look.

Tuesday This and That and the Other and Words

Today was my day off and I’m sure I could have found a lot of useful things to do, but oh well. I got some coffee and then I found a place to sit and sat and wrote for a long time. I piled up a lot of words. I was pooped at the end but I got a lot of story told.

Then I came home, and having gotten a new postcard, I sat down to add it to my little pile of postcards and to put a tick by the senders name. I’m not all weepy about getting or not getting cards but it’s always nice to get one and being that I check off my own cards as I send them out I just do the same for the incoming cards. Anyway here are the cards in the pile at the moment:

Monday at work, while waiting for someone to show up for a class, my coworker handed me an iPad Pro and said here, draw something. So I did.

This was the sky I saw tonight.

And finally (see what happens when you spend too much time stringing words together?) awhile ago I bought two of these fine Palamino Blackwing pencil sharpeners. They’re designed to put a looooong point on the working bit of the pencil. The bit that’s known as “the lead”. The second one I bought the nice young woman at the art supply store told me, very excitedly, about how the inside held two more blades. Now I don’t really know where I’d easily get more blades but I’ll worry about that when the time comes and I have to start replacing blades.

However, when emptying the trimmings of my fine pencils (I sharpened all my drawing pencils from HB to 6B the other night) tonight I noticed this message inside. I don’t think it wants me to stop sharpening my pencils… but now I might have to do a little more research.

Busy Monday – kittens and watercolor

Today was the day the two kittens (now six months old) went to the vets to be neutered. Got there messy and stinky, even though I tried as best I could to clean up the carrier using some paper towels I had and the doggie clean up bags outside the office… Anyway, lots of paperwork and then I was off.

Drove the same road I went down the other day and took a few more reference photos of the hills and barns that I like there. The brush and grass was covered with a light coat of ice so things were quite sparkly.

Cruising For Clouds 29 Jan 2018//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Then I got a bagel and coffee and headed to Hand Hollow. What the heck – it was 42F so I sat at a picnic table and painted awhile. Gotta say that ice covered pond still eludes me. It’s openings are dark – no – filled with color, yes but dark, grey areas – no white. And of course like water the colors change with the light. Ack.

watercolors //embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Oh well, painting that didn’t quite work is better than no painting at all, right? Learning through failing. Got it. Mainly I get that I need to re-find my darks – which I had, but they seem to have vanished. Also wishing i had a palette with bigger mixing areas. Hard to mix up enough on the tiny watercolor box. Hmmmm.

The kittens came home around 3 pm and were wobbly and funny and no way were they going to “be quiet”. Now we’re all ready for some sleep.

Weather of January

Poured all morning, windy, dark. I look up this afternoon and the sun’s out. I stick my nose out the door, as they say, and there’s a monster rainbow to the north so I hop in the car and take off to chase some clouds. Here are most of those photos.

23 January 2018//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Then and Now – Gettysburg and Beyond

Looking back,I first posted these words here in 2015 after an incident in Baltimore triggered violence and looting. I reposted them two years later, a month after this president took office and thinking about what it means to be American and what is worth fighting for.

Today is the anniversary of those words being said overlooking the battlefields of Gettysburg. Two minutes that sum up what is worth fighting for and why we must continue to fight for what we believe.

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate — we can not consecrate — we can not hallow — this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us — that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Abraham Lincoln
November 19, 1863

Friday

Up at the crack of dark to go to work, after a night when the kittens just wouldn’t quit… Had a nice reward after I got to the mall:

iPhone X* launch of course so no one was in the parking lot looking up. They were all lined up in the mall by the Apple Store. I managed to work long enough that if I had taken my lunch and last break I would have had 15 minutes of work remaining so we agreed I’d go home.

Had a nice early dinner with Mom. Today would have been my parents’ 66th wedding anniversary. Mom and I did a lot of chatting despite the fact that my voice was about non-existent.

Then I decided to stop at the East Greenbush Library to see if I could kick start my NaNoWriMo word count. In earlier years I used to duck into the library every night, hole up in a corral and write until I ran out of words or until they kicked everyone out. On Friday they close at six which gave me just enough time to set up, sit down, start writing – oh! THERE’S an idea! – and get about 800 words before the next to last call. The library is in their booksale mode though and even though the library was closed the book sale was open til 8:30. I spotted a book of quotations on the way in and there it still was on the way out… meant to be. But then I went in and looked around. I can’t show some of the goodies I got because they’re for someone else but here’s a sample:

The kittens are not getting that I’m not amused. I just wanted to crawl into bed with a cup of my un-drunk thermos o’tea and it felt so good climbing between the newly changed sheets and yes of course tea everywhere… grrr.

Let’s do it again tomorrow.

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