New Stuff

why parsnips, you may ask? New iPhone day! Yes indeed. Photos TBD.

The person who will not stand for something will fall for anything.
— Zig Ziglar

New Stuff

A beautiful day in the neighborhood

I went out because the clouds and sky were glorious but the colors of spring are mysterious and fugitive. Tonight I went out to the car because I’d left my snack out there uneaten. I sat there and ate it, pear juice all over my face and hands while I watched the birds at the feeder.

Controlled time is our true wealth.
— Buckminster Fuller

A beautiful day in the neighborhood

NaPoWriMo – Day Twenty-Nine

The penultimate day of April and so the almost-last poem of NaPoWriMo. Hopefully it’s been a good month for you all too wherever you’ve been laying low and waiting for COVID-19 to pass over. I was out and around looking at things and painting and took some photos of what I saw and one of my helpful co-workers and myself, trying to work and of course, some clouds.

April is almost over. This morning
I went out with my first coffee, wondering
has there ever been a better time
for daffodils than this year?
We suddenly have time, and reason,
to look and look again. To see
the no-color brown-grey hillside
fill up with frothy green brush.
One day, the pond has a haughty goose.
A week later, several yellow goslings
hurrying to line up behind two strict
but apparently caring parents.
We had several rounds of snow this April,
but nothing stayed the hand of spring.
We were there when the maples bloomed,
watched as peonies leapt out of the ground,
four, six inches at a time from nothing.
When the peepers sang, we stopped to listen
and knew another checkbox had been ticked.
Every day the hand of April is seen
in places you’ve looked before, suddenly,
throwing a fistful of green, now pouring it
along roadways, sneaking out of hedgerows,
following the farmer turning the fields,
that telltale green waiting til he heads home,
jumping up out of the surprised earth
No one cares if it’s weed or timothy
Only that April came and now comes May.

NaPoWriMo – Day Twenty-Nine

NaPoWriMo – Day Twenty-two

Wow – a week to go? how did that happen? How was your April? How was your day?

Woke up to snow and January cold.
There was no mail in the box —
I stood looking at the daffodils
crushed down by a cruel spring night.
From there, things went on —
web pages just hung and didn’t load,
the pounding surf of the web reduced to
ebbs and flows of bandwidth.
It was warmer in the car at
lunchtime than inside the house,
and my cats looked woeful but
glad to get rid of me for an hour.
The daffodils were up when I returned
disregarding metaphors or forecasts.

My pen scratched and sputtered and
I realized finally – it had run dry.
I laughed at myself for having
muttered myself over this all day.
I cleaned it at the bathroom sink
flushing it with water til clear
then carefully filled it and – imagine –
only got one tip of a finger blue.
As I stood and scrubbed away the ink
the sky was orange at the horizon
and the sun a diamond in the
branches of trees somewhere near
I bowed my head to my task again,
the story of the day within.

NaPoWriMo – Day Twenty-two

NaPoWriMo – Day Eighteen

A quiet snowy day. We didn’t get the four to seven inches but there was slushing and there higher hills that were still white this afternoon. NaPoWriMo challenged us to “write an ode to life’s small pleasures” but there are so many right now, I’m going with a bigger one. Time.

Thirty days and thirty-one days to pause
Who knew in a lifetime you’d have this chance
From first awakening, to sliding grateful
back into a bed that holds you safely
Day after day of being. Looking and
seeing. Painting or writing or something
you haven’t named yet. Making breakfast. Lunch.
Wondering if it’s too early – guess what –
the answer to that is no. Do it now.
Do something else or more of that – later.
Go out on the porch with a cat in arms –
take a good whiff of the morning waiting.
However many more days and every –
Pick up the daily. Heft it. Wield it.

NaPoWriMo – Day Eighteen

NaPoWriMo – Day Seventeen (hold that thought)

Yes Seventeen… you know what that means? DING DING DING it’s Haiku Day!

We’ll be fine. Mostly.
Yes mid-April snow is fine.
I’m sure we’ll be fine.

Tax day came and went
without much pressure this year
Uh, what is today?

Been eating healthy.
Stocked up on beans and cabbage.
Craving a burger.

My shelves are well-stocked
I have emergency lights
Could you please call me?

Social Distancing
is a must these days for all
Hey, six feet back, bub!

Who is that masked man?
This is not a comic book,
just the grocery store.

Stay at home April
time to write many haiku
and eat some bonbons.

The cats look askance
You fed us, now go to work
please and thank you mom.

Some day we will laugh
at parts of this pandemic
but not all of it.

NaPoWriMo – Day Seventeen (hold that thought)

In other news

We can’t go anywhere too exotic but we can dream…

Veggies and fruit arrive by fedex now:

The worms have arrived! (also by fedex, but yesterday)

Vermiculture 2020//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Other things you can do with an assortment of fruit:

In other news

NaPoWriMo – Day Thirteen

Well, to say the least, it was raining. And then it rained some more. And then Billy Collins did his live reading at 5:30 – Thank you Billy!

When the rain came down
making circles in circles
of the world already so wet
Out painting, grey isn’t
what I was there to do
so I broke out the tea
thinking this will pass.
It poured and I poured.
On my phone, a poet
reading. How amazing,
to sit in your car and
watch a favorite poet
read and talk about
his words. He was, in fact,
apologetically in Florida.
While he spoke I viewed
the fuzzy world past two
watercolor palettes and
laughed so I painted
them and him and went home.
It was a good day despite
the endless rain and news.
Another day of staying home
or at least alone, painting
and writing and finding
a scrap or two of laughter.

I can’t complain really, this morning it was so wet and windy that I stayed in and painted this.

Art to me, is seeing. I think you have got to use your eyes, as well as your emotion, and one without the other just doesn’t work. That’s my art. — Andrew Wyeth

NaPoWriMo – Day Thirteen

NaPoWriMo – Day 10

There were three poems, but this one was a little more ready to go. More in the continuing string of longer than normal poems! Someone on facebook asked what pickles were on our refrigerator shelves and a lively listing ensued. Later it was summed up as a great long and very informative conversation that had nothing to do with the news! I totally agreed. What a welcome diversion.

After I was sick at the beginning of March, I took an actual list and did a pantry shop, just before things got locked down. (When I’d started to feel well enough to stay out of bed for awhile, I had got it in my head to clean out the pantry and kitchen shelves, which I did, a little at a time and many trips to the trash can.) I was glad to have just freshened up all my go-to items, and I’ve been lucky enough to be able to get some groceries for pick up and some fruits and veg delivered!

In these days —
“these difficult times”
when grocery shopping has
taken on a whole new
sense of adventure,
we talk about our
childhood meals and
favorite candybars and
how our sourdough is doing
as though we are indeed
in “difficult times”
My pantry has all the
old standbys, spaghetti,
makings of sauce, baked beans,
soup, sandwiches, pickles, relish.
Tea, coffee beans, sugar.
A few bottles of adult
refreshment for evening
Raisins, a jar of oatmeal.
Doubtful I will starve
although the cats would
tell you otherwise.
They seem concerned.
I reassure them daily.

.

NaPoWriMo – Day 10

NaPoWriMo – Day 9

So very rainy and later windy today. Did some “productive things” like changed the sheets and did some wash, did the dishes I left over yesterday, fed the happy if chilly sourdough starter. Figured out a way to keep it a little warmer at least in the daytime.

The cats seemed concerned that we might run out of cat litter and FOOD. I found that PetSmart would let me order it online and would bring it right out to the car so that’s what I did. In fairness, they always offer to help me out to the car with it. In truth the cats NEVER offer to help me bring it in from the car.

Anyway, that’s pretty close to Mom, so I swung by with the milk she asked for and a few extra things from my delivered shipment of veggies.

Milk for My Mother

Drove in today to see my mother
— brought her milk,
a jug of two per cent,
no loaf of bread,
none to be had even if wanted.
A calculated risk these days,
claiming an errand for myself,
part of my responsibilities
to three cats concerned,
if prematurely for their own
still amply-filled food bin.
I brought her myself, and
some unexpected groceries
along with the asked-for milk.
It’s about all I can provide
along with many texts and calls.
We both consent, silently,
to hugs and kisses.
How illicit! Are you shocked
at our breach of social distance?
You shouldn’t be. Mom would
forgo milk a day or so longer.
The single cure I can offer is
for the only ailment
we have that matters.
We sit side by side on the couch
chatting about things: some
worldly, some news, but most
surrounding us daily, flowing,
the tide we float with or
swim against and have for years,
so many years.

NaPoWriMo – Day 9