Hometown Blues

Credit: patrickeades.com

Where once was my children’s childhood 

Interlopers arrived, knocking down forests

Cutting up well-worn dirt paths

  and paper roads

Replacing them with asphalt for new houses

Knocking down solid dwellings

Constructing cookie cutter outsized McMansions

that clog up the curve in the narrow road

Their children have no yards

Only swamps and useless driveways

 for their many cars and perfect perennial plantings 

This old house sticks out

An eyesore to others, maybe

A tired elder who shakes her head at the soaring towers the new neighbors call “home”

She will miss her inhabitants

The rowdy boys sledding down her hill in the big winters when they were little

Those 2 man baseball games in her drive

where second base was the bed of flowers by the bulk head

There’s still a worn patch of green that was the pitcher’s mound

One man catch and the throws that missed the net breaking windows in the garage

Shattered glass happily dancing to pieces on the ground

The swing set and fort

A place to hide

Games of “lion and zebra”

zooming and zigzagging on endless grass

The homemade sand pit on the side of the garage

Tonka trucks and shovels and pails

 A little boy’s excavation site that never did grow grass

The back forty a favorite spot for the first garden

and those pesky woodchucks!

Summers spent swimming in the kiddie pools

After you were too big, you made the  bonfire pit

A grown boy’s excavation dug with man-sized metal shovels and lots of muscle

Cold nights keeping warm by its roaring heat

Old enough now for hops and barley and other spirits that moved you

Summer nights of fireflies’ halos and cricket sounds and skunk smells

 and deer at dusk and coyote howls

They will visit you in your dreams

 

Day 23.  Happy memories amidst the changes all around us.

Capturing a New Day

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Last quarter moon in the first part of the day

Still high in the Eastern sky

The day is beginning to burst

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The pond is composed

Presently unoccupied

Bullfrogs as yet to call their mates

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The stream across the way

bubbles in contrast to the easy

manner in which her mother rests

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Her brother runs faster

Rounding a bend in the road

Gliding over rocks and under

fallen trees who lay across

his banks in a final surrender

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Back home a view of our sweet land

Snow hanging on in the back forty

Sunlight kissing the maples and birches

The bonfire pit anxious for a conflagration

And shoots of fresh grass

winning over the sleeping earth

 

Day 15. I woke up to see the last quarter moon outside my bedroom window. These photos were taken with my phone.  Took the easy workout this morning, walking for an hour watching the golden sky light up and taking pictures of pretty places near the homestead.

 

 

Heaven’s Newest Star

Credit: drearoblivion.blogspot.com

 

An afternoon stroll

Spring Sunday just beginning to reveal its glory

A walk with the tribe

My small band of pilgrims paying homage

Honoring a life well-lived

In the grief a sprinkling of joy was present

Certainly love was winning the day

Though you lived many years you left us too soon

A memorable woman whose heart beats within us

 

Day 12.  A dedication to Barbara. A long time member of our faith community and our town whom we lost 3 days ago. Married for 6o years, mother to many, she leaves behind a legacy of love and kindness and earthly wisdom.

 

What If I Missed It?

 

I thought I’d take a walk between the raindrops

A daily morning amble bordering on an obsessive need for fresh air

No walls of snow nor cold spring precipitation can deter me

A funky forest scent greets my nostrils- a deciduous odor-somewhere between death and rebirth  

No one is near to rousing from sleep

The raw gray keeps their wakefulness away  

I turn the corner passing a small grove

SNAP!

Branches breaking?

Squirrel scurrying?

I gasp, covering my mouth in whispered surprise

A trio of does meets my eyes

We stare in respectful silence

The whole world seems still  

Morning mist begins to soak me

The air wraps me in its chill  

Signs of life at last arrive

Cardinals cheerfully chirping

Mourning doves cooing their greeting

along and among and amidst

broken bows and mailboxes

bent from brumal blizzards

Though these days remain anemic and ashen

Small glimmers of a golden vision are emerging

My heart is anticipating a new inauguration

Day 10.  Written at the end of a whirlwind of a work week. Happy Friday!

Roots and Routes

Credit: www.penandbell.com

Roads, paths, byways and highways

Places I have seen

People I have met

Those whom I have loved

They are beginning to exist in my memory

Dwelling in a happy space of a life well-lived

The long flat road of childhood

Pathways of the campus

The bustling avenue of a young woman

The winding lane of a small town

and the rolling hills that I have run upon

Streets pushing the strollers that carried my babies

The muddy country road in the mountains

and the long highway to John’s Island

Road trips, day trips, field trips and side trips

Mystery trips to the notches and beaches

I see them in my dreams

I have not yet reached the mountain top

and gladly so

Now I hold hands with my beloved

We stand at the gateway

Our eyes fixed on a new direction

Our hearts following their own path

 

Day 9. A dream scape poem that needed to be written.

 

The Road to Completion

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The moon was lightly veiled in a frosty mist, hanging low in the western sky. I turn right on the road that serves as a low ridge for a sunrise view. The day was just barely breathing, trying to add its muted glow to this dead zero day. I am encased in Gortex, winter proofed and multilayered. Surprisingly mobile and agile despite being sealed and wrapped from head to toe. It takes mere minutes for my eyelashes and bangs to create miniscule icicles, the results of my warm breath meeting the crackling cold air. I’m reminded that my nostrils have hair, as they,too, stiffen in the chill.

Getting out the door for a walk or run in this long winter requires a different kind of dedication. Smart preparation the night before, added time in the morning to layer up and a sheer determination to just do it. Forget physical ability. If your head’s not in it, go back to bed!

I would like to think that my obsession with fresh air and morning movement helps me be less fearful, allows me to grow an extra skin layer of grit and toughness, maybe even a kind of boldness, a clarity for the day ahead.

I am immersing myself in this season mostly because I know it really is my last in this climate. I’d still be out there anyway but I feel more purposeful now. Time is roaring past me; the days seem to spin into one another. They fold and unfold in ways that put me in the dual role of observer of and participant in each moment.

Would I have this same outlook if I were not departing? I cannot answer that question fully. Would you dear readers feel the same?

Maybe we all need to be right in the midst of the microseconds of our life. Maybe we need to embrace the Grace, the Holiness and the Wholeness, the Light and the Dark, the Here and the Now.

 

There is no path to happiness, happiness is the path

~ Buddha

 

Writing Up a Storm!

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(part of my backyard-a blanket of deep white)

The blizzard has passed although the day is far from ordinary. School cancellations forced me to stay home. Others are digging out, taking another day to reorder their life. We feel lucky not to have lost power even if we got 2 feet or so of snow. It is under 20 degrees and all I can think about is those others in the very eastern part of the state and the islands who are off the grid and cold. We live just far enough from the coast where it could have gone either way.

I’ve got a roast in the oven and potatoes ready to be cooked for my famous mashers. It feels like a Sunday. We went out today, heading to the gym for exercise and the local organic grocery store for dinner ingredients. Laundry is getting done and we are in denial about the workday for tomorrow even as I prepared the smoothies for the next couple of days.

Winter storms shift the beat of daily life. Some panic- rushing to the stores for an overwhelming amount of food, as if Armageddon is approaching. Such a weird response in my mind. We don’t live miles or hours away from the nearest anything. I often wonder how much of the supplies end up in the trash after all is said and done.

So we chill in the chill. We had a great meal together last night-created by what we had in stock. So yummy! And my youngest and two friends took a 2 hour hike into the woods late yesterday afternoon. Refreshed and rejuvenated and ready, they experienced a rare excursion into the quiet. Late last night, the neighbors took their sleds to the street, whipping down the hill in the middle of the road. The travel ban had its benefits!

 

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(another part of the back with the footprints that lead to the woods)

I’ll be up before dawn tomorrow. Hopefully catch a run before the rush. Thanks to all of you for sharing in the tidbits of these last 48 hours. And remember to capture ALL the moments everyday if you can!