“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


i wish i may

the trees of easter listened to our secrets and nonsense.

sunday.  2 white girls talking all day outside about everything and nothing, settling onto old chaise lounges, barefoot under the april sky, calling it quits only when evening began to roll in.  there were teasings of rain, but the birds never quietened, and my phone rang only once.  i missed the call.

we hadn't planned it, and in fact discussed getting in the car and going here or there, discussed walking to the park, but the farthest we got was into the house for a drink or something to eat, and then out again under the cloudy sky.  we turned off the daily gps, and let ourselves get lost, let the day take us on a journey.


actually quite perfect timing.  i am reading why place matters, am barely in, nodding my head in time to the spin of dean moriarty's wheels, this year of no rules seeming righter and righter, this year of dismantling moving into a year of shedding, of tossing, of leftover maps and emotions blowing out the open windows as i zoom down the road.  this year's road is full of unforeseen curves and potholes in the night, and the price of gas keeps going up, but what's a girl to do?


thursday morning and the sound of the wind surprises me.  the door is open, the sky blue and gray, the birds singing, but i see nothing but small breezes.  i turn away and the wind returns, blowing cool air across the bottom of my feet.  sunshine is bright and everywhere, and the wisteria is at last blooming, though not much.  spring seems another sign of this year's untried road, moving too fast, dogwood petals already dotting the streets and sidewalks.  the trees i thought would never leaf now hide the owls and hawks, and i can no longer see the church steeple down the block.  it is easy to fall under the spell of that wind, now shushing across leaves and flowers, just as easy to feel claustrophobic and exposed to hidden eyes.  i think to myself that the end of april will surely stop the too many changes of this year, that may will truly be a month of mays.  yes, you may this, yes, you may that - that the changes still to come will be good ones.

the trees of thursday move with the wind, but only the trees across the street, behind the neighbor's house.  it is a small wind and takes its time to cross to my yard, to flirt with the hackberry tree and be gone.  i divine the mood of the day by the sounds of the birds, and they are quieter.  quietening. hawks or rain be coming.



recipes for life. 101a.

one piece dark chocolate.
preheat morning to 68°.
add sunshine and breezes just cool enough to make you appreciate those flipflops and bare arms.
mix in birdsong and overhead trees going green,
blue skies, white fluffy clouds, an ice cream vendor's bell - yes, even in the morning.
let the chocolate melt on your tongue and lie back under the beginning of the day.
roll up your shirt, exposing white belly.
close your eyes.
when the cat meows close to your face, reach out an arm and feel the warmth of her fur.
keep your eyes closed.


the easter bunny is driving a ford pickup this year and made an early visit,
arms full of dark chocolate and a pink stuffed bunny,
telling stories sweet enough to make me cry.


there are weekends and then there are week ends.  the ends that stand on their own, the ones that erase all the days before.  this is one of those.  this is one that says not only is spring here, summer is coming.  this is one that sends us out for buckets of paint to welcome the rooms to a new season, sends us out for steak dinners and imaginings of new spaces.  we feed our souls and our bodies and our inner artists.

yesterday was bees.  again.  a certain someone stood at the creek's edge - close enough, he said, and that was just fine, him being only 10 and full of memories of wasps' bites, but i had to walk a few steps closer.  i'd missed the first swarming a week or so before, saw only photographs, and never expected a second chance, but yesterday morning there they hung, a few yards from their original colony in the catawba tree.  the second swarm chose the exact resting place that the first swarm had chosen, an apparent magic limb on the ginkgo tree.  i spent all day wishing on daylight stars and lucky stones that i would see them fly away, praying to the queen of bee gods and the god of christians, and my prayers were answered.  i was there in the late afternoon when the tree suddenly began to quiver, a heat mirage of flight - they were up and off and they were flying.  a sky full of bees.  feeding my soul.   a taste of joy.

one piece of nothing.
turn the day up to 80°.
add one cup of ice and old rolling stones songs.
toss in laughter and silence.
do not stir.


at the asian food market this afternoon, duck eggs.
boil for 30 minutes, the woman said,
and eat with your eyes closed.



questions, answers. easy peasy.

me in sunshine & pjs.  katie's stairs.

i know she thinks i forgot about her, but back in december, noodle nominated me for a blogging award that required me to answer some questions.  you know how it works.  i've been blogging for quite a while, and in truth thought there's nothing i can answer that i haven't already said, but i was flattered - noodle's mom reads me and puts up with me, and is one of those people on the other side of the political aisle who doesn't expect me to think like she does, and i have to admit, i appreciate that. 

but i'm doing it differently.  i'm not gonna re-award anyone, because recently someone got upset with me for not yet watching a dvd they loaned me, and i just . . . well, i don't want to pressure anyone. so i'm just doing the question and answer part, and here goes.


what is your favorite color?  it would be easy to say, you know, that bluish greenish color i use a lot and really, really love, but in truth, it's any color that's a bit dusty.  almost.  i need to rethink that. i am not a fan of burgundy or orange or most autumny colors.  and i'm not crazy about neon colors or dark pinks or magentas.  i like taupes and whites and pale blues and silver instead of gold.  i like colors you can't quite name.  faded.  soft.  

favorite animal?  in my house, i prefer cats.  i understand cats.  understand the way they so often want to be left alone, the way they want to sleep so much.  i like the way they don't need me, the way they take their time to fall in love with me.  i like their sneakiness, the way they stretch, and the way they eventually nestle with me.  i like their wildness.  

but all that said, i admit to a bit of coyote love.  they are tough in the worst of circumstances.  and i have to say owls and hawks and dogs and horses and well, i could go on.  but maybe not rats. 

favorite non alcoholic beverage?  coca-cola.  no ifs, ands, or buts.  over ice.  

facebook or twitter?  twitter, although i'm not happy with that feature that shows you pictures without you having to go to all that trouble to click on the link and open it up all by yourself.  i don't want to see pictures all the time, and it's part of the reason i prefer twitter to facebook.  or instagram. or videos when there should be only words.  i can read so much faster than anyone can speak, and i can reread for deeper meaning.  twitter moves quickly and isn't near as full of people trying to sell me something or pictures i don't want to see.  and it's full of funny. so, yes.  twitter.  

favorite pattern? stripes or polka dots.  something clean and uncluttered.  in the right color.  

do you prefer giving or getting presents?  the christmas after my mother died, when i was still dealing with legal stuff and emotional stuff, i accidentally sent an old friend her annual box of christmas goodies to the wrong address after sending her birthday card late, after sending her easter box of goodies late, and it cost me her friendship.  you may tell me it was wrong of her, and i would agree, but it's just the way things go.  up until then, i would have said giving.  emotionally and mentally, it's still giving, but i now question myself and worry, and a lot of the used-to-be-joy has gone.  what i want to do is just gather up heart shaped leaves and send them out, with a note that says i love you and this is all i got.  as for getting, as long as it's not a dvd with a time limit for watching.  :)

your favorite number? anything with 3 digits.  i have a thing about 3 digits.  

favorite day of the week? this is hard.  probably saturday, but in truth the laziness of a sunday afternoon is hard to beat.

favorite flower? lazy pink tulips.  paperwhites.  pink roses.  anything from the yard that i can plop into a vase - a magnolia blossom, catawba or pear tree blooms.  

what is your passion? oh god.  the truth, the truth, the truth.  



everyday sunday: april 6. rain and no chocolate.

me on the temporary bridge.
i stood there watching the water rise and then scooted off.

stormy sunday.

our back yard is surrounded by other back yards, all higher than ours, and water pours from the old rock walls like waterfalls.  the water rushing down the street, pushed against the curbs, curls in the air before splashing down, and i think waterhorses, though in truth i have no idea what waterhorses are, unless you count the ones in lord of the rings.

thunder.  the rock bridge crossing the creek by my front door floods quickly, and i mistake the sound of hard falling rain for hail.  the waterhorses deepen and rise and i begin to see the creek rise also. no way can i resist stepping into it and over it.


where do you write about the weeks that tear your heart and push you to your knees in pain and love and too-much-ness?  do you find a pen and a notebook and a light in the darkness and write until your hands cry no mas no mas?  do you search for a warm spot in the sunlight, wear sunglasses against the brightness, write a sentence, stop and search the sky, write another sentence, or maybe just a word, lean back and close your eyes, give it up for right then, put it off, lean further back, put the pen down?  do you leave voice messages for yourself, swearing you'll write them down later, sighs and pauses and all, promising yourself you'll remember the way you looked off to the side when you said this, that you'll not forget your jittery heart as you said that?  do you prop the computer in your lap and just type the words, listening to the rhythm of the keys, not seeing the words as anything but letters and apostrophes, just letting them drain from your fingertips?  do you sit at a desk with the tv on and too bright lights overhead because it's what you do and where you do it, and the sound of kids and sitcoms is just white noise?  do you pay attention or do you try to not look?

seeing the story written down is hard for me.  the words never cleanse, never release.  sometimes i begin a sentence and then turn the page.  too much, too much.  this morning's storm saved me; blue legal pad in hand, ditto my favorite pen, the yowling cat driving me crazy, my knee aching - i wanted the words to tear through the paper, break on through to the other side, but it wasn't happening.  my ankle began to ache.  my hip.  my head.  the cat grew crazier, wanting outside, but not really.  i let my breakfast grow cold.  the words too.  my hand began to ache.


the news disturbs me.  the thought police have arrived, and i think to myself there is no longer any use in writing the truth, in being honest; the water is rising and the bridge we are standing on will fall.  i think i will not reach to save those who let it rise, but i know myself and i know i will.  i take soup from the freezer to let it defrost, and the cat, at last calm, falls asleep in front of the fire.  i buy a book on kindle - on sale, something to read through the rainy afternoon.  i wonder how anyone who owns a stove can complain about cooking. i wish there was chocolate in the house, and decide to head to the store as soon as i finish this post.


earlier there were birds in the rain, flying sideways, fast seeking shelter of the trees.  and then the skies opened up.  now there is thunder in the distance and the rain has slowed to almost nothing.  i see a robin on the grass across the street.  it feels like an all-clear sign.



the promise of a coming storm

baby pink blossoms, wednesday morning sky.

the palms of my hand itch with words i cannot say,
the saying aloud of wishes a jinx,
the saying aloud of truths a crime.

funny that i write it that way, that my hands speak or stay silent.