Saturday, June 23, 2018

being here

my town.
the marquee at the American Theater:
sometimes when you have big events and so much going on it's hard to return to the day to day just because you want it so much and yet you still have things to do: mowing the lawn, laundry, cleaning enough so i can bear living in it... dealing with the wildlife is always an issue, at my house or at Home. 
where i am for a few days taking care of the elder dog Gwen and her younger and quite silly friend Tess. summertime is always busy in the north country, things to do, plants to grow, ideas to nurture, hikes to walk. i had the very great pleasure of meeting with a Master Naturalist on Saturday, who had sent out an SOS regarding populations of a lily he's helping research. while my observation located three plants, not the exact but a related species, but it did contribute to his data and he'll monitor them. I got to ask a ton of questions, and see how the science brain pays attention in a similar way to the artist brain. 
twilit birds are hard to capture
with my old red canon:
a great blue heron on the pond
i now often feel like the plants and animals and indeed the rocks and streams are fellow beings, not features of the landscape. at Home my partner found a woodcock nesting close to the house, so close that you could see the hen doing her job. he had seen three eggs before he realized what was happening and stopped going too close. it's been a while since then and the other twilight, after i'd started brushing my teeth, and as i was wandering around with toothbrush and mouthful of bubbles as i often do, i looked and i saw a little bird that was round and chubby and odd. it was a juvenile woodcock. mouthful, i tried to tell him, without alarming the bird through the big window. then there were three, all acting like goofballs, one cocky as all get out. they were making kid-style woodcock calls, too. 
i couldn't get a photo, it was too dark.
two goldfinches (or other closely related finch)
i tried to doctor the color a little, but it was too overcast.

 one of the four i've seen this year
snapping turtle mama, with attached rider.

 down the road several miles a neighbor has four clydesdales
 this one's my favorite
 we've also watched a pair of Baltimore orioles gathering
the tents from tent caterpillars, pulling them off the tent-shape like a spinner preparing to spin silk from a hankie. 
the new fawns are growing well and unfortunately one was road killed. 
this season there are many road kills, but that's what happens when humans
speed around in motors.
just the news from the north country.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

rail trip

weekly news:
i got the dry flax papers out of the blotters
stacking up a little pile of biggish sheets.
and hung up the felts at zone 4
before i prepared to visit toronto.
 this brick was part of one of the chimneys that rudy dismantled last winter
 lichens grow well here.
 beautiful miniature universe
 and the unused back door latch.
i still find debris that i clear away when i mow.
 7 am rainy morning trainride
 before i took the photo i thought there was a detectorist!
i got really excited.
then i looked at the picture.
 lake ontario
 and a tiny detail,
fringe made with cloth!
part of an installation
by Sally Thurlow
that wendy and i found by serendipity
and a visit to see Andrew's book after the launch at Swipe Design
i'm excited to read my copy because i really liked
and used The Inner Studio in my teaching.
just a coming together
the way this vibrant city does it.
brick and mortar
and beaver in unexpected places

text and textile are everywhere
and here, in so many languages, 
i'm ashamed i know only english.
i would have gladly learned other languages
when my mind was young and supple.
now i listen eagerly, and enjoy without understanding.
can you imagine how wonderful 
it would be to discern
bits of the
conversations heard in passing?
or, better, to greet the speaker in their language?
after the second trip to soma 
(and the second chocolate and this time burnt honey gelato)
and one last stop at this very cool bookshop
we went back to wendy's to find the electricity was out. again.
off i went in an uber to union station
and then to brockville on the train, 
drove over the two-mile-long ogdensburg bridge
which moves, i know, because i walked it half way once,
swaying in the sky.
wendy's healing hands
resting for a while
between chocolate, talk, rolling blackouts, and love.
yes, she's wearing my shifu patch
a my kami-ito knit bracelet with roz hawker's silver amulet.
i hope she's resting today.
i am, with happy memories.
and now it's the next day
and i've planted a garden at Home,
mowed the grass at my place, 
and begun preparations for a visit i will tell you about.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

the post i should have written*

mother sugar maple


 june garden

 fallingdown barn
 by the barn
 fridge message
new maiwa threads
* i found my old camera and am delighting in its company. 

Monday, June 11, 2018

time was and passes

time passes
there are things that remind you of what it was like to be another you.
this photo of two impossibly beautiful young outlaws.
do you remember this story? raindrops keep falling on my head?
lost along with a whole bunch of other things.
there was a west that never existed, 
as well, i suppose, as an east.
 what does the mama snapper think?
she has other things on her mind.
 stay away, you
 stay away
so i did.
i don't even know if she laid eggs.
there have been very few snappers along the roads here this 
 at the grocers i found an australian friend
though not the tasty one i like.
 spotted in the garage.
i am speechless.
all of you my friends,
this paper,
folded here prior to cutting for spinning
 this is a beautiful kozo
handmade, lovely and strong and a gift.
any of you who read this
and gave me this wonderful paper,
will you please let me know?
(i'm thanking you now, again)
it was a gift, 
and it was smallish (maybe 14 x 20 or smaller)
and i want to buy more.
but dammit i can't remember who gave me it.
 in town i bought pizza the other evening
 it was very good.
i found a little drama, 
an egg, 
and found by a fly
 who waits, 
i guess.
 there's no such thing as 
free lunch.
beauty is, however, free.
  this pattern charmed me today, 
as i walked to the studio to finish sheet forming another 3 pounds 
of flax.
i need to have my hands making paper,
or thread,
or books.
soon my first born will be 
older than the men in the first photo.
how can that be?
after a long and busy day,
i think on the blessings of turtles who know their business,
of beautiful paper
now in the drying stack.
i think of the few plants i tend in my little gardens
and of the new garden i've begun
at the place i call Home.
i think of the garden of friends i've made through the blessing
of this medium.
and i am, indeed, grateful.
i was wrong. my son is a wee bit older than sundance, 
a lot younger than butch in this photo.
his birthday is coming up, so that's on my mind!

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