Tuesday, August 25, 2015

a crush or two

ok, the truth is i get crushes.
i have certain things i love very much
and they are important to me, even though i may never voice that interest to anyone.
i love maps and globes, i love the idea of mapping,
in fact sometimes i teach classes using mapping as a theme.
i do this at school, too.
well, today i found a whole new world
a globe maker in england.
this company makes beautiful work.
bellerby and company is a place i would love to visit.
can you imagine making globes, building the spheres, painting the lands and seas...
so, yes, these globes amaze me.
and here's another beautiful and important thing:

an herbarium made by abigail bainbridge.
while teaching at women's studio workshop i met chris petrone
who is friends with this maker.
the world of beautiful things is precious, indeed.
i thought this book
made by my student lynn keffer at wsw
might fit in as a nice segue to a couple of beautiful old things:
 this stationer's binding
 and this vovelle
my head is a whirl with bookish things today
after a few days
of quiet life again.
maybe now i can finish my edition.

Sunday, August 23, 2015


i spent the first night alone at the new place
on friday
i took over the two setters,
some books, and some drawing stuff
 and spent some time
being unusally alone at my new place
unfolding the tactile notebook 
i built with sandra brownlee 
 on my studio floor
 tess was very interested in the text and images
or maybe just some smells
there is wax and mud and flower pigment in there
 using the moleskin accordian book
freed me to be un-sequenced
which has become a problem for me 
as i ended up with too many sketchbooks
going at once.
 the non-precious sturdy pages
 didn't particularly love what i did to them
 they remained neutral
(except for their creamy yellow color)
and i added in all kinds of things
 sewed in new little 
bookish bits
drew with the three new watercolor crayons i bought
at the art shop in johnson, vermont
over the color from goldenrod
 the almost half moon 
rose early over the southern meadow
 and in the morning
the ground mist lingered
even over near the clydesdales
on the road home. 
where i struggled 
with an electrical issue
and found the best service man
after 2.5 hours of waiting for the electric company
service diagnosis.
a 6 hour glitch
thankfully fixed for less than $200 

there is a week left 
before school begins.
i hope it's uneventful, peaceful,
and for a change, 
full of making and being, not just fixing.
i am tired this sunday.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

barns and oats insurance

the elements are having their way with my barn
some boards still hold integrity, 
some not
next to my mare mist's old stall
lies some evidence of occupation
or at least of eating.
 hay mow diamonds
dazzle on these august days
 and i made a few summer prints
these colors softened some
from the morning light
 just enough for one book
 i went over to my classroom today
and found that the floors were newly waxed
i barefooted it to my room
and worked for 40 minutes
and slunk away
before the custodian found me.
 one amish farm's oats against the cold
  looking up
(ian spent some quality time with our old barn)
 and here
thinking of all the turmoil of the last few weeks.
now i am home
getting used to sleeping at the new place
while i live
in the old one.
it should feel weird, but it's ok.
 today i listened to some podcasts,
after rediscovering the one aimee did of me for
it was pretty fine
and i now know that
susan mills is doing a really great job.
susan was in my women's studio workshop class.
many thanks to all of you
for your kindnesses while i managed this challenging fortnight
 on the sidelines supporting my kids
through the loss of their father.
i let them know of all your kindnesses.
it matters.

Sunday, August 16, 2015


families gather 
in good and in troubled times
 nephew rob with son ian
ian outgrew the big guy
(his childhood hero)
rob traveled with his youngest daughter
to help my sister post-surgery 
erin came to entertain us all
after their dad's death but before the service
my kids cleaned out their stuff
and the attic
it was a huge, dirty, hot job
but it's done
ian met the new place
and said goodbye to his old one
goodnight room
my house is on the market
so i, too, can move 
down the road a piece.
90 acres, no mule, good karma.

Thursday, August 13, 2015


hannah and ian's dad passed early this morning.
thank you all for your caring.
it's huge.

our family is waiting. 
my children are gathering 
at my ex's home
welcoming the other relatives
(not mine) 
as their father transitions
from life to death.
it's very sad.
we all know this, 
and we know how hard it is 
in every sense
to let go and also to be patient.
so i wait in the wings 
and appear as the support person from time to time.
this is how my summer is winding down.
i barely reached home from longridge
making plans for one last little trip.
but instead i will be here now. 
sandra taught us this: 
be here now. 
autumn's tease

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

transitioning to home

sandra brownlee gifted us
with world enough and time
five days
enough being there
and enough safety to laugh
to be quiet
to think and work
in ways new and in safe emotional space
i can't remember one guarded or sarcastic word.
so we had individual time with sandra
and in this sacred space
another student, lynda shalagan, painted our exchange.
under nancy's apple tree.
 our lines, a poem

 sandra shared a book by hedi kyle
 the font
 mending words
 some bugs
 sacred things
 oriface: hay
 dear therese inside a big paper
 all of us in the barn
 for the one who couldn't come
and here, here is a book
made by my student lynn keffer
at w.s.w.
so lovely.
(apologies to those who i didn't have time to ask permission of:
we're in a bit of a crisis here)

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