Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wishing everyone a truly happy new year!
Light snow in the afternoon. I went walking in the woods and found this heart for Clytie!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

In May of this year, a game warden brought a 4 day old albino porcupine to the Center for Wildlife. Because she was sickly and needed lots of tending, she became quite used to humans and it was decided that she should remain at the Center as an "educational ambassador." This holiday card was done by Jeannie Brett.

I haven't had a Christmas tree for years, mainly because I'm too tired at the end of the semester. But this year, inspired by Edna, I got a beauty! See picture below. It's the kind of tree that e.e. cummings and Marilyn Monroe and Albert Einstein would have loved. Maybe do love. Look at those ghost lights glowing in the window. . .
The ghost of the Christmas tree looking in the window. . .

Twilight on this part of the river specializes in
blues pulled straight out of deep dream. . .

Saturday, December 12, 2009

from The New Yorker July 1, 1939

I am still cleaning out the room was used to be the guest room and then became the junk room.
Nearly done! And when it's done, its official name will be The Room of the Blue Hedgehog in honor of a picture I found in there of, natch, a blue hedgehog, done by a friend's child when he was in the 4th grade. Yes, it seems to me that everyone needs a hedgehog room (especially if one has so many pets they can't really have a hedgehog. . .)

One of the joys of this clean-up is finding lost treasure. This appeared in the New Yorker in 1939.
I have always loved it. A psychology professor gave this to our class. A mother overheard her young child talking to himself and wrote this down, presumably from behind a door. I don't think the child knew anyone could hear him. Even as irked as he is, he does manage to add some hilarious little touches. He'll remember to put the lid on the garbage can! But even better, the panda, the marble. Oh, yes. And the noonday sun. . .

He will just do nothing at all,
He will just sit there in the noonday sun,
And when they speak to him, he will not answer him,
Because he does not care to.
He will stick them with spears and put them in the garbage.
When they tell him to eat his dinner, he will just laugh at them.
And he will not take his nap, because he does not care to.
He will not talk to them, he will not say nothing,
He will just sit there in the noonday sun.
He will go away and play with the panda.
He will not speak to nobody, because he doesn't have to.
And when they come to look for him, They will not find him,
Because he will not be there.
He will put spikes in their eyes and put them in the garbage,
And put the cover on.
He will not go out in the fresh air or eat his vegetables
Or make wee-wee for them, and he will get thin as a marble.
He will not do nothing at all.
He will just sit there in the noonday sun.
This is for my Moleskine project. . .
Snow crystals, fingerprints, kisses, each one different. . .

Sunday, December 6, 2009

First snow early December

These were the last flowers to come from the garden. Just hours before, literally, these flowers were still growing outside. . .

Thursday, December 3, 2009

"The wind has. . .

"The wind has blown the rain away and blown the sky away and all the leaves away and the trees stand." --e.e.cummings

So now I can see the river again! Fortunately, the river refused to go waltzing off with the crazy, crazy wind. And my beautiful boat is now put away for the winter. I rowed at dusk on Sunday to the launch area, accompanied by a harbor seal -- the water all rosy from the sunset, the temperature 50 degrees. Now I'm going to have to rely on daydream to travel the shining water. Lucky for me -- one of my best talents, daydreaming.

The Angel's New Hat

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Went out rowing today for two hours. The wind was a bit frisky but the weather was warm -- well, warm for November 21st. About 50 degrees. And the river, gorgeous. The second best surprise was rowing out to the Memorial Bridge and finding it had reopened. The best surprise was playing hide and seek with a harbor seal the whole time I was out on the water.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Cosmos, zinnias, marigolds, nasturtiums, spinach. . .

November zinnia. . .I've covered the flowers twice when the temps got too close to freezing. Am NOT complaining. Couldn't be happier, actually, that I still have a garden in November.

Plates full of diamonds. Or fortune tellers' globes. . .

Rained for a solid day and night. I was out at 10 pm bailing the boat. Good thing. She was very nearly full. But look at the plates full of diamonds that I found everywhere this morning!

New pal

My newest pal. Not clear to me whether the mouse is male or female so for now, it lives in its own glass house. But it likes to sit on my shoulder while I write. Tiny whiskered muse. . .

Mouse with Mouse

Sunday, November 8, 2009


5:00 pm -- already dark. Just came in from the river and a two hour row in 65 degree weather. I watched the wind pull an oak leaf off a branch and then the leaf drifted peacefully down and floated across the reflection of its own tree. . .

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Sad PS

The possum died, but not before she had a scrumptious full plate of cat food. She had a safe, warm place for her last bit of time on earth. I buried her in the back yard in a nest of golden leaves, in a place where the sun first touches the yard as it rises. Poetic but ridiculous since possums are nocturnal. Oh well.


The river's always right there, though foliage screens into invisibility late May through early November. My part of Kittery still hasn't had a hard frost so we've held on to flowers and leaves and wits a bit longer this year. Now the trees are starting to think it's time to let go. Late afternoon, I am wonderfully surprised--as I am every year--by sunset light glittering right over the water into my window. Not a great picture but still, you get the idea. One of the many reasons I love winter. It returns to me the river.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Center for Wildlife today. Got to visit the three squirrels I raised. They were in an outdoor cage, sitting up on high shelves. Their tails fluffed up behind them like autumn clouds. Eating acorns. Three beauties! Soon to be released back into the woods. They started out so scrawny and broken and are now nothing but beautiful. And I did see the release of Great Horned Owl who'd been at the Center since July. Oh, yeah. Amy let go and that owl was off into evening in one big happy hurry!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

This isn't my picture but nevertheless, the bathtub possum could be this possum's sister. . .

Opossum with concussion in my bathtub

I was walking the dogs this evening when I spotted a confused opossum on the sidewalk ahead of us. Tied the excited dogs to a telephone pole and went to examine the poor juvenile opossum who let me walk right up . . .couldn't see any blood but suspect the critter had just been
grazed by a car. She turned in a little half-hearted spiral then just stopped and looked at me as if to say, "How has my life come to this?" If she'd her wits about her, she would have fled the minute she saw me and/or the dogs. Up to speed, an opossum can go at a fairly decent clip, about 4 miles per hour. Decided I couldn't leave her there. She was at the mercy of humans both in and out of cars. So took off my coat, bundled her up like a baby, held her in one arm, while I untied the dogs, took their leashes in my other hand and set off under the still-mighty-full-moon toward home, hoping that she stayed dazed long enough to forget about trying to bite me. Opossums have lots of sturdy teeth. Now she's in the bathtub with a small dish of wet cat foot and also water. If she survives the night, I'll take her up to the Center for the Wildlife in the morning. A doolally opossum's in the bathtub and all's right with the world.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sixty degrees today on the river this afternoon. My new BFF, a young ring-billed gull who kept me company the whole time I was out on the water. I followed this trail of light while rowing and as yet have no plans to return.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

While cleaning an outdoor cage at CFW, got a very bad nail puncture. Went to the Dr. for a tetanus shot but that resulted in a fever? I guess. I went to bed in two pairs of pjs covered with a fleece top, wool socks on my feet, wool socks on my hands (who knows where their gloves are when suddenly the body goes polar and its the middle of the night), a hat, covered by two down puffs and a fat warm bedspread, radiators cranking out 80 degree heat. And I couldn't get warm. (I didn't take this picture. . .) But it gives you a pretty good idea what the inside of me felt like last night.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Not as easy as you might think to take a picture of yourself very nearly covered with birds. Stella's looking out the window. Perma-dove's picking out his read for the day. I'm working on a poem. All's right with the world, tho possibly I could use one more bird for my right shoulder. . .just to balance things out. . .
A Happy Birthday
by Ted Kooser

This evening, I sat by an open window
and read till the light was gone and the book
was no more than a part of the darkness.
I could easily have switched on a lamp,
but I wanted to ride this day down into night,
to sit alone and smooth the unreadable page
with the pale gray ghost of my hand.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Sorry to be repetitious but I am, as they say in Great Britain, gobsmacked. Today my neighbors put up a sign to show the snow where to fall. . .Or perhaps they are planning to sell snow this winter and are pointing to the site of their future snow store. It's hard to tell in cases like this just what's really going on. . .Any ideas?

Have I mentioned lately that I am in love with THIS BOAT?
65 degrees today. I emptied last weekend's storm out of the boat and went rowing. But not far. The outgoing tide was wickedly strong. So I rowed in sweet circles right by the dock. Is it all right to be in love with a boat? I am in love with my boat. I am deeply, deeply in love with my boat. I don't see this love affair ending anytime soon.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

This is from Caroline Smith & John Astop.
The Elemental Tarot.
And reminds me that while say things, one
to another, other more important messages
are passing between us.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Last flowers to survive the frost are keeping the camel lamp company. The camel, in turn, guards the desk and desk, now a squirrel and dove playground, inspires fabulous drawings and poems!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

All day cold rain. Frost tonight or tomorrow night. So I'm posting this flower lamp. Because.

Monday, October 12, 2009

My squirrels are now eating plates of whole wheat bread and formula. They are old enough that they don't want to be hand fed anymore. And they no longer want to play the Mekeel Is A Pine Tree game. A few more days and I will return them to the wildlife center. They'll be released back into the wild very soon. If I'm lucky, I'll have three more babies to raise for release before winter sets in.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Not always easy for a human to be a tree.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Not a hat. Not a cloud. Not a bad idea. Just a wonderful new brain, purchased for $3 at a local farm stand.
Now all I have to do is figure out how to install it (and get the cabbage juice out of my hair.)

Monday, October 5, 2009

Getting Ready for Winter

Weather's still warm, more like spring than summer, or late summer. No frost yet. Every year, the frost comes later and later. Nevertheless, I'm shifting my attention to the clouds because soon that's where the best blooming will be. . .
Tire cover I saw on an SUV in the school parking lot. She's impressive, if not for her super-powers, then certainly for her dimensions. What a crack up.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Luna Fortuna Secunda Columbidae Fos

Late summer, early autumn, there's a very rare flower, maybe only three or four of them in a year, in the whole United States. In Latin, the name of this flower is:
luna fortuna secundna columbidae fos
and it means something like
"good luck moon-dove flower."
As you can see, I am one of the lucky ones who found such a flower in my own garden!

I'm just goofing. That's Stella the live dove nesting in flowers I brought inside from the garden!
The instructions are from a book called Journal Spilling by Diana Trout
1. Work quickly
2. Choose a magazine and rip out 7 - 10 pages
3. Then choose 7 - 10 images, again quickly
4. Without thinking, place the images on the paper, fast.
5. Scribble

I work slowly and I don't scribble so this exercise turned out to be both difficult and then, fun!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

K.A. Efetor
G.M. Tarmann
Please Do Not Become A Moth

I’ve caught you beginning to look crepuscular,
soft and lost, your edges singed by simple daylight;
at your sides, arms now part wing – like two flags
of surrender the enemy never bothered to notice.
Loss has shrunk you so much even a sparrow
might devour you. When I see you again, I know
you will look like just a man. But once the buried
secret reveals itself, that darkness only grows. So I’m
making sure the moon knows how much you need
its soft cool glow. And I’m folding tin foil into flowers,
filling them with sugar, tying them to leafless branches,
one way of adding a little bit of summer to what now
can only be winter. To me, you will not be coming home
again ever, though home is still my hope for you.

What Happens To Money In My House

A wonderful artist friend sent me a check to pay for something that didn't need to be paid for. After the check
had been in my house for a few hours,
it mysteriously transformed into what you now see. Non-negotiable, I'd say.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Once in awhile, usually on a rainy evening, it becomes visible. . .
When I was twenty eight, I had a dream about a raven who
came to my door with a ring in its beak. A wishing ring. I
still wear it though your first impulse might be not to believe me.
It is, after all, made of dream-metals and so, invisible. . .

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Two Hundred Million Reasons to Love Crows #1.

There are about two hundred million reasons to love crows. The first one is:
they are more glossy beautiful than Marilyn Monroe or fresh asparagus or opera by Puccini or clouds shaped like the lost hanging gardens of Babylon or. . .

Swept Up Whole/Kay Ryan


You aren't swept up whole,
however it feels. You're
atomized. The wind passes.
You recongeal. It's
a surprise.

-Kay Ryan


This is my last sunflower. It opened yesterday and isn't just leaning toward the sun. It flattens itself at noon to be a plate, just in case the sun should decide to fall. This sweetie says,"I'll
catch you!"

Have been watching bees all afternoon. They're taking turns with this sunflower. One after another. And they each rotate around once counter-clock wise, as if to say -- you humans tell time backwards. It's really only a matter of how much pollen you can carry away from each blossom. I agree.

I love how much this bee looks like its flower no matter which flower it's on!

One of the most beautiful days on earth. Everything in the garden, from dragonflies, to big fat honey bees, to me -- all soaking in the late, warm light.

Late blossom hoping to become eggplant. I may have to repot the plant and bring it indoors but I'm willing. . .

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Origin of the word marigold:
Middle English from the given name Mary, referring to the Virgin Mary + dialect gold

Used for:
tooth aches
strengthening the heart
mashed into oil & put
on wounds
draws evil humors out of the head
strengthens eye sight
remedy for pain and bee sting
marigold water in the eyes helps one to see
herb of the sun
love charms
causes a witch to lose her will
added to pillows to encourage prophetic or psychic dreams
effective in stopping gossip
good for mixing with chicken feed--turns the eggs
extra yellow and the chickens, too
healing skin lotions

If I were telling time by the garden, I'd say that summer is finally here.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Moon Man McBride

Here lies Moon Man who loved to run on what he called his Millennium Wheel or sometimes, The Eye, I'm on the London Eye! He'd go for 10 mouse-miles then stop to wash his whiskers, ears and rosebud nose. Then snack on a seed or berry or a long dried strand of timothy hay and be on his way again on the yellow wheel. As if this journey were brand new, one of a kind, never to happen again. And slept all day in a tea box house, on a bed of shredded grass and bits of pillow stuffing. And he took sunflower seeds from my hand, never failed to peek out of whatever hiding place he was in when I called his name. One of a kind, bright little zen friend, laid to rest on a bed of zinnias, marigolds and fresh mint. He will be so missed.
Beautiful enough to be stained glass. Or the kind of coins they used in Oz or Atlantis.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Don't know what these are but all I can say is I wish my hair looked like this! Whatever they are, they're tiny,
only about the size of the fingernail on your pinkie.