Sunday, October 3, 2010

Here's a goofy little doodle from a journal page. . .
Have found, and fallen in love, with a poet new to me -- Shinkichi Takahashi. This poems's from a book called Triumph of the Sparrow/Zen poems.


Gods are everywhere:
war between Koshi and Izumo
tribes still rages.

The all of All, the One
ends distinctions.

The three thousand worlds
are in that plum blossom.
The smell is God.

Chicken lamp

Busy, hurry, list it, do it, fast, now and now-er, better, best it. . .seems to be the dominant tape running in my head and no matter how many things I check off the infinite To Do list, dozens of other things boldly add themselves so that the list never shrinks, only grows. This morning, though, I heard a quieter voice, quite funny, actually. It said, "Why don't you just pay some attention to the chicken's tail feathers." Meaning the carving, I guess. So I did. I stopped and meditated briefly on the beauty of the wooden feathers. In the background, the To Do list was ramping itself up with trombones and xylophones,small mortar rounds and the sound of Humpty-Dumpty crashing and climbing, crashing and climbing. But it doesn't make any difference because today, finding my way from beauty to beauty is the doing.

Grateful for rain

Whole porch full of geraniums burst into very nearly audible hallelujahs
when the rain finally returned.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Spider with Twin

This spider's been spinning its web from my rocking chair to my front door or weeks which means I can't really use the rocking chair and getting in and out of the house is always a very delicate tai chi sort of event. For me and the spider. Then the rain came
and -- really! -- washed the spider out! One day of sun and she's back. I'm happy to see her. I don't mind about the rocker. Out on the lawn, there's a glider that none of the spiders seem to have discovered yet!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

New Heart-Throb

One of my favorite poems by e.e. cummings

maggie and milly and molly and may

maggie and milly and molly and may
went down to the beach (to play one day)

and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles,and

milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;

and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and

may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.

For whatever we lose(like a you or a me)
it’s always ourselves we find in the sea

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


CFW leaves me a phone message: "The Kittery Police called and said that they've received a report of a seagull at Fort Foster using an injury to get the sympathy of people on the beach. If you're able, will you go to Fort Foster to see if the gull needs assistance?" She's laughing. It's illegal for a gull to "use its injury" to garner food or affection from nearby humans? Is the bird letting one wing droop a bit while sighing softly "To fly or not to fly?" Is it throwing up on tots? Is it going into a dead faint right next to the cheese doodles?

I drive up to Fort Foster and ask the man at the gate if he knows anything about a deceitful gull.
"Yes," he says. "We had quite a few reports. A police officer responded to the call. As soon as that gull saw the officer, it flew away. The officer said he thought the gull was frightened off by his
uniform. We figured the gull was just sick or something."

"Maybe ate some bad fish?" I say, getting into the swing of things.

"Yes!" says the man at the gate. "That's just what we thought!"

But I'm left wondering just who calls the cops on a gull? And why does a police officer show up on the beach FOR A SEAGULL????

figure it out. . .
After the March 31st release and the sighting of male and female together
I haven't seen the swans on the pond until today. The pictures are of swan
#1 in the clear water, swan #2 in the green water and #3 swans together.
They were clear across the pond so the pictures are blurry and small but
who cares. They are alive and clearly very happy to be together. I couldn't be happier myself.

March 31, 2010 Swan Returns to Pond

The swan we found on January 13th who had a 6 inch deep wound in her chest recovered, mainly due to the incredibly good care she received at the Center for Wildlife. These are pictures of Lorisa, who should be named Goddess-Savior of Wildlife,
returning the swan to the pond. We'd been told that the swan's mate had been killed. But he showed up the next day. Really a very happy story.

Monday, July 12, 2010


"If we give objects the friendship
they should have, we do not open
a wardrobe without a slight start. Beneath its russet wood, a wardrobe
is a very white almond."
-Gaston Bachelard


"An immense cosmic house is a potential of every dream of houses. Winds radiate from its center and gulls fly from its windows. A house that is as dynamic
as this allows the poet to inhabit the universe. Or, to
put it differently, the universe comes to inhabit the house."
-Gaston Bachelard

Friday, June 18, 2010

There's a gannet in the bathtub
(not my bathtub, thank God)

and a baby possum in my heart

This is Amy, one of the staff members at the Center for Wildlife, with one of our many new babies.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Relative of Extinct Auk appears in Wells, Maine

I happened to be working at the Center for Wildlife as a Razor Bill was admitted. Technically, it really should have been swimming off the coast of Newfoundland. So a lot must have gone wrong for this beauty to appear
at a construction site in Wells, Maine.
We all stopped work to marvel. The
Razor Bill's the bird that most resembles the extinct giant Auk.

Razor Bill somewhat off course

Black and white, interrupted

The bird appeared to be such a black and white affair that the intake of breath ( from all of us gathered to watch the exam) was audible.
"Mango!" said Amy. And that's exactly the color of the inside of the Razor Bill's mouth. Mango bright and true!
Slim stem's the thing connecting what we can see with what we can't. Those little hearts? Obvious everyday valentines from each side to the other.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Am not sure what this is. That's probably why I bought it -- at the grocery store! Clearly, it cannot be edible to anyone or anything on this earth?

Monday, May 17, 2010

OTIS July 1992 - April 2010

Whose religion centered around tearing off any loose wallpaper; who, over time, turned the banister into splinters as he clawed his way from the first to second floor, never taking stairs when there was an opportunity to shred wood; who could wake from the deepest sleep by the scent of freshly toasted bread, leaping to the table or my lap and tearing off tiny bits of toast, flinging the scraps every which way and only eating the bits that had the most butter; who, spiritually, mentaly and physically
could not abide flowers in vases -- never once failing to swat every flower out of every vase (eating a few, ignoring the rest); whose purr was certain remedy for any sadness, small or large. Apparently no remedy for the sadness that attends his passing.

My new mantra

If at first an idea does not sound absurd, then there is no hope for it."
--Albert Einstein

poem by Jack Myers

Desert is the Memory of Water

After I am gone and the ache begins
to cease and the slow erosion I felt,
being older than you, invades you too,
you’ll come to see that an image of the desert
is the memory of water, like remembering

when we were walking in beautiful Barcelona
and you said you thought trees were gods
because they were rooted in earth
and flew in the air and magically made food
out of light and made the air we breathe.

I was stunned how you could open up a God-space
just like that. Like when my 2-year-old dug holes
in the yard and fit his face into each of them to see,
as he explained, if he could find where the darkness
came from. Then you asked me why I never prayed.

I believe whatever disappears or survives
or comes into being is a prayer that’s already
been answered, and that we feel alone
because we won’t let go of what is gone
or changed or hasn’t happened yet.

Waking this morning with my arms around you,
the dogs snoring, and a mourning dove cooing,
I felt I awoke in a peaceable kingdom
where the fear of death turned inside-out
into a love for life. If I prayed, I’d pray for that for you.

-- Jack Myers, from his final collection,
The Memory of Water

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Walked to the graveyard this afternoon. Most of the angels were toppled from last week's crazy windstorm, some gusts up to 91 mph.
Every angel I could find, now restored to his or her proper guard post.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

"All beginnings are small." -Carl Jung

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Poem by William Dickey

by William Dickey from

I sent you this bluebird of the name of Joe
with "Happiness" tattooed onto his left bicep.
(For a bluebird, he was a damn good size.)
And all you can say is you think your cat got him?

I tell you the messages aren't getting through.
The Golden Gate Bridge is up past its ass in traffic;
tankers colliding, singing telegrams on strike.
The machineries of the world are raised in anger.

So I am sending this snail of the name of Fred
in a small tricolor sash, so the cat will know him.
He will scrawl out "Happiness" in his own slow way.
I won't ever stop until the word gets to you.
Swan reported lingering in small area of open water near drain pipe on a frozen pond. Normally, at this time of year, the swans would be on the river. I went to investigate and then went back again the next morning. A friend and I pulled the swan to shore. Discovered a wound at least six inches deep in her side. She is now receiving the best of care up at the Center For Wildlife. I think of her every day.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Crow taking heart from candle flame. . .

Monday, January 4, 2010

Isthmus to Island

Under almost any other circumstance, there's an isthmus here. This high tide turned the dock to island. If it were my isthmus, I think I might have sequestered myself on the far part of the dock with good footwarmers, a thermos of tea and enjoying temporary island-hood. . .

Very high tide

Because of the second full moon at the end of December, yesterday's high tide was about as high as I've ever seen. For instance, one should be able to walk to this dock!

Friday, January 1, 2010


In fact, the bird did fly away. Just resting. . .

Andy's poem for the new year

This is the poem I just received from my friend, Andrea LeBlanc. Wonderful poem for the new year!


On the first morning of a brand new year
Indeed a new decade
Standing outdoors in slippers and robe
A goldfinch sitting on my hand

Stunned (or content)
Safe from the chill of the snow
Where he fell
Heartbeats throbbing visibly
As minutes passed

Listening to the wingbeats of cardinals
Distinct amidst the flutter
Of birds busy
Before the coming storm

Grateful in the stillness
For the opportunity
To begin the year
With a kindness


First day of the new year, seems like a good time to revisit this picture. As a little kid, I was always ready for a racally good time. Starting when I was about four, I used to say to my grandmother, "Live it up, Becky, I do!" A very good motto for the new year.