Friday, October 29, 2010

Scattered

Scattered showers
Scattered Leaves
Scattered thoughts
My mind in tune
With autumn
It twists turns blows around
Can not light long
In a single place
Time to dig in
Dig down
Hang on tightly
That isn't a pumpkin smile
It is winter's grin
Teeth bared
Wanting a bite
Of scattered me

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Email

Email may be faster than SnailMail but it certainly produces a mental
confusion in the criss-crossing of information. My aging brain has
problems all by itself these days. I wake and do brain somersaults
trying to recall the day of the week. My thoughts chase each other
o'er hill and dale in attempts to sort out commitments made and
appointments scheduled. My memory struggles with a tap dance of who,
what, where and when. We agree to surrender on why.

Back to the speed-up of the world... and email. I correspond with
several friends, each correspondence having its own speed of
exchange: daily, weekly, etc. and the lag in wending/receiving has
the messages hiccuping around in some sort of wild communication
abandon. Answers seem to precede questions sometimes or don't arrive
in timely fashion so things are repeated, and repeated, and re

Uh, did I already say that?

Answers arrive to questions I've forgotten I asked. Questions show up
about things I'm sure I either never mentioned or already answered. I
grope around trying to sort out the sequence of events. This message
was in transit when I got those queries, do I answer again or assume
that the answer will eventually arrive? Here's an answer to a
question I don't remember asking, and I have no clue what that
question was anyway! I mentioned THAT this morning, do I repeat
figuring the answer fell into the bit bucket?

Wasn't the "information age" supposed to make things easier?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Tunes!

A morning for some music to lift my spirits. March music I think,
music with energy and direction, that sets the tone and whips up some
enthusiasm.

I listen to some sort of music almost every morning. There is a CD
player on one side of my comfy chair - the chair where I sit to sew
and think - and on the other side, a speaker that holds my iPod.
Quiet and music share my time there. When thoughts are busiest I
silence the tunes and listen to the thoughts inside my head.
Otherwise I fill the air with sound. Yes, I get plenty of music...

Today it will start off with the Radetsky March by Strauss. Marches
are excellent for setting the blood to whirring around inside and
waking such zest as remains in my aging bones. The Grand March from
Aida is another favorite - once it gets going - it starts off a bit
tentatively but builds to a proud head-lifter. And The Entrance of
the Gladiators, though who can NOT think of a circus with that one?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Flotsam

The Artist/Writer Exchange show opened in Bandon on Sunday. I was
excited to be a contributor. Having several of my pieces of writing
on public display, even if buried among dozens of other writer's
contributions, is as close as I expect to get to being published. But
what is this emotional reaction all about? I was excited to go and
then completely deflated. Did I have expectations of which I wasn't
aware? Anticipation can lead so quickly to depression as I rattle
along on the ancient roller-coaster of my feelings.

Saw a crow flying across the parking lot at the local supermarket
carrying a huge wad of bright pink bubblegum as his prize. Have been
wondering ever since whether he found it edible. Or did the treacly
stuff give him a self-sticking beak? I prefer to think of him perched
in a tree somewhere blowing immense bubbles.

Limerick I need to shed from my brain:

I dated an actress named Twiggy
Who said over-eating's no biggie
She ate and she ate
And cleaned every plate
Twiggy's now doubling Miss Piggy

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Stocking up

Maybe it is the autumn season and the sense of winter chugging
inexorably toward me that brings out the instinct to squirrel away
food. Perhaps living in the country, surrounded by women who make jam
and can tomato and apple sauce, awakens old human patterns that tell
me to prepare for the future. Either way I'm alert to the imperative
and readying our cupboards for the winter.

When Himself and I moved to the country I tried my hand at making
jam. FInding that easy enough I moved on to relish and ventured from
there to chutney. Tomato sauce was more trouble than it was worth. It
is a lot of work for something easily obtainable from the store. My
independent spirit was not up to the task.

Sixteen years later my knees are not up to the work of standing,
mixing, stirring, and pouring. The urge to fill the cupboards remains
so instead of do-it-myself I resort to fall canned food sales and
extra trips to the market. I'm hoping to tuck away enough of those
items we use regularly to make trips to town optional rather than
imperative during the nasty wet rainstorms to come. There is a
satisfying feeling that accompanies a well-stocked larder. The
household is provided for and we can settle in and wait out the dark
months ahead.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

It's Getting Chill Out!

Despite the date of the fall equinox having passed, the leaves on
trees beginning to turn golden, and the change happening in the local
bird population, last night autumn really began to assert itself. The
season is clambering its way out of summer and stumbling toward winter.

The change in seasons seems to seep into my consciousness. A few
leaves on the alders show yellow among the still green boughs.
Mornings turn crisp, and the fences drip with heavy overnight dew.
The summer birds are replaces with those migrating to warmer climes
and I hear the song of a few early arriving winter residents. These
occur over a number of weeks from the still warm days of late summer
until well past the TV weatherman's official pronouncement in late
September.

I've watched all those events pass this year and muttered to myself
about summer being over but last night was a more bona fide sign in
my personal world. Last night was the first night since summer
arrived when I wanted more blankets on the bed.

Hey, this is serious business! I've already blogged about the various
different night-time warmth installations I use. As winter approaches
the blanket quality gives way to quantity. Instead of switching from
a sheet to a flannel blanket, from the flannel to a light quilt, from
the quilt to a fuzzy synthetic cocoon, it is time to begin the
complex layering process. By the middle of winter I will spend the
night in several discrete layers of flannel garb, with socks and head
cap, and buried under several blankets. I will be complaining of a
cold nose, cursing the rain, and daily praying for summer's return.

One more hurdle of fall has arrived. A whole slew is one the way,
including the first night we turn on the heater. My intimations of
the season are as sure and predictable as stacks of Halloween candy
in the supermarket or pumpkins on porches. Onward to winter, ya'll!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Animals

No, not the 60's R&R group with Eric Whatisname... Burden? Burton?
Something like that. No, I'm thinking about the ones we share our
lives with. Around our house there is the one who rules, Queen of her
domain, our cat Miss Flickinger. Then there are the outside ones -
those we feed and care for but who don't sleep in our beds. We have
chickens, pond fish, and an ever-changing variety of wild birds who
frequent our bird feeder.

I'm somewhat fond of the fish. They live just beside our deck in a
300 gallon stock tank planted with water lilies. They are nothing
fancy - a small community of feeder goldfish that range in size from
several 3 inchers that arrived this past spring (half that size then)
and a handful of earlier arrivals that have now grown to the 6 inch
and over size. I feed them daily in summer. They swim to the surface
when I knock on the edge of their pond, and make "gawp, gawp" noises
as they eagerly gobble up the food I toss. Like the chickens they've
had a variety of names, mostly because I quickly forget what it was I
called them. They don't mind and they never respond to their names
anyway.

I named all the chickens once-upon-a-time. The sheep too. Except for
the rooster I've forgotten all those names. And the rooster, Brandon,
often gets called Johnny, which was the name of a previous rooster.
I'd worry about forgetting those names but it doesn't seem to be a
senior thing so much as a who-cares sort of thing. I know the name of
the neighbor's dog and cat (Ginger and Ratty Junior)... and the next
neighbor over's horse (Buddy). And I recall (most of the time) the
names of various canines owned by non-neighbor friends: Sam, Moxie,
Bob, Chloe, etc. Now where was I going with this?

Oh darned. There was a point when I started but it wandered off
somewhere. It had something to do with animals, but I forget exactly
what.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Kneezles

After my post yesterday these strange apparitions appeared on my
knees. Yes, I was the victim of a spousal felt pen attack! With my
arthritis it seems proper to bring happy faces to these joints,
don'tcha think? Thank goodness I wear long slacks when I leave the
house. I'm not quite ready to flash these smiles in public - though
I'm sure they'd get a giggle!

Annual visitor

Every fall a praying mantis finds our front porch. This one is 2.5 -
3" long and first appeared on the screen door, almost as if it was
about to knock and request entry. It spent the afternoon
investigating the ceiling and corners of the entry. There are lots of
webs but we didn't notice any spiders willing to engage in battle. I
don't know where she has gone now but I wish our autumn visitor well.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Playtime

It might not be obvious from my more recent posts but I'm a great
believer in the power of play. Too many of us forget how to have fun,
how to be silly, how to giggle and enjoy the absurd. We grow up and
grow out of the mindset of discovery, abandoning it for cynicism and
world-weariness that seems to represent adulthood.

If you haven't done it, don't! And if you have, take the time to
recover what is lost. Our lives are tremendously short and we should
pack all the laughter in that we can. I fret and fuss in time with
the best worriers but I'm equally disposed to titter and guffaw. My
joints ache and I roll in angst but I also sing out loud and indulge
in writing limericks.

So join me in doing something delightful, or something childlike at
least once a day - more if you can manage it. Find the absurd in life
and display it. Here are a few ideas:

Got a sore knee? Draw a happy face on it with a purple felt pen.

Stand in the elevator and sing (loudly) "Row, row, row your boat!"

Make a funny face and wave at a baby in a shopping cart.

Tie a striped ribbon around a light pole.

Make yourself a bouquet of weeds. Add a ribbon and display on your
desk or dining table.

Buy yourself some crayons and a coloring book. Spend your lunchtime
"outside the lines".

Make some soap bubbles and use them. Outside in a public place is good!

Find some way to be whimsical and tell me about it. See if you can
find something different every day for a week. I dare you to be
sillier than me!