Wednesday, May 31, 2006

On the hill

there is a spot on the hill
where sunlight falls past the pines
and warms the dry, brown duff held
between roots and granite boulders

the scent that rises there
in the gentle heat
never fails to slow my step
along this path

and make me breathe long and deep
inhaling the light smell
of needles and sap fallen into soil,
rich and brown and black,

lightly warm and sweet,
like apples and honey under
ginger and cinnamon — I linger,
looking for a reason to stay

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Walking in beauty

Last night, in the grove, I was walking in beauty. The western tanagers are in town — those winged jewels that pass through seasonally. The first time I ever saw them they appeared as a full flock wheeling on the banks of a remote desert river, improbably brilliant against the browns, greys and greens of that land.

Scanning the tops of the sagebrush on the hills beside the grove, I spotted numerous of western meadowlarks. Possibly my favorite bird, if only for their musical song which fills long distances with the sound of falling water.

The evening air also carried the soft, throaty coos of the mourning doves. I saw two mating just the other night.

Two great horned owls sat basking in the light of the lowering sun. I didn't have my camera with me to capture that incredible view, nor the one of the fox that crossed the path, alert but apparently not bothered by such proximity to humans.

Photos found here, here, here, and here.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Owl feather

I Am Really Just a Tambourine

Makes the universe admit a
"I am
Really just a tambourine,
Grab hold,
Play me
Against your warm

— Hafiz (translated by Daniel Ladinsky)

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Wingbeats to heartbeats

wingbeats to heartbeats
the bird flies effortlessly
carried on the wind

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

A to Z Meme

I've been tagged by leslee for another meme.

accent: hard to pinpoint

booze: red, bourbon

chore I hate: cleaning the tub and poop patrol

dogs/cats: one border collie is plenty

essential electronics: computer, scanner, stereo, sound equipment

favorite perfume/cologne: Beautiful by Estee Lauder

gold/silver: and/or

hometown: where I live now

insomnia: it's inevitable if I drink more than one cup of coffee in the morning

job title: which one? graphic designer, editor, musician, writer, mother...

kids: one

living arrangements: very comfortable, thank you

most admired trait: creativity and lovingness

number of sexual partners: ahem! 

overnight hospital stays: last was for the birth of my child

phobia: crossing on logs over rushing water

quote:  "Love doesn't just sit there, like a stone; it has to be made, like bread, remade all the time, made new." — Ursula K. LeGuin

religion: raised Episcopalian

siblings: one brother, two sisters

time I usually wake up: 7-7:30 am

unusual talent: I've been told I have a great telephone voice 

vegetable I refuse to eat: lima beans

worst habit: would have to be either not finishing what I start or not getting started

x-rays: lots of one foot and the other ankle

yummy foods I make: arroz con mariscos, rhubarb gobbler, pizza, strawberry-spinach salad, grilled chicken with adobo sauce, basil pesto, mango salsa, oh heck you know it's all good

zodiac sign: taurus

tagging: Brenda, Patry, rdl, snowsparkle ... and anyone else who cares to join in. Let me know if you do it!

Monday, May 22, 2006


being on solid ground
is a molecular illusion
a promise of return

Friday, May 19, 2006

Two old stones

like two old stones
they lie side by side
in geologic time

their stillness belies
the days and nights they
tumbled down together

when the great lake
that breached above
flooded these lower regions

and the raging river
that carved this bed
for the first time

threw them together
polished as new
and left them behind

to lie here
warming in the sun
quietly side by side

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


what do I do about the absence
that speaks so loudly

what do I do about the rhythm
of the leaves that chants
your name

what do I do about the air
slipping around the corner
with the sound of
your voice

but breathe in

and out

and let longing thread through me
making of me a permeable cloth

with an open weave that leaves room
to sieve stars, to swallow the moon
to sit impossibly still

Tuesday, May 16, 2006


I am wrapped in water
in the sound
of falling

I am wrapped in soil
dark now, its
scent rising

I am wrapped in sky
the air's

I am wrapped in leaves
singing in

I am wrapped in flame
pungent smoke

I am wrapped in the depths
of a dry well
of shadows

I am wrapped in wishes
under stars

I am wrapped in names
spoken into

Monday, May 15, 2006

Wild yard

with each pass, the grass
gets shorter under whirring blades
and my sweat gathers
in the robust sun

small birds linger and,
despite the whickering noises
of the push mower,
rush in as I turn my back, looking
for dandelion seeds and
long bits to fortify nests

at the back of the yard, floating
on top of the still-long grass
in the shade of the box elder,
long and worn, barred
with red and black and
tipped in cream,
a single hawk's feather

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The morning light

in the morning light
in the morning dampness
I leave the unpaved road,
turn into the wild country

into land of falling edges and
soft green divides, where
untamed water flows
and none but the wild go

I walk along curved lands
that rise like hips and shoulders
into spreading light

over all, the vast
sunbright sky sings in whispers
to a drumbeat under my skin

Monday, May 08, 2006

Morning walk

Sun on grasses wet from last night's rain.

The foxes were sunbathing.

A mother and four kits.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

By touch, by sound

my fingers very softly trace
the lines by your eyes
and down your cheek
these traces of laughter
of moments we have

my fingers smooth the furrows
that run across your brow,
the aches and incremental
worries of yesterdays, or what is
yet to come,
not now

my fingers create their own
memories cast in time and place
here upon your open
skin, like tongues they
sense and taste
each one

I bend down to sing a murmur
into your ear, you who
have lost the use of words,
and feel your warm pulse
slow to the rhythm of
my voice

the rhythm of goodbye

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

In every tree is a bird

every tree is in bud
and thickening leaf,
glowing in green arches
through slanted early light

in every tree is a bird,
burning bright,
spinning its brilliant song
into clear, green air

standing here listening
under all these luminous trees,
each with a blazing bird,
I hear what I crave

that this song might fly,
and nourish my beating heart
with fiery life and
incandescent desire

Monday, May 01, 2006

Washing the sky

dust colors the air
under lowering grey clouds
the sky turns yellow

the wild wind teases
fingers running through my hair
whispers in my ear

I hold very still
listening to that low voice
of fierce affection

kisses to the cheek
caresses across my face
here a while and gone

large, single drops fall
heavy with pollen and dust
washing the sky clean