Wednesday, August 03, 2005

August On Horseback

August is a month that many people wish would speed by. Minds move on to thoughts of fall, summer is close to its end, and people trudge about like they live in a furnace. Not I, to me August is the month that highlights the special parts to a summer day. For example, I went out today on my horse, catching the trail behind the barn and sliding into the deep woods. The temperature dipped from 90 to 80, or at least it felt like it did. My horse picked up a brisk trot and we moved along the path until we reached the creek and turned onto the "Waterfall Trail". I listened to water as it tumbled over a ledge and slid between mountain boulders, the fine smell of a well groomed horse, fresh cut grass and moss on wet stones filled the air. I found myself with a smile on my face and joy in my heart. It doesn't get much better than this, the ride made even more special because of the contrast with the heat in a car, on a sidewalk, or working in the garden. Without August I would never experience quite this level of pleasure. It might be the hottest of months, but August on horseback is almost paradise.

Friday, July 08, 2005

London Bridges

Heard from a few friends yesterday. None of them mentioned London and the bombings. Instead we discussed horses, the rain, erosion and mothers. I think we were seeking security, wanted to know that the world would keep on turning, and that small everyday things were still important in our lives. Though we skirted all around the London issue I feel sure it is what bridged the distances between us, made us reach out, span the deep dark waters of those with no sense of the value of a human life, and touch something safe, a friend.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Geothermal Or Middle East Oil?

We're trying to do our small part to save energy but it turns out that it is harder than you might think. I've expended more energy in the past few weeks searching for anyone in NC who knows anything about installing a geothermal heat/cool system in a house than my air conditioner has used to cool down June. I think the oil Mafia has threatened heating and cooling system installers with being boiled in a vat of that black gold if they so much as mention ground heat, fuel savings, or heaven forbid, we don't need oil to stay warm information. It appears our own oil companies and our laziness and penny wise-pound foolish attitude about energy costs will deliver us into the hands of the Mid-East power brokers. Personally, I don't want to be dependent on anyone outside the USA to keep my house warm. Our government politicians should be exploring alternatives with the same aggression they use for political fund raising. Just think how nice it would be to thumb our noses at the oil wells outside our borders and say, "We don't need you." I'd vote for the guy who made that possible. Until then, here in the hills of NC, I will continue to explore the wilderness of alternative fuels while fanning my accordion folded piece of paper (a primitive but effective cooling device) with hope of stirring the stagnant air of the unacceptable status quo.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Fractured Soul- A short, short story

Rain ran down and bubbled against the sleek curved surface, transformed it. Like sitting inside a bowfront china cabinet faced with the beaded glass from an earlier century, Cecily thought. Appropriate, since she felt as fragile as a fine porcelain cup encased in a body, wooden and stiff with age, with skin, transparent as glass, drawn taught across brittle bones.

She stood up, moved closer to the window. How had she ended up in this New York highrise, far from the mountains she called home? Her son insisted she move near family, she resisted and then acquiesced, because it made him happy. It's what a mother did.

Cecily peered out and down forty stories at the stream of people and cars. Her son said it was like sitting on top of a mountain looking down at a river in a gorge. He said she'd feel right at home. Not so, thought Cecily, though she hadn't told him that. It was like looking into yourself and watching the blood pour from a wound in your heart. She ran her hand across the glass, traced a fine flaw in its surface. Did her son know it was fractured, was in danger of shattering? She would not tell him because if she did he would feel he had to move her again and the thought made her weary.

Still... If there was a chance he'd move her back to her mountains she might say something. She felt a slight quickening inside, then whatever had stirred, curled back into itself. Deep down she knew going home belonged in the past with beaded glass.
Cecily stepped back and stared at her reflection in the flawed window and watched, no expression on her face, as the crack widened across her soul.

Friday, June 24, 2005


Is it right to write if you don't feel like writing, but you might, if you write right along in the right way, with the right words, will you come up with something called good writing?

Friday, June 17, 2005

Friday In June

Cool as the cheek of an old person the day begins. I listen to the breakfast conversation of the bluebirds and watch the horses groom each other. I wish I could capture the peace of this June morning and send it to those I love so that they too could feel the wonder of being alive at this moment in this place. The world is good.

Monday, June 13, 2005

When Mothers Move

I've spent the last week moving my Mother from Kentucky to NC. I know this move has to be hard for her. She is down-sizing, moving to a new community and leaving most of what has defined her for many years behind. Or at least before the actual move I thought she was leaving those things behind.

Things went fairly well considering she is in her 80's, has a cat who is half wild, and enough stuff, that couldn't be moved until the last minute, to keep me busy with questions of why do you need this? As I packed her treasures I wondered about the things an octogenarian deems important. Bags upon bags of plastic bags, a small orange plastic measuring cup, tiny scraps of paper filled with shaky handwriting, and toys for a calico cat. I began to puzzle over her choices. Is it the small everyday things that are important? Are we all wasting energy and precious time acquiring all the symbols of modern success? I thought of the boxes of dishes, sports equipment, and who knows what else, I moved when we changed locations. It all seemed so vital.

The items that connect us to our basic needs are what my Mom's treasures tell me are valuable. Perhaps the items she wouldn't allow to go in the moving van say the most? The calico cat, of course, and a small box filled with her living will, social security information and pictures of those she loves. "If I make it to my new home with these, everything will be ok," she said. Wisdom comes with age, they say. For once I feel they might be right.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Poem-maybe? The Real World

Rain dots the surface
circle against broken circle
in a blue oval pool
leaves tremble at the touch of water
gray sky hovers like a tarnished tray
turned upside down
over a ruined picnic
inside the television reports
the war
dust covered soldiers
half a world away
thirst for home
drip sweat
circle against broken circle
in the ochre sand

Friday, June 03, 2005


Why is it that I always feel like curling up with a good book when it rains? Plants don't do that, they perk to attention and virtually leap into leaf production at the first drops of moisture from the air. Me, I feel bogged down, water logged, my hair droops where it doesn't frizz and bones groan with the effort of moving, forget all about leaping. The 3rd day of June is masquerading as October and I wouldn't be surprised to see the pumpkin vines sprouting jack-o-lanterns. Perhaps,I will go for a walk in the downpour and drown my sorrows as I wait for the summer sun to come to my rescue. Or, I can wind my way through a book on deserts and get lost in its' pages. What would you do?

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Yoga pose or dead pretzel?

Yoga seemed extra hard today and I am beginning to wonder if I am meant to be bent into the shape of a pretzel. Perhaps, I'm meant to be one of those straight pretzel sticks? One that will definitely break if you try to bend it. Then there is that relaxation bit at the end of a rigorous yoga workout. Relax your toes, relax your fingers, relax your face. Relax my face? Heck tension is all that is keeping this aging skin from turning into a sagging bag of wrinkles. And, another thought to ponder, there are those super yoga gurus, twisted into impossible poses, the picture of perfect serenity on their face. Could it be they are actually dead from being bent out of shape so often? You never see them move or talk, only pictures of them still as a cadaver.
Yep, I'm not sure anymore about the benefits of this yoga stuff, but I will try to remain flexible in my thinking on the subject and will practice the corpse pose often, just in case someone wants to take my picture.

Monday, May 30, 2005

house under destruction Posted by Hello

Memorial Day

Woke up to rain. Could it be the angels crying that my Mother told me about when I was a child? Is it the newest ones? The ones from the Iraq war? Don's flag will stay tucked away, safe and dry until next year, when we will once again fly it in honor of the dead.
The horses are in the barn, munching hay and I think it is time for us to go to breakfast at Waffle House, a fine old American tradition. Hope wherever you are the sun is shining and the angels over you have no reason to cry.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Gallop Down Hill

I'm new to all this and I feel like I do when on an unfamiliar horse and I am galloping down hill. Hopefully, the falls aren't as bruising when on a blog.

Farm life

Things are quiet on the farm today. Horses are dozing in the shade of a large oak and the dogs aren't even scratching fleas. The only disruption to the silence is the black crow. He, of course, has to let us all know that crows are out there, watching, waiting. I wonder what is on his menu for today? Perhaps, if we are lucky it will be Mickey D.