06 September 2010


My boy and I are rolling 8s this year. His settles him into the 3rd grade with a nice young teacher Ms A who on first meeting seems up to the challenge. At least she was chipper at open house parent's day. His Special Teacher Ms R joined us and took the opportunity to explain to Ms A that the big ball in her classroom was for J to sit on. Needing to maintain balance helps calm the hyper mind.

My 8 is in the 50s column. Not much to say there. It is what it is. Had a visit from my Florida sister which ended entirely too quickly. But I never want her to leave. Even when all the green has turned to white and the only trace of color is her trembling purple lips, I'd still be selfish enough to keep her near. What kind of love is that?

13 July 2010

Other people

I'll have to get used to having other people around when I use this voice-activated software. I feel a little bit intimidated and shy about them hearing what I am saying. I could send them downstairs to do laundry or maybe out to walk the dogs. Perhaps I will just ask that they put on a headset and listen to music. At any rate here it is almost 4 o'clock in the afternoon and I have yet to get anything done. This is not the progress I wanted to make this week. Maybe I can work on a drawing before Holly and Jordan get home.

12 July 2010

After a long hiatus, I'm back

It feels like forever since I have written here. So many projects kept me away but now I have returned.

I finally have the voice-activated software updated and operational. Two stories and one essay are in the works.

The cartoons have been fun to draw and seem to really capture the neighborhood children. We all miss the Shiny Bob character so maybe he can come back for an occassional visit. The latest addition to the 4th Avenue South gang involves another dog. I'll keep you posted.

I was given a cool digital drawing board. There has been a pesky snafu with the installation but my crackerjack technical team assures me success is within reach.

Pretty excited about these developments.

29 September 2009

No Sex For Priests

- - Heather McHugh

The horse in harness suffers;
he's not feeling up to snuff.
The feeler's sensate but the cook
pronounces lobster's tough.
The chain's too short: The dog's at pains
to reach a sheaf of shade. One half a squirrel's whirling there
upon the interstate. That rough around
the monkey's eye is cancer. Only God's
impervious—he's deaf and blind. But he's
not dumb: to answer for it all, his spokesmen
aren't allowed to come.

05 March 2007

thank you Lisa

The Layers
      --Stanley Kunitz
I have walked through many lives,
some of them my own,
and I am not who I was,
though some principle of being
abides, from which I struggle
not to stray.
When I look behind,
as I am compelled to look
before I can gather strength
to proceed on my journey,
I see the milestones dwindling
toward the horizon
and the slow fires trailing
from the abandoned camp_sites,
over which scavenger angels
wheel on heavy wings.
Oh, I have made myself a tribe
out of my true affections,
and my tribe is scattered!
How shall the heart be reconciled
to its feast of losses?
In a rising wind
the manic dust of my friends,
those who fell along the way,
bitterly stings my face.
Yet I turn, I turn,
exulting somewhat,
with my will intact to go
wherever I need to go,
and every stone on the road
precious to me.
In my darkest night,
when the moon was covered
and I roamed through wreckage,
a nimbus-clouded voice
directed me:
"Live in the layers,
not on the litter."
Though I lack the art
to decipher it,
no doubt the next chapter
in my book of transformations
is already written.
I am not done with my changes.

16 October 2006

You Can't Have It All
by Barbara Ras

But you can have the fig tree and its fat leaves like clown hands

gloved with green. You can have the touch of a single eleven-year-old

on your cheek, waking you at one a.m. to say the hamster is back.

You can have the purr of the cat and the soulful look

of the black dog, the look that says, If I could I would bite

every sorrow until it fled, and when it is August,

you can have it August and abundantly so. You can have love,

though often it will be mysterious, like the white foam

that bubbles up at the top of the bean pot over the red kidneys

until you realize foam's twin is blood.

You can have the skin at the center between a man's legs,

so solid, so doll-like. You can have the life of the mind,

glowing occasionally in priestly vestments, never admitting

never stooping to bribe the sullen guard who'll tell you

all roads narrow at the border.

You can speak a foreign language, sometimes,

and it can mean something. You can visit the marker on the grave

where your father wept openly. You can't bring back the dead,

but you can have the words forgive and forget hold

as if they meant to spend a lifetime together. And you can be

for makeup, the way it kisses your face, half spice, half amnesia,

for Mozart, his many notes racing one another towards joy, for towels

sucking up the drops on your clean skin, and for deeper thirsts,

for passion fruit, for saliva. You can have the dream,

the dream of Egypt, the horses of Egypt and you riding in the hot

You can have your grandfather sitting on the side of your bed,

at least for a while, you can have clouds and letters, the leaping

of distances, and Indian food with yellow sauce like sunrise.

You can't count on grace to pick you out of a crowd

but here is your friend to teach you how to high jump,

how to throw yourself over the bar, backwards,

until you learn about love, about sweet surrender,

and here are periwinkles, buses that kneel, farms in the mind

as real as Africa. And when adulthood fails you,

you can still summon the memory of the black swan on the pond

of your childhood, the rye bread with peanut butter and bananas

your grandmother gave you while the rest of the family slept.

There is the voice you can still summon at will, like your mother's,

it will always whisper, you can't have it all,

but there is this.

From Bite Every Sorrow by Barbara Ras, published by Louisiana State University Press, 1998. Copyright © 1997 by Barbara Ras. Reprinted for educational and personal purposes only.

26 September 2006