Thursday, July 16, 2020

Poem for Thursday and Local Herons

Great Blue Heron
By T. Alan Broughton

I drive past him each day in the swamp where he stands
on one leg, hunched as if dreaming of his own form
the surface reflects. Often I nearly forget to turn left,
buy fish and wine, be home in time to cook and chill.
Today the bird stays with me, as if I am moving through
the heron’s dream to share his sky or water—places
he will rise into on slow flapping wings or where
his long bill darts to catch unwary frogs. I’ve seen
his slate blue feathers lift him as dangling legs
fold back, I’ve seen him fly through the dying sun
and out again, entering night, entering my own sleep.
I only know this bird by a name we’ve wrapped him in,
and when I stand on my porch, fish in the broiler,
wine glass sweating against my palm, glint of sailboats
tacking home on dusky water, I try to imagine him
slowly descending to his nest, wise as he was
or ever will be, filling each moment with that moment’s
act or silence, and the evening folds itself around me.

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I wasted too much of Wednesday being angry on Twitter because various public figures are assholes. Otherwise I did a bunch of what has become the usual for this quarantine year: some writing, some photo stuff, some laundry, some keeping the cats entertained, plus a walk (no bunnies today but a frog peeking out) in the neighbor's fish pond.

We ate cheeseburger casserole, then watched The 100, whose main characters are too scattered for my taste in a final season when I'd like to see them interacting, and Agents of SHIELD, which I felt the same about tonight though most of this season has been such fun that I haven't minded. Here are herons we saw on the canal last weekend, both great blue and green:

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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Poem for Wednesday, Little Bunny, Race to Witch Mountain

Grace
By Joy Harjo

For Darlene Wind and James Welch

I think of Wind and her wild ways the year we had nothing to lose and lost it anyway in the cursed country of the fox. We still talk about that winter, how the cold froze imaginary buffalo on the stuffed horizon of snowbanks. The haunting voices of the starved and mutilated broke fences, crashed our thermostat dreams, and we couldn’t stand it one more time. So once again we lost a winter in stubborn memory, walked through cheap apartment walls, skated through fields of ghosts into a town that never wanted us, in the epic search for grace.

Like Coyote, like Rabbit, we could not contain our terror and clowned our way through a season of false midnights. We had to swallow that town with laughter, so it would go down easy as honey. And one morning as the sun struggled to break ice, and our dreams had found us with coffee and pancakes in a truck stop along Highway 80, we found grace.

I could say grace was a woman with time on her hands, or a white buffalo escaped from memory. But in that dingy light it was a promise of balance. We once again understood the talk of animals, and spring was lean and hungry with the hope of children and corn.

I would like to say, with grace, we picked ourselves up and walked into the spring thaw. We didn’t; the next season was worse. You went home to Leech Lake to work with the tribe and I went south. And, Wind, I am still crazy. I know there is something larger than the memory of a dispossessed people. We have seen it.

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I had an uneventful Tuesday doing the things you hear me talk about often: scanning old documents, posting old photos, a chunk of writing for a project, taking some photos, a walk in the afternoon when the heat had lessened (we saw bunnies but again not the frogs). We did eat cassoulet for dinner (already made and frozen) and Paul decided that we needed "Bastille Day brownies" which he made for dessert!

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We watched this week's Stargirl, which I am really enjoying, then we watched Race to Witch Mountain, which was so much fun I don't know why we never watched it before -- The Rock plays Cranky Babysitter and Carla Gugino plays his love interest, so that was familiar, and they wind up at a sci-fi convention, which is very Galaxy Quest and also very funny (actual stormtroopers)! If it's predictable, I don't care!

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Poem for Tuesday and C&O Canal Deer

Deer
By Chris Powici

as crows fly
in the dawn light
on the cold hill
the deer are running

the thud of their hooves
on the bed of the stream
is the drum that rocks
the roots of the birch
and the wind that shakes
the birch tree’s leaves

rain is their tribe song
rain is their robe

snow is the dust
of the bones of deer
falling to earth

and earth is the dark
deep silence of things
where you dream yourself
human, alive
watching the red deer running
on the wall of a cave

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Monday was very warm and pretty quiet around here. I did a bunch of writing in the morning, then laundry and some jewelry repair/repurposing in the afternoon -- fixing earrings, changing clasps on an old necklace to turn it into a mask strap and changing charms on mini goddess belts. We took a walk in the late afternoon when it was a bit cooler and saw several bunnies, though the frogs were hiding.

We had chicken picante with pineapple for dinner and I sent older son a replacement for a mug he broke. Evening involved Antiques Roadshow and a National Geographic show on Egyptian queens, plus posting a bunch of photos. Now I'm watching the end of Merlin's third season (in which Morgana finally reveals how evil she is and I can't even feel sorry for Uther, who deserves her even if no one else does). Deer by the canal:

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Monday, July 13, 2020

Greetings from Butler's Orchard

We've eaten all the blueberries we picked a few weeks ago, so on Sunday after some morning chores and lunch, we went back to Butler's Orchard with a timed ticket to pick more. It was quite hot but a dark cloud floated over us as we approached the farm, then we were rained on when we first started picking, but that made the heat tolerable and we got lots of berries. Plus Paul made deviled eggs and tomato pepper jack soup for dinner.

We watched the two-part season finale of Snowpiercer, which was great -- I'm very glad the leads will apparently be back next season and I like the direction they went in and the double twist! I root for Jennifer Connelly the way I root for various women on The 100 and am then horrified with myself. We also watched Perry Mason, which sometimes seems dark just for the sake of it; I'm only there for Rhys and Maslany, and I bet she's gone next season.

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Sunday, July 12, 2020

Greetings from Carderock

It was quite hot in our area on Sunday, so we were slow to get out of the house. We did some chores in the air conditioning and some reading, plus I posted a bunch of old photos to Facebook. Then we went to Carderock to walk along the canal, where there were few people and lots of animals -- the most deer we've ever seen walking along the canal, at least six, plus herons, turtles, and far more frogs that we could hear than see.

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After dinner we watched The Old Guard on Netflix. It's much too bloody for me, but I love Charlize Theron and she does not disappoint in a story that's essentially a mash-up of Highlander and Torchwood but with female main characters, which makes it quite enjoyable for me -- Kiki Layne is good too. (One day someone may convince me that, say, grinding a body in a meat grinder would not destroy even an immortal, but it is not this day.)

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Greetings from the Johto Region

Running late because I had a very Pokemon-themed day: met friends for a socially distanced raid in our cars at Cabin John Park, met friend for a socially distanced raid on the sidewalk in the neighborhood, and finally just now defeated Giovanni (after we saw the live show when our kids were very young, we kept walking around saying "No, Ash, I am your father"), but my real excitement was seeing Team Rocket's Meowth balloon fly over my house and getting to battle Jessie and James, which I've wanted to do since the day I put Pokemon Go on my phone so I could try to play long distance with my kids.

It was otherwise a nice day in general anyway, though beastly hot. I only got little projects done and several not-done, but I had a lovely chat with six friends from high school, the most we've had in this chat group before, and then more chat with two of them because we hadn't talked in a couple of weeks. We caught up this evening on the season finale of Burden of Truth because we missed it during the double-episode Blindspot, and they left it in a nice place if it ends up being the series finale as well. I'm in an "Egrets, I've had a few" mood, so here are a few we saw in Delaware last week:

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Friday, July 10, 2020

Poem for Friday and Fiddler Crabs

Fiddler Crab
By Loke Kok yee

Bluegrass festival
The banks of the Ohio
A fiddler crab

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Thursday was pretty uneventful apart from household chores and some writing. It was hot but nice out, we took a nice walk before dinner, with bunnies in evidence and also a neighbor's son having a hysterical meltdown because his father wouldn't let him sit in the car in the afternoon heat and pretend to drive, which was pretty amusing since I was not responsible.

We ate leftover tacos for dinner and watched what I thought was the two-hour season finale of Blindspot, only to find out that it has one more episode in a couple of weeks! At least the show isn't ending on a cliffhanger, and a character I really wanted not to be dead isn't. Here are some of the fiddler crabs we saw in the Burton Island Nature Preserve swamp:

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