Two weeks into …

Two weeks into the newest year
...well, the only year we have if we are a forward looking people.
I dabble and dawdle a lot in memories so I sometimes find large chunks
of the new year has flown by and I think it must still be January and winter. 
The truth is, January could be Spring in Central Texas and has been on many years. This year-it is colder...I always think that bodes well for summer. Last year we had a February cold snap with snow. That was, I knew, a bad omen for Summer. 
Spring came rushing in nipping on the exiting heels of Winter like a large and playful puppy. Before the Spring settled in, Summer settled down like the warm mantle it was to become. Warm was quickly replaced by heat...stifling heat. Heat so unrelenting that my brows furrowed against it in the morning when it was 83 and humid, untl evening when it was still 99 at bedtime. 
I am gratefull for the cold crisp mornings and a fire in the fireplace some nights. If it can continue this way for several months, I might be able to tolerate another Texas Summer. 

So here it is Jan.15, 2012 I am writing to let everyone know that I am alive and well in Austin, Texas and looking for our January topic. If there was one already and I missed it...I apologize.

If one appears soon I will try to write...for now I'll send this and use in my blog that I am lucky to post in once a week. Getting up daily and writing just has not ingrained itself for me sinch I forsook my Morning Pages some years ago.


A lesson in pure love…

September is near…

my Van Gogh calendar

announces its approach

in this, the airless heat of August

my mind drifts back

to a different and long ago September

with my dad in that September

dove hunting in a dazzling New Mexico

sun- drenched dusk

four kids piled in the rear of the station wagon

my Dad, tall, in beige hunter clothes

pregnant  mom beside him in the front.

We’re stopped on the side of a narrow dusty road…

this must be dove country; it looks like a cornfield to me…

in the silence of a solitary moment

when all four children stop nudging, wriggling, whining

in that silence a clear, yet plaintive sound…

a howling dog…

it catches everyone’s ear as it eerily continues

to beckon someone-

dad is the one who answers that call.

while we quiz mom about where he is headed…

disappearing into the cornfield and beyond,

it seems but moments he returns and

reaches into the glove-box for his pistol,

only to leave once more.

back he heads

towards the now still louder howls…

back to an abandoned dog, chained to a tree

in the last fevered hours of starvation…

one shot…then silence…

slowly dad returns…

a tear sliding down his ruddy freckled cheek…

no man ever loved a dog as much

as dad loved that dog

in that moment…

the hunt…

abruptly over.

A toast to my less travelled Roads

There is something so compelling

about taking  a less travelled path

while still hearing the beat

the rumpa pum pum

of those different drums

still following

the ones I can’t resist.


how you never get lost

on that trail…

because it’s only a journey…

eternity is the destination.

My entire life has been about taking
that other road.

I could never make up my mind what I
wanted to be

if ever I grew up.

Six decades on and

I seem to be still working on that…

but there’s time

possibility is limited only

by imagination.

July 4, 2011

The Magnolia Tree

When I first moved into this house

I was married to his brother

after his feet of clay

revealed the “one true” part of our true love to be


No matter; this really was my

one true love-we just needed a break

from the suffocation we both felt.

His brother and I married

against all odds and many suggestions that

it might be the wrong solution to the problems.

I drift…his brother, my new husband and I

bought a house and the first summer

our neighbor went to South Carolina for a visit

and I asked him to bring me back a Magnolia Tree.

Good soul that he was, on the plane back

in his possession

2 Magnolia Trees.

My one true love, who I will now only refer to

as Romeo, came to help us plant the tree.

The “tree” was little more than a stick.

Romeo began to prepare the planting site by digging

an appropriate hole. After several days the hole was hug

and  neighbors and even strangersstopped by to survey what he was digging.

The hole looked like a passageway to China…

In to the whole went the teeny stick Magnolia tree.

After several years, it grew tall enough for our twin granddaughters to pose  with it when

it was about 5 feet tall.

After about 8 years in it was 8 feet tall but nary a bloom

On the advice of a sage gardener

I sneaked out at night and wacked the stem with a piece of hose

under cover of night so no one could see and report me

for tree abuse or insanity.

At about 12 years of age, I discovered a spent flower pod while raking up the leaves

not ever seeing or smelling the bloom.

The following year I watched

and waited

and was rewarded by four or five flowers.

The tree is now about 20 years old; in May it started to bloom

and we must have had 20 blooms.

There were blooms we could not reach and they were left on the tree

to cast intoxicating fragrance

around the yard.

Yesterday I came home and went out back to

survey the Queendom. On the very top of the tree

I saw a flash of red. I spotted several more

one of which, Romeo, now back with me

after a very long time away; tried to bend down the branch

to give us a better look.

The spent pods, left on the tree had swollen very large

and were now bursting open to reveal bright red seeds.

I would love to plant the seeds

and make trees for the twins,

now grown women with their own children.

They are no longer really interested in the garden or the trees.

The trees cycle

and mine have evolved.