In like a lamb
only the crusts of snow
like heels of day old bread
linger in the shadows.

The dormant grass is showing
like unmentionables under a short dress.

The fields are spitting rocks
and the gravel road puckers
as the frost comes out of its winter den.

The spring birds have been fooled,
red wingers bobbing on tattered cattails
and robins teasing worms from the brown lawn.

something changes.
Is it Pi day on 3/14
or the Ides of March on 3/15?
March changed her mind.

Rain then sleet then snow and blow
and blow.
The pussy willow catkins shiver
and the yearling fawns are scratching for corn kernels
heads down against the wet snow
whipping horizontally across the open spaces.
Weather man says snow all night.

Out like lion.

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A year with deer

A year with deer
A year with deer

A year with deer outside my window.
Creatures of the dawn and dusk
they materialize in the low light
leaving their hiding spots
to graze in the slight protection of numbers.
They nervously twitch flag tails
talking to each other,
bobbing their heads in watchful munching,
ears turning on turrets
listening for anything out of place.

They clue me into something amiss.
Tails in the air,
high leaps punctuated by nervous stares toward the creek.
They crowd closer together and move to the side of the house.
Hunger keeps them from darting into the woods.
I look where they are looking.
Ah, coyotes. Two of them. Slinking. Looking about.
Marking a bush. Gnawing on something.
The herd relaxes slightly as the coyotes leave the scene.
The business of dinner resumes.

As food becomes scarce in winter,
the deer pecking order shows up.
Does in their prime birthing years eat first.
Fawns come out in full daylight
to beat the cautious does to the waning food supply.

Fawns, now without the attention of their mothers,
like waking children with chicken tails,
fur ruffled and uncombed
eat the soy beans nearest the house
where the does will not venture.
They come in twin pairs
small and fluffy with sweet little noses
and a lost look in their eyes.

But, summer does are great mothers
stepping up their watchful biding to protect their progeny,
showing their darlings where and when to fill their bellies
and where and when to hunker down and chew their cud.
Fawns play and leap and nuzzle each other
unworried about dangers.

Falls deer are reeved by nature to procreate.
Does play hard-to-get
pestered by horny bucks
abandoning sustenance to chase tails
and posture to competitors.
Eventually does choose a suiter
looking back with a come hither,
get-this-over-with look.

And, the cycle continues.
Spring fawns
Fat summer of plenty
Rowdy fall
and scarcity of winter.
Through it all the strong and wily survive.

These beauties of the woods
thrive and grace us in with a show
as they go about the business
of living on the edge of forest and field
outside my window.

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Frog Buddha and Lawrence Welk

Frog Buddha
Frog Buddha and Lawrence Welk

stuck in the mud today
just staring outside
and unmoved
not even the smiling Frog Buddha
with a lap full of snow
or the ‘50s fashions of the Lawrence Welk show
can shake me out of this funk.

I tried snowshoeing,
homemade chocolate milk,
tall taper candles,
and watching the deer
yet nothing sparks me.

Frog Buddha
give me trust
that all paths go in the right direction,
that I am never on my own
or alone
That I am loved
and that happiness is always the best choice.

Maybe I should learn to tap dance,
listen to big band
and pursue the creative life

Lawrence Welk’s snappy music
is beginning to help,
the glass of red wine doesn’t hurt either
and the sun going down,
farm lights glowing in the gloaming
are warming me.

My spirit will not be denied.
A softer time is coming.
A time of simplicity
of touch
of love
and happiness bubbling
like the best champagne.
Frog Buddha is right to smile.

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Hope for snow

Hope for snow
Hope for snow

The high full moon
small and tight
in the puckered snowless sky.
Winter is slow coming this year
cracking only for a bit of Christmas snow.

Hope for a December lion,
a fresh, fierce tempest
to burst us out of the doldrums
and into a new year of adventure.

Adventure to explore the attic,
the cramped dark storage places
to confront fears,
to throw out old stories
to look for unused treasure and talents.

Adventure to explore beyond the yard,
beyond familiar ground
to find inspiration and courage,
courage to follow dreams
courage to flow with bliss.

So, hope for snow
to carry us into the New Year,
to carry us far
and remake the dull spots
into something grander,
something worthy of this one bright life.

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Angel tree

Angel tree Christmas 2015
Angle tree
Christmas 2015

Angels made of lace, satin, corn husk, gingham, and paper
cascade down the incline of the flocked tree.
They hover with fingerless wings
framing their painted smiles,
earless heads,
and eyes of black dots and string knots

Because angels see, not through their senses,
but through their halos.
They feel, not through fingers,
but through their wings.

Their halos look up to the tree top
open unending circles
allowing the light of the star
to wash down over their angel bodies.

Angels touch the pine branches through their wings
feeling the subtle flow of air and breath,
feeling the organic cycle of growth and death.

We too can feel through our wings and our halos,
see the divine light of good
and feel the flow of nature,
the flow of our seasons.
We too are creatures connecting the stars and the earth.
We, as angles, are the stuff between,
a heavenly spirit
housed in an earthly body
shedding the white light
on the shadows of this human life.

Go forth this Christmas season
with an angel’s heart
full of love, light, and goodness
sharing loving-kindness with those we meet
for we are all angels.

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Rules to observe for a good birthday

rules for a good birthday
Rules to observe for a good birthday
My 47th birthday

Never, never go to work.
Open your eyes to see the sunrise
but sleep-in to a luxurious time.

Be selfish
Spend time only with those you love
including some time with yourself.

Plan ahead.
Birthdays are not just one day
so many mini celebrations are in order.

There must always be cake
or lemon meringue pie
and a glass of something with bubbles.

Fashion rules do not apply
so wear your most comfy,
tacky, worn out jammie pants,
a soft fleece, and big scrunchie socks.

Listen to happy music,
wind chimes,
song birds,
the breeze in the trees
or the soft, tapping rain.

Remember today is a tribute.
Be grateful for the people your life touches
and the gifts you bring to the world,
gifts of love, art, engineering,
healing, laughter, industriousness,
and compassion.

Happy birthday to you
and many more!!

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Milkweed fluff

milkweed fluff
Milkweed fluff

Perfect seeds
ordered and sleeping
waiting in a pod
a pod like two hands cupped together
made of weathered barn wood
facing the wind.

Wind teases out the lightly knitted fluff
unravelling as they lift and float
like woodland pixies
carrying their flame seed
spreading the kernel of life.

I pick one up like a daddy long legs
and settle it in the palm of my hand.
The fluff is soft as wisps on a newborn’s crown
and the seed is marked intricately as a spider’s back.

I set it free with my breath.
As it lofts and drifts across the creek,
I set to dreaming
dreaming of this country life
with time for an herb garden, apple trees, and pumpkin pies.
Time to watch fox pups and spotted fawns and bright full moons
and time to walk along the creek picking cattails and milkweed.

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