What’s Your Winter Story?

A break in winter’s indisposition,
my boots back on the trail, slow
steady climb to Rattlesnake Lodge.
Satisfaction ripples through my body,
easing the stress of everyday worry.

I pause and lean into the warmth
of ancient boulders surrounded
by a forest of silent  sentinels –

unbending hardwoods, scattered
stands of pines, snarled branches
of mountain laurel, rhododendron green,
snapped limbs,  ample reminders
of the power of wind, plight of rock falls,
telling marks of splintered bark
what’s your winter story?

Dormant stillness belies determination;
even the resting roots are reaching for
nourishment before spring buds open.

winter trees


Reminders of a Heart’s Delight


I watched love rise over the mountain,
sing from the branches of the aging maple,
course its way from mountain top to ocean.
I saw love sprouting in tights buds
and daffodil promises.
love will bloom on the hillside,
rain from the heavens with a gentle touch,
green winter’s lawn with clover leaves of three.
I wake and walk in circles of love,
cherished words, human embrace,
memories shared, heart-to

daffodil heart


Weaving a Spider’s Tale

Fall Showing: Yellow mums, scarecrows with smiles,
pumpkins positioned at the welcoming corner of my lawn.
Two identical spiders with silken thread, spun protein,
tensile strength greater than my bones and half the
strength of steel, strategically placed for the fall showing,
one hanging by the front steps, the other on the back deck,
identical twins as far  as I can tell. Uninvited guests.

From my memory template of scary spiders, Arachnids that catch
all the attention in the news, there’s the hobo, the wolf and its
oversized variant the tarantula, brown recluse, black widow,
and the orb with yellow stripes – the writing spider. Daddy said
that if this spider wrote a name on its web, the person was
doomed. Daddy also told me that Farmer McGreggor lived
across the railroad tracks near my house and if I ventured
in that direction I would suffer the same fate as Peter Rabbit,
I would be an unsuspecting fly caught in a spider’s web.

These rather ordinary house guests camping on my posts
wove their way into my days in an untidy, cob web fashion;
brown with a bit of a striped effect; in a species of 50,000
these are regarded simply as domestic house spiders.
Despite my love for E. B. White’s Charlotte Web and the itsy
bitsy spider who did not learn his lesson well, repeatedly
climbing the spout despite the warnings about rain,
I do have not a familial relationship with spiders.

Cool webs, threatening fangs and creepy legs.
My rocker becomes an observation post as the porch
dweller grows bolder with daytime appearance,
and bigger with the insect feasts. Much of the time
the acrobat curls into a ball, eight legs tucked tight,
swaying in mid-air, all head/mouthpiece, and abdomen,
until the invisible web quivers  and legs spread in every
direction; an unsuspecting prey is nabbed, stuck tight,
wrapped in silken thread. An occasional lucky wasp touches
the steely stickiness and escapes with a forceful thrust.
Then brown spider whispers dag nabit, – missed this time

Nights are growing colder, the food supply source diminishes
with the approach of  all-hallowed- eve. I grow faintly wistful
knowing that soon my house guests will complete their task,
leaving a nest-full of eggs, offspring to take over the world
when spring arrives once again, spiderlings instinctively
knowing how to survive the cold, finding crevices for shelter,
and warmth wrapped in their egg sacs. Not so scary then.

explore more at http://www.explorit.org/science/spider.html

spider guest

Water Talks

Sitting on the time worn smoothness
of river rock, I listen to the hurried waters,
the slaps, claps, splashes of dancing
white caps with no real cares about
what life drops in their path; running
streams circumvent logs and boulders
making an alphabet of turns; life
racing ahead, meeting challenges
with a fervor of determination.

Movement slows around the bend,
peaceful ambling, no angst about
stirring winds, approaching downpours,
or rivulets running off mountain slopes.
Still waters collect in reflecting pools
gathering shapes of present moments
– trees, clouds, mountain ridges, nodding
heads of  goldenrod and Joe-pye weed,
pauses that sooth, restore, revive.

Lingering on the edge, I am drawn into
back and forth bantering of tales being told,
each water droplet an ancient traveler
journeying to its point of origin, sharing
with passers-by the notions of paths traversed
and landscapes changed across millennia.
who else has stood in this place pondering
the power of origin and transformation?