Monday, September 24, 2007

Window on the Seine

My coworker went to Europe and brought me back this nice little print of a scene on the River Seine. Quiet river noises on my cloth-covered partition wall, turn my head to the right and there I feel. French accents, the male voices only minimally annoying, mix with the sounds of watercraft and small splashes, birds talking. As long as I cycle, dance, and swim plenty in the good old US of A, there seems no pressing need or desire to travel, but as my gaze flows from the Seine to the mottled French sky, and back over the city skyline, I consider what wonders would come to light during such a journey. All the same, I'm sure, but is it? Fly high, hit hard.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Through Other People's Eyes

Not always easy to see oneself through other people's eyes with any clarity. I did not believe that this wonderful image could have been based on a photo of my own face, but it turns out that my vision has some growing up to do. The funny thing is that I imagined what the life of the poor soul whom the piece was based on must have been like. I thought he must have lived in the late 19th century or perhaps the early part of the twentieth, having come upon that hat by a wild story in his wild life of alcohol and fast living. I felt both sorry for and jealous of the poor bloke, obviously prematurely aged by his wonton ways. So so so surprised to be shown how it really is me, even though Bryn informed me of that at the beginning. I'd thought that I'd scientifically determined that it couldn't be me. I didn't want it to be me, even asked my coworker. She assured me it couldn't be me. Thanks Bryn for tripping me out so completely. I see it now.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Equinox Cometh

The autumnul equinox exerts her limitless power upon my every blood cell, ebb tide, high tide, and again, ever stronger. My heart sings sinking spirals of senescence, turns colors bright with transformation. The moon grows large in anticipation of harvest. My fleshless skull streams long yellow flames of directionless desire about 30 feet out behind me every time I ride downhill, feeling springlike when I let my thoughts lose track of time. Have you ever taken a nap in the afternoon, woken up at sunset thinking dawn had broken, and then realized your inner clock was off by 12 hours? It's like that - wolf smells spring sometimes and fall other times in this chameleon climate, times for love and times for death, transposed. My life, my love, where dwell they now, deep in some October countryside?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Tea the Magic Key

I love plants. I love water. Tea brings my old friends together to flash memories and myriad visions of the now through simple smell, taste, and feel, sometimes tingly, sometimes deep in the earth growing up through rare orchids. Found the boy playing with my favorite tea strainer when I got home last night, the kind that you squeeze to open the little mouth. He had a green grape of questionable edibility bouncing around in it. I asked for it back straightaway, informing him that it was meant for tea only. He, obviously & deeply enamored with the non-toy, refused to relinquish it, based on the argument that he was about to fill it with tea. It seemed an unlikely proposal at first thought, but when he flew out the back door to the mint patch it seemed more reasonable. Gumbo came back with the little leaves arranged just so in the strainer. He told me it was for me to make for myself a cup of tea. I predicted a weak brew because the leaves were few and unchopped, but set about with the water boiling regardless. After pouring the water and letting it steep for awhile the rich color surprised me. Then the smell hit and that extra bit of magic that a good cup of tea, traditional or herbal, can invoke got invoked. Turns out that he must have chosen one of the varietal mints, probably pineapple mint, maybe lemon. Smelled delicious, tasted tingly, invigorating. I poured a couple small cups for the little ones. They took turns taking long sips, standing facing each other in the kitchen, letting out exagerrated "ahhhhh"s after each drink. Moments like that ain't for sale. The boy got a little excited and said "This is the best cup of tea I've ever had. I love it." One of the best cups I've ever had. They both wanted seconds, and when my cup was done the boy came by and drank the very last magic drop.

My mind drifted back to caveperson times, the first cups of tea, the first cups, the joy of discovery, a future of scented steam wisps letting lightning & desire find their harmony, sing about life fantastic, beyond pre-conceived notions. False fences fall away, once so high I couldn't get over them, so wide I couln't get around them, one of the first songs I learned, like it was yesterday.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Chilling With Bret & Son

Got to spend a nice evening with Bret, Suzy, and their 6-month old son last Saturday night. Doesn't his boy look just like him? Apparently my son has done and joined a gang of pre-schoolers and chose this photo to represent. Came as rather a shock to me. You just can't talk to them too young about the pitfalls of life.

Bret's been getting daily doses of radiation to treat his rahbdomyosarcoma. I read quite a bit about the effects of exposure to radiation while reseaching a term paper about nuclear war back in nineteen-eighty-something, and sure enough he' got them. Body temperature regulation, burned tissues, etc. all present, and painful for Bret. I always figured that I would see this in the other fallout victims and myself, after the limited exhange. I used to scan the sky for incoming missiles, but nope, the radiation is deliberate and will hopefully save his life, amazing.

Notice Jim Morrison in the upper right corner on the back of his American Prayer album. The boy wanted to hear some spoken word so I turned him on to Jim rambling about dead native Americans scattered along the desert highway. He thought it was alright. We just finished reading the original unabridged Pinnochio, which was at least as heavy and 171-pages long, and we both loved that, terrifying mayhem and all.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

End of Summer

Summer ends and the seed pods prepare for the driest part of the dry season. Our old manx sits on the dried out rear lawn, as did Black Panther, our old manx. He's been puking all over the place a lot and I wonder what pains he endures sometimes. He's a good cat.

The darling daughter, also in the picture, advances along in leaps and a bounds. Just the other day she said "That's a ball."

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Hiking at Dusk

The boy and I got to enjoy some of the exquisite wonders of dusk hiking over the Labor Day weekend. Twice we ventured out a little before sunset and returned well after dark. The last rays of the sun shining on Mt. Diablo looked absolutely heavenly, and the tranformations of the woods around us in the later stages of the deepening gloom seemed ever new. On one of the nights we had left without a flashlight, and twice I had suggested that we turn back, but Gumbo kept pushing to go further, so on we went. Then we came to a section of dense oak trees that made the vanishing light all the more apparent. There, a particular tree caught the boy's eye, "Whoa, that's weird, look at that!" he exclaimed, referring to two trees growing out of one stump. "That's not right" he continued. We checked it out together for a minute, and I assured him that the treee was not so unusual, but did not manage to fully convince him. He responded with "I think it's best we head back now". Coming back in the dark, the last orangeness fading into the bay, the thistles were more difficult to avoid, so we each got spined majorly. Since then he always calls it "the Prickly Woods", a name that seems to be sticking. Sweet times up on that wild hill, so glad we live so close to nature.