The temperature has at last climbed into summer. The heat of the days welcome the crepe myrtle trees, suddenly fat with blossoms - white, pink, purple - hiding the last open spaces of winter, the spaces spring's watercolors couldn't cover. The red dragonflies return, also the orange daylilies, and the sweet willingness to do absolutely nothing settles over us, summer laziness relaxing bones and minds and hearts. The evenings overflow with muggy breezes and mosquitoes, and summer nights bring the cicadas' songs. The cat winds her way to the third floor balcony, summer sprawling dark and hot around the house, sliding up the stairs with her. I read to avoid thinking about things. All fiction and kisses and mexican hot chocolate.

a memory: 
once upon a time there was the way the sun fell through my mother's windows, puddling on the back of the couch of my young childhood.  i would sit backwards, books settled into that light, and get lost in their stories.  i still see the little ballerina in my memories, pink and white tutus glowing across the big pages, dust motes dancing - summer memories if the color of the remembered light is to be believed. late afternoon.



the secret art of storytelling

build a wall, nails, screws, wood, light switches
paint it
surround yourself brush in hand
inhale exhale stroke color dribble spatter
the second wall will spring from the first
keep your distance until it calls you
more paint more brushes more color
more smooshing parts of your soul

2 parts white
1 part soul
1 part silver



from then to now and back again

one night a long while back. winter.  reading.  kindle.

I can't remember the book.  I think it's one I'd borrowed from my local library, but possibly not.  I didn't highlight this quote, just enlarged the words and took the picture and kept reading.  I think it's maybe from the Fire and Thorn series, but I'm unsure, and I apologize to the author of whatever book it was.  It was just something I liked.

I liked the idea of all those secret tunnels.  Hidden pathways.  And though I knew at the time what here was and what there was, I like, all these months later, not knowing.  I like here being anything and there being maybe everything.  Anywhere.


there is no rain today.  there is sunshine outside and inside, on the television, theoden has become the king we always knew he was.  i am writing, just writing, no sentences, no stories, just a list of things i see:

gray velvet
the blue green of my mother's table
the light brown of cardboard
black moths
white ceiling
one granny smith apple

digging a secret tunnel from words to painting, i think.  i have been sketching.  making lists. watching the wind.  small time journaling.


collecting moments.

january 31: i bought beer, lemons and bagels at the store, only there because katie mentioned my fridge was empty, unless you counted the cokes and pickled okra.  i do, and they were supper more than once last week, but she was right, and we headed out.  we talked about the perfume of coffee, and never mind that i'm not a coffee drinker, i wanted to buy a bag of beans just so i could smell them in the mornings.  i didn't.

may 1: sunday morning.  may.  the churchbells are ringing it in, accompanied by a woodpecker on some tree somewhere out there in the chilly sunshine.  april was poets and rain and tornadoes and stuff i can't talk about.  i paint walls to the sound of baseball games and movies on the television, breathing out the thoughts that scare me, breathing in the brushstrokes and nothingness.  with every flood warning, i toss things out; the house empties bit by bit.  i think in images i've yet to paint, and read instead of walk.

there is a cardinal nest in the cherry laurel tree, the mama cardinal's tail feathers still against the storms.  a skill i envy.




Too many things do.

She now needs help to get onto the bench and so, that little chair.  In real life, it's a pale blue. She has new stairs she's not yet talked herself onto - I think they will stay white.  She can no longer jump onto the bed or the couch, but can pull herself up, and in truth, some days she manages to get into the house through the high-up open bathroom window, but I've never seen her do it.  She's just suddenly in the house.

She must have one big jump in her every so often.

She is becoming a lap cat, and I try to ignore that Maggie also did that, right there near the end. She sleeps more and she needs more warmth next to her, and sometimes  . . . and sometimes . . . well. So many of those sometimes.  It is what it is.  Just aging, I tell myself.  I can relate to that.  I'd like to think that every once in a while I have one big jump left in me.


i leave the door open for the wolf.
he never enters, just stands and watches, then turns away.
headed for home, away from the rain.

this morning's birds were the brown ones, the ones with stripes; i can never remember what they're called.  one stood at the open door, just like the wolf, lucky that the cat was sleeping.

these are the things that change.  once where there were owls there became hawks, and now there are crows.  next door a new baby is almost here.  it is june 1st in texas, 4 something in the afternoon, and the temperature remains in the 70s.  my air conditioner is mostly broken, and so far it's mostly been not needed.  the rain keeps coming, though, a change from last year continuing on.  i come home at the end of the day and i feel different, the air feels different.  the days slip by.  the world is too hard and life too fragile.

but. there are those big jumps waiting for us, jumps we'll make.  a small cat has taught me that.