A little something I wrote on the way to a longer poem—a Shakespearean Sonnet. It could also be called “a poet addresses her muse”.
early winter's moonlight—the bones shine 94 November 25th
leaves in the sidewalk's ice—an early December's evening 95 November 29th 2021
one crow after another and another—night falling 96 December 2nd 2021 | bottlecap
And a little something for a moment’s meditation:
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snow falls whispering into the whispering brook 90 November 11th
under her umbrella—November's sun slips away 91 November 15th
un- wanted—her doll's button-eyes still shine 92 November 18th
as if the sun still shone—wildflowers under winter's stars 93 November 22nd 2021 | bottlecap
children gone to bed—a jack-o-lantern's grin flickers out 86: October 28th
As I was walking along minding my own business, a couple neighbors startled me. They’d snuck under the electric fence (which, to folk like them, is a mere formality).
apples rotting under the tree—for two pigs? perfection. 87: November 1st 2021 | bottlecap
We went up to Burlington over the week-end. The city was beautiful, as always. We visited our daughter at UVM and hiked along the bike trail skirting Lake Champlain. We also visited an outdoor market in the South End.
both the pumpkin's and the little girl's bottom— muddy 82: October 14th
There’s been a good deal of work done on Burlington’s waterfront during the last thirty years. I remember it’s being scruffy and overgrown but now there’s a waterfront park, museum, a rail trial that can be walked, biked or run with a beach and a skate park along the way. The trail goes to the north. To the south, warehouses have turned into antique stores, bookstores, cafés and restaurants without seeming gentrified. Many of the old railroad tracks are still around, embedded in the roads, yards and parking lots—reminding me of Berlin. A little closer to the lake, the trains still keep busy.
frost at midnight—the moth's colorless wings 83: October 18th
We visited Rockpoint, an outcropping of cliffs and rocky beaches and sand. Just a small walk to the north. Whereas the rest of Vermont has surrendered its green to the pines and firs of the mountains, Rock Point still keeps its summer—warmed by the lake’s waters and long sunsets. The Adirondacks are the saw-tooth ridge across the waters.
The walk back took us along the beach. A handful of seagulls, having nothing much to say, paid no mind.
late October—each day the scarecrow's shadow taller 84: October 21st
bending with the weather-vane—the Milky Way 85: October 25th 2021 | bottlecap
- A few images from New England this weekend. The last is from Katahdin.
behind the tree's unleafing, the wide-eyed moon 78 September
carrying a pumpkin in her shirt's belly—fall harvest 79: October 4th
as far as October's winds—the owl's cry 80 October 7th
dreams in a yellow field—the tractor at mid- night 81 October 11th | by bottlecap
A devil's paintbrush come very late to the party. I've been awfully busy with carpentry since returning from Halifax, replacing windows, doors and rotten sills. My back has been in bad shape but hasn't prevented me from working—if I'm careful. Still no frost in Vermont. By this time last year we'd had three or four killing frosts. after rainfall—her toes among bobbing crab- apples 75 September 2oth The rains have been warm. The crab apples took to floating in the puddles after a good and drenching shower. leaping from the paper, a cricket's exclamation point! 76 September 23rd The best September days have only just now shown up. The breezes are cool and the sun is warm, but not hot. The humidity has gone out of the air. The hillsides are still green but the sap is going out of the leaves. They rattle and fall with each gust. doors and windows closed before nightfall— autumn 77 September 27th ~ Bottlecap A freshly baked loaf of bread for the evening's meal.
Because of border complications arising from Covid, I drove one of my three daughters to Halifax (rather than fly her)—and that was an 11 1/2 hour drive with no stops. If she had flown, she would have been forced to quarantine for 12 days at a hotel in Halifax, and there were no direct flights to Halifax from the US. So, living in Vermont, why not drive? I’d never driven much beyond Mount Desert Isle. The road in Vermont starts with White Pines, Maple, Birch, Oak, Poplar and as one drives across Maine, the deciduous trees gradually give way to evergreens until, by the time one is driving through New Brunswick, the forests are given almost fully over to evergreens—Red Spruce, Balsam Fir and Eastern Hemlock. The landscape smooths into a gradual, rolling, rising and falling with views of wooded expanses and sky. The bay of Fundy gleams to the south. Just past Moncton, the highway rounds the northern tip of the bay and heads south until it crosses a broad flat into Nova Scotia. There are half a dozen towering wind turbines that turn on the Nova Scotia side.
The video was taken behind the Nova Scotia visitor center.
After that, there was another two to three hours rolling through evergreen forests and fields before we landed in Halifax.
slowly through the wind-turbine's blades—the Milky Way 69 August 30th 2021
I always expect Canadian cities to be more European: That is, I expect a city that’s lived in rather than a 9 to 5 white collar business district; and a hope for a café culture that invites sidewalks filled with drink and conversation rather than the snarling of impatient automobiles and delivery trucks, but in the end Canadian cities are mostly like their North American counterparts in the US. Halifax does seem as though it’s going through a transition. While the old city center is filled with “For Lease” signs, is treeless, cold and uninviting, a new city center, Spring Garden Road, is being gussied up. The power lines, a tangled mess of wires draping nearly every street, strung from telephone poles that are bent with strain, some broken, are finally and properly being buried. Spring Garden street is being narrowed to make it a semi-pedestrian zone. They should simply make it a pedestrian zone and kick out the cars.
wedged between the lovers' bicycles, the red, shiny tricycle 70 September 2nd 2021
We stayed four nights, then left our daughter and her green backpack at Dahlhausie. That was rough. The last two of my three daughters have left at the same time (though two years apart in age.) I live in a house without the sound of children or teenagers. I’ve always loved children and the sudden emptiness makes me question, all the more forcefully, what to do with the remainder of my life. In a sense, we live for our children while they’re with us; and when they leave some of us, I guess, aren’t quite sure what we’re living for.
cries of seagulls as the tide recedes—autumn answers 71 September 6th 2021