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Archive for February, 2008

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THE MARSH IN WINTER

If you stand and listen,
you will hear the voice.
Reeds sharp as rapiers rasp the wind.
Frost creaks in the trees.
Sunlight, ice-bright, falls from the sky.
Scattered cedars and junipers loom like shadows.
Sheathed in ice, a willow droops heavily
across the path.
Driven snow packs the creviced bark of cottonwoods.
Once-hidden bird nests now plainly marked
by a white cap of snow…

Out on the marsh, blue water shows through shifting ice.
Tall brown reeds, slim as dancers, bend in the breeze.
A hundred thousand cattails, each one lit
by the low-angled light of westering sun,
each brown seed head blazing
like the head of a saint.

– TIMOTHY WALSH –

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“Listen…”

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It’s me…Madeleine…here, for a visit. Shhhhh….I’m listening to the ocean…

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SNOWY NIGHT

Last night, an owl
in the blue dark
tossed
an indeterminate number
of carefully shaped sounds into
the world, in which,
a quarter of a mile away, I happened
to be standing.
I couldn’t tell
which one it was –
the barred or the great-horned
ship of the air –
it was that distant. But, anyway,
aren’t there moments
that are better than knowing something,
and sweeter? Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
than prettiness. I suppose
if this were someone else’s story
they would have insisted on knowing
whatever is knowable – would have hurried
over the fields
to name it – the owl, I mean.
But it’s mine, this poem of the night,
and I just stood there, listening and holding out
my hands to the soft glitter
falling through the air. I love this world,
but not for its answers.
And I wish good luck to the owl,
whatever its name –
and I wish great welcome to the snow,
whatever its severe and comfortless
and beautiful meaning.

– MARY OLIVER –

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Another beautiful day. Sun. Snow melting. Tastes like a hint of spring. Forecast predicts winter’s return. When there’s snow, I carry this poem deep in my bones.

LIGHT OF WINTER

Facing white snow
Suddenly
Oneself fading away
The whole universe
Turning into a great lamp

– GIAC THANH –

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A beautiful day. Sun. Snow. Flocks of gulls by the Hudson. A walk with my husband in the heart of winter with the throb of spring underneath it all.

Last night at 11:28 my cell phone rings…daughter Sara calling from LA with…CONTRACTIONS! Oh, lord! I quickly realize…it’s almost TIME! I also realize, I must prepare–this is really, really happening and could happen at any moment. I now know the American Airline schedule at all three metropolitan airports and have a little pile of clothing at the ready. I’ve set my cell phone ring so loud that I jump everytime it goes off.

Oh, to be able to teleport…to grow wings…or to live in the neighborhood. Much to Sara’s dismay, I’m beaming a message to the baby to wait for Nana! She, on the other hand, is beaming a message to the baby–any time now, I’m so ready!

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Today is day 360 of blogging…almost consecutive. I find myself reflecting. Photos. Writing. Collecting…selecting writings of others. Carrying the day in my belly.

At first…photos, more abstract…

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These are a few of my favorites…Later, a different point of view…

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Over the next few days, I’ll spend more time reflecting. In all my years of journaling and writing, I’ve never done anything daily. Naturally, I missed a couple of days on the road…no wireless. Mostly, I was somehow compelled to post something every day.

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The snow starts at 4 am. At 7:15 I’m on my way to the Salisbury Mills train station to spend the day in Manhattan. The roads are slick; the station parking lot is being plowed and the snow continues.

When the train pulls in at 5:40 pm, the cars in the parking lot are piled high with with snow. All except one. Mine! Thanks to my wonderful husband, my car has been moved to a completely plowed spot and is ready to go. When I pull in the driveway, he has the snowblower going. I love this man!

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