The mind dances here and there, rarely in a linear fashion. So what’s on my mind these days? How about counting on these fingers?


  1. This month’s annual perusal of seed catalogs leads to opening our shoeboxes of seeds themselves – counting and inspecting all the packets remaining from previous seasons. Makes for quite an impressive array, even if I’m not the principal gardener. Just listen to all that considered discussion and dreaming on the part of the actual planters, the mother and daughter and their friends.
  2. Even in retirement, I require a timetable – a to-do list – some sense of priorities and direction, in addition to routine. What does that say about me?
  3. From spam email: “Man Snake Enlargement.” Also, “Man Pole.” (Um, like a May Pole?) English terms pale by comparison.
  4. My Motets move in poetic processes that largely lack images. It’s a curious twist for me.
  5. At a holiday gathering with friends and family, one of the tots picks up my Peterson bird guide. Claudia intercepts it, opens it, and, as if it’s an illustrated children’s text, begins inventing a story. “This is Emily. And what’s this duck doing? It’s FLYING! And this one …” Anyone else think there’s another book waiting to take off there?
  6. Taking a few risks, looking at the proposal and rules. If I fail, it’s more on my own terms.
  7. Memory, as counterpoint and harmony for the present. Or maybe dissonance and discord.
  8. Still can’t take in the news.
  9. Parasite: a freeloader, usually fatal. Lives off the work of others. Seldom demonstrates gratitude or other qualities of good upbringing.
  10. What happens when we lose our sense of mission?


Fennel seeds dusted in snow.
Fennel seeds dusted in snow. Our herb garden at rest.



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