Idaho Notebook: November

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Forlorn Halloween pumpkins.

Leaf silhouettes against a slate gray sky.

Hint of rosemary snatched by the wind.

Towering elms capped in blackbirds.

Red nose. Cold toes. 

Gleaning squirrels.

Quiet expectancy.

Thankfulness for Christ the Lord.

 

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Idaho Notebook: October

yellow leaves on tree

Autumn in Idaho: genteel, civil, illusory.

 

Trees parade burnished hues.

 

Spiders spin furiously, festooning trees and sending webs floating on the breeze.

 

Harried leaves skitter across the street; some stick to a wire fence, hundreds of tiny hand prints; others join a pile in the corner.

 

In this health-conscious world, bags of candy line the grocery shelves.

 

Jack Frost visits and leaves dangle, black and damaged; flowers droop and shrivel.

 

Do you think good surprises outweigh the bad surprises in life?

 

birds against clifftree tunnelfall bitter brushelm beetles (2)

To My Friend Leslee

family on boat - editedSometimes I yearn for one more day at the lake,
the wind whipping my hair,
throttle wide open,
half standing, my leg braced on the seat,
190 horsepower leaping forward, planing out.

Do you remember Andrew throwing
our puppy into the lake (he was teaching her to swim)?
Or Andrew playing with baby snakes in the shallows—
they were probably rattlers?
Or Dee and Joe doing “the Locomotion”
barefoot on the deck?
Or later, when Dee hadn’t gone for years,
and he defiantly sat on the beach and read?

Or what about the icy tingle in our armpits
when we jumped into Lucky Peak in June?
Or scrubbing duck doo doo off docks at Lake Lowell?
Or a passel of children—yours and mine—
who could play all day in the sand?
Or the upswell of joy as we skimmed across the waves
with reckless abandon?

Oh, for one more day filled with the
coconutty scent of sunscreen,
of chattering baby voices
and suntanned teenage bodies,
for the summer sun burning our backs until
it was a pleasure to jump into the frigid water,
for shared adventure, the elixir of friendship,
and water smooth as a glass slipper.

Grace: Hope Beyond Hope

morning-glory.jpg

Masking ruthless aggression

with pink-blushed flowers,

morning glory thrives

in sun or shade,

in flower beds, farmlands,

fields, and ravines;

reproduces from roots,

rhizomes, stems, or seeds;

revives after decades of

lying lifeless underground;

and is eradicated only by constant

smothering and spraying.

 
Likewise, our most persistent sins,

clad in clever rationalizations,

must be overcome

by unremitting applications

of faith and prayer

and continuous suffusions

of atoning grace.

Temper Tantrum

castle rocks yellow bell

 

In a last ditch effort to

foil Spring’s debut,

Winter throws a royal fit:

frenzied snow squalls,

blasts of windy fury,

hails of icy orbs.

His coup de grace?

suffocating stratus shrouds.

 

Nonetheless,

Yellow Bell lifts her head.

Softening

IMG_2566 (2)

raw macaroni

 

bitter, unforgiving hearts

 

warm until tender

I Met a Yogi While Walking

calico cat - shutterstock

The calico cat

sat, motionless, guru-like

inscrutable sage

Summer Idyll

yellow-headed blackbird

 

O, enchanted hour beneath the willow tree

on grassy banks beside a wandering stream

where yellow-headed blackbird calls atop a reed–

 

who ordained this tranquil hour of

cooling breeze, largesse unwitnessed

but for iridescent dragonfly?

 

Total Commitment

 

Photo by Felice R. Bond

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Like a tiny dive bomber,

the hummingbird 

plunges her whole self

into the heart of a trumpet vine flower,

drinking deeply the sweet.

 

Can I, like she,

immerse myself,

regardless of hazards

and the shortness of the season,

in the prospects of the day?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The State of Things at the Current Moment

flowered couch

Here I am sitting on
my frayed, flowered couch
in my 3-bedroom house
in a small rural town
in the forgotten state of Idaho,
while out there somewhere
is an unstable president
and brooding terrorists
and charitable strangers–
and people everywhere
who just want to quietly
live and breathe and die,
who hope the terrorists
will decide to be
ordinary citizens
and the president
will lose his cellphone.