Category Archives: dog walking notes

June 23 in Haiku

Only in LA?
Strappy silver platform shoes
as garden decor.

After fourteen days
of leaden skies, cloud cover,
gloom, the sun comes out.

The mushroom ragout’s
secret ingredient is
wedge of Toblerone.

The smallest bird swoops
in an arc, back and forth, then
rises, rises. Gone.

She begs with brown eyes,
an occasional paw swipe.
Sweet and persistent.

In the wee hours,
Lila hops up and joins me.
An honor I’m told.

Once nut hulls rained down
on my head. Another time
raven swooped so close.

(Billy: you better believe they do it on purpose).

A pleine air painter,
boyfriend posed in the shrubs. “May
I?” He nods. “Fauvist!”

Four Travel Haiku

The worst gate ever.
Ten seats. Four speakers. What? What?
Six minutes to board.

A nun. A family
wearing crocs. Yoga pants and
bare midriffs galore.

Curly hair. A snot
rag wadded up. Goopy snorts.
Please, God, not near me.

Seeing the tall thin
Black man exit first class when
I’d thought him homeless.

Grapefruit, orange, dill,
ginger, salmon, and snap peas.
A nice departure.

Scrap of Dan’s pj’s
Square of Mom’s wool challis scarf
Strip of indigo

The clematis vine
twines upward on the lattice.
One perfect flower.

I wished my zoom friends
could hear the growling thunder,
See the trees backlit.

Two hens, one tom, live.
The flicker dead in the road.
Men tamping asphalt.

I get mullion, toile,
and priapi, but bundt? Do
they never eat cake?

6/19 (two)
Sunday was a blur
I really like it like that.
No apology.

I knew the Haitian
boy, so newly here, would love
the plastic monkey!

The balloon arches
grace the front doors of the school.
The last day is near.

I wrote for hours
almost all of it about
one of my front teeth.

They run out of air
today. One wife’s forebears are
waiting in the wreck.

Launching off the bed
to bark at the front window.
Who is it this time?

The boys raise their hands
at the same time. “Revolt!”
they holler, and smile.

(This came to me as I woke before I’d heard the news about Prighozin).

I am happy. I
am victorious. I’m loved.
Why not say these things?

A stately linden
shades the cop at the detour
while he does nothing.

Finn walked in a heel.
A heel! To get under my
umbrella. Went back.

Along the wood pile,
I scoop catalpa blossoms.
Yellow jacket stings.

Everyone who came
later has emerged and left.
What is going on?

White supremacy.
Partisan hacks, too good a
term. Going backward.

Haiku from today’s walk

Today’s walk generated six haiku. Since that’s too many for my monthly recap, here they are. I’m posting from my phone (where I have yet to figure out how to single space), so I’ve employed slashes to indicate line breaks.

Can I just admit / I do not like paprika / either smoked or sweet?

Look down for a change. / Mica chips in the sidewalk / offer sly beauty.

Mia Farrow tires / of Harry-Meghan stories. / She’s a racist now?

Code switching is not / new. Can we stop pretending / that it is? Jesus!

Since New York Lucy / said pacing is a problem / thirty pages — gone!

Every morning: a / red dot, but there is no call. / It’s a ghost. I swear.

Shadows and poems

Muscular and assertive shadows with claims to the olden days. Wisteria.

Shadows that process.

A delicate shadow that refuses your judgment.

Shadows warmed by wood.

A shadow with secrets.

A bevy of shadows? Or perhaps a parliament. No, a convocation!

Happy Monday all! We walked out with Finn this morning, flexible in our gear. Hats on, hats off, gloves on, gloves off. Langley windy, as usual. Warmed up by the bottom of the Cypress slope, as usual. We feel spring arrive through the lens of habit and garments. Finn sleeps now. Pooped.

Cover ‘em up

You know why it snowed here just outside of Boston, don’t you? In May? Because I just at long last and much later than usual put away the winter hats, scarves, mittens, and gloves.

With a chill wind at our backs, we three set out. Signs of the season were everywhere, most notably an abundance of maple flowers. They littered the road, sewer grates, and rock walls as if spring’s answer to snow.

Crystal Lake was closed, not due to social distancing measures, but because it’s being treated to prevent algae growth. Last year, a bloom turned deadly and killed quite a few unsuspecting dogs.

If ever I stayed behind for too long to take a picture, Finn turned back over and over to check on my progress. Look at him as I photograph a dramatic bole.

Lastly, I apologize for not yet responding to the comments of my last post. There’s been a bit of a funk going on here which isn’t depression but kinda resembles it. I don’t know what it is. I’ll chalk it up to the pandemic.

But let me say how grateful I am for the depth of sharing here. I know I keep saying this but it feels necessary to do so and true.

I will not likely burn my Pages until I have done SOMETHING with them, but the timing of that something matters. A strategy will matter. At Deb’s suggestion, I boxed them up and got them out of my writing space. An energetic shift, for sure — a sense of relief, of space opening up. Clutter management but more. I’ll have more to say about this soon.

Day 59 of Home Containment.

A balmy wind and gratitude

A balmy wind blew here today, making the black walnuts rain down like artillery. You won’t hear any nuts landing in this clip, but the wind shows up.

After four days of enduring an under-the-lid stie, I am beyond grateful — and not just to be better. I am grateful for how K put up with my whiny helplessness. Grateful for good medical care even if the doctor seemed to minimize things a bit. (“I see a little stie,” he said. Since it felt like a toothpick was lodged under my eyelid, I responded, “don’t you mean a giant stie?”) I’m grateful my brother could come through with a script for antibiotics even when the “little stie” local doctor wouldn’t.

But mostly, I am grateful for my vision.

Otherwise, I wouldn’t have seen this dead snake out and about with Finn this afternoon, would I? Or the morning sun shining through the bromeliad.

Or been able to stitch and type and make soup.

Today — TA DA — I finished font conversions and created a single document holding the entire novel. Word count: 315,000 plus a little. That’s about 650 pages. Not ideal, but I’m starting on my query letter.

I can’t tell you the relief at moving on!