Monday, November 24, 2008


Today was a sad day at my house. Our rescue kitty, Toes, who has been with us for three years, had to be euthanized for a variety of medical reasons. It was the right thing to do but it was very, very hard. She was a nice old lady who only wanted to be loved and petted. Toes was never happier than when she was ensconced on a lap, getting face scratches and being crooned to. She looked, alas, much like a dust bunny, but she had beautiful green eyes and her nose was a perfect little black heart. She had, of course, six toes per paw.

I will miss her very much.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

For Gwen

maggie and milly and molly and may

e.e. cummings

maggie and milly and molly and may
went down to the beach (to play one day)

and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn't remember her troubles, and

milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;

and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles; and

may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.

for whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
it's always ourselves we find in the sea.

Photo is detail from a watercolor hanging in my dining room by Graham Herbert, a painter from Hornby Island, British Columbia.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Day of Sharing Words


I arrive at the Bell Tower

and they go on

talking about some silly thing they did

when they were girls. One keeps saying,

remember, remember?

The ferry glides

serenely by, brimming with tourists

gathered on deck for a feast of seeing the way of our town.

When the other woman says,

Oh, I don't know if he ever really loved me...

I turn to go

because he must be her husband.

But the other leans in, caresses her friend's hand,

kisses it lightly, says, your father loved you,

and I don't knowy why I feel relieved

but I do.

After a pause, I walk on.

Their voices follow, especially the laughter

(so elated, so shared) bubbling

with affection, the champagne

of intimacy.

Because of their bond

no loneliness invades my aloneness. I bend

to pick a few daffodil buds

carry them home

and later on my sill

they swell open and beam

like candles.

Mary Lou Sanelli

from Craving Water: Poems of Ordinary Life in a Northwest Village

A Day of Sharing Words

Today, dear Reader, I received an email from LK Ludwig who has proposed A Day of Sharing Words. LK explains:

"The idea: We have words that touch us, move into our hearts and resonate, creating a feeling, taking us some place- past, present, future- perhaps some place we have never been and may never go, but for whatever reasons, the words pulse in our blood. Meeting new words, new poets, new poems, new ways for my heart to beat, is an intriguing concept. Want to go on this adventure with me? It will be easy to travel along. Many of us already do this sharing; this idea is just to help us find each other and hear the words we have to share.

"The Date: Wednesday, November 19.

"The Plan: on your blog, post a poem that moves inside you, touches you, reaches you. (quotes and song lyrics also welcome). Include the author (or composer or musician) and source (book, album)- perhaps also the amazon link if there is one. no explanation required, no other revelation about the poem you are choosing is necessary.

"One last thing- Perhaps add an image. a photo. a video. a painting. a collage. if you would.Come here to this post.

"Add a comment with your link. I'll create a typepad page with the links, so others can hear the rhythm of the words, see the image and share in the experience.

"The Request: If you are intrigued enough, post on your blog about this Day of Sharing Words- encourage your friends to post. Who couldn't use a few new poems in their treasury or new songs in their hearts? How cool would it be if we coud [sic] get dozens of bloggers to share on the same day!? What an anthology that would make!!!"

I will certainly be posting one of my favorite poems next Wednesday, Dear Reader. Come back then and see what I have chosen! Will it be a Billy Collins poem, or a Mary Oliver, a classic from Shelley or Keats, perhaps a little e. e. cummings or someone else? Who will I share with you that day? I hope that many of you will be joining in the fun. Please do let LK know so that we may all go to the link page she will create and encounter new poets and old friends. See you there!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Dear Husband's Birthday

Today was my DH's birthday. We are now entering into those lovely three months when I can claim that he is "so much older than I" and that he was born "in an entirely earlier decade!" Yes. I can. And I will.I baked DH a big, big, BIG three layer sour cream birthday cake. With rubber ducky candles, no less. I made such a big cake so he could take it out to the gun club tonight to share with the other Thursday night trap shooters. I'm sure there will be no cake left when he returns home. I rather like the ducky candles.
DH's Dear Mother gave him the jackalope for his birthday. This one even sports wings, tail feathers and bird feet! I had never seen one like that before.....

He is very fond of his jackalope. DH is smitten with his jackalope, almost smug to actually own one. DH is taking it to his cabin. Tomorrow. He likes it.

DH is taking it to live in his cabin, the huntin'-fishin'-shootin'-manly activities cabin that fairly reeks of testosterone. He's taking it tomorrow.

Thank God.

Happy birthday, DH.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veterans' Day

In loving memory to two gentlemen who fought for their country in World War II. My Daddy, Joseph Bell Rawlingsand my father-in-law, Donald Paul Unger. You are missed.
It was a cold, wet and windy Veterans' Day, but the wind made the flags snap crisply and the cold rain couldn't dull the bright colors of the flags.

I honor the all men and women who have made the sacrifice to fight for their country.

Thank you.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Sensual Journal Project

Almost 18 months ago Deb Denton asked me if I wanted to participate in her Sensual Journal round robin exchange. The specifics of the project were that each participant would create their own journal, pick the theme and then send the journal off to be worked in by six other group members. What made it a 'sensual' journal project was that each person had to incorporate four of the five senses into their work. Now, let me tell you, that's a challenge! I was eager to participate and in due time got my journal ready to mail off and then I started receiving journals to work in myself. I have just finished working in Sheila Scott's gorgeous journal that had a 'journey' theme. I found a lovely box in which there were five completed folders, each one unique and wonderful. Deb did hers as a Passage to India. Catherine Anderson did her entry as Memories of Africa. Besides those there was Amelia Earhart's Last Flight, Route 66 and a Journey of the Mind that had to do with reading and books. Each of the women before me had set an impossibly high bar!

For me, this journal was the hardest to work in. I had too many ideas and it took time and thought to finally settle on which journey, real or imagined, I wished to document. I chose Underwater Galapagos, not only because it was the most magical place I have ever visited, but also because I had some underwater photos I'd taken during my time in the Galapagos that I thought would be fun to work with. Once I had the photos printed and the other things I needed for my folder gathered together, it didn't take so very much time, but I was traveling a lot in October and once I returned home I brought with me a very nasty cold (compliments of my grandson) and then I had a bad back experience that left me unable to work. (Or stand or sit or lie down or generally do anything!) All of this babbling is to explain why it took me so long to get my contribution finished, but I have finally done so and have mailed it off to Sheila. I hope she is happy with my work. I know she'll be thrilled with the other contributions! I had a great time working in her journal, just as I did with the other five I've worked in over the past months. Deb's Sensual Journal project was wonderfully fun and also a good challenge. I'm honored to have been able to participate.

Now I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of my journal----I can't wait to see it! I will be sure to post photos of it when it returns home to me.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Whatever you do.....VOTE!

Please exercise your right to vote today. No matter your cause, candidate or concerns, it is so very important that you take the time to vote your conscience and your heart. Thank you.
Royalty free photo found on