January 2013 Small Stones

These small stones (haiku-like writings) were written in January 2013, as part of a write-everyday challenge offered by the website, Writing Our Way Home (http://www.writingourwayhome.com/) which has subsequently created a page on FaceBook where many continue to write daily, and share their writings.

31 Jan 2013

Here upon a field of mindfulness
our meandering paths of creativity
constructed cairns 31 stones high
each unique, complex…
and very much treasured.

My last one pays homage to you,
and you, and you, and you, and you, too,
who kept me company on this sweet journey.

May the small stones of these cairns
continue being built with compassion.
May every moment of your life
be blessed with wisdom.
And in the end, when the strong wind blows,
may your cairns tumble effortlessly
into the abiding sea of awareness.



30 Jan 2013

Quartering an apple
its core
ripe with seeds

Peeling a banana
I taste it
before I taste it

Squeezing an orange
pulpy and sweet
rivers of juice down the reamer

purple and round
need nothing

An Anjou pear
under ripe
resists the sharp blade

A bountiful bowl
beneficiary of the above
bestows the fruits of labor.


29 Jan 2013

Crab boats shimmer on the inky black carpet
of the ocean’s expanse
random spots of bright white light,
like stars resting on the ground,
lift and sink
with the weight of human and tidal activity
as halogen lights far away
softly beam into my bedroom where I sleep.


28 Jan 2013

Above a rare blue heron glides effortlessly,
as a gray dawn cracks open
while below, this enchanted small stone writer
enshrines her.


27 Jan 2013

Every time my eyes
embrace you
it feels like
the first time…
Full Moon.


26 Jan 2013

Moonlit midnight
clouds create an aurora.


25 Jan 2013

Returning from REM-less
my eyes open
amber lit numerals inform
2:07 a.m.
rhythmic breathing next to me
ambiance of the dark room
rain tap-dances on window
I count the drops
one, two…
make it to twelve.


24 Jan 2013

“The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men often go awry…” ~ Robert Burns

I discovered the cache of bird seed upon removal of the defunct wall oven. There in the corner, partially hidden behind a metal electrical box, a hoard of millet scavenged by a purposeful little mouse.

Out came the vacuum and within a few human seconds, mice-hours, perhaps entire mice-days of labor sucked away. The tiny entry hole then sealed tight.
Now I wonder…where other hoards exist.


23 Jan 2013

Those milky brown eyes, with their luscious ability to expand my heart beyond its accustomed borders, hone in on me.

“Whatcha want, girl?” I ask.

Her coral tongue darts out and does a half-lap around her muzzle.

“Oh! Cookie?”

The other side of her muzzle gets the tongue treatment as her eyes now brighten & widen (if that is possible), and her bowed tail with its Pomeranian plumage straightens to thump on the floor. Apparently applauding.

And they say dogs can’t talk.


22 Jan 2013

I lived in an old home, large and drafty, with a fireplace in the kitchen that had a huge brick hearth, chipped in places, and blackened by smoke above its cavernous mouth. I’d sit on that hearth, and watch my mother bustling around the kitchen as she baked and chopped and washed dishes. She’d often hum a soft melody, a song all her own, barely audible. Contentedly. My brother and I would stay warm in the dark winters on that hearth, roast marshmallows, and watch the flames dart up and down, blue and yellow and orange, while charring those little white pillows. A standing grate stood over the burning logs and on that was placed a black cast iron dutch oven, filled with meat, potatoes, vegetables. The original slow cooker.

We don’t build houses like that anymore.


21 Jan 2013

A mob of monkey-mind paws
lob small stones upon me
as I sit in meditation.

I’m pelted with wee words,
pithy phrases,
convoluted sentences,
ornate paragraphs,
Hell! An entire manuscript
saturates my sought-for stillness.
I wish to reach for pen & paper
to end the unrest,
recognizing that any action
will likely increase it.

Do I?


20 Jan 2013

Weather forecaster warned:
“Beware of sneaker waves
when walking along the beach…”

Throughout the long night
a thunderous surf kept me awake.
Ocean waves roared, rumbled,
crashed onto shore.
Bellowed and exploded,
loudly expounding their ferocity,
sounding more like bombs detonating
than the groveling of rubber feet.

Seems to me those waves
wore combat boots.

19 Jan 2013

My mother visited last night.
Her cheerful self
looking as she did when I was young,
wearing that familiar flowered dress
cinched at the waist and draping gently
over matronly curves.
She reached out slowly,
through eternity;
I met her hand and held onto it
with astonished relief.

Even in my dreams,
now the only space we share,
she gifts me.


18 Jan 2013

The rusty shepherd’s hook
wobbles under the weight
of yellow, red, blue, brown
—a kaleidoscope of birds!—
flocking to feed.


17 Jan 2013

A chiffon layer of fog
greets me at dawn
draped over fir trees
and curling around
bare maple branches
and little fern fronds.
A velvety quiet exists
within the descending vapor.
I hear my heart beat.

When the sun fully rises
the fog lethargically rolls back,
a towering down blanket
resting against the horizon.
and waits.

16 Jan 2013

A tightly wrapped cylinder
a papery wand of local information
laid on my driveway
flung thoughtfully towards my door
by never seen hands
to save me steps outside
into the cold
in the dark before dawn.

I bow to the tribe of anonymity
I bow to this invisible worker
I bow to the order of the universe.

15 Jan 2013

Opening the back door this morning
I’m greeted by the bellowing barks
of those sleek sea dogs,
the Steller sea lion.
Sight unseen,
their bass notes rise up
the bramble & rock embankment
one hundred feet
deep and hollow, a resounding
tuba-like concerto that
tickles a smile out of me.


14 Jan 2013

Seagull slides along
a rimless rink of air
black form pirouetting
around the luminous sky;
catches a thermal
steadies… hangs motionless
wings stretched, relaxed.
Sun glints off a golden beak
while below
the ocean swells.


13 Jan 2013

Temperatures dip to freezing
then dive deeper.
tender plants droop.
I wonder
how do the birds stay warm
exposed to this cold element
wrapped only in
flimsy feathered shawls.
I wish
they had insulated lodges
where they could stay
cozy all night
snuggled into comfy fleece nests
set in front of log-lit fireplaces
with little cups of nectar to sip
while Debussey plays in the background.


12 Jan 2013

A small stone of a story:

The rain fell gently
Like fine sand
straight down
soft and powdery.

And there it was:
the demarcation of wet & dry.

On one side of the lawn, raining
on the other side, not.
And yes, the sun was shining
around a low dark cloud.

I ran outside…
first to the rainy side
then to the dry;
back & forth
a couple of times.
I felt like Alice
stepping through the looking glass.

Seldom are we allowed to see
so clearly
the duality of nature.

Don’t ask me why, but I moved into
a yoga warrior pose
positioned at the dividing line
my left hand rooted in the past
my right hand pointing towards the future.
one wet, one dry
of surrendered joy.


11 Jan 2013

Turning over a stone
the ideas underneath
slip away
like a worm seeking cover
in the earthy loam
or like a fly
caught in a web
to free itself.


10 Jan 2013

Those slow-mo moments upon awakening: luxurious
downy contentment where slumber and consciousness
kiss, where porous edges of dreams fuse into a
pool of wakefulness that remains deliciously dull
until feet hit the floor and find wooly slippers,
slippers which both body and mind use to glide into
the day.


09 Jan 2013

Feathered serenity shattered
when the raptor swoops in to feed
panicked doves scatter
Wing patterns on the glass pane.


08 Jan 2013

The tails of two tabbies
twitch and sway,
tap and undulate
sweeping out languidly
curling in, around
like a one armed hug
these long striped ropes
of swirling blacks, browns and grays
point back to ancestry
barely evident in docility.
But oh that stare…
that unblinking stare
golden and Buddha like
plumb regions unfathomable
and alas, unattainable,
but in the knowing minds
of two home locked tabbies.


07 Jan 2013

Stepping outside
dense deep fog wraps around and
sloppily slaps a kiss on my face
startling my senses to rapt attention.

Audacious lover, that cloud.


06 Jan 2013

A leaf falls to the floor
from the faded poinsettia,
curled and crumbling.
The Christmas decorations —
all packed away.

After the holidays,
the colorless, the cold…
the stark days of winter set in.


05 Jan 2013

Sun rises.
Birds flock to freshly filled feeders
hanging helplessly from shepherd hooks.
Quails emerge from under escallonia
and tramp along like little Charlie Chaplins,
to feast on toss-me-down seeds.


04 Jan 2013

Pausing on the stairs halfway up
I allow the rambunctious hound to rip past me.
Although… for a split second, I’m inclined to
sprint faster.
How come she always beats me to the top?
Silly thought.
What am I, ten years old?
I’m seriously not competing with my dog.
Am I?


03 Jan 2013

Coffee brewing. That soothing ambrosial aroma
filling the kitchen, as the hum of the heater
slices the quiet of this early morn.
It’s chilly here; less so because an oversized
plush robe wraps closely around this body, this
body that still moves zombie-like, reaching for and
rinsing a cup, bending to greet cat, leaning
against the counter. Waiting to sip hot coffee,
waiting to fully awaken.


02 Jan 2013

Midday sun rays stream through south facing
windows. Everything feels warm.
The cats lay about, patterns on the carpet.
Furred abdomens slowly rise and fall.
Far away, clouds accumulate.


01 Jan 2013

Found on the ground, a small Pine Siskin
head tucked under wing
just a tiny little bundle
of soft downy feathers,
still warm
huddled on the cold damp ground.
My hands and heart could not save him.
This New Year Day death is nothing less
than a new beginning for one small bird.


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