Wednesday, September 27, 2017

pile of leaves, stack of books

i've had my pumpkin chai and am enjoying getting outside as much as possible as summer lets go into the more subtle hue of autumn.

one of my library books is almost as big as what it describes:  tree houses!  in preparation to stay in my neighbors' before they put it on air bnb, i thought i'd read up on them.  "tree houses:  fairy tale castles in the air" by philip jodidio is just the ladder i need to climb high into my bucket list and cross yet another item off!

"farm anatomy:  curious parts of pieces of country life" is a beautiful rendition by illustrator julia rothman.  aside from the farmer's almanac, i can't think of a better and more stylish way to learn, for instance, how to make dandelion wine or identify the cuts of a cow.

danny gregory has compiled inspiration from private art journals of traveling artists, illustrators, and designers in his book "an illustrated journey".  i'm hoping to get inspiration for my most recent two art commissions.  ("maira kalman:  various illuminations" by ingrid schaffner is next)

kid's book "mama built a little nest" by jennifer ward is just fun, as i continue to adventure to all of our local wildlife refuges.

for school i'm looking into "ideas in food:  great recipes and why they work" by aki kamozawa, "expressive photography" by various photographers, and "big questions from little people:  and simple answers from great minds" by gemma elwin harris.

and, to top it off?  two novels soon to be movies, jeannette walls' "the glass castle" and "the mountain between us" by charles martin.  first, though, i want to finish "the yellow envelope" by kim dinan and "the genius of birds" by jennifer ackerman.  (i get more than a little book greedy, can you tell?)

Monday, September 25, 2017

unfolding light

theology is our attempt to
punctuate mystery
an analysis of the Beloved's letter
a drawing of the back side of light
as it recedes
of course there is no such thing
we make it up
and spend the rest of our lives
following an imaginary map
nevertheless we're all walking around
with light shining in our eyes
every once in a while
you just close them and


Wednesday, September 20, 2017

got stamps?

stamps, as well as typewriters, tell a story of's so fun to search through piles, courtesy of the IPRC in portland (independent publishing resource center) at its new location.

i was drawn to the intaglio printed ones and learned they were created using an italian process, or "gilio" capable of one or multi-colored raised printing which is no longer used.

as the price of stamps change, so do the stories of the letters we write. we may remember, for example, how old we were during a certain olympic year or which stamps we used to send christmas cards...all in all, something worth collecting or at least learning from.

i love my wonder woman stamps and save them for special cards and letters.  do you have a favorite stamp or letter writing memory?

Monday, September 18, 2017

call to writers

have your poetry or prose featured on the poetry post at the multomah arts center!  i just sent in a couple of poems and wanted to post here how you could as well...

-send up two typed works
-each piece should be no longer than one single-spaced page
-non-english poetry with translation welcome
-content should be appropriate for people of all ages
-also include a short author bio, email address, and phone number in a document separate from your writing (jurors will not be provided identifying information)
-email your work or queries to
-writers will be notified of submission decisions by december 1st.

submissions must be received by october 1, 2017 for consideration by the panel

for more information, see Multnomah Arts Center website

a is for apple

a is for apple...or ei as in neighbor.  in my case, it's both!

my wonderful neighbors and i are set to make our ancestors proud  by getting together to mark the first day of autumn with a big homemade applesauce making party.  (author's confession:  while i grew up surrounded by wonderful home-canned goods, i have yet to take the time to learn the art properly)

all we need are some apples, jars, paring & coring knives, and a lot of laughter.  we've got that well covered.  sweet, like cinnamon and shared like community.

it doesn't get any better than that.  how do you like to mark the start of fall?

Sunday, September 10, 2017

the other einstein

i have the best hairdresser!  yesterday we talked about quantum physics and the nature of the universe while she expertly wove hip highlights into my tresses.  her contemplations reminded me of a book i am just starting to read entitled, "the other einstein" by marie benedict.

since i haven't read it, i will type from the novel's inside flap, "what secrets may have lurked in the shadows of albert einstein's fame?  in 1896, the extraordinarily gifted mileva "mitza" maric is the only woman studying physics at an elite school in zurich.  for her, math seems like an easier path than marriage, until she falls in love with fellow student albert einstein.  charismatic and brilliant, albert promises to treat her as an equal in both love and science.  but as albert's fame grows, is there room for more than one genius in a marriage?  this is the untold story of albert's first wife, a brilliant scientist in her own right, whose contributions to the special theory of relativity have been hotly debated." 

Thursday, September 7, 2017

living into the answers

it was said to me by a wise person recently, "information alone is not enough; transformation is key."  and they couldn't have been more right.  in viewing not only myself, but my responsibility as an educator, and society as a whole... that light here is a quote from "the heart of higher education" by parker palmer that i am applying to life:  "live the questions now, so that one day you can live right into the answer." --rilke

knot knowing

if one is going to learn to sail, one must learn one's knots!  this is me at a local bookstore gathering information so i can practice at home.

what seems awkward now is something i know will get into my muscle memory, so i tie knots in all those in-between times of day; those 3 or 5 or 7 minute segments that aren't really long enough to do something else but too short to waste.