Went out to cut dogwood and tamarack branches. The sun is strong today--my scarf, sweater, vest almost too much. Five days of sun and hardly a cloud in the sky. Glory be, spring is really coming.

Now a small wind moves through pale, bedridden stalks of grass. Stalks that will miraculously revive and stand tall and green to sing their song in a matter of weeks. How do all these seasons move? Just when you feel you cannot bear another grey morning, another colorless afternoon--the first resurrections of spring come exultantly.

I've been thinking of that afternoon, that evening spent at the Flats with the orchard one, passing the soccer ball back and forth, back and forth, until both sweet spots on my bare feet were numb and I was smiling into the sunset, all the endorphins of pain and pleasure, summer and sunlight and friendship filling my stomach.

Now I have traveled East and West, have lived South of here for seasons that were rich, but when it comes to a Northern spring, or murmurings of one, well I have never found its equal, and that's the truth.


Maybe due to a friend's constant endorsement of them,

or perhaps simply because I recently finished Peace Like a River,

but I can't stop thinking about these lately.

Also, how badly I want to travel through New Mexico and Alaska. Some more backpacking this year, please!


ash wednesday

the sun is out (is out, is out, for the first time this february!!)
and Fun is singing
Take your time coming home,
hear the wheels as they roll
let your lungs fill up with smoke
forgive everyone.

so we breathe deep the stale winter air
kayak choppy waters and crave vitamin D
cross our fingers for snow-pack and water,
cross our fingers against drought

then smear ashes on our foreheads
and remember that smoke, dust, drought,

from the dirt we came,
and to dirt we shall return.