State Forest State Park. June 13, 2019.
How does the Meadow flower its bloom unfold? Because the lovely little flower is free down to its root, and in that freedom bold. ~ William Wordsworth
So it’s after 5:00 pm here in Colorado and I haven’t yet added one single word to my work-in-progress. Why? In part, I had much to do today. But in greater part? I’ve reached the point in which I need to write BIG climatic scenes and I’m intimidated. It was easier to tend to other business today.
I need to make like a Meadow flower and feel free to try and fail, all the way down to my roots. Otherwise, what’s the point?
Great Egret. May 5, 2019. Clearwater, FL
Last night I met with the young leaders of the Sunrise Movement in Colorado, and heard some tough news. As I listened, I slouched lower and then lower in my chair. At the same time, I noticed the young woman across from me sitting straighter, back erect and strong. It was as if I was a cautionary tale. The lower I went, the higher she sat. No caving in for her. It was a beautiful sight.
I’d like to be more mindful of sitting and standing tall, no matter the situation.
A good stance and posture reflect a proper state of mind. ~ Morihei Ueshiba
The human body is a steed that goes freest and longest under a light rider, and the lightest of all riders is a cheerful heart. ~John Burroughs
November 23, 2019
And who is more cheerful than a chickadee?
Today is cold and icy. Again. Unlike two weeks ago, I am not venturing outside because I very much do not want to slip and fall again. Instead, I went in search of an appropriate quotation for this ice-encrusted day. I found the following . It speaks to me, despite never having directed a film. I read it as “Writing a novel is mystifying…”
Directing is mystifying. It’s a long, long, skid on an icy road, and you do the best you can trying to stay on the road… If you’re still here when you come out of the spin, it’s a relief. But you’ve got to have the terror if you’re going to do anything worthwhile.
~ Mike Nichols
Suffice to say, I’m firmly in the white-knuckle, can-I-pull-this-off portion of the writing process right now. First drafts can be simultaneously exhilarating and puke-inducing.
November 15, 2017
“If we had a keen vision of all that is ordinary in human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow or the squirrel’s heart beat, and we should die of that roar which is the other side of silence.” ~ George Eliot, Middlemarch
Birds are the most popular group in the animal kingdom.
We feed them and tame them and think we know them.
And yet they inhabit a world which is really rather mysterious.
~ David Attenborough
House Finch. November 1, 2019.
A black cat crossing your path signifies that the animal is going somewhere.
~ Groucho Marx
Loki on January 29, 2018.
(As an aside, it’s the one-year anniversary of Loki’s big dental procedure in which he lost almost all of his teeth. Despite his expression here (pre-procedure), he’s one of the gentlest souls on the planet and I’m grateful for his good-luck companionship.)
We all have our own life to pursue, our own kind of dream to be weaving, and we all have the power to make wishes come true, as long as we keep believing.
~ Louisa May Alcott
Okay, Ms. Alcott, count me in.
Clearwater, Florida. June 2, 2018.
In art and dream may you proceed with abandon.
In life may you proceed with balance and stealth.
~ Patti Smith
Autumn wins you best by this its mute appeal to sympathy for its decay.
~ Robert Browning
House Finch and sunflower, October 16, 2019.
Nature will bear the closest inspection.
She invites us to lay our eye level with her smallest leaf,
and take an insect view of its plain. ~ Henry David Thoreau
Mariposa Lily. Centennial Cone Park, July 10, 2019.
Fashion is not about clothes,
it is about a look.
~ Carine Roitfeld
October 1, 2019
In October, a maple tree before your window lights up your room like a great lamp. Even on cloudy days, its presence helps to dispel the gloom. ~ John Burroughs
Hustler Gulch Hike. July 26, 2018.
Our bloom is gone. We are the fruit thereof. ~ Wallace Stevens
True strength is delicate. ~ Louise Berliawsky Nevelson
Unidentified butterfly, South Fork of Cave Creek. May 15, 2019.
Centennial Cone Park hike. July 10, 2019.
I hope you will go out and let stories happen to you, and that you will work them, water them with your blood and tears and your laughter till they bloom,
till you yourself burst into bloom.
~ Clarissa Pinkola Estes
I’ve mentioned before that I’m usually a one-project-at-a-time kinda writer. It seems my brain and creative juices struggle when I switch focus. BUT. I think it’s a good skill to cultivate, juggling projects, so I bought myself a brand new notebook for a brand new middle-grade novel idea I’d like to noodle on while working on my work-for-hire nonfiction project. If you hear the sound of shrieking gears, that’ll be my brain right before I burst into bloom.
Ladybug on Apache Plume in backyard. March 12, 2019.
The older I get, the more I’m conscious of ways very small things can make a change in the world. Tiny little things, but the world is made up of tiny matters, isn’t it?
~ Sandra Cisneros
Nature is ever at work building and pulling down,
creating and destroying, keeping everything whirling and flowing,
allowing no rest but in rhythmical motion,
chasing everything in endless song out of one beautiful form into another.
~ John Muir
Cave Creek Canyon hike. May 13, 2019.
Trees go wandering forth in all directions with every wind,
going and coming like ourselves,
traveling with us around the sun two million miles a day,
and through space heaven knows how fast and far! ~ John Muir
Soon-to-be Spicebush Swallowtail Butterfly. Blakeslee, PA. August 18, 2019.
Everybody knows what a caterpillar is, and it doesn’t look anything like a butterfly.
~ Lynn Margulis
When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds. I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief. I come into the presence of still water. And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light. For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free. ~ Wendell Berry
We die. That may be the meaning of life.
But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.
~ Toni Morrison
She fearlessly wielded language, never backing down from truth. I’m grateful she graced the planet for 88 years, creating books that will keep her fierce genius alive forever.
Rest in power.
Joy in the universe,
and keen curiosity about it all – that has been my religion.
~ John Burroughs
When life gives you Monday,
dip it in glitter and sparkle all day.
~ Ella Woodward
My wish is to stay always like this,
living quietly in a corner of nature.
~ Claude Monet