Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Don't get lost in the labyrinth of memory. It's possible to get stuck there forever.
Hanging sculpture in San Francisco, photo enhanced in Picasa

My last observation for
(Thank you Kaspa and Fiona.)

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Dancing in Darkness

Night photo of my back yard processed in PIcasa
Half asleep, I felt my way from the bedroom to the back door, the howling wind keeping me company. As gusts hit the trees, sheets of snow flew sideways, the whole forest a turmoil of bending and shaking. Mesmerized, I watched a waking dreamscape of nightmarish dancing.

Saturday, January 28, 2012


if someone pushes
do you push back
what does it mean to
"turn the other cheek"
if you are wronged
must grievance last forever
can simple kindness
always (ever?) be enough
I have the questions
but not the answers
(interpretations may vary)

Friday, January 27, 2012


old Chief watching for 22 years
carved from a block of wood
solemn with squinting eyes

sentinel behind the Umbrella Plant
looking out for me
a silent presence

Thursday, January 26, 2012


light leaks from the day
warmth of sun on the high peak
mountain alpenglow

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Spooky Woods

On the trail behind our house is an area of tight-growing Lodgepole Pines with leaning deadwood that we've named "Spooky Woods."  When the wind blows, the trees rub together, creaking and moaning, sending a distress call into the cold shadows of a winter afternoon.  After a snowstorm, the trunks are spackled white. Limbs beckon us to enter a wooded maze. In dim light, my imagination creates an entrance to another dimension. The trees whisper their warnings as we forge ahead, the woods closing around us.

During the month of January, writers from around the World are participating in
A River of Stones

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Cape Kiwanda, OR, spring 2011
I've been thinking about perspective:
how sometimes a small change in how I view something makes all the difference.
If I can just be a bit more flexible, make some minor alterations,
I might see things in a novel and fresh way. 
Perhaps pausing and making a small adjustment would make a big difference.   
Possibly I can view a situation in more than one fixed way.
It's worth a try.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Dawn, Cape Kiwanda, OR, spring 2011

floating on sleep's still waters, slowly sensing the surf of wakefulness 
gathering to cast me into
a new day

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Pillow Land

Waking in the night, light coming in the transom glowed pink - a good indication that snow was falling. Waiting for sleep, I listened to wind rattle the metal wreath at the front door and shush as it passed through tree branches. In the  morning, wind still sifted and twirled through the foot of new snow. The forest was transformed: snow blasted tree trunks and evergreen boughs were flocked white. Hushed as the surroundings, our touring skis made a soft pillowy sound as they fluffed and glided through winter's dreamscape.

A spot of bright color leads the way.

Observing and writing during January for

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Sunset Song

violet sunset
veil of silence on the peaks
mountain's lullaby

Just after sunset, Peaks 8 & 9, Breckenridge Ski Area

During January, I'm participating in 

Friday, January 20, 2012

Mama Bear

mama bear watches
skepticism in her gaze
I avert my eyes

Mama Bear was painted by my daughter-in-law, Michelle, and given to me as a gift. There's something about the Bear's eyes - no matter where I am, they're focused on me. Sometimes, I try communicating with her telepathically. I ask, "What 's on your mind?" Inscrutable, she remains quiet - watchful. She has that tiny half smile. Do I amuse her? Does she like me? Her demeanor is colorful but unvarying and unyielding. So many questions, and Mama Bear doesn't feel the need to answer. She just fixes me with that all-knowing stare. Self possessed....enigmatic. She knows some secrets, and she's not telling.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Hair Style

my gal clips, snips, shears
adding product she names it
dandelion gone wild

I'm participating in

I enjoy visiting all who comment, but if your profile is not enabled (when I click on your name in the comments), I can't get to your Blog. Please check that your profile is enabled and linked to your blog if you want visitors. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Winter Wind

gusts swirling old snow
dark clouds in metalic sky
frigid breath taunting

Ski runs of Keystone Mountain in distance, taken from Peak 10, Breckenridge Ski Area

Each night hoping for snow, I wake to a paltry dusting swirling on gusts, blowing from peaks, whiting out the forest. Today, it seems prudent to sit by the fire, read, and watch the wind play with the snow. I'm still putting moisturizer on the frostbite I got yesterday, my skin looking coarse and chapped on my cheeks. The dry, cold winds of winter at altitude are not a gal's best friend. Only a blizzard would compensate for the harsh treatment of winter's icy breath.

Ever hopeful,
I'm musing and observing while participating in

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

This or That

minus temperatures    blowing snow    frozen faces    skis won't slide
reevaluate the idea of "fun"
cozy house    crackling fire    strong coffee    fresh-baked gingerbread
decisions    decisions

Went skiing early and nearly froze. It was so cold that the skis "stuck" even going downhill. Lots of poling and possibly some minor swearing complaining. When the wind picked up, snow blew from the trees creating whiteout conditions. Any skin not covered froze immediately. After two hours of torture fun, we skied back home. Waldo smiled a greeting - he loves the cold. More snow due tonight - hopefully no windchill.

I'm trying to observe closely in January for

Monday, January 16, 2012

New Snow

a dingy-laundry sky of fast-falling flakes bleaching the earth white

I'm doing a snow dance today in Breckenridge, CO
A River of Stones

Sunday, January 15, 2012


 My Granddaughter and I had a discussion a couple years ago about fear: how we must pay attention to the feeling because it may warn us of real danger. But, also, how we must examine it, face it, make sure fear doesn't hold us back from accomplishment, from joy, from growth. She was about six at the time, a twig of a child, preparing for her first Taekwondo Tournament where she was matched to spar with boys. A sweet, caring child, she's never liked loud noise, undue commotion, or hurtful violence. But, she's self-motivated and disciplined. I'm sure she's still afraid sometimes, as we all are (as I am occasionally when I watch her tackle a new challenge). Not physically strong, she develops other strengths, mental and emotional, that serve her well. She teaches me valuable Life lessons.

lessons from a child
face daily uncertainties
find the solution

Amanda Grooming Flower

I'm observing carefully through the month of January:

Saturday, January 14, 2012


spent a half hour on FaceTime
with my World traveler friend, Mary
she and her husband just arrived in NZ
a major piece of luggage "missing"
but smiling and upbeat as usual
gave me a tour of their rental apartment
views of green hills and peaked mountains
so distant from my winter white
we'll "see" each other on the computer
for the next three months she's gone

Mary last year in South America

Friday, January 13, 2012

Mirror Mirror on the Wall

looked in the mirror this morning
(usually I focus a little to the side and up)
today I took inventory

what the heck happened
between 37 and 67
lines and dots mapping what 
once upon a time was 
uncharted territory

not to mention dandelion hair
sticking up in all directions
as though electricity
 entered at my feet
zapping upward

don't comfort me with
all the nice platitudes about
wisdom - experience - beatitude
it is what it is and
I'm seeing devastation

I won't even write about the body
no use frightening
my readers

Trip to Denver Zoo with Grandchildren 1/03/12

Observing (perhaps too) closely for:

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Rude Awakening

Before dawn, the plow scrapes into my sleep,
shoving both the snow and my dream to the side.

I'm participating in 

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Full Moon

In the  indigo essence of Wolf Moon, our touring skis creaked and buzzed in temperatures that turned snow flakes to ice crystals. Through the towering trees, the moon's pale glow banded the trail with ghostly light. Stars pricked the quilt of heaven. What was beyond our night vision lay in unknowable darkness. My heart beat in time to the night's song. I listened for coyotes' howls, maybe gathering for the hunt, but their tracks were our only (known) company. Perhaps they stood in the shadows, hackles rising, watching the strange creatures gliding in moonbeams through their territory.

I'm observing carefully for January's

Monday, January 9, 2012

Early Morning Ski

in dawn's frigid glow
each exhale an icy mist 
we ski through the woods

I'm participating in
A River of Stones

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Continuing the Journey

Two years ago, I abruptly realized I'm not immortal. I tore a major artery and my heart squeezed from constricted blood flow. One minute in robust health, the next diminished by pain and fear. Control is an illusion. In every moment there is uncertainty to be acknowledged and accepted. Move on, move forward, move over, or remain stuck. There are choices and outcomes. The worst really can happen and possible you'll conclude that you can withstand it, maybe even learn from it. Or not. The path for all is different, twisting and changing direction, but always leading to the same place. No matter what our beginnings, we'll reach our last breath and wish there was time for one more. For me, in this moment, for this breath, the journey continues. 

I posted about my heart attack at my main Blog Live and Learn.

covered bridge, Vail, CO

I gratefully participate today in

Saturday, January 7, 2012

A Winter Treat

softly sifting flakes icing the ground with glazed frosting

Finally! Some much-needed snow in Breckenridge, CO. 

I'm pausing to observe carefully through the month of January for

Friday, January 6, 2012


I pass  Kachina when I run the bike path. She was donated to the Town of Breckenridge in 2004 by my friends, Susie & Rick. That was the same year that Susie was going through chemo and radiation for Ovarian Cancer. Today is Susie's 70th birthday. When I ran today, I sang Happy Birthday in front of Kachina and gave thanks for Susie's health. Kachina sparkled in the sun. Eagle looked alert and ready for flight on this special day.

I'm participating in

kachina   ancient one   spirit helper
let eagle soar
celebrate life

Thursday, January 5, 2012

My Morning

Dry grasses poke through velvety white and bushes wear a thin layer of frost. In running shoes, I navigate trails sticky with melting snow. I keep my head raised but my eyes flick from ground to trees to mountains, enjoying the short and the long view. My heart rate rises, sweat wicking and freezing on the back of my fleece. Today winter seems like spring - not enough snow for January. At home, I take off my heart monitor and brew a cup of tea. Looking out the kitchen window, I see a moose, gigantic body in full trot, careening through my yard. She stops to look over her shoulder before disappearing like a hallucination into the forest. I blow on my peppermint tea and decide whether to have a peach scone or an almond biscotti. I'm feeling quite alive.

I'm participating in January's A River of Stones.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Old Woman

old woman 

bag of bones in pale coat 
smokey hair a frizzy halo

shuffled to slatted bench
lit a cigarette 

murmured  and chuckled 
waving her fingers

amusing herself
with meaningless conversation

In the city yesterday with my grandchildren, a woman approached and sat near us as they ran and dove and shrieked, playing tag. Two different worlds in close proximity. I watched both with interest.

I'm participating in

Monday, January 2, 2012

Remembering - A River of Stones

memory is
a blank canvas
painted with emotion
I'm participating in small, daily observations throughout January:

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Winter White - A River of Stones

necklaces of tracks 
on the milky throat of snow 
seed pods as witness

Small observation for