Sunday, June 18, 2017

“A man is a very small thing, and the night is very large and 
full of wonders.” 

by Lord Dunsany

We had a bat in the cabin so the mouse related cleaning has 
expanded. Trips to the dump, nailing of boards, caulking,
reorganizing, plastic bins….,

 We brought the canoe over from the farm today so 
hopefully we can get out on the slough this week.

This Red Necked Grebe has nested on the far side of the 
slough directly across from the cabin.

We have had several days of rain for a couple of inches so far.

This family of Canadian Geese are also nesting on the slough, 
this is only the second year we have had geese here. 

The other night the beavers alerted us, with much slapping of tails,
to several deer on the far side of the slough. After several years
of only seeing a couple of deer for an entire summer it looks
like the population has rebounded.

We have also not see the bear or any of it's scat so far.

We have only see one garter snake in two weeks, normally we
would see multiple snakes each time we walked the dogs. It is
interesting to observe how the animal populations seem to 
fluctuate from year to year.

“Then I perceived, what I had never thought, that all these staring 
houses were not alike, but different one from another, 
because they held different dreams.” 

from A Dreamer's Tales
by Lord Dunsany

Friday, June 9, 2017

   We got to the cabin Monday. About five trees were down on the lane, so we had to get my brother-in-law to come by with his chainsaw. Had mice in the cabin for the first time. So lots of laundry to do, they picked my sock/underwear drawer for their nest. It looks like they all suicided in the bucket under the bathroom sink. About 4 or 5 but it was a pretty disgusting mess so I did not look too close. 

   A squirrel also started a nest inside by the kitchen door but he moved out when we got here, I don't think he was there long but we need a new pest proof door. My wife is duking it out with another squirrel in the outhouse, I may sprinkle some black pepper to drive it out of there, that normally works. 

   Another first, we have tent caterpillars in large numbers. Not close to the cabin yet but the trees around the slough are grey. We do have some nice orioles around the cabin, also coyotes yipping at night but I can no longer hear them. I can hear the grouse that are really drumming in the evening. 

   The beaver cannot chatter at me from the trees like the displaced Red Squirrels, but in the evening they circle in the slough below the cabin and slap their tails on the water to mock me.

(Week 1)

Hit the road Jack, and don't you come back, no more, no more..,

"He took then to waiting
till the night smoke rose from the boil of the sunset

But the moon carved unknown totems

out of the lakeshore
owls in the beardusky woods derided him
moosehorned cedars circled his swamps and tossed
their antlers up to the stars
Then he knew though the mountain slept, the winds
were shaping its peak to an arrowhead
But by now he could only
bar himself in and wait
for the great flint to come singing into his heart"

from Bushed

by Earle Birney

Friday, June 2, 2017

But if we have the luxury of true mental freedom, there are larger concerns to be found. Look at the sky. Does space go on forever, to infinity? Or is it finite but without boundary or edge, like the surface of a sphere? Either answer is disturbing, and unfathomable. Where did we come from? We can follow the lives of our parents and grandparents and their parents backward in time, back and back through the generations, until we come to some ancestor ten thousand years in the past whose DNA remains in our body. We can follow the chain of being even further back in time to the first humans, and the first primates, and the one-celled amoebas swimming about in the primordial seas, and the formation of the atmosphere, and the slow condensation of gases to create Earth. It all happened, whether we think about it or not. We quickly realize how limited we are in our experience of the world. What we see and feel with our bodies, caught midway between atoms and galaxies, is but a small swath of the spectrum, a sliver of reality.

from What Came Before the Big Bang?
The physics and metaphysics of the creation of the universe
Harpers Magazine Jan 2016, 

by Alan Lightman

Thursday, June 1, 2017

"In our short century or less, we generally aim to create a comfortable existence within the tiny rooms of our lives."

from What Came Before the Big Bang?
The physics and metaphysics of the creation of the universe
Harpers Magazine Jan 2016, 
by Alan Lightman

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

"Bow down: I am the emperor of dreams;
I crown me with the million-colored sun
Of secret worlds incredible, and take 
Their trailing skies for vestment when I soar,
Throned on the mounting zenith, and illume 
The spaceward-flown horizons infinite. 
Like rampant monsters roaring for their glut," 

from The Hashish Eater -Or- The Apocalypse Of Evil -
by Clark Aston Smith

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Someone had a bad winter, 
someone else had a good walk.

"the walk liberating, I was released from forms,   
from the perpendiculars,
      straight lines, blocks, boxes, binds
of thought
into the hues, shadings, rises, flowing bends and blends   
               of sight:"

from Corsons Inlet
By A.R. Ammons

Thursday, May 25, 2017

“how futile is man's poor, weak imagination 
by comparison with Nature's incredible genius.” 

from At The Earth's Core

Sunday, May 21, 2017

"There is a recurrent moment, for lovers of art, When we
shift from looking at a work to actively seeing it."

from the New Yorker, Looking and Seeing
by Peter Schjeldahl, May 8, 2017

Sunday, May 14, 2017

"The wild keeps telling us something 
we want to pass on to the world:
Even far things are real.

from Whispered into the Ground

No sooner were we back for the coast then we 
visited one of my favourite spots, our friend's place  
on the prairie in Southern Alberta, where I managed 
to see one of my favourite animals. And no post
on the prairies would be complete without the poems
of William Stafford.

"That winter when this thought came-how the river
held still every midnight and flowed
backward a minute-we studied algebra
late in our room fixed up in the barn, 
and I would feel the curved relation, 
the rafters upside down, and the cows in their life
holding the earth round and ready
to meet itself again when morning came."

from Living on the Plains

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

"I went for a walk over the dunes again this morning
to the sea,
then turned right along
   the surf
                         rounded a naked headland
                         and returned

   along the inlet shore:"

from Corsons Inlet
by A.R. Ammons

Botantical Beach Park, Vancouver Island

blogger font wonky again

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Spring Red Wing dreaming of territory and conquests.

"Or like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes 
He star'd at the Pacific—and all his men 
Look'd at each other with a wild surmise— 
Silent, upon a peak in Darien. "

from On First Looking into Chapman's Homer
by John Keats

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Lately we alternate between skiffs of snow, 
spatterings of rain. hints of blue sky and a bits of cloud.
But it must be spring because we had to move the 
Forester so they can sweep the gravel from the street.

Yesterday we went for a walk in search of birds,
we found some.

"I remember you. You're the one
who lifted your ancient bones
of fossil rock, pulled yourself free
of the strata like a plaster figure
rising from its own mold, became
flesh and feather, took wing,
arrested the sky."

from Stone Bird
by Pattiann Rogers

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Spring has sprung?

It’s harder to lose things and easier to find them, 
including yourself, in the light.” 

from Bathing the Lion
by Jonathan Carroll

Thursday, April 13, 2017

"He yearned for the day when the new church

would be built—right across the road. Now
it rises above the moon: saints in frescoes 

meet the eye,"

from The New Church"
by Lucia Cherciu

Monday, April 10, 2017

I mentioned we went to the park with the dogs last week.
Shaun, Nina, and Whateley not only saw the ducks but
they made a new friend.

"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

Monday, April 3, 2017

"These Castles, tilting the sky over their towers
Championing the river of hills below,
Have silent halls and courtyards locked with snow,"

ftom The Strongholds
by Robert Finch
in The Strength of the Hills
Indian File: 2

A bit of snow yesterday so Whateley and I took some
 photos in the back yard. Blue sky today.

"his mind, that sea, caught at green
thoughts shadowing a green infinity."

from Marvell's Garden
by Phyllis Webb
in Even Your Right Eye
Indian File: 8

Thanks Margy

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

"The sun argues 
ice to liquid"

from Icicles
by Mark Irwin

We took the dogs to the park today, the city has not yet filled 
 the pond. They wait till late spring to discourage the Canadian 
Geese from nesting. However this pair of Mallards were making 
do with the spring melt water in a low spot. Although they are 
probably our most common duck I love the iridescent heads on 
the males and all the colours you see when they preen.

"I am living deeply now
like the white spider I spy
among the wild roses." 

from These Heady Flowers 
by Elizabeth Kirschner

Sunday, March 26, 2017

"All night, this soft rain from the distant past. 
No wonder I sometimes waken as a child."

from Starlight
by Ted Kooser

"It is the process of writing that urges the writer toward a poem’s 
most natural, most effective form. The decisions are best made en route."

from The Poetry Home Repair Manual
by Ted Kooser

Saturday, March 11, 2017

"I've learnt the beatitudes of ice
something sacred, something cold, 
demanding respect, a paraphernalia
of horned boots, cowl and padded vest,
for body nicely flexed to winter's mold"

from From Shovel to Self-propelled Blower:
The Immigrant's Progress

by Rienzi Crusz


Saturday, March 4, 2017

"Reciting. They say candle-vigilant 
woods in high Arizona swirl
twisting upward out of red dust
miles of such emphasis.

Like them, dark on dark on dark."

from Hail Mary
by William Stafford

Giovanni Bellini 1488, Virgin with the Child and Saints.
Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, Venice

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Bow River

"NOW the little rivers go
Muffled safely under snow,

And the winding meadow streams
Murmur in their wintry dreams,"

from Winter Streams 
by Bliss Carmen

Saturday, February 18, 2017

After a good check up with my doctor, I took my camera 
to Kensington our first neighbourhood in Calgary. 

Through no intent on my part 
a theme emerged.

 This week my wife and I attended a talk at the university by 
author Michael Chabon. I quite enjoyed it and 
will be reading more of his work.

“There's nothing more embarrassing than to have  
earned the disfavor of a perceptive animal.” 

                                                     from Wonder Boys
                                                     by Michael Chabon

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Valentine's Day 2017

Days of Construction Paper and Macaroni

Office bound how often the seasons, years go unremarked.
In the younger grades you decorated the classroom.
Iron autumn leaves between sheets of wax paper and it is fall.
Black cat cutouts, Halloween, an accordion turkey, it is Thanksgiving.

Cut out intricate snowflakes for winter, macaroni trees, it is Christmas.
February and there are Valentines for everyone for once.
Easter eggs, paper tulips, it is spring and change is in the air.
And in the summer you ran thru an endless twilight
until the street lights called you home.




Monday, February 6, 2017

''It was one of those Saturday afternoons where the snow 
is coming down gray and mean, and you can't even get a
 decent recorded message on the answering machines 
of strangers."

from review of The Lonely Guy
by Roger Ebert

Sunday, February 5, 2017

a couple of centimetres Saturday, 
more coming.

"Let us keep melodrama out of this scene,
Eye open to daylight, foot on the firm earth."

from Son-And-Heir
by A.J.M. Smith