Tuesday, March 31, 2009


What is a friend?
A friend is more than someone to share a cup of coffee
and mull over the events of the world or the town.
Instead, a friend goes deeper, and shares a bit of his soul
and his heart, and his life.
Dreams and goals and successes and failures get discussed,
along with hopes and grief and bruises and joys.

Sometimes the coffee gets cold as we dig deep and share—
finding a point of view we hadn’t thought about, or dared to explore—
and judgments get reserved and criticism isn’t given.

The most important thing we often do is listen and accept
and to be the cheerleader or the solid rock
in a world filled with turmoil and indifference.

And, sometimes we are the mirror, just reflecting back
the idea, the thought, the concern, the question
or simply finding a quiet hour to talk, with no agenda
and knowing there is acceptance and love.

And, always there is friendship
and that can be enough to get us through the day—
knowing someone cared enough to come for coffee
and a lot more.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Almost Spring

The hills again white, the elk still huddled in the low pastures, even though the wild currants and the elderberries are showing a bit of green, and the daffodils now bloom furious and bright. Strong winds blow through, shaking the house with a roar, almost smothering the rat-a-tat of hail on the roof and the deck.

The waitress pouring yet another gallon of coffee to the crowd huddled in the cafĂ© as the hail bounces again outside declares she’s had enough and is ready for Spring. We murmur our concurrence, our hands gripping the coffee mugs, fingers still cold and the ice pellets not yet melted off of my hat on the table.

Easter is two weeks away, and my wife’s newly bought Spring dress and sandals seem a bit out of place, as she huddles in a blanket by the fire, the sky dark with the next burst of half frozen something.

We came over the summit last night, snow swirling around us, almost sticking to the road, wondering what month is this? Almost April, or a return to January. We’re not quite sure.
Cooped up in the house, watching the calliope of hail, wind, sleet, sun, then a repeat, cats catch up on their sleep and humans devour the Sunday paper and play their music. My first screeches on the violin seem to blend in with the latest squall beating on the deck. The lawn was mowed a few days ago, when Spring seemed so close, yet, now, the grass lies half frozen with hail, and the birds eagerly mob the feeder.

I have to get out of the house and off my butt, and dare to walk up the road. A blast of icy wind nearly takes my hat for a ride, and I zip up my sweatshirt, trying out my new, summer-weight hiking shoes, wondering if I need them to walk through another round of hail before I get home. I make it as far as the bridge over Killiam Creek, and, on the way back, the sun feels warm and bright, and the air soft. For a bit, I imagine it is really Spring, until the clouds move back in and another blast of ice pushes through.

In a few weeks, the yard will really be in bloom and more flowers will be bursting forth. Yet, today, with the snow again in the hills, and down almost to the valley, I wonder. Nature is teasing us today, but when I make up the bed tonight, the winter blanket will still be there.

Sunday, March 22, 2009


Empty, or at least a foggy day,
or a big white cloud
turned into a horizon, an ocean---
A sky, well at least the undercoat of orange
getting ready for blue, and clouds, or a sunset—
A mountain, slowly taking shape
thrust into the ocean, with some dance steps of my brush;
colors mixing, blending, skritchey sounding on the
canvas, turning into
the picture in my mind.


Sunday, March 15, 2009

The Squall

Wind, hail, sideways sleet
pummel the daffodils, the
swollen buds of the crabapple.

Not yet Spring, at least not today.

Horses flee to the barn, cats
nap on the bed, foregoing their afternoon hunt
hoping that treat time comes early.

I curl up, this Sunday afternoon, crossword done,
book calling, my own nap over--
pot roast aroma filling the house, needing the oven
after the pumpkin pies were done.

My glass of wine just right
as the latest push of wind and hail moves

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Robins Dance

Robins dance on the grass
ahead of the rain moving in—
Geese circling, ready to go north—
A bit of warm in the breeze
Fresh off the ocean
before the storm—
No longer winter.