04 December 2016


Feeder finch waiting his turn for more seeds.

Other birds were not so polite. Bottoms up!

New kid on the block. He's in for a rough winter.

Waiting for his dinner, too.

We made it through Thanksgiving. Nanner, nanner.

25 November 2016

Post Thanksgiving Poetry Prompts

Bonus poetry prompt - Study for Improvisation V by Kandinsky

So, we've feasted and relaxed for a whole day, time to get back to writing. Here are a few prompts for you, use them for poetry or any other writing medium you embrace. 

1.  Barrels. Think about barrels. All sorts of cool things come in barrels, mostly alcoholic in nature, but not always. Whiskey, vinegar, Tabasco sauce, beer barrels, flour barrels, water barrels, oil barrels, a barrel of monkeys (anyone remember that game?). Think of the types of wood that a barrel could be made from and why. Staves and hoops, firkins, kilderkins, and hogsheads. Did you know a barrel of beer is 160 liters?  So what's in YOUR barrel?

2.  What are you more afraid of - fire, water, or ice? Would you prefer to die in a fire, by drowning, or lost alone in the Arctic? Or maybe on a boat in the Antarctic that's on fire and ready to drop you into the ocean? All kinds of Movie of the Week possibilities.

3.   What's under your skin? Blood, muscle and tissue? Something more sinister? Tiny nanobots? Is skin just a wrapper or something more? Maybe something (or someone) gets under your skin. What would that look like? How would it feel? Would you want anyone to know? Are things truly only skin deep?

4.  If you could go back in time to high school, say, and do it all over again, would you prefer to go back with all your present memories intact or just start anew? What problems would your present memories bring to your 17 year old self? If you started new, would you trust yourself to make the right decisions this time around?

5.  Aliens are coming to take you away. They say you can only bring one plant with you and you are forced to choose between a coffee plant and a cacao plant. Which would you choose and why? (The aliens don't bargain, so don't even try and take a rutabaga instead.) 

11 November 2016

A Hunting We Will Go

I like to hunt with my camera. I think the deer appreciate it because they allowed me to get pretty close.

In my travels I get to see interesting landscapes. A few stubborn leaves hang on, despite the wind.

Mule deer had more curiosity than sense. Or I'm short enough to be nonthreatening.

I love the ears. They ought to be able to hear anything coming a mile away.

The sound of running water over rocks kept me distracted at times.

The stare down.

What remains hidden in the trees?

A few more pics and the deer went bounding away, into the trees.

04 November 2016

Must Have Book for Poets


A little bit of self-promotion for the day. See that book up there, The Crafty Poet II? It's a self-contained little poetry tutorial, chock full of tips on crafting poetry, poetry prompts, and poems that model the prompt.

It just so happens one of my poems is used as an example of a poem modeled on a prompt. My poem is "Synthesis" (Page 108) and is a model for the prompt by Barbara Hamby entitled "Vex Me".

My first line is
"Oh Rock in my Path, how considerate of you to descend 
early in the morning to avoid squashing my flesh-bag 
beneath your magnificence." 

Of course it goes downhill from there.

There are lots of other wild and wonderful poems in this book, and prompts to keep your brain engaged and new work flowing. Pick up a copy on Amazon, or Barnes & Noble, you won't regret it.

While you're at it, stop by and give Diane Lockward some love for putting together this awesome collection.

Now, it's November - NaNo this and NaNo that - back to writing!

28 October 2016

Farewell, Minneapolis

The farewell tour of Minneapolis included a visit to the Minneapolis Institute of Art. In the spirit of Halloween, a sculpture.

As a matter of fact, the whole post will be sculptures. I danced around becoming a sculpture major in my Fine Arts program. I still carry a love for figures to this day. Buddha's come in an enormous array of poses.

I was fed a steady diet of Greek and Roman sculpture in art school.

I grew to appreciate the more abstract views of the figure.

How far could an artist go with deconstructing a figure?

Sometimes the figure didn't even need to be there to convey presence.*

* detail of above photo showing dog tags used to make up the sculpture

Is a figure the sum of its parts? Do multiple jack-in-the-boxes make you immortal?

Or is sculpture an outline of a moment captured in time?

An art museum is a great place to ponder all kinds of questions, or just to sit and absorb. Art helps you explore the question - What does it mean to be human?  If you stand still long enough, art offers a small respite from the ordinary. And sometimes we all need that.