Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Good Dog, Gracie

Today, I read a cartoon by an artist called Bird Born about adopting a dog from an animal shelter. The story reminds me of Gracie who, like the adopted dog is a bit ill-mannered but also very joyful and lively.

She is becoming less ill-mannered in our daily walk but no less joyful. Today, when I had to sit to remove a sharp nut shell from my shoe, she consented to sit and take in the view, then to lie down and wait. She has learned this new skill as well as this command "s-l-o-w s-l-o-w s-l-o-w" when we walk on wet wooden bridges, slick and slippery with grunge.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Maybe Soon

The records say this is the warmest year so far in history, with February breaking all the records.

All I know is that we have had rain and rain and more rain, making for a slow start to damselfly/dragonfly emergence. Even though I can't prove it with a decent photograph, I saw a Common Green Darner cruising the lake today, flying fast, darting in and out of shore vegetation, on the make.

The frogs already got to it some weeks ago and now the toads too. Suddenly, the overflow channel (bone dry much of last summer) waves their egg masses and jelly strands.

Maybe there's hope yet for a lively renewal in and around the water.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

The Sun Came Out (Briefly) Today

while I was working, wind still racing. Too late for ode hunting, but not too late for reflection during my work break.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

This time last year

I had documented Fragile Forktail (March 15), Blue Corporal (March 22), Green Darner (ovipositing March 22). Common Baskettail arrived on March 27.

As of now: Fragile Forktail.

Out of frustration, I went elsewhere to find something difficult to shoot. This is the result:

Nowhere near as good or as satisfying as odes, dadgummit.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Windows (Again)

Confession: my cousin and I once sneaked downhill to peer into the windows of a neighbor's house to see what we could see. I had not read Harriet, the Spy, and he most certainly had not. But I had read Nancy Drew mysteries, so I fancied myself a detective of domestic life -- others' domestic life. The two of us wrote (maybe even only once) a neighborhood newspaper, featuring what we imagined might have happened in our grandparents' former house.

For me now, windows shine most without people like these stained glass panes in a chapel door, sunlight splashing their colors on a dark wall.

I don't need a story -- fictional or factual. The windows are enough.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Blue Tarps

I first encountered them in photographs of Katrina's aftermath, then on houses atop Sand Mountain after the April 27, 2014 tornadoes, and now across the openings of old sheds/wooden garages and around the farm in Sewanee.

A symbol of suffering and destruction, they cheer me here -- flapping, snapping in wind; shadowing in strong sunlight; fraying from weathering and age. Today, one hoop house tarp clapped and ruffled, clapped and ruffled, clapped and ruffled, in a curiously moving rhythm.

And I was happy.