Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Real estate.

I have ever maintained that the most difficult thing about being an adult is that you have to make decisions. Major decisions. I’ve been putting off a biggie since ... oh, about mid-2010, and I finally bit the proverbial bullet:
I am selling my beloved house in Middle Lake, Saskatchewan.

The second floor reading nook.
Late yesterday afternoon, after all the chewing and stewing and pro-ing and con-ing that’s been going on in mein head for the last few years, I finally decided that my life is far too complex – living in three provinces within ten months didn’t help – and I need to simplify. (By leaps and bounds).

The realtor arrives tomorrow to do an evaluation.
I have been purging here: yard sale, dump (where I played guitar and visited with my friend, Frank Punk ... told him I always wanted to play the dump, ha!), a load to the second-hand store, give-aways to friends.

In an upstairs crawlspace I found two boxes of books, magazines and newspapers my work has appeared in. How my perspective has changed over the decades. At one time, I worked so terribly hard at getting published, and rejoiced in all those acceptances, and treasured the publications. Today I took most of it to the recycling bin.

Curiouser and curiouser. I seem to be disassociating with things that once really mattered to me. Except music. I’m playing guitar more than ever, and tonight I had a wonderful time on the piano: just me, my favourite songs, and a glass of white wine. Okay, two glasses, truth be told.  
The garden here has consumed me. Painting and staining and repairing and cleaning have consumed me. It has been an unusual summer, for certain, but ah, so many visits with friends from here (Middle and area), from my writing life, and from my long ago life, too. Man, I am seriously blessed in the "friends" department.

(Elaine B. and I cruise the countryside on her "RZR" and take a beer to a friend in the field.)
It's terribly difficult to say goodbye to this community. Lucien Lake Regional Park is a 10-12 minute walk from my door, and I didn't get there often enough this year to swim, hike, and just plain take all that beauty in. The beach is groomed (as below) every single morning. It is really something.  
Middle Lake, you are Saskatchewan's best kept secret. 


Saturday, August 18, 2012

Limbo Land.

It is well past midnight, past 2:00 a.m. August, and I am alone.

Boredom -- and slim pickings -- have me reading a John Grisham novel ("The Confession.") First one ever. Last one.

I have a camera now.

I have a garden in full throttle. (Well, the lettuce is in decline.)

I have no idea when I'll be returning to Edmonton.

I have fallen down the stairs (but fortunately, I have broken only a single toe.)

I have suffered an otherwordly migraine, with accompanying nausea. (The latter came upon me so quickly I had only time to turn away from my computer and vomit in the closet.)

I have been to Saskatoon to visit my son and his girlfriend and to eat a Fuddrucker's hamburger and then play semi-competitive mini-golf. (Greg won).

I have been to a winery in St. Louis, SK.

I have learned how to make a hollyhock doll.

 I have launched a book in my garden.

I have enjoyed out-of-town guests.

I have had a moderately successful yard sale. (No one bought filing cabinets or bowling shoes, size 8.)

I have written, but not enough. Two poems:
Snake Walk
                              for Logan
This thing in us that loves
to discover them
along the old train lane. Garters
long as your arm—
                              even longer—
baking on gravel or curlicued
in whipgrass. Son,
this is where we are truest,
closest. Soft-stepping down the line,
prey to the darting Avocets
and badger holes. Unsticking ticks
from each other’s legs
and necks. Ears tuned to
the grass blade, eyes finessing
the tell-tale stripes. We count
fifty-three today. New record.
You photograph my veiny fist
full of intact snakeskins.
Like Hydra, you say.
I will find a long flat box, mail one
to your sister in Montreal, another
to an old lover, the rest I’ll release—
sheer ribbons­­­—to the tentative village
 of wind.

Five Minutes

Red potatoes off the spade
and into the soup pot. (Always
no one to share the best parts.)

                 Absence makes a sound
like a bluebottle
vibrating in the night-window.

Messy bouquet on the antique table—
monkshood and heliopsis. Maybe
someone will come. Ah, but the purple

martins sing like the mad. It’s their hour.
Little to know about this one, except
often she had dirty feet
and fingernails, often she fell
down stairs
                               and broke things.

As soup goes, it’s not too bad.  Big chunks
of light on the laminate. Sometimes,
she sang, too.

I have had snakes in my garage and snakes in my garden.

I have painted.

I have eaten much of Greg's raspberry jam.
I have made one coconut pie and one key lime pie.

I have taken photographs of unusual things, and ordinary things, and prairie, and musuem things.

I have been exhausted.
I have laughed on occasion, but not danced.
I have been worried.
I have come to the realization that I must let some old friends go, because, oh, they have let go of me.
I have been told I've been missed.
I have some new friends.
I can grow a garden.
I truly believe in cows.
I truly believe in this man:

I have great trouble sleeping.
I think too much at the wrong times.
I have been nourished by a sermon.
Sometimes I sing my own songs to myself.
I am rarely closer to understanding, but damn, the sunsets are really something.


Friday, August 3, 2012

Listen, Honey: New Book of Short Stories!

 Listen, Honey!

... you are invited to the book launch for Listen, Honey

Wednesday, August 8, 7:00 PM

at Shelley and Greg’s (106 3rd Ave, Middle Lake, SK)

Listen, Honey is an entertaining, thoughtful, and downright sexy book.”

(contemporary short stories for adults, DC Books, Montreal, $20)

Shelley will read a few excerpts,
and books will be available for sale\signing.

(weather permitting, event will be in the garden ... please bring lawn chairs)