November 30, 2012

by Beth Lowe on November 30, 2012

It’s the very last part of dusk. So much so that it’s hard to see.

Winter’s white feet glimmer in the half-light; he gently waves his furled tail. At this time of day, he does the guiding though I hold the leash. At the dam, we clamber to the top of our big rock and watch the sliver of sun slide down behind the silhouetted trees.

The wind starts slowly in the high tops of the creaky old oaks and then settles gratefully in the pines. It whispers down their trunks, soothing rough bark, ending in sweet exhale.

There is no other sound like wind in pines.

It’s Thanksgiving weekend. Everything’s done for the moment. No crazy shopping with the hordes for us. We stay home, walk in the woods, play music, read, be together.

We breathe in the cold air, along with a small but certain peace.

From our lookout rock, the kitchen – where my family is – glows like the stand of tamarack trees I visited earlier today.


November 29, 2012

by Beth Lowe on November 29, 2012

Subdued morning, the color of damp tree trunks and dead pine needles. Not gray; rather, shades upon shades of brown. Forest camouflage. Cat ice no more, what now covers two thirds of the pond will persist through full-on daylight.

The kingfisher begs us to follow him.

He takes us to the other pond, the one across the street, connected to ours by the rivulet flowing through the dam, under the road. Two swans, eleven Mallards, and a Canada goose or two allow the fisher to dart and dive between them, hunting for food.

We watch.

A flicker at the birdfeeder, bright head swiveling, gorging on sunflower. We cheat: black oil sunflower seeds are the fast track to the most birds. No filler seeds for us. Safflower, sometimes, for the cardinals. Always the last birds of the day, a pair visits just before sunset.

I wait.

Yesterday, driving home: lithe shades leap the road at speed. Woods, water, fields on all sides. Through the snow, in the dusk, I barely glimpse them as they slip away, following the horned one, the old paths. Gone so fast, I’m not really sure I saw them at all.

I can no longer get away from the pain in my head.

I wanted to follow the deer through the snow veil. I thought their secret path might lead to a new country, but I was afraid I wouldn’t come back.


(For more about cat ice, see this post.)


November 17, 2012

November 17, 2012

  We walk up the driveway to get the mail, and the last kingfisher of the season chitters as it flies over our heads, heading from our pond to the next. A tow-headed fisherman, the good one, calls out hello, says we probably won’t have many more days like this. “No,” I respond. I know [...]

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November 15, 2012

November 15, 2012

  You, stuck at wide-open whine.   I go to the woods, alone, tend my hurts like an animal. Return from solitary remote, shadowed.   You pretend you can’t see my sinews, my scars, my pain.   You need your drama.   I – I – will howl only when the moon is full, and [...]

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November 8, 2012

November 8, 2012

  Gabriel has gone.   The last time I saw him was in a café in Chelsea. He said he was getting tired of haunting the canyons. “It takes a lot out of you, ya know?”   The hurricane pretty much decided what happened next.   A homeless guy who hangs out across the street from that place with the [...]

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November 6, 2012 – Election Day

November 6, 2012

  Inspired by “Epiphanies,” by Jessamyn Smyth   Mist-rise snakes along the surface of the water. Our coldest day so far. The diving ducks don’t seem to mind. Oak tree leaves are down now; usually they wait ‘til spring when the new ones push them off. Hurricane breath blew hard. Dog hunkers down, chews sticks and [...]

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November 4 and 5, 2012

November 5, 2012

November 4, 2012 Too Close Early November, the day before the clocks go back. Not quite light, water begins to reflect morning.   Dog and I slip out the back door. He catches movement to his right, and I can see enough.   Two men slip into the green-black pines at the shoreline just beyond [...]

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30 Poems in November (with a bit of a late start)

November 5, 2012

 I’m a reader and a writer. I’ve been a teacher and tutor of both. It goes without saying that my life wouldn’t be the same without having the skills to read and write. For pleasure, of course, but, more importantly, for navigating through life, for jobs and careers, for not simply surviving, but being successful. [...]

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Going to California

May 27, 2012

We do what we always do when I visit. We talk and we laugh. We drink too much coffee. I’m with my family in the Santa Cruz area on the Central Coast of California. I haven’t been here in much too long. Here, in this place that’s like a second home. We watch the ocean [...]

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snow soliloquy

March 8, 2011

The snow piles at the edges of our driveway are now over my head.  My study, with its walls half-underground, has snow mid-way up its windows. Some days, this makes me feel warm and snug, like I’m in a grouse’s snow burrow; others, it makes me feel trapped. As New Englanders and Midwesterners alike will [...]

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