Saturday, January 8, 2011

Rip Van Winkle Afternoon

yellow light dapples the trees
its warmth
full of falsehoods
lulls us
so we linger
on the meadow's moss carpet
a little too long

shadows spring up from the ground
catching us
chasing us
off the mountain

forcing us
back to the cold truth
of January's calendar

We have been hiking again. I don't care if people think "that's all you do".
It is a cheap, healthy way to spend a winter day. I miss the ocean and being able to snorkel or ride our SUP. But I am all for "make hay while the sun shines" and as this place is full of mountains and we are fit enough to walk in them, so we hike. We tried out a new peak today. It was a (another) ridge climb through a swath of natural forest. It was pretty, but also depressing. Depressing because most of it was a silent, almost dead forest. It was full of trees, yes, and there were a few birds here and there, but there are no animals--no squirrels, no mice or foxes or other little creatures to look forward to. There are wild boars. The startle and scare us occasionally, but we usually don't see them, only know they exist because of all the tilling they do along the trails. There are also wild monkeys. They live in pockets around the gorge south of our city and it is always fun to hear them and see them when we walk. I am so used to seeing rabbits and chipmunks or squirrels when I walked in the States that it is a bit disappointing to not be able to see them here.

Friday, January 7, 2011

the new david and goliath

Political Machinations

25 years it took for low dose control to be allowed
--less than a year for the blue pill to pass government muster

The Story Continues...

i wish for all the women who are out there and struggling and for those who are no longer with us.
i wish that we could help this woman find her stone and cast down the goliaths in her way.

Thursday, January 6, 2011


Welcome Home

chicken soup and just made bread
greet us from the kitchen
as we brush off our coats and the cold
at the door

(in praise of my slow cooker and the bread machine
who do the work while we play)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

my ritual too

we are pilgrims for one day

doing the yearly ritual.

we follow the path down, down to
where the sea beats these cliffs

we walk with ghosts on stones
1,200 years trod for this same purpose

we pass the stalls--
their bright colors and
tempting smells will wait

we wash our hands and mouths,
enter the cave.
standing before the bright red box
we throw coins with holes in their centers.
we shake the bell, clap the gods awake
and pray for a good new year.

My grandmother's family were Jewish.
On the other side--waspy Protestants.

I am who I am, but
will take all the blessings I can get
from whichever gods may be
watching over me.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Are we there yet?

One for the river--

only the eerie creak of trees joins us on the last leg of our windy winter hike


today was a good day.
my calf muscles are not in agreement with that statement, but they will get over their aches soon enough. It was sunny and in the lower 50s (about 12 degrees C) and so we braved the wind and went over the mountain and through the woods.

It feels so good to get out and to move. I feel so trapped and get cabin fever so easily in the winter.

We have been hiking a lot lately, finding the connections between the local trails. it is so very, very nice to have solid 4 to 5 hour hikes within 20 to 30 minutes of the house. Today we followed the trail in Kaeda gorge to the turn off at the cold water sulphur stream then hiked switchbacks for a bit till they led us straight up to an amazing ridge covered with tree roots and moss. The walk was blissfully endless. Sounds insane, I know, (and I admit to thinking "whose idea was this anyway?" at several points during the climb), but now, drunk on homemade Chinese for dinner and endorphins, I am feeling like it was a wonderful idea and Shuji just said "why don't we go back tomorrow and try that other trail--the one where we are not sure where it leads to?"

We'll see. it may rain tomorrow, or be too gray and windy--not a day that calls for us to come and play. Anyway, tonight I will rest well and bask in the memory of the sunshine that filtered through tree tops blessing us with its warm rays and even waking up a few frogs while it was at it. I may make it through winter yet.

One for the road--

I heard you, was taken by surprise--mistook you for
some larger, more dangerous beast

in the still, the wait for the rustle or charge
your croaky voices gave away those
dark hidey places

did the tease of today's
call you out to play too?

Monday, January 3, 2011

white eye

tiny pale green birds
white-eyed acrobats
dazzle us with daring feats
among the camellia blossoms

the first stone--not what you think...

trailing scents of spice and yeast--
off to the shops for butter.
does the checkout girl's smile mean she knows
it's for cinnamon rolls?
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