The Last Bouquet

Dry, pumpkin colored fall: the season to gather apples and grapes. Geese congregate before their flight south. Squirrels store food for winter. The whimsy of Halloween collides with bittersweet autumn.  I lean into the tenderness of its melancholy contradictions. If we celebrate the harvest, then we must also accept the reckoning. Autumn cushions the fall … More The Last Bouquet

Just Coasting Along

“Sometimes, you don’t know where you are going until you get there.” Anonymous In August my wife and I drove to Manzanita on the Oregon coast. We were accompanied by her sister and brother-in-law. Our mutual objective was to escape the inland heat. Each morning we walked Neahkanie Beach. A haiku of fog shrouded Cape … More Just Coasting Along

Libra Lullaby

“… since we must always have a suffering world, we must also always have a song” David Budbill It’s said that “a Libra’s purpose is to use its unbiased and fair stance to fight for the practical cause of the world and make it become a better place. They like balance and justice.” Hmm … … More Libra Lullaby

When I Grow Up

“The American male doesn’t mature until he has exhausted all other possibilities.” Wilfred Sheed I had my share of angst about what to be when I grew up. I felt lost and uncertain about the future. I avoided expectations by dropping out. I moved to the mountains. It was the right thing to do, given … More When I Grow Up

The Winter of Life

It’s the winter of life. Ads for funeral services pepper my mailbox. Mortuaries stalk people my age. The implication, I suppose, is that I don’t have too many decades left. It’s nice to be wanted. Eventually, I’ll buy what they have to sell. But, for now, I’ll wait. There are more songs to write. It’s … More The Winter of Life

2020

Normally, this time of year, my wife and I would be traveling to San Francisco to visit relatives. Our son, niece, and my brother’s family live in the Bay Area. For the last several Christmases we’ve vacationed there. We take in a movie each day and dine out each night. It’s the perfect getaway to … More 2020

What Next?

In September, smoke from wildfires shut down activities in much of Oregon. An eerie mustard colored sky shrouded the community of Hood River. The burnt smell of the air created a vacancy reminiscent to March/April’s sheltering in place. Eyes itched and stung; throats seized up dry and scratchy. People were dispossessed of how to pass … More What Next?

In the Oregon Hills

I can’t remember how I learned to read. I don’t recall the teacher’s patience to help me sound out vowels and consonants. Nor the prompts to form these sounds into words. Was I encouraged at home by my parents? If so, there’s no memory. That process disappeared with time. Yet, the gradual step by step … More In the Oregon Hills