In one week, I am leaving the house on the cove in the center of the Ozarks.
We have lived in this home for over 18 years and in the Ozarks for over 30. This land is one of the great loves of my life.
But now we leave.
Moving one thousand miles to the east. To the foothills of the Smoky Mountains and a new life.
I will miss this land of steep ridges and deep fern green hollows. And I don’t know how my writing will change. This beloved land has been my muse for now much of my adult life.
I am excited for this new adventure. And it has all happened with such suddenness and energy that I have no doubt it is exactly what and where we are supposed to be.
And with that certainty, I have little grief over leaving. I know I am being given another great love of my life in our new home. A home very much like my beloved shack in Arkansas, but this time tucked into the foothills of the Smoky Mountains in a small village in western North Carolina.
My husband is going home to the state of his birth and home to his family.
We are both going home to a place we never dreamed of until a few months ago.
I will keep in touch, Dear Reader, and I will find a voice in that new place and my writing will follow its course – The Course of Our Seasons – a new and beautiful adventure.
I settle in my bones
waiting for the gibbous moon to rise
her sweet face mourns with me
and all that I leave behind
we both walked on water
for the longest time
the fragility of the day holds fast
in the light of early afternoon
in a year heavy
with veiled feelings
in the eyes of passers by
wands of dried grasses
tasseled in gold
seem to wave over our worries
look how sparrows glean the field
how lilies gild the meadow
rain falls on us all,
the just and unjust,
criminal and saint
we are all alive
under this fragile light
of early afternoon
sun is unfolding across my face
freckled and lined
by all those
ancient summers worn
by dust and seared green pines
fragrant sap sticky as preserved
amber of peaches
warm from the stove
stirred in the ancient black pot
and from their hands
their song, sung in wordless
murmuring incantations above
pots and babies and lovers bodies
asleep in the shade
of a hot July afternoon
sweet water from the well
casts the evenings magic spell
as the fiddlers resin up their bows
mandolins court and spark
in early summers dark
lighting fireflies to twinkle and glow
its not every night but now
we sing and tell stories how
we lived and dreamed and truly loved
its not every night but when
we gather up to dance again
and music rises
to the summer moon above
so grab your partner
coo and dove
hug your friends and swing your love
cause all we have is the music
and the stars
its not every night but now
we are here and this is how
we celebrate the music
of our lives
I am longing for my friends and our summer nights filled with music and laughter.
This was written a few years ago and some of us have moved away and some have died. But this will always be my memory of our friendships and our love in a very specail place and time.
I have become careless
in this lockdown time
as if this time was out of regular old normal time
This morning, I reached in for blueberries and found them already molded, gone gray
and lettuce wilted to slime
I have become careless with the food someone else gathered from shelves and plunked down in my car trunk
only to be thrown out just after the weekly garbage pick up.
I have become careless with friendships and relations
Calls early on in March and April were tinged with panic and overwrought sentiment
Now most maskless and tired of all the worry,
they have moved on,
leaving me behind closed doors and silent phones.
Squandering these moments,
I have become careless with time itself
as if these hoarded hours will be added on
to the end of my days-
a bonus for being good and careful
I mailed the postcard
found in your old Bible
I didn’t have a stamp
so just wrote please forward
to whom it may concern
Signed it with a pen
I picked up at the five and dime
a long time ago
The ink was dried up
I hope you can read it
It was just the message
I heard when I called
the number on the wall
It said Sinner
Our family’s veterans include great-grand fathers, my grandfather, great uncles, uncles, cousins, brother in law, sister in law, my Dad, my father in law and my husband, Bob. All served their country in war and peace.
And, today especially, we remember Lance Corporal Phillip Vinnedge who was killed in Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2010, the brother of my beloved niece’s husband.
He was 19 years old.
it is not unreasonable
to ask for a future.
But at the moment,
future has no form
It is ethereal as the moonlight
cast on dark water.
Reason and desire
will not bring it to fruition
this unseeable time
the fortune tellers crystal ball.