Saturday, May 16, 2015

The old gray chair

she ain't what she used to be. She's in the twilight of her life, set aside from the new Adirondacks, pushed under the fir. Dragged from Massachusetts, a cast-off from suburbia, she's rested here for nearly 20 years. A few years ago, she lost her mate from terminal joint disease; he's now been chopped up for firewood. She creaks a bit. A surgeon replaced key wooden ligaments with metal bolts; she's no longer all natural. One doesn't know if household liability insurance covers a collapsing accident.

She's very heavy, made from oak, so heavy that this past winter her cruel and aging owner left her outside, unlike the lightweights nearby, light and constructed from some tropical wood from Southeast Asia, supposedly sustainable, that he lovingly shelters and oils each year. Even so, will they boast her longevity, or become decrepit in the Maine storms, and sustain nothing?

Please sit with me one more time.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Spring trash day

Picked up along Ash Point Drive on my walk this morning:

  • a couple of beer cans and one bottle
  • many styrofoam coffee cups
  • several paper coffee cups
  • a length of foam wrapping
  • a sock
  • juice bottles (2)
  • soda can, only one this year
  • paper towels, wadded
  • broken mason jar
  • 2 plastic flowers blown from the cemetery
  • disposable diapers, 2, in the raspberry patch, neatly tied, full

All carried home in a plastic shopping bag from Walmart, whence some of this stuff undoubtedly came.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

On the deck, with snow

Back in Maine for the first time in a month. Almost the first thing to do was put out the deck chairs, because, well, it's spring, and 60 degrees and sunny, even though snow needed to be shoveled from said deck, even though there's still a bank of snow surrounding the deck and hiding from the sun, and in the back yard still a lot of banks of snow, including one three-foot pile on the driveway left over from construction by the plow. It's a strange sensation to be sitting on the deck with snow still in the yard, as if a reminder that this winter may never go away. Maine wasn't even missed all that much recently, for one knew this discouraging winter would grip the land up here for a while yet. In Massachusetts, site of snow records, nearly every sign of our discontent is gone, giving way to crocuses and daffodils. Here, the woods and lanes still carry the reminders (although the hostas are bravely peeking out). Never has winter seemed so long (even though it wasn't - what we didn't get in December, we got in March). Those of us who don't usually get depressed, were.  And now: just keep the eyes up for a while, looking at the blue of water and sky, feeling the sun on the face, watching the season's first osprey soar.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Fishing in the slurry

The seagull stands on a rock, intently looking at the surf. The sea for a hundred yards out is a slurry of floating ice and thick water, due to the unrelenting cold. When a wave comes in, the seagull flies a couple of feet straight up, just out of reach of the water, then settles back down. The waves must be loosening food of some sort from the rocks; why else would the seagull repeat his dance over and over? Then it picks up a strand of seaweed and carries it out of sight. My guess is that there's a mussel attached.

Hard work making a living on the frozen ocean shore.