Tuesday, May 28, 2013

early morning news

dan woke up to the smell of bacon. irresistible. he rolled over on his pillow, still sleepy.  he read the clock and rubbed his eyes.  as he clobbered down the stairs in his dressing gown the scent of coffee accompanied him.  
sissy was there, slippers and hair pinned back with a spatula in her hand, frying mushrooms and eggs in the pan while the bacon cooked in the open oven.
"this is lovely, sweetie..."  he wrapped his arms around her from behind, "but it's only 5am..."
she turned around, smiled and spoke in the clearest possible speech, "dan, we're pregnant."

Sunday, May 26, 2013

a very true story

there is an orange cat. he is six years old and he lives in a house with two humans and two other cats. this house has a kitchen, which the humans built out of parts they bought from a store called ikea. there are many drawers. after many years of failed attempts, the orange cat has finally worked out exactly how much strength is required to pull a drawer open. he pulls the drawer open.  there are plastic forks and paper plates in the drawer. the orange cat opens the drawer, and then gets in.  and he sits there.  happily.


there were piles of them.  some covered in a shell of hard cardboard.  others glossy.  some stuffed.  some finished.  some unfinished.  some never started.  adventures. mysteries. love stories. paper clips hold places. folded ears mark favorite verses. the titles. the authors. the lonely and the popular. multiple volumes and missing parts. stains from tears and surprising rain storms. one wetted from a flood after a hurricane.  some with spines bent apart and broken.  some pristine, kept clean and new inside clear plastic. notes scribbled inside them. love and questions.  victories and defeats.  truth and lies.  intertwined by bards on pages. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

the whale museum is a real place

there is a museum for kids. a museum for science. a museum for arts. a museum for performing arts. a museum for sculpture. a museum for the history of science. a museum for history of sculpture. a museum for planes. a museum for harps. a museum for Hollywood. a museum for communism and tetris. a museum for war. a museum for rugs. a museum for doctors. and a museum for trees. a museum for glass flowers. a museum for cookies. a museum for natives. a museum for paper. and a museum for whales. there is a museum for everything here.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

pick up line

it was not the best way to meet a girl, to spill coffee all over her.  but it seemed to work for Leo.  this was the second time he'd mindlessly bumped into a women of his own age at the local café and spilt both his and her coffee between the two of them.  it created such a hot mess that all anyone could ever do was laugh and clean up.  those awkward little moments of dabbling napkins on stained blouses proved valuable for chatting up.  both times he'd caused the incident, and both times he'd left with a number.

whipped cream

she carefully scraped the edges of the stainless steel bowl with the long handled silver spoon, collecting every last delicious splatter of whipped cream.  she licked the spoon between turns around the inside of the bowl.  she savored every molecule.  she closed her eyes.  she licked her teeth.  nothing ever tasted so genuine. so true. so believable as this cream.  nothing added but air from a hand-held electric whisk.  it had been so long.  there had been nothing like it there.  it had been years since she tasted real cream.  there was no room for cows on the space station.

Friday, May 17, 2013

seemingly perfect

every house on main street has window boxes filled with various-colored pansies.  the mail boxes are hand painted.  the houses are numbered in predictable sequence. every lawn in raked and mowed regularly.  children play basketball or jump rope in the driveways.  well trained dogs sit happily on decks or under the bushes by front doors.  joggers use the sidewalks and wave hello to each other as they pass.  drivers stop their cars at each stop line, wait for passer-bys and proceed at the posted speed.  it all seems perfect.
but no one who lives on main street likes their neighbors.

Opossum Castle

the snow-capped mountain is named the Opossum Castle.  opossum means white beast in the native language of the valley.  some stories are told to children to frighten them; stories about half sized people who live in the castle on top of the mountain.  they are covered in beautiful white hair.  they hunt yeti and pray to shapes in the clouds.  they rule close to the sky, closer to the gods and spirits than any of the valley's most prestigious shamans. the mountain sits like a precious jewel in the crown of the mountain range.  this range that spans the continent. 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

cloud chaser

sophie stole her neighbors dingy last Saturday, not out of spite for them, but out of necessity for the dingy.  the mountains obscured her view of a particular cloud that had been morphing from one animal to another to another to another. she had been watching it tell a story all morning.
she didn't anticipate how heavy the dingy would be to drag off the beach. 
by the time she got the boat in the water and herself in the boat, it was too late to realize she had no paddles, and the dingy was already adrift in the lake.

earl grey

at the dim little bar in town they are known not for their beer taps, their fine wine selection, or the top row of elaborate bottles filled with an array of sickeningly bright-colored liquids inside that turn the heart to a steely resolve over matters of marital strifes and bad business deals that no one ever orders.  they're not know for the bands that play every week night to drown out the sound of clanging and banging in the kitchen where they prepare unremarkable foods for unremarkable guests.
at the dim little bar in town, locals order the earl grey. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


i took the camera out into the garden today and took some pretty pictures of my bluebells, strawberry plants, the double take scarlet storm, and my flower box pansies.

Monday, May 13, 2013

the backgammon games

every sunday afternoon some elderly women and men set up their backgammon tables around the duck ponds in the park. they play for plastic coins. at the end of the day, the player with the most coins gets a free pint of larger from the local pub. then the coins are redistributed, the tables are folded up and put away into the trunks of small cars and the baskets of bikes. they will do the same again the following week, and the week after that, and the week after that, and so on, as long as the weather is good.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

the incident

to protect him from the storm, they allowed a horse into a local book store.  this was not the best idea.  not for the horse.  and certainly not for the book store. 

the horse, albeit happy to be out of the storm, was claustrophobic.  being caught in such fine quarters exacerbated his condition.  this lead to some rather unfortunate frothing and kicking.

the book store suffered from both the frothing and from the kicking.  the romance novels are, to this day, still not recovered from the incident.

in effect from that incident on, no horses are permitted into book stores.


muriel grew many vegetables on her farm, which lay between the north village and the lake lands.  she was best known for the quality of her beats, both red and gold.  chefs from villages near and far sought to buy her beats to present to diners in salads and as accompaniments to the fresh-water scallops and lamb shanks they liked to serve.  last year, muriel received an award for exceptional quality from the farmers' association for her beets.  she was very proud of her beets.  however, she wished someone would notice all the work she put in to growing turnips.

shapes in the clouds

yesterday morning ben woke up late, made himself a pot of coffee, and looked out over the lake.  he was surprised to see a row boat floating aimlessly on the water.  he could see no one in it.

curious, he set out in his own small boat towards the wayward vessel.  he hoped he would be able to bring it in and return it to whomever it belonged.

he did not expect to fall in love.

then, no one ever does.

ben especially did not expect to fall in love with the girl lying at the bottom of the boat.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Betty's Donut Cart

Norman and his wife Beatrice once owned a full-blown bakery.  they were younger then and had the energy to be up early and keep up with the demand of the village's bread needs.  the couple grew tired and successful, and so they sold their bakery to a new young couple who were eager and restless for work. Norman and Beatrice took some time off.  they visited other villages.  they spent time in the city.  but all that visiting made them homesick.  homesick for their kitchen, their ovens, clouds of bread flour. that's when they decided to open the donut cart. 

the grassy foothills

couples gather on the foothills at the shallow-rising base of the mountain range for picnics in the spring time. men bring their dogs there for leisurely hikes.  women bring their children there to let out some bottled energy - preserved over the long, white winter here.  artists line up along the edge of parking lots with easels and battery-powered radios that only pick up the national weather service and an off-shore pirate station.  poets fall asleep under blossoming trees. bees discover new flowers where last year's had withered.  a ranger watches over the flocking people.  watching out for that bear.   

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

louise in the library

light shines in through the front window of the City South Library in the early evening.  in summer, the light casts long boxes over shelves of unsorted books, returned by readers and waiting to be placed back in order.
keen-eyed passers by will notice the silhouette of a feline etched out of the bottom few boxes of light.  this is the shadow of a white cat with blue eyes.  she is nicknamed Louise.  she came to the library on a warm winter morning, the same warm winter morning before The Great Blizzard.
she has lived in the library ever since. 

Monday, May 06, 2013

extra extra

he pours himself a thermos of hot coffee and pulls an orange beany over his ears to keep warm.  before anyone else in the village wakes, he has to make his rounds, delivering black and white printed newspapers to every neighborhood home and apartment. 

the village paper is gratis.  it's free.  and everyone expects everyone else to read it.

he never reads it.  everyone assumes he does. sipping from his thermos of coffee as he throws copies out of his truck window. 

he leaves whole bundles of papers at the train station and in front of the three local cafes.


local gossip

the blond haired girl that works the espresso bar at the big-name-bookstore around the corner has six tattoos.  there's one she never shows anyone.  it's the one she warns boyfriends about.  and it's the reason she always wears one piece bathing suit. 
the blond haired girl that works the help desk at the big-name-bookstore around the corner doesn't have any tattoos.  she does have a strange birthmark on the back of her neck though.  she too always wears a one piece bathing suit.  i don't know the reason for this yet.

i only started working at the big-name-bookstore on Thursday. 

Saturday, May 04, 2013


bo is a black cat with no tail.  he had a tail once.  he can't remember what it felt like to have one. but truth be told, he tries not to think about it very often.  thinking about it just gets him down. and down is no good for a cat on the up and up.
 bo is new to the neighborhood.  he was chased away from the last place by a nasty clan of raccoons.  raccoons have no manners.  no etiquette.  no panache.  not in bo's opinion.  this new place has no raccoons.  only the occasional rafter of turkeys. 


Friday, May 03, 2013


every friday morning the empty lot behind the roller skating rink fills up with men and women driving big trucks, pulling stalls, filled with wares.  fresh baked bread.  vine ripened tomatoes.  cabbages in multiple colors from throughout the rainbow. honey from bees who only pollinate nut bearing trees. locally harvested olives, grapes, capers, oranges, figs, lemons and lavender. there is a man with fresh oysters. a women peddling thyme, dill, sage and chocolate mint. families of quail hunters proving their stock to the passing crowds. and occasionally there is a bearded man there with a box of kittens for sale. 

Thursday, May 02, 2013

star gazers

outside the bar three teenagers sit. the curb providing a foundation for both sport and reflection. skate boards rest, sullen, beside them. the smell of pizza lingering on their conversation. soda bottles half empty. their plastic bottoms scratched from the idle meditation. as they deliberate on the possibilities of places beyond the stars. they debate the truth of infinity. the infinity of nothingness. weather a "yes" is really a maybe or a reluctant agreement. tipsy dinners take big steps to avoid them. giggle. and then sigh.  because they remember what it was like to be hindered by so many possibilities.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013


the end meal. dealt by a tired waitress in black. to a couple just beginning. over muscles sautéed in white wine and butter. crostini with roasted red pepper and young anchovies. sangria with peaches and raspberries. questions about professions over courses of small plates. an awkward smile. finished with a glimmer of splendor. with admiration for an older man. a younger woman. a Tuesday night at a tapas bar. olive pits collecting on a tiny side plate. questions piling up. does he have any tattoos?  does she drink café or tea? when will i find out? should i just ask?