Sunday, July 30, 2023

Duck In Green Water

 The duck paddled expectantly over to where I stood near some docked boats.  He hoped for a handout. It  was a bright, windless afternoon on Fontana Lake in the mountains of western North Carolina..  Yes, the water really was this color. I marveled at the emerald clarity of this deep lake and the almost too-graphic-to-be-real ripples. Disappointed, the duck swam away, leaving me mesmerized by the green glow of deep water.

Sunday, July 23, 2023

Dream House

 Many of us have wandered through a neighborhood and said "That’s my dream house!" It might be a stately Tudor, a grand mansion or a charming 1930s bungalow. The Montford neighborhood of Asheville is full of candidates ranging from Arts & Crafts cottages to sprawling Victorians like this one. Nestled within a shady garden, it possesses features on many a person's fantasy Dream House Wish List: a large front porch, a turret and even a porte cochere. Let’s not think about the painting and scraping and inevitable repairs. Instead, let's dream of sitting on that porch or enjoying the view from the room with the turret.

Sunday, July 16, 2023

Meadow, Mount Cuba Center

 Even before visitors arrive at Mt Cuba Center, they are enveloped in every possible shade of green. Formal gardens extend from the home built by a member of the Dupont family, but conservation and restoration of  the area's natural habitat is the center's main focus. Trails and paths meander up and down hills, through woodlands and around the perimeters of ponds. In high summer, it’s the meadow that fascinates me. One tree stands knee deep in the grasses, adding its leaf-rustle to the sounds of blade against blade against blade. A ladybug crawls along a leaf. A small bird rides one tall sturdy stem waving in the breeze. Meadows are subtle and take time to enjoy.

Sunday, July 9, 2023

Old Encyclopedias

 They sat in stacks on a blanket, fifteen volumes with cracked leather spines, waiting for a new home.  Science has made great strides since the 1880s. Countries have come and gone. The pages are full of long-dead philosophers, military leaders, minor poets and very few women. The spines, jumbled out of order become a mysterious, surreal poem: 

Minnesota Opera

Brazen Circulating

First Born Grand Days

Strangulation Vegetable

Sunday, July 2, 2023

Love In a Mist Redux

 The nigella plants that were such an enchanting cloud of pastel colors last month have now dropped their petals. The seed heads have swelled into what looks like an alien rosebud with tentacles. They sway in the breeze, still surrounded by a mist of feathery leaves that are drying and changing color. Flower arrangers love these seed heads. But they will remain in this narrow space along a silvery fence, sustenance for birds and other small creatures.