Tales from the field #12

This little tale isn’t really about art fairs or galleries – but it was kind of in a field, and tickled my silly sense of humor to the extent that I wanted to share.  Last weekend D and I spent some time at Lake Cuyamaca.  One of my favorite activities is to walk across the top end of the lake, next to the meadow, over towards the forest.  From there, there are a lot of options for wandering and discovering nature.

Talking of nature, there’s a last-chance for the call of nature before you set off.

porta potty

I just love the half moon over the door.

But let’s take a closer look at that sign.  It isn’t a man, or a woman or even a disabled sign (not that this particular potty could accommodate a wheelchair, but the path leading to it wouldn’t be easy for a wheelchair anyway).  It’s a white label that’s peeled off into the shape of someone taking a seat!

porta potty sign

Just in case you were unsure what this room was for.

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Sonnet Challenge #27

I realized that I had not posted this sonnet, despite the fact that it was inspired by the experience of a fellow blogger.  Rhi had gone for a very important interview and had asked for some accommodations to help with the difficulties with environment unfamiliarity due to autism.  They guessed at how they needed to overcome her difficulties and did not succeed too much.  Perhaps as a consequence, neither did she at securing the job.  I recommend you read her blog entry before you read the sonnet.

A day in your moccasins

We able-bodied try to understand
the difficulties of the body bent
into a chair, or missing foot or hand
by hobbling ourselves, with the intent
of walking in your shoes – or wheels – or world
of silence. We can don masks, hold a cane,
experience the perspective of hands curled
to uselessnes by age’s creeping pain.
This path we walked can help us build a bridge
across the chasms that hold back those not whole;
and yet one group we still leave on the edge
unable to feel how you’re untypical.
We can’t take steps inside a spectrum mind.
Only see footprints in the sand you left behind.

Sonnet Challenge #26

Sometimes I think poets go through all the circumstances themselves so they can write about things from a personal perspective.

Inside Prejudice

Outside of prejudice, a place that’s learned
like old wives’ tales, absorbed at parent’s knee
to recognize the ones that should be spurned,
no why, just that’s the way that it should be.
Inside of prejudice, that face is turned,
for reasons I can’t fathom, away from me,
til whispers, giggles stop when I get near
and conversation turns to other things.
I know I am the joke I cannot hear
and my imagination then takes wings
and rises on the heat of latent fear,
the wind that is despair, and all it brings.
Outside of prejudice can see no wrong.
Inside of prejudice I don’t belong.

Veteran Arts Start-up

One of the galleries I work with, Vanguard Gallery in Moreno Valley, is on a mission to create a Veteran Artists Cooperative.  Rick’s ultimate hope is to create a Museum of Veteran Art in Southern California – but the cooperative is a good place to start.  It would be wonderful if you feel you can contribute a few dollars to the project.  Or if you are willing to share this to others who might.

Veteran Voice Project.

Tales from the field #11.

I’ve been locked out of a few places before – my house, my truck (multiple offenses) and my motel room.  Motel 6 are particularly good at having the key not work the next evening, but that’s always an easy fix.

This weekend I went to Flagstaff and fairly easily found my Airbnb location.  The owner I knew had taken the weekend off to go hiking out of town, and out of cell phone range.  There was another guest also, but when I arrived the place was empty.  And locked.

It had been a busy week and I’d skipped the part where I’d written the entry instructions down because I thought they were in a text on my phone.  They weren’t.  They were on my email which I couldn’t access until I got my laptop onto wifi.  I couldn’t get onto the wifi until I accessed my email and found my host’s wifi and password.  Catch 22.  I could always find a Starbucks, if only I could get onto the web to find where one was because I don’t know Flagstaff well…. Catch 23?

I wondered how friendly the locals were.  This is a fairly rural area – down a cinder gravel road.  I was in luck.  The second house I tried had a 4 furiously barking dogs and a friendly homeowner who stuffed them back into the house and sat on the steps with me and was willing to let me use his laptop as well as his wifi, though mine turned out to be faster.  Email accessed and problem solved!

Sonnet Challenge #25

So for a little light bedtime reading, it’s usually a science book or something similar.  I recently bought a science reference book (it’s useful to have a periodic table handy when my mind wanders) and read about the accuracy of Cesium clocks and other (mis-)uses of radioactive materials……

Atomic Time

 

We count the rot of Cesium to mark time;

we are obsessed with measuring the past

as it come at us, from a future cast

quite randomly; yet we strive to align

the whirl of planets circling the stars

above us.  Slicing time up like a pie

in pieces with precise equality

so we can note the passage of the hours.

We watch the atoms split, then split them more,

note and love the difference in decay,

and harness it to blow ourselves away,

then realize we cannot close that door.

We know that action made the world a mess

but that’s one thing we couldn’t second guess.

Sonnet Challenge #24

My friend and neighbor Bob and I usually get into some kind of philosophical discussion over dinner.  He usually comes to dinner on Mondays but he’s snowbirding at the moment so I get a few months off from trying to cook the healthy stuff he needs to eat.  A few weeks ago he was talking about visiting the graves of friends and relatives who have gone on to the next plane.  He said “I know they’re not there, but it’s like the last place they were, and it helps me to focus on ‘visiting’ with them.”  We both knew a sonnet was inevitable from that conversation.

Standing at your grave
Standing at your grave, you are not here.

Though bone or ash remains, your spirit’s flown;

and yet I came to visit one who’s dear

but taken flight.  This, your departure lounge,

a hollow hall where I can stand and wave

and visit memories you left behind.

It’s mostly when I stand here at your grave

the things you were come easily to mind

for me.  I know you wait ahead

with your side of the story that we are.

I’ll finish mine and see you when I’m dead,

where there’s no time and distances aren’t far

But now, beside your grave, I miss your face

and wish somehow you were here in this place.