Showing posts from 2021

The Crows Who Knew the Fox Who Knew My Mother

Always, in the month of May, I feel my mother's presence in the untamed view outside our windows (which was once her view), in the mountain neighbors who once knew her, even in the noisy crows who congregate in the gangly ponderosas in our yard. The elders of this crow family might have been youngsters when Mom was alive, growing as she aged, recognizing her just as they recognized the mother fox and each new set of kits who denned below the house. Mom loved nature, and walks in the woods, but she also loved Japanese art, exotic travels, world-class museums, good books, classical music, Darjeeling tea, and French food. She never had these things growing up, which is perhaps why, later in life, she loved them so much. She loved Van Gogh, but not as much as she loved Claude Monet. A print of Monet's Japanese Bridge  found its way onto every bedroom wall I had as a child.   I've been re-reading my old journal entries from 2004, when my mother's valient struggles with cance

On the Green River, In the Steam of Another Lifetime

Two special women in my life just passed and I find myself filled with nostalgia for my own mother and for a childhood that was, by all measures, a good one. And yet there were tragedies, as with all childhoods. This poem, in this new year, takes me into the heart of a few of these memories... Forty-five years ago, Colorado’s South Platte River left her banks and thrust herself at the tall cottonwoods whose deep roots until that moment drank  matter-of-factly from her mossy waters near the frog pond by my childhood home twenty feet tall, the river roared across mowed lawns  scoured cul-de-sacs, inundated our home as indiscriminately as she snatched Betsy Grant’s  two-story brick house, carving a gaping hole where the basement had been, leaving nothing but a curtain rod. I do not remember if the day the rains came, on the heels of mountain snowmelt if on that day, a rainbow – like now, here on the Green River – stretched across the blue horizon offering itself as retribution and apology