Archive for September, 2010

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Fall in the Old Pueblo

September 29, 2010

In the desert Southwest, we don’t have the obvious demarcation between seasons — what we have is more subtle: a change in the direction of the wind, a different cast to the sunlight (to my eye, it looks more diffused than light in the summer and spring). And of course, the snowbirds return en masse, clogging up the arteries of our already pot-holed roads. Anyway.

I want to share a few fall-ish photos, and a sentimental poem I wrote concerning my small family, and my grapevine.


Windbells from Arcosanti, yet to be hung, but beautiful wherever they are.


Sparrows munching a stalk of wild maize growing by our wall.

We still have butterflies cruising through the air — though not as many as we had a few weeks ago.

We Vintners

planted in a wooden half-barrel
last summer our grapevine
gave no grapes         but determined proof
of survival through the Sonoran summer

come winter’s indifferent hand
stripped the leaves    and left us
with a twisted stick and no hope
for a productive spring

but contrary spring brought a flourish
of ruffled green and a handful of tiny
toy grapes         one cluster
even the bugs ignored

summer danced her flamenco round again
and the grape flesh blushed
and swelled with sweetness
and here         my loves

taste our timid tender grapes
truly they are the embodiment
of all we are
to one another

A boy and his dog, though he’s no longer a boy …

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Happy Birthday to the Best Kid Ever

September 20, 2010

Last weekend was our boy’s 16th birthday — yikes! He’s a mellow kid, and a very conscientious driver (at least with mom in the car) — so I’m not too worried about his driving solo. It’s all the other idiots on the road than cause me concern. But hey, I have a personal chauffeur now!

A sample of his birthday cards — everyone loves him! You should have seen all the birthday wishes he got from friends on Facebook! Yowza.

Harassing the little rat terrier with duck whistle. The dog starts to sing/howl if you blow that whistle for more than a minute. Hilarious!


My two guys.

My world is a better place because of my son; I am grateful for his existence everyday of my life. If that sounds sappy and sentimental, well, so what.  I believe it’s important to be grateful.

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A Little Wildlife

September 19, 2010

Had another butterfly visit recently– though this one looks pretty beat-up. Someone’s been chomping on his wings. If you look closely, I swear you can see his face. And he looks pretty tough, don’t you think? Well, tough for a butterfly.

We found a fruit bat resting between a picture and a patio wall — he doesn’t look too happy to have been discovered.

The fruit bats come out at sunset and zoom around snatching bugs in the air. It’s pretty cool to watch.

And now this is just a bit bizarre: we found a baby king snake in the den last night — just lying there, minding his own business.

My husband took him outside and released him into the bougainvilla, where he can eat crickets and whatnot. When he gets bigger, he’ll eat rats, mice, and rattlesnakes. Not a bad snake to have around, if you have to have a snake.

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A Late Monsoon, A Happy Birthday, and Two Sides of a Butterfly

September 5, 2010

Last weekend, we had torrential rain (again) that flooded our patio (again).

Water, water, everywhere — for just a moment.

It was also my husband’s birthday recently, too. He’s my awesome guy, so he gets awesome presents! And lots of love.

My two loves.

Of course, our ratter wanted to participate in the happiness we shared.

Whatever ’tis, I wantses some too.

This little guy paid us a morning vist — and hung around long enough to get his pic snapped:

I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly,or whether I am now a butterfly dreaming I am a man.  — Zhuangzi

Now he shows us his macho side, which we don’t usually get to see:

Whatchu lookin’ at?

And then he flew away. Thank you, little pretty-pretty; your visit made my morning.