To love life, to love it even

when you have no stomach for it

and everything you’ve held dear

crumbles like burnt paper in your hands,

your throat filled with the silt of it.

When grief sits with you, its tropical heat

thickening the air, heavy as water

more fit for gills than lungs;

when grief weights you like your own flesh

only more of it, an obesity of grief,

you think, How can a body withstand this?

Then you hold life like a face

between your palms, a plain face,

no charming smile, no violet eyes,

and you say, yes, I will take you

I will love you, again. ~Ellen Bass

(Book: Mules of Love https://amzn.to/3wstyvV)

posted by Philo thoughts along with a great photo!

I really like the poem. And the sentiment. But I don’t love life, I don’t even like it. My take on it all is the exact opposite of the poem, as far as I know. Although I do love walks in the woods. With my dog. But my dog isn’t here anymore. She left me on March 13 of last year. I don’t think I posted about that but I might have. And then there’s the woods…no where near here and the drive doesn’t work. So. There you have it. And it’s only Tuesday.

Stopping By

The Woods and Words Today. While we continue to wait for official election results. Covid 19-end days. The next turn around the corner.

Female Northern Flicker. Came upon this neglected shot I made a few years ago. I was alerted by a neighbor that the flickers were migrating through the area. Lying on my belly in my small blind (set up overnight on her property), I was able to capture a few shots of these beautiful ground feeders. Thanks Melissa Starbuck. And thank you, David Moynahan.

The Waiting Days

Photo As Poem

mikko lag

Mikko lag

They breathe mild the high firs
Enclosed in the snow mantle.
Softer and thick that white splendor
He’s got every branch, away.
The White streets get more quiet:
The rooms collected, more intense.
Chime the hours. It comes
Beaten every baby, shaking.
Over the wing, the crash of a ciocco
That in lightning and rockin, ruins.
In pale shine of sequins
The candid day out there increases,
It becomes everlasting, infinite.
—Rainer Maria Rilke

The Dog of Dreams


Amazing World

For some reason I find this photo deeply unsettling.

I was going to practice the great virtue of patience with a consistent knee-recovery regime. The one that begins with exercise and ends with restorative rests and pain meds where appropriate (always).  I’ve done quite well so far, at least as this has included writing & notes & reading. And then this. I ran across this photo.

I find it deeply unsettling.

Is this a result of the pain medicine? We have to ask. This photo looks like a person in the body of a dog, or perhaps the other way around. What is this? Person or dog? Dog or person? Hallucinogen if it were not for the fact that it can be seen at any time and with coming or going.

It’s just not right. It’s off somehow. And the article said not a word of this phenomena thus making more of the pause for the beyond of bizarre.

Those all-too-human eyes are not piercing or mean, not even intrusive. But they do not belong to that creature with such understanding, knowing. You want an explanation.

It seems I have to do something about this but what? It doesn’t belong here, but where? Another planet? Will it speak?

It’s too unsettling. It cannot possibly be related to bones. (!) Or heeling (stet). I’ll go back to sofa dreams and leave the thinking for others. And even at that, de ja vu has moved in. Of course. A pillow for my head.


Visiting La Crosse


Posted by Bob Good Studios

Bob titled this “And so it begins.” It strikes me that this photo is so vivid and stark as to make it appear as a painting. You will note St. Joseph Cathedral in the background, right, as a shadow. As if overlooking the whole downtown. And through the years it did indeed overlook the town.