Category Archives: Thoughts

Iris

iris

 

 

Today the iris on the windowsill bloomed
White and violet and the petals
Shriveling back toward green daggers
as the sun reflects a second dawn from the windows across the street
A trip to the Ironbound,
Oranges lined up on the counter
small to large, each scrawled with text
Honey tangerine
Small navel
Larger navel
What is what
California
Florida
8 for a dollar
Calabaza
Pumpkinhead
By the pound
The olive oil is dusted with a fine confection of salt
Half a papaya
The sparrows swim through the rafters
A dozen eggs
Whipped to a meringue
Bruises like thumbprints
No bigger than violets
What woman would not,
Like a cake of flexible fondant,
Look sublime in a dress of white satin meringue?
That liquid pearl drooling over the copper of her skin
2 dozen eggs, yolk in palm
And a date with a sweet tooth

Rabbit Ole’

Bunny

2/9/05

Here is dinner
In valentine hues:
Precooked
Red wine
White beans
Pink Bunny
Carrots
Cassoulet
And I am listening to Xanadu
Electric Light Orchestra
Olivia Newton...
There is a primrose on the table:
Pink edging on magenta
Yellow centered
And leaves greengreengreen.

Eyre and Electricity

Eyre and electricity

West House

1/24

Today I could see my breath inside as well as out. The power back on I huddle waiting for warmth. The sink is frozen, the still life is frozen, the air is sharp, my fingers numb starting at the pinky working in. so much for a willed productive morning. I will be productive watching to see if the pipes are burst as they thaw. I am walled in on the east, almost a cave, ice stalactites, like glass minarets turned over. Something tracheal about them with each diminishing ring.

I open the woodstove and stuff it full. I would hope this would make it warmer faster. I remember cold mornings at home. Not wanting to get out of bed. How long, once started, the fire took to spread heat past the cast iron. I should do as I did then. I should forsake this cold desk, glove my cold hands and curl by the woodstove.

***

Hard to imagine time is so short now. I have only just begun a ritual. I awake in east house. The sun catching my eyes from between the pines at dawn, barely rousing me in its sheath of ice. Then to breakfast and to the studio. There I stay until the light begins to pass. I go then to west house, (which is the last to catch the light) with its golden velvet upholstery, dark wood, red rugs and diamond paned windows.

Today I have lost the sun already, somewhere between morning and afternoon. There is no sun to set on west house today. Outside everything is a monochrome of blue. The snow breaks the even geometries of the architecture. The trees balance a white plume on each upturned arm.

Everything is so very still, so very quiet. There is a completeness in all this stillness – a contemplative world without need or desire. Wind and desire move things, create urgencies. They rattle the windows, shake the snow from the trees, press the cold through cloth to bare skin. But here I rest in this remarkable stillness.

***

Bejeweled pomegranates, splitting open in each festoon. They are like the heads of saints in the Fra Angelicos. Bare round monk’s heads, like apples. Each cloven with the axe of their martyrdom.

***

Buddha’s Hands are lemons stuffed full of fingers.

***

Another resident dilly dallies in the kitchen. I scare him off with the shriek of the kettle I am late in attending to. I read Jane Eyre on the golden sofa.

***

The esophogeal ribbing of the icicles, each day growing longer. as if the sky were taking root: extending its curtain of snow over each roof and reaching groundward. Soon we will be incased in a wall of ice.

***

Constellation.

Orion will serve to mark this month, this place. As Arcturus marked Millay and August, as day ended it hung over the barn, the studio, in the west. Here, each night I return after dinner to see the X of Orion overhead in the swath of sky that is framed on the east by the pines and on the west by the roof of the studio. I find the tiny cluster, the wee dipper of the Pleides, then retreat into the warmth

Ribbonfish

ribbon fish

Nothing poetic in me today. I was up until 3:30 painting and then was too wired to go to sleep.

Today I slept until noon, well 1. Ate my lunch/breakfast. Took a tour of the mansion (it is closed in the winter due to cost of heating. It is incredible. Al lead paned glass and hand carved woodwork and cool bathtubs and sinks.

Then I took a doze- sort of like a nap, but upright in a chair with a book partially open in my lap, coming in and out of consciousness listening to the wind rise and watching the light fade with the day. Then I did yoga with Brigdhe, a screenwriter. Now I smell food. Check out the fishies – fish rock, fruit sucks!

ribbon fish close up

Albany

Today was beautiful. I was reminded of an Arthur Dove painting of a glowing circular sun when, in the afternoon the sun ringed by a halo of ice in the surrounding clouds appeared between the trunks of the pines. Strangely I miss Newark. I know where things are there. I have ventured south to Albany for ribbonfish the length of my arm and quails eggs and oysters. (Cook the quails eggs for three minutes to hard boil then serve with caviar – the archaeologist) I met a man named Joe who might “pop” a few crows for me, or a rabbit or a grouse or two. Pop. He also called a few friends of his: one to ask him to bring along a spare mallard if he still has them intact in his freezer, one to ask him to pop an extra rabbit and bring it along to their hunting party this weekend. They are looking for bigger game: bear, coyote, bobcat. He asked if I wanted to learn how too hunt. Called his taxidermist too. Working for him at the specialty food store is an archaeologist who gave me another list of useful contacts, his more dead than alive, or at least dead longer. She said the new Dutch of Albany loved their aphrodisiacs: oysters, plums, cherries… According to him all of Albany rests on/in a bed of discarded oyster shells. There is a trash can in my studio with a pair of live eels. I feel like I am at last getting somewhere.

Tonight is Friday. An open studio. A party promised. The world thaws.

Snowed

StudioSometimes I look out the window and I think the world has gone all black and white. No more the constant façade of Nick’s Café with its red painted red bricks. No more the tall edifice of the Muslim Cultural Center whose lit windows I always mistake for the moon rising in the east.

Snowed four inches, then sleeted all afternoon, the little ice pellets tick tick on the skylights. The sky went pink and so did the snow, now everything has gone dark. There are icicles. It is slippery. The sidewalks have worn the treads off my shoes.

I find painting boring compared to the flickering flames in the woodstove. So I feed the fire all day.