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Sunday, January 8, 2017

Where The Past Is

In recent weeks, there have been several inquiries about my reticence to restore Anonymous access to the comments section of my three blogs.  Five years ago, I wrote a little poem about being a grampa. Its title is Where The Future Is.  This has been a very rainy day, a good one for very rainy day activities such as going back in time to locate the temporal coordinates of that decision. I have done so.  Here is a post from "Gardening With Geo."  that illustrates the need for such boundaries. It is transported whole and includes the comments it got --strange as they are.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Where The Future Is

(Norma photos)
I will tell you
Where the future is.
I step beyond my
Shadow on the green
Back door to
Where she put a
Hat on him

And grandmothered dreams
Into memories.
The future roams our
Work in short steps
Under boughs and birds,
Seeing all, startled
At wind-eddies, awed
At assemblies of
Ants and daffodils.
I am paid in pebbles.


  1. This the ARYAN BLOG with GEOLOGIE HURE?
    You with DARLENE- PLO?

  2. No, Anonymous, this is the blog about quantum horticulture. I believe you want the blog down the road.

  3. Новинка сезона - мазь для о*****а. Из инструкции: "...1 сантиметр пасты выдавить на ладонь и втирать в ч**н до наступления о*****а...
    Устали сидеть и флудить на форуме? Предлагаю сделать перерыв и п*******ь!
    Эротическая фотогалерея от Mr.Wobbly

  4. Thank you, Anonymous,  for offering such a creative, if confusing, use for pasta. Best of luck with "Mister Wobbly".
    I trust this post offers some insight into the reasons for my comment adjustment.  To those who have requested I allow Anonymous access, I hope this helps ease the discomfort of commenting via Google I.D.s that have been disused but are still functional. I have installed your current blog links in the sidebar blogrolls at my sites so that you may be reached at other hosts and private domains that don't support Google Friend Connect and wish you every success in your new frontiers. As for me, I am trying to update my understanding of this new system --still confused about what Google+ is (help?!)-- but for now, it fumbles around where the past is. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Over-And-Under Enigma Retangled In Time

Having lately found myself in an awfully busy state --I'd ask for help if I knew what I was doing-- I decided to have fun, this New Year's Week, with some distracting matters that have no particular relation to worldly demands (or each other besides my affection for them) and am content to be guided by photos that have not yet figured in this blog. Let's start with one end of the top dining room shelf:

These are books I keep overhead. When I want one, I make a long arm and tease it out of its stack or however it leans into its neighbors. It is a friendly shelf because the books all like each other and arrange themselves accordingly, without troubling any alphabets or Dewey Decimals for order, so I like them right back.

Another overhead thing I like is doorway inscriptions. Here comes one now:
This is an entrance to the Fine Arts Building on S. Michigan Street in Chicago. Overhead is a line paraphrased from a poem (Ars Victrix) by Henry Dobson, "All passes. Art alone Enduring, stays with us.", which Henry Dobson in turn paraphrased from a poem (L'Art) byThéophile Gautier: "Tout passe. L’art robuste / Seul a l’éternite'."

Skywritten, overhead, on high shelves, stone, marmoreal clouds. Time emits an image in my mind: 1964--I watched Lyndon Johnson deliver his speech in a Valley Forge dingle. I was high above on a forward slope, but higher even than I, a Piper Cub pulled a banner around the sky. It read, "Goldwater, 64!"

My camera was back at the campsite, but the mind takes a good print --sometimes. Today, I found a print from 1977 in my email. It's from from Wendy, who has been a sister to Norma and me since the 1960s. I don't remember this photo being taken, but am pretty sure I'm holding my nephew who is enjoying eye-contact with Norma Over my left shoulder --still a very pleasant pastime-- while I seek out his owners with my infra-red-x-ray vision --or maybe that's just '70s-camera red eye.
Point is, it's not so much what happens over things --heads, presidential lectures, doorways, shelves and shoulders-- that owns all the thunder. Over gets a lot of credit it doesn't entirely deserve. What happens Under is a big show too. And sometimes what goes on behind our backs is quite lovely, even if it takes us 40 years to get the picture.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Winter Faces

A proper post about Winter Faces should begin with a sundial face. This one is in Norma's garden. She went out early and Normaphotoed it cold and covered with frost --so was the sundial.  I can't see it very well with all its ice but calculate it reads about a million o'clock in the morning, which is earlier than anything should be up or about. In fact, on winter nights especially, the whole world, populations, oceans and landmasses, should be brought indoors by sundown. 

And yet, there is some charm in finding a face in rose leaves. Its frosty beard and brow remind me of a favorite childhood relative...
...who never tried to pinch my cheeks or kiss me like other aunts did --who just liked me and played checkers, took walks and said things that made me think. 

On cold days I often think I'll go inside and see what the smell is. Sometimes it is a gingerbread man or, historically, an homunculus --a tiny but fully formed being from which a human is believed to develop. The idea took hold of theology after scriptural editing of the Septuagint (or, for argument's sake, Ἡ μετάφρασις τῶν Ἑβδομήκοντα) off which text the following snippet was snipped from Genesis as the archetypal  humans were being created: 

Passing angel to God: "Well, You seem to know what You're doing!"
God: "Whatever gave you that idea?"

Which brings us to the closing enigma of spontaneous generation.  We see this most commonly when rainfall creates earthworms on sidewalks. We step carefully lest we demolish miracles. But in California, after 8 years of drought, we find this enigma elevated to the top shelf of the barn. That is where I keep boxes of old VW engine parts, all dark gray in color, and have noticed life-forms emerging from among them. Observe:
They grow fur and stare back at us with the implied question: "I am some old car parts you'll never miss that have transmogrified into a barncat, problem?"

Norma takes her photo. I grant this miracle hunting rights on our property. It does not say thank you. Miracles are like that. Yes they are!


Thursday, December 8, 2016


Some enigmas defy analysis. They occur repeatedly and settle. We say, "There."  Here is one I discovered many years ago. It consumes seven seconds of video and the only comment I make (if you have the sound on) when it occurs is, "There."  Such is the mind in action. Norma kindly photoed a clip at our kitchen table:
(Link to video clip)

It consists of two coins, both held in the right hand. When turned over, one coin travels under the left hand while the other stays put. This is fundamental mechanical physics involving fictitious forces which, if performed in front of the right government agencies, will attract lucrative research grants. However, we must here ask what precisely we are looking for.

Examination of enigmas is also a search for truth. Thomas Paine offered this rare, sober observation of its character: "Such is the irresistible nature of truth that all it asks and all it wants is the liberty of appearing." The conclusion seems inescapable, especially when we seek truth in the mirror. I have reached an age at which I look in the mirror and say, "Well, whatever", then must admit that's what I've always said  --even since childhood.  This week, Norma took a photo of what I look like in the mirror (I wear a hat on windy days):
So, in our examination of enigmatic truth, we must defer to opinion, and the better mind of Herbert Spencer who thought opinions were ultimately determined by feelings, not intellect. Personally, I don't believe those two aspects of mind can be so far apart as to avoid each others influence, but will couch my doubt in a question. Which mental gesture best indicates we are in the presence of truth, one which causes us to say "There" or another causing us to say 'Well whatever"?

Thursday, December 1, 2016


Having examined three years that were historically important to me, 1510, 1892, and 1964 , I considered it only fair to examine 1962.

I don't know why I chose 1962 except fair, yes, maybe because there was  a World's Fair in Seattle that year. Here is a memory-photo of The Space Needle under construction. For some reason, or not, I always imagined they started it at the top and built downward with steel and prestressed concrete legs. This is how it looked in in my brain:

There was a restaurant up there in the saucer that rotated so diners could get a good look at the city. However, when we drove up from California, the line to get a table extended halfway to Oregon. It is now 54 years later and I'm pretty sure some of those people haven't been seated yet.

We stayed on the ground and had sodas and hot dogs that didn't agree with each others company, then got on the monorail which aggravated the argument. But we were kids, and kids are like hearts; they rest between beats and recover. We ignored our stomachs and rode an elevated  train that swung around on one rail. It was very futuristic.  Since then I have participated in many futures and learned to know when I am in one. They still make me queasy sometimes.

We are in a future right now. Best I can suggest is concentrate on some fixed point, like a mountain or big idea, or a pretty little rock and draw a doodle of it:
Settles the jumps right down; welcomes us all into December --a time of renewal and good will. I shall turn 67 this month and part of me remains in 1962. It seeks astonishment in a world's fairest dreams.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Blogger Enigma!!!

Dear companion bloggers,
This evening I was prompted to accept some changes in posting procedure by Google Blogger --little boxes with arrows that said things like this:
"Blogger Buzz

A first few tweaks toward a better Blogger

A Googler at Blogger Buzz - 36 minutes ago
From New York to Jakarta, Blogger is one of the most popular ways to publish the things you’re passionate about. Still, we’ve heard that there’s more we can do to make the platform a better place to have your unique voice be heard. So we’ll be making some adjustments over time to bring you a faster, easier to use and more beautiful Blogger. To kick things off, we’ve taken a crack at simplifying Blogger’s dashboard so that it’s easier for you to get right to the tools you need. Now, whenever you open Blogger, you’ll be taken right to your blog with the most recent post, putting you o... more »"   

I clicked a couple to get them clear and things went fine for a while.  Later, I found I had no administrative access to my 2 poetry blogs: Gardening With Geo,and Invalid's Workshop I don't know what Google is trying to do here but I resent it, and urge you not to click on prompts as hastily as I did --that's five hundred pages of my poems that seem to have been written in disappearing ink --like much of this strange century's written record. I still have some control over this blog, Trainride Of The Enigmas, but have no idea how long that will last or if my poetry blogs will be restored.  Yes, I have run a virus/malware etc. scan on my computer and it's clean. This is Google-doings.

If anyone has a suggestion as to what I might do to correct the problem, I'd be most appreciative. Until then, I'll ask your patience.

How Poems Get Their Titles

Below is a Normaphoto of me this past Wednesday writing a poem on a little tablet (at right elbow) furnished free by the Hospital. For reasons perhaps discernible to keen observer, I had tentatively entitled it Not My Finest Hour --but found myself scribbling it around a better title, also furnished free, "Quehaceres", Spanish for Tasks, subtitled "To do..."
Here is a picture of the first draft of "Quehaceres":

Then it occurred to me that it was a to-do list that got me into the fix I was in. It was Tuesday, the 15th, and I decided to attack the most frightening problem in the most frightening room of this crazy old farmhouse. The old w.c. wax flange had spread and failed. Water got into the subfloor. If that could be corrected before the holiday, there would be sincere thanksgiving ahead. I went out and bought a new neoprene gasket to replace the old wax one, some lumber and --in case of protracted inconvenience-- a "Lug-a-loo", much used and roundly hated by campers.

I only neglected some minor details. I am in my late 60s, asthmatic and run on a pacemaker tuned to music to relax by. It was well into evening before everything was braced up and tightened down --functional at least-- and I settled at the kitchen table to read a bit, kick back and gasp for breath.  Many years ago, a therapist taught me a breathing technique she guaranteed would make panic attacks impossible. It always worked too, so I tried it and had a panic attack. About 1 a.m., I was feeling a bit restless and decided an ambulance ride might calm me down --and, what the heck, why not visit ER for a few hours and see how things are going in ICU until Thursday?

Couple days ago, a perceptive and valued commenter at one of my poetry sites recognized neglect there and opined it was suffering from "drought".  This surpassed prior estimates (including Acidosis)  and was adopted as the title for the poem:            


Drought, it hides 
Out underfoot
In tortured roots,
Science, in art,
And doubt, faith
And overhead in
Dry trees where 
We seek the living
Sky from our knees.
So, let's remember, there's nothing wrong with "to-do" lists, but at certain stages of age and caducity their authors will find themselves rewarded by careful editing before leaping into action -- and thus avoid overdoing.  Or one might simply hire a contractor. In neither course can the effect of bathroom repairs on the enigma of poem titles be measured accurately without a survey of the entire universe. Something to keep in mind when tempted to "do-it-yourself".