April 14, 2015
garden, photos, spring
About two weeks ago, the blue iris burst out.
These came with the house. That is, I found two very small clumps of leaves. I didn’t know what they were. When someone said they looked like iris leaves I transplanted them and they began to expand. Only this last year did I get a lesson in when to feed them. They appreciate being looked after.
Another plant which came with the house is Indian Hawthorn, now in bloom.
In the space vacated by a very overgrown sage plant (why would anyone plant something that wants to get six feet wide in a less than two foot wide strip?) I put this small cactus. Its blooms, photographed last week, are already spent.The mesquite tree leaves are filling out. That pale green color is appearing all over the desert areas: there’s a lot of mesquite in the area.One of the two little iris clumps turned out to be a white iris. It is now in full bloom – but only one – while the blue ones have faded. Obviously, this color is more finicky. I’m hoping more attention will increase the blooms. This one is planted outside my study window.
April 5, 2015
Albuquerque, Made and Remade, poetry, Santa Fe
Northern New Mexico, that is. I am scheduled to do two readings from my book, Made and Remade, at independent bookstores in Santa Fe and Albuquerque during April.
I’ll be in Santa Fe on Saturday, April 11, at 3:00 p.m. at op.cit. books, Sanbusco Center, 500 Montezuma Ave.
I’ll be in Albuquerque on Saturday, April 25, at 3:00 p.m. at BOOKWORKS, 4022 Rio Grande Blvd NW.
If you’re in either area on the day I’m reading, please come by and say hello.
The poems in Made and Remade respond to William Paley’s book, Natural Theology, published in 1802. Famous for his analogy, “suppose I had found a watch upon the ground . . . the inference we think is inevitable, that the watch must have had a maker . . . .,” the book presents Paley’s case for creation by design. As cracks developed in a once coherent world view, we are left with patches and pieces – the material of poetry – with which to make meaning. The poems move in many directions, reflecting on how much has changed in 200 years.
March 31, 2015
mesquite, native plants, photos, spring
The poppies started showing up last week, here there and everywhere, and this week, some in our yard.
When they arrive I want to celebrate. It’s spring. I thought about poetry in their honor. Could I do a riff or a twist on Wordsworth’s “Daffodils”? It didn’t work. The following is all I could come up with.
Gluttons for sun,
they shine it back,
closing at night.
They persist, pop up
every year, sometimes
fewer, sometimes more,
not in the same spot,
new every spring.
to be said.
While poppies are the most colorful sign of spring, it is the mesquite tree that has the honor of signaling when winter is really over and there is no more concern about frost.
You can see how close I had to get to one branch of the tree to show the leaves beginning. The apache plume, on the other hand, didn’t wait for any signal. It went ahead and bloomed.If there are no poppies where you are, I hope the daffodils are coming up!
March 27, 2015
Dreams, Floor Plans, Melusine, poetry
I have a poem in the just released issue of the online magazine Melusine.
It’s called “Floor Plans,” but what it’s mostly about is dreams, the daydreams of a child and the night dream of an adult.
Melusine is an elegant site, nicely organized. I recommend it: http://www.melusine21cent.com/mag/current.
March 16, 2015
garden, native plants, photos
This post is about what’s new and what’s not so new in my garden.This past year I added two Penstemon superbus plants. One did not make it through the fall and winter. This 50 percent ratio is typical of my efforts in the garden. But the one that has survived makes me want to try again.
Chamisa, Fall, 2014
This winter I cut back the out-of-control chamisa, as close as I could get to the ground. I thought perhaps it would give up. As you can see, it did nothing of the kind.
I can only hope this growth will be thicker and sturdier than last year’s, when I did not cut it back far enough. The plant growing around the stumps is Mexican primrose, which has spread as if it, too, thought the chamisa was not coming back. But what is this little blue and white flower?
It’s a pansy from a seed that wafted from another part of the garden. I am delighted when nature adds its own touches to my efforts to work with plants. I can pretend we are a team, though I know I have much still to learn.
March 8, 2015
hiking, Las Cruces, native plants, photos, picacho peak
Recently I wanted to get out into some green. I decided to visit Picacho Peak. The name is redundant, since “picacho” is Spanish for peak, but that doesn’t seem to trouble anyone. There is one in Arizona, too. Like the one near Las Cruces, it is an isolated mountain.
Looking west from Las Cruces, the mountain looks very dry. To climb it, one goes through several housing developments and some private land to a BLM parking lot on the western side.
To get to the peak from the parking lot one must go through an arroyo and a few other ups and downs.
After that the trail is surprisingly straight. In this closer picture, the hole at the right is along a particularly steep part of the trail, which then angles up across the picture to the outcrop (a small dark splotch) at the left.
That outcrop was a far as I got. The trail is steep and I was definitely out of condition. I don’t think this trail was laid out by recreation experts, but by people who wanted the shortest way to the top. I estimate I got about half way up the one and a half mile trail.
But it was nice to be on a green slope for a while. Here’s a view from part way back toward the parking lot.
February 25, 2015
for love of lit, Las Cruces, poetry
Reblogged from http://www.sinfronterasjournal.com for my local followers.
Sin Fronteras (the organization, not the Journal), in conjunction with Artforms, is sponsoring a poetry reading Saturday, February 28, 1-3 p.m. at the Branigan Cultural Center (Swartz Room), 500 N. Water St. in Las Cruces. The reading, “For the Love of Lit,” will be part of For the Love of Art celebration. The following poets will be reading: Win Jacobs, Michael Mandel, Catherine McGeehan, Lee Ann Meadows, Joseph Somoza, Tim Staley, Gerry Stork, Dick Thomas, Joanne Townsend, Frank Varela, and Ellen Roberts Young. The reading is free and open to the public.
February has been “For the Love of Art” month in Las Cruces for many years. This is the fourth or fifth annual “For Love of Lit” reading. The readers are local poets who may or may not be connected with the Journal.
Issue #19 of the Journal has just gone to the printer and should be out in about a month.