She whispers my name... Only I can hear

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas


Bright stars blaze down
Upon freshly fallen snow
Pleiades, The Bull, Orion
Gazing at my little farm
As they wheel and turn above.
Fashionably late, the Moon struggles
As she climbs the back side of the hill
A hot fire, a hearth fire
Fills the room with an infrared glow
Outside the world slows with frozen cold
Testing the patience of the ever watchful stars; so bright
Though they say not a word
They wink and nod knowingly.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

He was wild He was free













 
I only saw him four or five times
But he was a regular visitor to the farm; off and on
Even before I moved here full time just over two years ago
Black Bear here in New York can cover extremely large territories
Two hundred square miles, or more
So it was not uncommon for him to disappear for months at a time
Then he would be back, for a week or two
Passing through
I would see signs and know he was around
Sometimes hearing him in the night, or early morning hours
We came face to face once or twice, right here at my back door
I never felt threatened by him, timid as he was
Recently however he has been more bold
Encroachment on his habitat most likely the cause
He trashed my bird feeders repeatedly
More than once he ran off with fifty pound bags of sunflower seeds
Some of my neighbors reported similar encounters
But I didn't mind
I recovered the stolen booty more often than not
And I learned to track him quite well
It was annoying and cost me a few dollars
But I didn't mind
I offered him sanctuary
Now I learn that he has been killed
First day of the hunting season, the Sunday before Thanksgiving
I don't know who shot him, I didn't ask
He weighed in at 480 lbs and showed the markings on his chest that I knew quite well
I will miss his troublesome trespass, his noisy blundering in the brush
The world seems emptier without him somehow
Smaller, less interesting, less wild
I liked just knowing that he was out there
Out there on his own, making his way
I never knew, will now never know his name
Friends have suggested names for him
But the notion seemed silly, ridiculous even
I'm sure he had a name
Kept secret from those who don't speak to the wind and sky
Or understand the language of the rain
But I'm sure he would have shared it with me 
 In time

Monday, December 09, 2013

B-95 - The toughest four ounces of life you will ever encounter.

 
They call him Moonbird.


A shorebird known as a Rufus Red Knot, he was born far to the North in the Canadian Tundra above the Arctic Circle.
Far to the South in 1995 he was among a flock of Red Knots captured, banded and released by an Argentinean biologist working in Tierra del Fuego. His tag number, B-95
Since that time the Rufus Red Knot population has fallen by as much as 80%
Yes eighty percent.
The number is typical for many long distance migrating birds.
This is mostly due to our overwhelming need to develop every inch of natural space available and to build a WalMart within walking distance of every home in America.

In spite of the odds and the hardships, this one bird is still being spotted today, over eighteen years later. (The average Red Knot lifespan is 4-5 years)
Extraordinarily, this means that this little 4-ounce shorebird has flown over 320,000 miles in his lifetime.
A distance equal to a flight to the Moon and halfway back, thus earning him the name Moonbird.
One leg of his annual flight is FIVE Thousand Miles.

http://www.nature.org/cs/groups/webasset/@web/documents/webasset/moonbird-feature.pdf

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Tiny Dancers




Today sunshine flirted with the clouds as the cold air moved in from the West.
And then the Snowflakes came to play
Right there outside my window
Tossed and tussled on the shifting winds
The Snowflakes wove and danced
Drifting lazy unconcerned, aloof
The Snowflakes danced and danced
Some rising some falling some looping and stalling
The whisper of December calling
Tucking in the fields and open spaces
With white blankets laden with Winter's sleepy spells
All while the Snowflakes danced

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

The Last Barefoot Day

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
A dark day
And then a bright one
A day of twisting turmoil
A tempest travesty played by the South Wind
Against a season trying to turn
All the sullen gray broken
And changed again into day
Asking nothing more than light
A splendor on the long unkempt, still green, grass
Aglow and warm with the memory of Spring
And a promise for a new Spring to come
A great day, blue-bright blustering
An introspective day on the edge of Winter
Autumn, too swiftly unfolding
A rare day
A warm day
A barefoot day
...The last barefoot day... Perhaps
At long last

Monday, October 14, 2013

Oops...


Some 200 years BC Eratosthenes, the chief librarian at the great Library of Alexandria, read in a scroll that on the solstice the Sun was directly overhead some small town to the south, and that a vertically placed stick cast no shadow on that day.
After confirming that a stick vertically placed in Alexandria on that day did cast a shadow, he immediately concluded that the earth was round. He then went on to measure the circumference of the Earth to within a few percentage points using nothing more than a stick, it's shadow and by measuring the distance to the remote town mentioned in the scroll.
Some 1800 years later, using the best math and science made available by the church in his day, Christopher Columbus also calculated the circumference of the Earth and then sailed off to find a new rout to the East. His calculations were off by almost 30% (7,000 miles). Accidentally, he discovered the new world but he thought he was in India...

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Sunshine Sally

As near perfect as it gets...
Blue skies, warm days...

Fall foliage ablaze.
I love this time of year, bright colors all around me
Clean air surrounds me.
Harvesting, canning, cooking
Picking apples, gathering apples
Apple cider, apple pie, apple crisp, apple sauce.
The kitchen warms the whole house and everything smells wonderful.

In addition to all of this seasonal activity there is something else I get to do.
Something different, something special, something I really don't get to do very often...
I get to sally.
Not just in the broad sense of the word, but a full blown venture with much to gain and everything to lose.
Each day now, weather permitting, I sally forth into the woods with the pretense of locating dead and dying trees and to triage them for the purposes of stocking my woodshed. Some to be gathered now, some next year, and some to be left for the wildlife to utilize.

Not simply ventures, these are ad-ventures. The quest for firewood takes me to the remote places. Places I have long not been, have perhaps never been.
To where the young Fox play and carry on
Where the Deer come to birth their fawn
Where the Owls nest against the dawn.
Places where the Crows keep watch, where ancient farmhouse and fields fade
Where walls of stone slowly pass away.
To these places now I go as I ponder with purpose all that I see.
When the snow falls I will still, in these woods wander.
But for today I sally
I sally in the sunshine.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Serious Moonlight

Silent silver Harvest Moonlight
Holds captive the hillside and all of the surrounding fields, forests and meadows
Only the boldest of stars dare to accompany her radiance
While down below gently sleeps the rolling countryside
Cobalt and cadmium, slate and white mist
Fading to black in the deep forest places

I used to lay awake on such nights
Just to watch my lover sleep in the moonlight
But such comfort is not to be mine
And she is not there, perhaps never was

Now the hillside is my lover, keeper of my heart
I gaze at her slumbering indifference
As she rolls and basks in the silver moon silk
Knowing with the confidence of stock and stone, leaf and limb
That she will always be there in the morning

But tonight
Tonight I ride with the last full moon of summer
Fading fast, still holding my little world
In her tender embrace for one more night of perfect stillness
While the owls keep watch and call out the passing hours

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Useless, Useless


Looking for a place to stand
Amid so many
Lines in the sand
All the while wondering
What to do with our hands

Friday, August 09, 2013

Weather Report


The gentle rain is falling
Soft subtle humble rain, calling 
It spatters on leaves
Dripping from the eves
With a slow soothing cadence 
While a delectable fragrance
Lures you, lulls you, leaves you helpless

To the oldest of lullabies

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Understanding the Universe:


 
Things to keep in mind:
- Everything is very much a part of every other thing.
- Evolution is not a process, it is a consequence. Selection is the process.
- Matter is Energy. Energy is Matter.
- Imagination is more important than ambition.
- Regardless of our own behavior, nothing is ever wasted or thrown away.
- The Sun is a star, one of a countless multitude.
- Stars hang out in Galaxies.
- Our Galaxy contains some four hundred billion Stars
- There are, by far, more Galaxies than there are Stars in our own.
- Stars are, in fact, factories. Weaving the fabric of the universe from the periodic table
- They make everything.

They made you.

You are in a very real way not just a part of the Universe, but the Universe itself, contemplating it's own existence through the phenomenon known as consciousness.

So am I...
So is every other living thing...

In many ways understanding the Universe is going to be about understanding Each Other.
How about we give that a try?

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Morning Respite


Walking
Barefoot on the lawn
Naked thoughts run through my head
As the long grass runs between my toes
And the shadows are withdrawn

Cat Birds and Red winged Blackbirds talk about me
Right in front of my face
While the Blue Jays talk behind my back
Quickening my pace

Let them say what they will, I am barefoot in the grass
No stubble, no stones, no bits of city glass
My soft foot falls share
The same ground as the deer, fox and bear
My track mingles with theirs...

Walking barefoot, coffee in hand, testing the air
Taking in the morning as I wander here and there
The wind stirs, I listen
I listen with care

Walking barefoot before breakfast
A sunrise refrain
Through the long grass in the morning
Before the rain came...

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Around and around and around


Fifty six times now I've made this trip
Around and around we go...
Some see it as a cycle, a circle well traveled
But I have learned that this is not so.

I arrived here on Earth knowing very little.
Yet is was enough to get me started.
I knew my mother's voice, the voices of my family. I knew about the rhythms of everyday life. I knew enough to open my mouth and to start breathing.
I started learning from the get go...

That process has never stopped and continues to this day.
Learning is everything to me, and I would like to let you all know that each and every one of you has played a part in that experience... Thank you.

As we celebrate these landmarks each year we tend to see them as being cyclical. Like runners on the track, counting laps as we mark our voyages around the Sun.
The Earth's orbit is not circular it's elliptical; but that's not the point I want to make.
The point is that we don't just circle the Sun... It is more like a spiral because the Earth doesn't just go around the Sun... The Earth *follows* the Sun as well.
By the time the Earth completes an orbit, say on your birthday, we do not arrive back at the point we started.
For the Sun has traveled billions of miles over the course of the year and the Earth has traveled with her. We are somewhere NEW, entirely; someplace we have never been before.
Like it or not, we move forward.
Know it or not, it's always new.
Every day.

I mention this in passing because of something I learned somewhere along the way.
Perspective...
Albert Einstein told me that it was ALL about perspective, that reality was shaped by how big you are, how much mass you have, how fast you are moving and where you are standing.
It took me a long time to understand this. Thanks Albert. You helped set me free.
And so our view of the universe, including the phenomena of time and space, is filtered through a lens of mass & motion. We don't get to see it or experience it from a different perspective, not yet.

But we can imagine it.

And so it is here in this place we call cyberspace.
We all have beliefs and opinions that have been sculpted by our individual perspectives in life.
Now we have an opportunity like never before to connect, despite the constraints of time and space, and to share our experiences. What a marvelous development indeed.
It is important to remember that we do not all share the same perspective so we will not all have the same opinions. We would do well to imagine why others may believe differently than ourselves.

Something else Einstein told me was that matter and energy are the same thing.
He spent a lot of time and took great care to prove this and the Trinity test in New Mexico bore him out.
But he also told me something more... Einstein suspected that it went deeper than that.
He believed that everything, matter energy, particles, waves and the very forces of nature, had all once been one thing.
He hadn't proved it yet, but he was pretty sure...
Recent discoveries from the particle accelerator at Cern and the most distant observations from space are just now proving that Einstein's theory of Grand Unification is most likely true.

So from that perspective, we are all one.
Whatever we may think.

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Time Check

Eleventh hour of the sun
It is later than you think
Run rabbit run, run
It is later than you think
Acid ocean Sulfur sky
It is later than you think
Days go by and by and by
It is later than you think
The mirror knows
The flower grows
Like it or not
That's the way it goes
And it's later than you think

Friday, May 31, 2013

The Stillness


Bandingo Farm Update:

There's a kind of hush
All over the world
Tonight...

A stillness in the air so intense
The Tree Frog, Bull Frog debate
Reverberates off the hillside
In 7.1 3D, surround sound
Dolby not necessary.

Somewhere an engine whines
Sounds like a pick up truck
Over the hill down in the hollow
Coyotes take note, make comments

The Night Hawk calls
An owl answers
Dogs pass secrets
From farm to farm
The silent breeze holds her breath
As if listening to it all
Very intently

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Algebra After High School

IQ: 192 + PS: 152 = Died on street corner from gunshot wound while dealing crack.
NO cancer cure for you.

Monday, May 13, 2013

May Snow is the Sweetest


Bandingo Farm Update
Weather Report

It is snowing today.
Did last night too.
No accumulation so far...
But here on the hill tops you never know.

A somber gray shroud hovers and drifts overhead.
Thick... Quilted patches of texture and hue.
Pressing close, just over the hilltop, as if at any moment
We may just be in it.

Every so often a burst of large white flakes appears, dances...
Outlining the wind, revealing her secret jets and eddies
And then is gone.

Such is the weather today.
Light and dark interwoven.
The Apple blossoms tremble.
I don't think it will break forty five degrees.
The low canopy will mean not much chance if it getting any warmer, but it also means that it won't get too much colder tonight either.

The Jays and Thrush discuss the prospects loudly.
They and the others understand that the Hawk, the Owl and the Falcon are taking shelter today...
But the Crows keep watch all the same.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Bandingo Farm Update


Weather Report

The dry spell has broken...
A cool pleasant rain has been falling off and on for the past twenty four hours.
The frogs are very excited, the grass, lush and burning green.
Sunny breaks between showers allow the parched ground to absorb moisture.

Every now and then a lazy rumble of thunder comes rolling over the hill as an incredible stillness shrugs, sighs and returns; taking hold of everything.
Everything but the birds that is...
The frog's trill rises to a crescendo as the Redwing calls out shrill from the willows.
Big fat drops fall from eves and plum branches.
Splat, splat... Splat.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Air Pollution

As the Earth has evolved life has played a part of the equation almost since day one.
For a long time (something like 1.8 billion years) life on Earth consisted of nothing more complicated than anaerobic bacteria. The atmosphere was much different back then, it would be considered poisonous today.
But then something amazing happened... A new organism arose, Cyano bacteria - also known as Blue Green Algae -  an organism that could make its own food from sunlight, available water and CO2 molecules.
Photosynthesis had evolved. For the first time in the history of the Earth Oxygen began to accumulate in the atmosphere.

This resulted in the extinction of 99.9% of the organisms living on the planet at that time...

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Maples



Silent sleeping giants, the Maples stand
Clutching the ground their roots hold fast the land

Sweeping limbs like subtle fingertips branch and twig
They touch and tickle the evening sky so big

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Possession

Sex, power
Money and greed
If it's on TV
Then it's on for me
By our own design
This world we make
We forget the give
But we remember to take
And take and take
Make no mistake
It will show in time
That we are NOT fine
So remember this well
When it comes your time

It was never yours
It was never mine 

It was never yours
It was never mine

Thursday, February 14, 2013

February

 
She kissed me gently
This morning as I stood at the door
Not like last week's kiss
Softer, kinder
Still cold
But with a hint of relenting warmth
And moisture
Knowledgeable of Spring
Not quite hiding it...

And so it has been all day
Now the Sun plays
With blue breaches in the clouds
An occasional sweeping sound
The outer limbs gently sway
And tremble at her touch
My valentine
The Wind


Monday, January 21, 2013

Dreaming

I have a dream today
I've had it for a while now
A dream about a message
A dream for the future

A dream that will save the world.

The message is a simple one

Consume less
Take less
Use less
Waste less
WANT LESS
Appreciate more

Give more
Share more
Help more

Love with abandon
Love with awareness
Love with forgiveness

Accept truth
Expect truth
Want truth
Speak the truth

Believe in yourself
Accept others
Appreciate others
Help others

Always, Always, Always remember:

EARTH FIRST

We have no other place to go
Without it all other issues are moot


This message comes with no religious pretext or expectations
Just a hope that everyone everywhere will understand it's importance and appreciate it's simplicity.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Paranoia Strikes Deep

A little science in the wrong minds can be a bad thing.
What is it with these conspiracy theorists that makes them want to wallow in their own misconstrued bullshit and misinformed idiotic ideas and then label themselves "Truthers"?  

Denying the Apollo moon landings - asinine
"Loose Change"? - laughable
Anti "Climate Change" -  Outright dangerous and STUPID
And now Sandy Hook truthers... Paranoia OUT OF CONTROLL

Lets get it straight from the get go
Truthers are concerned with anything BUT the truth.
Their grasp of science is weak, if at all discernable.
To accuse grieving parents of partaking in a vast conspiracy to take away guns???

It's criminal. 

Anyone this paranoid about gun control SHOULDN"T BE ALLOWED TO OWN A GUN IN TNHE FIRST PLACE. 
Instead they should be invited to have their heads examined.
And if you happen to be a Florida Public University professor like James Tracy - you should be invited to seek different employment; perhaps as a clown for Ringling Bros. in Sarasota