Category Archives: garden

Far Lookout Writing Retreat, Oak Grove

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For one week, I kept my own company off the grid—no emails or net-surfing, just the blank page, scads of delicious vegetables, and the companionship of green outside the window.  I did wander under the canopy of oaks during my morning walks which strengthened me in the old way, as if I were still walking in the woods of my childhood.  One evening, I sat on the terrace with my hosts, Michael Hoeye and Martha Banyas, listened to their stories of the land and of their art and read to them a little from my work in progress.  The clarity of intention was visible in every nook of the gardens as well as in the beautifully maintained house, studio, and cottage. Continue reading Far Lookout Writing Retreat, Oak Grove

August Poetry Postcard Fest

Deluge of summer visitors has cramped my writing time just a bit, but thanks to Paul Nelson’s August Postcard Poetry Fest,

a pile of postcards


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I am writing a postcard poem a day and receiving many postcards from writers across the nation.  Check back in September for some wonderful examples. Meanwhile, enjoy the last of a beautiful summer! I am canning applesauce, dehydrating apple slices, and learning to make apple pie filling for those dark days of winter.  Next week:  Far Lookout Writing Retreat in the Portland environs–a small cottage all to myself!  happy writing 🙂




Profusion of Roses

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In my part of the country, my part of the state, the flowering trees rage into spring and early summer in generous blankets of color, always a welcome sight after the uniform overcast of winter.  But this spring and early summer, the roses have it.  Our rash of warm and sunny days has inspired extensive blooming; sprays of blossoms taller than a man hang over fences or climb garden walls.  My garden’s small contribution has expanded to four varieties and all of them are very happily opening and opening as if that is what they were meant to do.

For myself, this extra ration of sun so early in the season has spurred me on unexpectedly. I fling myself pell-mell into a full bouquet of expanding projects, eat late, and get to sleep even later, wondering where the time went.  I know this feeling well.  I remember the power surge of the summer light when I lived in the far north, all that yang energy coursing though my veins like a drug I couldn’t get enough of.  And, as the consecutive winters took their toll, the contrast between “dormancy” and “awake” grew even greater.  I  moved to the northwest to find some moderation, but not this season.  The roses are singing and I hum along in harmony; I am fluent in rose.