Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Women I Love: H.D.

It's fall in Vermont and I'm hungering for the kind of literary and artistic blasts of inspiration I used to get when heading back to college in Providence each September.

There's also a Lunar Eclipse in Aries unfolding, and according to my new astrological guide (you didn't know this about me, did you? No. Nor did I. But here I am, confessing in public–) it's a time to get one's liberation on. A time to let one's wild child out of the bag. For me this is manifesting as a desire to get back to the female artists whose lives inspire, whose work turns me on, who remind me of a higher calling and a higher form of liberation.

And so I'm going on a little virtual tour, and bringing you along for the ride. There may be more than a few poets in the mix.

C.D. Wright writes: "It is a function of poetry to locate those zones inside us that would be free, and declare them so."
And who is this? This here is H.D., i.e. Hilda Doolittle, who you can read an immense amount about if you follow the link.

To our freedom, in its variant forms, friends.


Friday, October 3, 2014

praying and being cool

The world you see is just a movie in your mind.
Rocks don't see it.
Bless and sit down.
Forgive and forget.
Practice kindness all day to everybody
and you will realize you’re already
in heaven now.
That’s the story.
That’s the message.
Nobody understands it,
nobody listens, they’re
all running around like chickens with heads cut
off. I will try to teach it but it will
be in vain, s’why I’ll
end up in a shack
praying and being
cool and singing
by my woodstove
making pancakes.

-Jack Kerouac


Thursday, October 2, 2014


I completed two books this week. Which means I hope to spend a lot more time walking with my camera (and my children). Today...

Friday, September 19, 2014

Good morning, fall: 

veery, apricot-corn muffins, coffee, cream, blackberry jam, 
cheddar, bees, pollen, boys, sweet mustard, sun, tea. 

My walls are being coated in plaster. 

My children are growing older (and sweeter, and wiser).

Contemporary Vermont Fiction is nearing completion.

Blessed be, blessed be, blessed be
and forever and always:

Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Happy birthday to my dearest Pops (i.e. Dandy), who has dedicated his life to building good houses for others, loving his wife & children & grandchildren, providing a good education for the children in his community, being a steward of the woods and land he grew up on, providing good food for others, preaching simplicity & sustainability, modeling humility & humor, decorating our hillside with funny stone art, fearlessly loving and caring for all of humankind, practicing curiosity, and, in recent years, being one of the kindest and most badass grandpas that ever walked the earth.  (He has also, on this fine morning, eloped with my two-year-old so that I can work and write this post). All touched by the concentric circles of your generosity and compassion are ridiculously lucky.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

a dreamer

Because it is fall now, and with every new season I seem to have to try and figure out who I am (again). 

Who are you this early autumn?

Saturday, September 6, 2014

the world salvaged from the lords of profit

Teach the children. We don't matter so much, but the children do. Show them daisies and the pale hepatica. Teach them the taste of sassafras and wintergreen. The lives of the blue sailors, mallow, sunbursts, the moccasin-flowers. And the frisky ones—inkberry, lamb's quarters, blueberries. And the aromatic ones—rosemary, oregano. Give them peppermint to put in their pockets as they go to school. Give them the fields and the woods and the possibility of the world salvaged from the lords of profit. Stand them in the stream, head them upstream, rejoice as they learn to love this green space they live in, its sticks and leaves and then the silent, beautiful blossoms.


Attention is the beginning of devotion. 

-Mary Oliver, from "Upstream"

Thursday, September 4, 2014

contemporary vermont fiction

Friends....it's been a loooonnng time coming, but I am currently editing proofs of Contemporary Vermont Fiction and our publishing date is set for November 3rd! It's a beautiful thing to see all of these stories (and writers) together in one document. They are speaking to each other and bouncing off each other and echoing and reverberating in all sorts of surprising and interesting ways. (Helped along their journey by Dede Cumming's beautiful layout and book design.) 

And look at this line-up of writers! Laurie Alberts, Julia Alvarez, Megan Mayhew Bergman, Joseph Bruchac, John Elder, Castle Freeman, Jr., Miciah Bay Gault, Suzanne Kingsbury, Jeffrey Lent, Ellen Lesser, Howard Frank Mosher, E. Annie Proulx, Bill Schubart and Wallace Stegner. Some of my old faves and my new faves, together at last within these pages. 

The book is distributed by Midpoint and can now be pre-ordered from Amazon, here, or better yet, ordered from your favorite local bookstore. 

For Vermont natives and Vermont lovers alike.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

the unconditioned air

How To Be a Poet

(to remind myself)

Make a place to sit down.   
Sit down. Be quiet.   
You must depend upon   
affection, reading, knowledge,   
skill—more of each   
than you have—inspiration,   
work, growing older, patience,   
for patience joins time   
to eternity. Any readers   
who like your poems,   
doubt their judgment.   


Breathe with unconditional breath   
the unconditioned air.   
Shun electric wire.   
Communicate slowly. Live   
a three-dimensioned life;   
stay away from screens.   
Stay away from anything   
that obscures the place it is in.   
There are no unsacred places;   
there are only sacred places   
and desecrated places.   


Accept what comes from silence.   
Make the best you can of it.   
Of the little words that come   
out of the silence, like prayers   
prayed back to the one who prays,   
make a poem that does not disturb   
the silence from which it came.