Winter blows in.
Geese gather in the yard in advance of the ice, eating what remains of the grass. Continue reading Winter blows in
Winter blows in.
Pintails warble into the quiet air; then the sound of a rifle and its recoil. Hunting season again. I dress my doe-coloured dog in a rouge coat, pull on my gloves. Continue reading Kindred blood of all that breathes
Insomniac, I wake, open the envelope of the day and shove another act inside as if the day were expandable, made of pleats, an extraordinary accordion capable of melody every time I squeeze, not some exhausted drone, a whine or tumble of falling keys, of rain-soaked shoes, of numb-finger stitches, belated appointments and warmed-over meals, the bones of my spine dully aching, rain dashing at … Continue reading Fall Semester Sonnet
Morning arrives cloud-dark and humid. Low tide. Wind in the trees and a flow of birdsong. A great blue heron flies off when I step outdoors, cracking loudly. Cicadas. The buzzing of insects. A kingfisher ratchets by, sounding an alarm. Blue scent of air, as if soon it will rain. Finches in the trees. The air sweet, odour of cut grass and salt air, a … Continue reading Behind it all/ Songs from rural zones #LIV
Paper wasps in the mailbox might seem a potent metaphor for a writer: you never do know what you will find when you go out to collect the daily mail. Often enough, alas, something that stings. But sometimes the wasps that arrive aren’t figures of speech; sometimes they really are industrious insects, just minding their business in a place where we don’t want them. One … Continue reading How to get paper wasps out of the mailbox amicably and other reflections–or, how to build a better wasp house
In this strange and fecund season here at the edge of the sea, I am thinking a great deal about climate change, for its signs seem acutely evident now, all around us. We appear to be witnessing major shifts or collapses in sea bird populations. Species of fish and shellfish we’ve not seen before show up here and there, and morning and night we mark the heights and declines of the tides–they are more extreme; likewise, storms when they come carry away larger and larger chunks of various shorelines. In such a space, what, for every living thing, might be reasons for hope, for looking to a future? And what might any living thing hope for (or against)? Continue reading 14 Reasons for Hope: A Phenomenology of Place
Psst, are you there? I don’t think I’m alone here—that’s what the philosophers say anyway. Here’s what I see: flickering shadows on blank walls of the afternoon, the sound of leaves rustling in the wind. Continue reading You who would see the wind (prose poems)
Every spring is riddled with odd auguries and peculiar sightings, this one no more than others perhaps, save the stepped up and persistent sense of doom that whistles through the nightly news as the world lurches from crisis to crisis. Continue reading When the wind speaks of snow/ In praise of animated observation and observations of animation
March is the coldest month and April is plenty cruel, but in Atlantic Canada May is the cruelest month, mixing hopefulness and frogsong with coyote scat and cold fogs, driving rains, muddy paths, and sometimes frosts. Continue reading Spruce tips and loon calls: on the slowness of Atlantic Springs
I wrote this on October 28, but it is still true in November, this humid unseasonable weather that clings to the days and makes our nights sweaty and confusing. A band of clouds gathers over the outermost islands, but here, closer inland, the sky is blue and the sun warm, the air sweet and gentle, hot even, if you’re in the lee of the breeze. … Continue reading Unusually warm again: on the peculiarly temporary sensation of enjoying climate change