Saturday, November 30, 2013

He said, She said Part 2 (6WS)

He said

You know,  I love my kids as much as any man does but
there's times when I wish  they'd give me some personal
time.   They got me a computer  so I'd have "something 
to do" but I'm too busy to bother with it.

They brought over a cell phone so we could be in constant 
contact but after it fell off the tractor fender and I backed 
over it they told me I was working too hard.

Shoulda heard them when I  mentioned my new lady friend.
She said

the day I fell over the dog I made the mistake of telling my daughter-in-law because it was funny, and a week later Home Services was at my door, and Meals on Wheels called to ask when would be a good time to deliver my lunch.

I shooed out the nurse and her blood pressure cuff and hung up on Meals on Wheels.  Then I called my son.

She said

One day Dad and I looked at one another and realized 
we were looking at strangers.  Since the last boy left we had 
been arguing, picking fights, and getting on one another's 
nerves.  After talking it over we decided it might be
time to just split up for a bit, have some time to 
ourselves and get to know each other again. 

I found an apartment nearer the kids, and Dad said he'd 
sell the house  (it's too big for the two of us anyway) 
and find something smaller,  and we'd see how that
worked out. He brings his laundry over once a week
and we talk. No fights, just talk. We've decided we
have to stop calling each other "Mom" and "Dad". We
practice.  He calls me Nancy and snickers, and I call
him Art,  and get the giggles.   I think we'll  be okay.

She said

She calls me once a week all the way from Idaho, makes
sure I know what this is costing her. Wants me to come
out and live with her.  Even though I've been to  Idaho,
and  California and  Florida,  and a lot of places in between,
after a few weeks of being polite and using different towels,
part of me longs to get  back to my students and my kiln
and my friends.

She tells me I'm getting too old to 'bother' with pottery,
and then mentions the 'nice' arts and crafts classes they
have at the day care center there,  the one right beside the
assisted living apartments.

The reality is, she  doesnt want me to live with her,  anymore
than I do.  She just wants to be able to tell her friends that she
'brought Mother out to be with her, she's getting so frail, you
know..."   I've started referring to it as Shady Pines,  which annoys her no end.

I  hung up on her the last time.  Now she can tell her friends I'm getting senile.


He said

A month ago I dropped a shovel on my foot, cracked a bone. When my daughter Lucy found out, she decided it was time to take charge.  "At your age..." seems to be the way she starts
every sentence these days. She even hired  a  "cleaning woman" for me, who could not be over 20--I had to show her how to clean a bathroom properly.

And  yesterday Lucy  told me she was  thinking of moving back to town so she could live here, and keep a proper eye on me. She forgets, the reason she moved out twenty years ago was because we simply could not get along;  she's too much like her mother, god rest her soul.  

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

and other assorted flavors

entrees are always welcome before the main course

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Charlie -- Progress report

This is an old house, with an attached shed. There has always been a passage way under the porch and into the shed.  We call it the tunnel,  and have sort of constructed a more permanent version so the cats can shelter there and come in themselves through a cat door in the shed/kitchen door.
I've started feeding Charlie at the inside end of the tunnel, to the great annoyance of the other two cats. *g*   And this morning,  since it was 20 deg out,  I made a cat bed for him

and tucked it into  a stack of wood.  yes, thats a sheepskin.  i threw in a catnip play toy for good measure.  I'd not mind sleeping in this myself,  frankly.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

He Said, She Said, First part (6WS)

He said

I take nineteen pills every day:
8 in the morning, 6 at lunch,
the rest at bedtime. I have a chart
that also tells me which does what.
These keep me alive and moving,
the others keep me happy but not too happy.
I guess you can call this living
and yeah, it beats the alternatives.

she said

My son's okay, he lets me alone,
drops by every week to visit, buys me
what I need when I can't get out.
He doesn't fuss. I'm still mom.
My daughter, however, has started
watching me, hovering in the shadows.
If I stumble, she frets.
If I forget a name, she gets really quiet.
She's started talking about moving in,
Im talking about moving away.

She said

When Harry died it was pretty quiet around here
for a week or two, then the phone started ringing,
and almost every call was from someone
wanting to take me out, have me for dinner
(and I suspect I was the dessert), or just wanted
to talk dirty.  I was nice, but not interested.

I thought it was funny; my daughter and her husband
were shocked, wanted to call the cops, no less.
I told them I wasn't interested in raising up
a new husband, especially since most of them
just wanted a cook and bedwarmer and nurse,
and I said then, I will not take care of another 
sick old man, thank you very much.  They 
both looked relieved, if dubious.

I never told them about the one I didn't turn down.

He said

I always said that when Skips died, that was 
the last dog  I'd  be having.  He died two 
weeks ago, and I buried him in the back yard 
beside the others;  this morning my daughter 
showed  up at the door with a  half-grown 
mongrel pup, all legs and  the other 
two-thirds ears, all wag and pant.  I looked 
at the dog, and the dog looked back: "Her 
name is Grace," my daughter said.
"You don't play fair," I said, to both of them, and
 my daughter just smiled.  Grace wagged her tail 
and put her paw on my boot.

Damn kids.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Thought for the Day

 we are where we would be
 if we went somewhere  else to live

Saturday, November 16, 2013

A Note From An Old Friend (6WS)

--who never realized the poem in this

dont know where you'll be
but if I can
I'll walk along with you
all the way 
to the end of the field
down the road and out
and leave you there
I know you know
the rest of the way
you wont get lost

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Progress Report--his name is Charlie

Put out a wildlife camera on the porch,  and finally got two good shots of this guy:

aha he's a grey torotoise shell mix, with the appetite of a wolverine.  Trouble is, its getting colder, and by my calculations  canned cat food freezes solid within a half hour at 20 degrees.

He won't come in.  If I appear in the doorway he quietly  jumps off the porch and hides.  Or goes back to his possible home under the barn.

Just keep on keepin on, I guess.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Things We Have To Leave Behind (6WS)

  sometimes  the forest wins

   or there is no longer a need

    sometimes we outgrow our passions
    or find new ways of working

It can be hard to let go of the familiar

or the cherished

  and childhood is a beginning, often down a cold unfamiliar  road,  not an end in itself

We leave things behind all the time.  Friends,  family, memories,  passions.  I guess the secret is to cherish the memories,  and try not to regret what we can't bring back

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Maybe maybe not

he's been hanging around for at least three days,  keeps coming back to the same rock on the wall.  First time I saw him, he was outwaiting the deer and turkeys who swarmed around him  like, um,  a rock in the stream.  Now he sits on That Rock and waits for something edible  to appear .

When I call him he looks over here, a long slow stare.  Not nervous,  just careful.  

put food out for him last night,  dry kibble on the porch.  It looked swirled around a bit but thats all.  Racoons would have eaten most of it ,  flung the rest around, had a fight over the water dish. Probably would have taken the dish home for a souvenir.

We'll see.   It's up to him. 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

thoughts in a cold new month (6WS)


not-knowing balanced
against the known: how sad to  turn,
find you not there

that shift when the tide
changes places with itself
rolls back up the beach

the sound the wind makes
when it stops; whispery leaves
hang silent again