Saturday, May 28, 2011


Click here for my latest Animoto video of a small, private obsession: floribunda

Friday, May 27, 2011

pouring. just pouring.

I don't really have anything new to add today, just a surplus of flower photos and the time and motivation to post something. The weather continues to confound my best efforts to get something original done in the way of an actual photo shoot. These shots are from a couple of weeks ago, taken here in my Irvington/Alameda cusp neighborhood (I was actually on my way to Fred Meyer that day to get some groceries). It always pays to bring the camera, doesn't it?

single peony

tiny iris


I have to run to the bank today and was just about to finish this post and shut down the netbook, but it's started to rain again and I can't face another sodden trek through the dark wet at the moment. I am so damned tired of the rain this year. And did I mention that the heater's on? Because it's also cold in the house. It's a four-day weekend for me since the Memorial Day holiday is Monday. Will it never stop raining? Will I be indoors again for most of it? Sheesh. It's a monsoon!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

I can't help myself, so why even try?

It's spring. It's all about the floral fecundity.

Latest Griffin update

He's moving with his mommy to a new apartment closer to Nana's house. Whoohoo! And here's the latest cuteness, making a point about some obsure literary reference to Doc:

Something about contemporary postmodern interpretations' insulting irrelevance to the work of Agee and Wolfe...

new calling?

Not sure, but I think I've got a new hobby. Check out my latest efforts:

Batter Bread

Under the cloth...

Voila! Cheesy Corn Muffins

Apple Pecan Tarte Tatin

Monday, May 23, 2011

birthday and not

Just realized that today would have been my father's 87th birthday, gone these fifteen years now.

I had an abortion on this day in 1978, about a year after Joe and I'd separated, the pregnancy a consequence of a brief, stupid, mutual indulgence. That child would have been about 32 years old today, I guess, but I have never regretted that choice. Not once. Even when I was in agonizing pain from the unanesthetized, state-funded procedure. Not even then. I owed my best effort to my already-here children; another unplanned would have been our undoing, since we all depended exclusively on my earned income.

Having the procedure on my dad's birthday was incidental, and a bit weird and inconvenient, and became a secret I never revealed to him, but it has also served as a reminder every May 23rd that sometimes making a hard choice, doing something eternally painful and sad is still worth it all this time afterward.

How many women write that story? Usually the story you hear from the media is the trumpeting of religious zealots and their pimped remorse; almost never do you hear from the women who chose to end a pregnancy and continue to feel it was the right decision. Well, here is one.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Random impressions of a jazzy night for poetry in Portland, Sunday evening, May 15th. Warehouse 640 is a confederation of studios and galleries, and the location of a monthly spoken word event hosted by Ben Fisher. This month's featured poet was Jeff Ettlin, dear friend, brilliant performer and truly gifted poet. Jeff inspires me everytime I hear him read, everytime I re-open one of his chapbooks: "Mama's Boy" and "Poem Pie." Genius. Seriously.

. Jeff Ettlin, poet.

Ben Fisher, host.

Monday, May 16, 2011

here and there, this and that, tra lala, nice to get out!

Because the weather's been just crappily disappointing forever, I've been feeling almost literally housebound since, well, OCTOBER. Emily Dickenson (with whom I almost share a birthday) and I seem to be of like lifestyle lately. So this past weekend was exactly busy enough to be interesting but not exhausting. How did that even happen??

Got to babysit for Mr. I'm Two Months Old Now, for a few hours on Friday:

Went on a shopping excursion to Fred Meyer on Saturday to stock up for Grayson's overnight on Saturday, and captured a little bit of spring on the way:

[Kinda love the extreme blur and saturation on these peonies... arty.]

No photos of Grayson this time (maybe next time) because we were too busy making Zentangles and spaghetti hotdogs and watching Shaun the Sheep streaming from Netflix to my netbook to think about photography. By the way, getting rid of the TV was totally worth it!!

Went to a jammin' poetry reading (with a jazz combo) on Sunday evening at a studio/gallery warehouse that was a lovely diversion from the usual, "damn, I have to go to work tomorrow" gloom that drifts through the apartment then settles around the neck and shoulders most Sunday nights. I got photos! But you'll have to wait until next post because I was too tired to download them from the camera last night. Stay tuned.

So meanwhile, here are a few more springlike photos captured in fleeting sunbreaks to tide you over:

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


On my way to work this morning on the #77 bus as we were crossing over The Steel Bridge above the quietly surging murk the Willamette River has become of late, I noticed an enormous tanker hawsered up to the granary on the east bank. You know--the granary. Those odd silos rowed up to the eastside waterfront with that hideous, gargantuan adspace owned by the Trailblazers facing back toward the Rose Quarter? The signage that screams, "RISE WITH US" and seems to suggest that their committment to Portland fans includes some kind of sacrifice with all their devoted dedication to the righteous purity of sport? [Really? Sacrifice?? Blazers, please. When is someone going to tell Paul Allen that his PR guys need a spankin'?]

I digress. The thing I noticed right away was the name of the tanker: FULL SPRING. Like that. In full caps and huge letters. Might as well have been called AS IF. There was so much clutter of floating crap around the hull that I longed for my camera. The irony was too painful.

I love Portland so much. It is an incredibly beautiful location for a city, and has a kind of neighborly coziness that no other town of its size on the west coast can approach. Portland in full spring is gorgeous; no other word. And from some locations you can't even see the bedrolls and human remnants under the bridges, making the transcendent views even more astonishing. I have a consistent emotional response to the view of downtown Portland from The Steel Bridge regardless of the weather, but overcast sky or descending fog has the effect of stunning me with the city's complex beauty.

I swear, someday I will be up early enough to station myself on the bridge with a tripod and my camera and will finally capture some essence of that view--bedrolls, homeless guys with shopping carts, cyclists, trains and trees and all.


Last month I was so excited to get to spend time with Oscar and Rachel when they arrived for a short visit. The Canon XS was strategically positioned on my greatgrandmother's oak table all ready for their arrival. Even Shanna and Griffin came over. I managed to get off a few shots as we were getting settled and then, nothing. Nothing. The camera completely died. No response. Even after I'd shut it off, rebooted (so to speak), pulled the battery and put it back in; to no avail. DEAD. My other cameras were not so satisfying (and to tell you the truth, I almost never use them so I forget how the settings work, dammit) and I ended up just thwarted and defeated as a photographer. The visit was awesome and fun and Oscar is perfectly adorable and cuddly, Rachel and I had a chance to talk and it was lovely to spend time with them. You will have to take my word for it because I have no documentary evidence apart from the shots I've posted below:

PS~the problem was with the $60 lithium battery, now replaced. Sheesh. The whole Philly Family is coming back in July and I am definitely looking forward to the photographic opportunities; I hope they are.