Kettledrum roll please…

It begins with a soft tap
almost a twitch
ever so slowly
the percussion picks up
lightly rolling 
into a steady beat…  …  …  …  …

sounds and resounds
joined by the hiss and tingle
of a tambourine oscillating
and announcing the crescendo 
kettledrum roll —

as the old house pipes
clamor ’til horse
and lazily collapse
into the sound 
of a warm pillow.

ag ~ 2013


2014 Mindful Writing Challenge

For the month of January, I am writing one small stone per day. This means paying attention long enough each day to record impressions of a fragment of my life.

Presence. Stillness. Wonder. Tumble, play and roll down river.

I wrote these words on December 31, 2011. It now feels like a couple of lifetimes ago. I do remember enjoying and growing with this process of writing/posting/tweeting a small stone as it was called back then (and still) as a daily practice. Sometimes simple, sometimes new, sometimes borrowed and sometimes very blue.

So once again, I am taking part in this “mindful writing challenge”. Hopefully, I will be able to post without too many errors that are nere impossible to correct on my now ancient iPad that cannot be updated. The real challenge will be twofold: write about some small or large occurrence in a meaningful way and try to post it with as little pain as possible on this original tablet. I kid you not – the typing and proofreading may do me in… may the work begin and the best of the two of us show up here.

Softly Quiet

The Solstice, The Hawk, The Fox and Snow

The Solstice
sun takes her longest time to rise
above the horizon and awaken – 
watch how slowly she stretches
as the tree tops blush
icycles melt and drip
the sound of light loosening.

The hawk
aware of shortened daylight
circles lower and longer
spying and snatching her prey
with quick precision
before darkening sky
and dimming sunset.

The fox too
usually able to blend
into leaf duff and forest floor
hurries now with snow cover
and vivid tracks to muzzle
under the crust for mice and moles
also scampering in snow light.

The snow 
glistens on pine and fir and ground
criss-crossed by violet-blue shadows
of pencil-thin branches
and barrels of tree trunks
softly quiet yet breathing life
yielding only to the winter sun.

The Cold Solstice
beckons to the sun
entices her undressing
out of her sheer lace nightgown
for a rendevous in the far north sky
where for one short day
her naked beauty is revealed.


December 21, 2013

Dark Knight of the Soul

Holiday blues? Feeling rushed, stressed or depressed? I’ve got the drink for you! It warms inside and out and based on the go-to potion of the Mayans who knew a thing or more about the bitter, sweet and spice of life.

It’s a mix of 70% dark chocolate, cinnamon and cayenne pepper! Heat milk (preferably low-fat organic) or almond, hazelnut even coconut milk, stir in the mix and pour into a warm and beautiful earthen-wear mug. It is very rich so a little goes a long way to lift your spirits and boost your energy.

I purchased a bag of this pre-mixed and aptly named “Mayan Hot Drinking Chocolate” from or 215-996-0606.

I prefer to call this heart-warming drink of the gods – “Dark Knight of the Soul”. Truly a healing balm for the dark nights and cold days.


Petals of Light

Ice casts and splints
on tree limbs
shatter yet sparkle
their last light
and melt into snow.

Ison, the comet that hurled
toward our mother star
splinters yet freckles
fragments of light
and melts into sun.

Paper Whites
on a windowsill
flake yet fragrance
petals of light
and melt into breath.

A giving heart
in many a bosom
grieves yet ripens
a healing light 
and melts into moon and the dark of night.

ag ~ December 2013

A Faraway Place

Dark Chocolate and Pomegranate

Winterberry ripe red
dry tufts of nomadic grasses
this passing of autumn
into winter.

Seeds nestle in ’til spring
the shortest hours of daylight
as arctic air blows in 
just below shallow sunlight.

The raw caw of a crow
and a lone squirrel 
ramble through the brush
black and gray.

Glass lenses steam up
coming through the kitchen door
to the warmth and fragrance
of simmering soup.

A nook to read
with a cup of tea
under a cozy  quilt a circle
of lamplight and snow falling.

This night of dark 
sweet chocolate and tart pomegranate
belongs to that faraway place
that is simply here at home.

ag ~ 2013