Friday, March 03, 2017

Morning walk observations

On a, non-run day, walk this morning two unusual, for me, things happened. First a movement in my peripheral vision drew my attention down to my left. There, in a drive-way on Falcon drive, a conch shell is moving along purposefully. What the heck, I think. Wondering how a live conch got this far inland, I note legs, of a sort, protruding out from the shell sides; aha, a hermit crab. Still not sure how it got to where it was.

Twenty minutes later I witness an armadillo crossing Oriole blvd. stopping traffic. I pulled my camera phone out of my pocket intending to photograph this, never before seen by me, critter, but alas he quickly sought refuge in a sluice pipe under a drive-way.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Nobody likes sore losers

The 2016 election for president of the USA is over.  Our electoral college put it in the books.  Like it or not, Donald Trump is going to be our 45th president.

There was quite a hullabaloo created in the time between the election and the electoral college vote 5 weeks later.  A large cadre of people decried the election results, screaming fraud, unfairness; their candidate won the popular vote, and the Russians made it happen.

Their shock and anger is understandable. Their candidate was a shoo-in.  As the November 8th Election Day approached, die hard supporters of Donald Trump, even Trump himself, believed he'd lose.

In the aftermath of his crushing electoral victory and his opponents crying foul, I'm reminded of the game of baseball; America's game.  All the players, or teams, if you will, agreed beforehand to the ground rules in place and to accept the umpire's decisions.  Well, except for the eventual winner. He didn't commit to accepting the umpire's rule; calling the system rigged.  His opponent called him out on that saying he must accept the rules of the game!

But, all the teams in the playoff accepted the rules, long ago established.  So on Nov. 8th, 2016 the World Series of politics came down to the final game.  It was agreed to by both sides that who ever scored 270 runs (electoral votes) or more, would be the winner.

Now I'm recalling Ernest Thayer's 1888 poem, mighty Casey at the bat.
It was assumed by the most vocal of fans that Mighty Casey would hit the ball out of the park, and that homer run would give Mudville the win.

But Trump's Opponent i.e. Casey, egotistical, too big to fail, Casey struck out; Mudville lost.

Now Casey's fans cry foul, fraud, kill the umpire!!

You lost Mudville, you lost.

Put your has been star on the bench and start building a new team for the next championship game in four years.

Whining and crying only diminishes you and exposes your weaknesses.

Monday, September 26, 2016


The midnight blue sky
Over Dansville is filled
With stars tonight.
And airplanes.
He died twenty years
Before I was born;
John Noel,
My great grandfather.
I never knew him
Only about him.
I only saw him once,
When I was 7.

Seven is just a guess.
I was a youngster laying on Aunt Nellie's couch.
Perhaps I was asleep, but if so, I was awake in my Dream.
I saw a man get out of a car.  It was an old car, maybe Uncle Ed's.
I can still see it in my mind's eye; black 4 door, like a 1920's style 4 door.
Whatever, It didn't seem out of place.
The man was wearing a calf length dark gray overcoat and a felt hat; one of those hats  that I always see Humphrey Bogart wear in some of his movies.
Strange, he didn't come up the front steps but walked down the 12 inch wide walk at the side of the house to the small porch leading to the door opening into the dining room.  Strange because no one ever used that door as long as I remember.
Aunt Nellie met him there and as they talked, I couldn't make out what the were saying, I knew it was her father, John Noel.
I don't remember him leaving, but when Aunt Nellie came into the living room where I was on the couch, I asked her "who was that?"
"Who are you talking about?"
"That man who came in through the side door."
She stared at me with a puzzled look on her face, and said nothing except to ask, would you like something to eat.

A dream?  Perhaps, but still it's a memory that stayed with me all these 60 plus years.
I've replayed that incident innumerable times and have decided it must have some significance, even if I can't say what that might be.

John Noel was a Civil war Veteran,  I think he knew I'd be going to Viet Nam in 10 years and maybe he came to his last home just to let me know he was real and not just a story told when people asked about the Civil war discharge enlargement framed and hanging over Uncle Ed's chair in the Living room.

He enlisted, volunteered, in the army for the civil war, against his parents wishes when he was 17, just like I would enlist and volunteer to go to Viet Nam.

History repeats itself.  An old adage that as proven itself time and again.  I don't know John Noels story, but I like to think I do know it through my own experience.

Monday, September 05, 2016

September floats in quietly
While steamy days of summer
Evaporate from the placid river.
Forlorn foghorns warn, unseen;
Lonely trains wooo wooo their passing....
A gull screeches, calling; her, me, who?

The morning meditates, so do I.
Watching river fog rise and kiss the sky---
The rising sun blinks.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

For me, nothing brings back memories better than music.
Listening to Elvis this morning I remember:
Riding my Schwin down Oak St.
I was 11,...
Listening to "Love me tender"
And thinking about my first real girl friend,
Judy Smith
From Hornell, NY.
Her family moved in to a new
4 site trailer park
Across the street from our place.
Her dad moved them here
While he worked on the
St. Lawrence Seaway.
I memorized "Love me tender, and
"You Ain't Nothing But A Hound Dog,"
And probably every subsequent Elvis song
Judy returned, with her family, to Hornel
After a year;
Nearly broke my heart.
'Til I met Dort Kiah
At confirmation practice
In Notre Dame church
On Ford Ave.

Thanks Elvis,
For the memories!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Morning spin

Every morning we arise
Lets spin the wheel
Of another's demise.

It's the most popular
In the world today;
Spinning the wheel of hate; yay.

You hate Hillary, I'll hate Trump.
Every member of congress we'll dump.

Let's hate the ref, the other team,
They must be blind we'll rant and scream.

If you're different from me
in any way,
You don't deserve the time of day.

We love to hate and hate to love.
We turn our backs on the Lord above.

With all our righteous indignation,
We put ourselves above all creation

There is no place for civil discourse.
Make up history, ignore the facts,
Perpetuate lies with violent acts.

A divided house will surely fall,
Whether on not we build a wall.

So if you'd like to reunite,
Put hate's wheel away tonight.
Arise tomorrow with love in your heart,
Good change will come when we start.

Seeing each other as human not race,
to feel another's pain is no disgrace.

In the morn, if you should awake,
Spin the wheel of love...
Take my hand and meet our fate.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Vengeful nation

Decry and pray,
Pray some more.
Point a finger of nay
At the blaming roar.

Anger, hate, recrimination,
Never right, always wrong.
Vengeful heart, ungrateful nation
Feeds the freedom of the throng.

Behavior, good and bad
Perpetuates itself.
Righteous are we in indignation;
Not me, but you must change,
If ever peace will reign.

The only change you can evoke
Is in your heart, and actions spoke.