My Boss

Silver Maple Samaras, May 16, 2019

Silver Maple Samaras, May 16, 2019

After fixing the string in the string trimmer (also called ‘weed wacker’, folks, but I prefer ‘string trimmer’. I also say ‘bandage’ as opposed to ‘Band-aid’), running out of gas and refilling, noticing the poison ivy and my lack of long sleeves, I decided the best place for me was the shower.

I like being the boss. Anger was my boss, so I quit. I let the guys finish the job with highly effective and silent scythe and clippers. The string trimmer is awful.

When I dried off, I put on a faux crushed velvet dress. Wine-colored, spaghetti straps, and two high side splits. When I put it on, I felt a bit better. My hand still smelled like gasoline (stinkin’ gas can - this is why I wear nitrile gloves…usually).

I put my denim shop apron, a gift from my Dad, and covered my dress. Back out in the nursery, I was still aggravated and chopped back exuberant Late Purple Asters, Blue Heart-leaved Asters, and Woodland Sunflowers. I pulled weeds in the hoop house. I potted up Wild Geranium, Solomon’s Seal, and Blazing Star. The plants were my boss and my aggravation slowly, slowly faded.

Let me be honest, I am

Self-portrait in mirror, May 9, 2019

Self-portrait in mirror, May 9, 2019

Let me be honest, once a week my kid and I eat an ice cream cone before dinner.

Let me be honest, I believe in co-sleeping or whatever odd name you want to call it.

Let me be honest, I believe in home schooling.

Let me be honest, I believe that kids are whole, entire human beings that can be trusted.

Let me be honest, this is not easy.

Let me be honest, I sometimes throw out plastic bags I could reuse, and I feel bad but just for a moment.

Let me be honest, I noticed her flat belly and jubilant workout and thought, “You haven’t had a kid, have you?”

Let me be honest, I feel envious thoughts and that never feels very good.

Let me be honest, I feel negative thoughts towards others that I believe are unkind but justified.

Let me be honest, I am judgmental.

Let me be honest, I am very fearful of being judged.

Let me be honest, my cat annoys the heck out of me when he nags for food.

Let me be honest, I want more time to be alone.

Let me be honest, I miss my family when they are away.

Let me be honest, I rarely do things the easy way.

Let me be honest, I don’t like cooking with more than one vessel.

Let me be honest, the worst thing about going to a potluck is having to prepare food.

Let me be honest, I have a hard time making changes.

Let me be honest, I am having a hard time using the manual focus on my new camera.

Let me be honest, I wish someone else would figure it out for me.

Let me be honest, this is not a very flattering portrait but it is honest.

Let me be honest, I like being honest.

Cranberry Beans and a Vase

I uncovered the pot of cranberry beans and ham soup that had cooked all night. I ladled out three generous bowls. I considered asking the guys for help bringing the bowls outside to where we eat. Instead, I reached for our wooden serving tray on top of the fridge and sent a glass vase tumbling. The vase broke against the soup pot. Splinters of glass flew across the stove top.

We went out for Indian food.


Tulip Tree Seedling in the Meadow, April 18, 2019

Tulip Tree Seedling in the Meadow, April 18, 2019

Why is the day cold? Wool clothes are in a pile bound for the attic.
Why is the breeze warm warm? The firewood pile is high.
Why is rain falling? The firewood is uncovered.

Why is the sun setting? I have work yet to be done.
Why is the sun rising? I have yet to sleep well.
When will the moon cease chasing the sun.

Why do I have debts to pay? I want to play.
Why do I squint? I want to see.
Why does the seed grow? I want to know.

Three Women

Her cart was in the middle of the aisle. Her boyfriend said ‘hi’ to me. I mumbled a reply, not even words, really. That cart was in my way. She stared at me. I navigated my cart between hers and the shelves. She did not move.


She was wiping down the gas pumps while I pumped gas. I said ‘hi’ just as squatted down to continue her work. She looked up, smiled, and asked how I was. An honest smile. I returned her smile with my own and wished I said hello while she was standing.


I had the expectation that she might not be friendly. She had disappeared when I entered the store. She was friendly. My hair was messy. Hers was not. We talked about wildflowers, clothing, Ocean City, Maryland, and paying the rent. She asked if the shopping was good in New Jersey. I said no. We both wished we had longer torsos.

At night

At night, when we settle down to sleep, my son is not ready to sleep. Sometimes, I ask him a question, to focus his mind, and help his body let go of the day.

“What kind of farm animal would you chose to have?” I ask.

“A jaguar,” he replies.

I laugh and think of how I’d prefer a jaguar to a hog or a chicken or a horse.

“He could be best friends with Mountain*,” he adds. “And, protect him.”

*Our cat.