Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Be bold

Through the window, the leaves obscure the view. At first glance, the red looks like flowers that have sprouted overnight and hang suspended between the intense green that hides even the fissured grey-brown bark of the tree trunk and slender branches weighed down with all that heavy silver-green, yellow-green, sun browned green, and violent raucous green. The red isn't from flowers or sunburned anything but the roof top of the Lon Chaney house next door. This is the first time I've seen so little of the roof as to be fooled into thinking some exotic high canopy orchids have attached themselves to the leaves overnight.

All this green filters out the bright summer sun as the days stretch and reach towards the longest day of the year, tomorrow, June 21st, to balance the shortest day a mere six months ago that seems more and more like last week. The sky is bold and unafraid of the coming days when the sun will shine a little less like brass and the nights will creep out for longer and longer periods until once again we are poised on the other arm of the balance where day and night share the hours equally and then give way to night again. Nothing lasts forever, not long blistering days or dark freezing nights when the world is softened by the thick muffling expanse that sparkles like fairy dust beneath the soft blue of moonlight. Each day, bold as a street corner whore stopping cars and offering her favors for nickels, dimes, and quarters or shy as mice under the watchful eyes of a hungry cat, is different and full of possibility. Today is another such day.

Thoughts of the man tired of waiting for some day, make me weak with desire, stir carefully banked holocausts of passion, and send me into dreams of being kissed senseless and ravished without regret or apology. He no longer wallows in the fantasy of responsibility or martyrdom to the superficial semblance of social appearances. He hungers for fulfillment and adventure and he knows where to find it. I'm waiting.

Monday, June 18, 2007

How do you know?

I am always following the magpie part of my brain that is attracted to interesting books and articles and knowledge in any form. I'm sort of a literary magpie that way, but it also works for photos and paintings and all kinds of bright bits and pieces of knowledge that I encounter.

I'm not certain what sparked the bug hunt that brought me to Falling Water, but something rang out like a clear silver bell; this is someplace I know, some place that seems almost part of my DNA. In case you don't know, Falling Water is a house designed by architect, Frank Lloyd Wright the inspiration for Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead's architect, Howard Roark, portrayed on the screen by Gary Cooper, and one of my favorite books and movies.

I didn't know about Wright being the magpie bit that Ayn Rand chose to fuel her story about artistic integrity, but I have always been entranced by Wright's architecture and his work in glass and furniture. You'd think such hard angularity would be boring or uncomfortable but there is such a sense of style and function that defies description. The way Wright designed buildings to fit into the landscape instead of being imposed upon the landscape was not only innovative but forward thinking, almost as if he envisioned a more eco-friendly future. In form and function, in harmony with nature, Wright's buildings are still a marvel and I wonder who carries his spark of genius into this century.

But it was Falling Water that excited me because it reminds me of the cabin I designed and wrote about in my new novel, Past Imperfect. I didn't realize Falling Water was in Pennsylvania, which is where part of the novel is set, or that I had internalized some of the design in creating my fictional cabin, a cabin I hope to one day build here in the Rockies, but it is there in full flower as though grown from the seed of a past memory or a glance at Frank Lloyd Wright's work. I cannot say for certain that I didn't see Falling Water long before this and stored it away among the other magpie treasures until I found a use for it, but how can I know for certain? Does it really matter?

So much of what we are as adults is built from the magpie bits and pieces of everything we have experienced, seen, and even glanced at without immediate recognition, stored away like seeds against the winter that fall through the cracks in the floors of our mind and take root at the first hint of warmth and moisture. We are surprised to find trees and flowers and beanstalks growing up out of the cracks, unable to remember storing the seeds, but there they are in full three-dimensional life growing in the fertile soil of the mind and waiting for a chance to come back to full and vigorous life. What is germinating among the magpie bits you've collected?

This past week time and black holes and the lands of faery are working their way into a story, and possibly a book. Buying a special gift for my granddaughter, Savannah, is slowly and certainly becoming a story of a little girl who doesn't like school or reading or writing or books who is given a bit of magic that unlocks the magic inside her. Just more magpie bits added to the collection to merge and create connections that grow into hybrid life.

That is all. Disperse.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

You get the cheese, fruit, and bread...

...I have the whine.

I've been dreading this day for weeks. Like the difference between the knowledge of impending death and the fact of actual death, I wasn't prepared for Dad's death. I'm not prepared for it today either. Even though I have avoided the greeting card aisle at the store, it hasn't changed anything; I still keep picking up the phone to call before it sinks in there's no one to call.

That doesn't mean that I don't wish all of you fathers a wonderful and happy day where, for this once, you come first and everyone forgets to ignore you while you fix pipes and broken toys, hook up DVD players and computers, take out the trash, mow the lawn, prune the bushes and trees, clean the gutters, service the cars, organize the garage, clear the snow off decks, porches, sidewalks, and driveways, bash your fingers plugging up holes in the siding, under the eaves and in the screens and walls where stinging and irritating insects and house hunting birds have made homes, helped with homework, carried in groceries, power washed the siding and windows (no matter how much you enjoyed it), braved the aisles at Home Depot and 84 Lumber to fix or build a new deck or buy the supplies to fix the toilet that keeps running, and do the million and one things you do around the house/apartment and yard every day. I do.


That is all. Disperse.