Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Mystery, from Lyrics of Lowly Life, by Paul Lawrence Dunbar, 1896

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Praising Manners

We should ask God
To help us toward manners. Inner gifts
Do not find their way
To creatures without just respect.

If a man or woman flails about, he not only
Smashes his house,
He burns the whole world down.

Your depression is connected to your insolence
And your refusal to praise. If a man or woman is
On the path, and refuses to praise — that man or woman
Steals from others every day — in fact is a shoplifter!

The sun became full of light when it got hold of itself.
Angels began shining when they achieved discipline.
The sun goes out whenever the cloud of not-praising comes near.
The moment that foolish angel felt insolent, he heard the door close.

"Praising Manners" by Robert Bly from The Winged Energy of Delight

© Harper Collins Publishers, 2005.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

A Reward             by Denise Levertov

Tired and hungry, late in the day, impelled
to leave the house and search for what
might lift me back to what I had fallen away from,
I stood by the shore waiting.
I had walked in the silent woods:
the trees withdrew into their secrets.
Dusk was smoothing breadths of silk
over the lake, watery amethyst fading to gray.
Ducks were clustered in sleeping companies
afloat on their element as I was not
on mine. I turned homeward, unsatisfied.
But after a few steps, I paused, impelled again
to linger, to look North before nightfall-the expanse
of calm, of calming water, last wafts
of rose in the few high clouds.
And was rewarded:
the heron, unseen for weeks, came flying
widewinged toward me, settled
just offshore on his post,
took up his vigil.
                               If you ask
why this cleared a fog from my spirit,
I have no answer.

"A Reward" by Denise Levertov from Evening Train. © New Directions, 1992.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Just when it has seemed I couldn’t bear
one more friend
waking with a tumor, one more maniac

with a perfect reason, often a sweetness
has come
and changed nothing in the world

except the way I stumbled through it,
for a while lost
in the ignorance of loving

someone or something, the world shrunk
to mouth-size,
hand-size, and never seeming small.

I acknowledge there is no sweetness
that doesn’t leave a stain,
no sweetness that’s ever sufficiently sweet.

Tonight a friend called to say his lover
was killed in a car
he was driving. His voice was low

and guttural, he repeated what he needed
to repeat, and I repeated
the one or two words we have for such grief

until we were speaking only in tones.
Often a sweetness comes
as if on loan, stays just long enough

to make sense of what it means to be alive,
then returns to its dark
source. As for me, I don’t care

where it’s been, or what bitter road
it’s traveled
to come so far, to taste so good.

"Sweetness" by Stephen Dunn from New and Selected Poems. © Norton, 1994.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

It’s said they planted trees by graves
to soak up spirits of the dead
through roots into the growing wood.
The favorite in the burial yards
I knew was common juniper.
One could do worse than pass into
such a species. I like to think
that when I’m gone the chemicals
and yes the spirit that was me
might be searched out by subtle roots
and raised with sap through capillaries
into an upright, fragrant trunk,
and aromatic twigs and bark,
through needles bright as hoarfrost to
the sunlight for a century
or more, in wood repelling rot
and standing tall with monuments
and statues there on the far hill,
erect as truth, a testimony,
in ground that’s dignified by loss,
around a melancholy tree
that’s pointing toward infinity.

"Living Tree" by Robert Morgan from Dark Energy. © Penguin, 2014.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Fingerless Mitts pattern

Fingerless Mitts On Bond USM      

Gauge = 4 - 4.5 sts         KP - 2.5 or 3   Worsted-weight yarn                     

For light worsteds use the larger sizes.  Regular worsteds work with the four sizes given
for child (teen/small adult, medium adult, large adult).

If you want a longer cuff, remember to adjust row count.

1) E-wrap cast on 29 (32,  35,  38) sts, leaving a 12" tail for sewing.         RC = 0

2) K 16 (20,  20,  24) rows.              RC = 16 (20,  20,  24) rows

3) Release every third stitch and relatch to form ribbing.

4) K 4 rows, inc 1 st  each end of 4th row.   #sts = 31 (34, 37, 40)    RC  =  20  (24,  24,  28)

5) Repeat step 4.                                 #sts =  33 (36, 39, 42)               RC  =  24 (28, 28, 32)

6) Repeat step 4 again.                     #sts  =  35 (38, 41, 44)              RC  =  28 (32, 32, 36)

7) K 5 rows.                                                                  RC  =  33 (37, 37, 41)

8) K 2 rows, binding off 6 sts beg of each row.    #sts = 23 (26, 29, 32)   RC = 35 (39, 39, 43)
9) K to  RC 47 (49, 49, 51) for fingerless mitts.   

10) Optional:  Release every third stitch and relatch 4 (or 5) rows to form ribbing.

11) Bind off all stitches leaving a tail for sewing.                 

12) Using the yarn tails, sew the side seam, leaving thumb hole open.

With thanks to Kangamoo Knits for the original pattern.

revised 3-4-15

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Wonder and Joy         by Robinson Jeffers

The things that one grows tired of—O, be sure
They are only foolish artificial things!
Can a bird ever tire of having wings?
And I, so long as life and sense endure,
(Or brief be they!) shall nevermore inure
My heart to the recurrence of the springs,
Of gray dawns, the gracious evenings,
The infinite wheeling stars. A wonder pure
Must ever well within me to behold
Venus decline; or great Orion, whose belt
Is studded with three nails of burning gold,
Ascend the winter heaven. Who never felt
This wondering joy may yet be good or great:
But envy him not: he is not fortunate.