12 March 2015

Really Good Stuff: Surprise Flowers From Hawaii

Surprise Flowers From Hawaii

Surprise Flowers From Hawaii

I often rail and rant against people sending me gifts, I hate for people to spend their hard-earned money on me, they ought to get themselves something with it, but today, for second year in a row, we got a surprise gift we are in love with. Flowers from Hawaii, Maria was beside herself laughing and admiring them. The donor is anonymous, she sent a similar bunch last year and after this dreary winter, we were pretty happy to get them, I have to admit.

We don't know who you are – Maria thinks it is someone who bought a quilt a few years ago – but we thank you, we are giving a few away – make a joyful noise, share the good stuff – and keeping the rest. Maria wouldn't let me take them outside for a photo, she said it was too cold. They are quite amazing. Whoever you are, thank you for thinking of us this winter. A nice kickoff to brighter days.

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I See Good Stuff: New Quilt

Good Stuff: New Quilt

Good Stuff: New Quilt

Maria is finishing up her newest quilt, I saw it this morning and was surprised and enchanted by it, different symbols, feelings, rich colors and shapes. I think she is just about done, and will name it and put it up for sale this afternoon (I get to scoop her, which I love, and it drives her crazy). I think of these quilts as a free-form kind of art, bounded only by the imagination of the quilter, and by the diversity of the discarded materials, all of them once part of someone's lives.

An organic kind of art. She'll put it up later, I suspect (she does not ever tell me, she can be strange and secretive) on her website.


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Parable: Good Stuff: Frieda’s Altar. Killing Flies, Dancing.

Frieda's Altar

Frieda's Altar

Maria called and said flies were swarming around one of her windows. In my house, I am the veteran fly-swatter, I have a refined technique involving height, angle and timing, I usually get even the fastest flies. These flies were sluggish and stupid, drunk in the sunlight,  and I got them all quickly.

As I was leaving Maria's studio, I noticed an altar, it had a bone, stones, candles all lit, and then I saw the tin of ashes. I knew right away they were Frieda's ashes, Lenore's are in the living room of the farmhouse. Maria said yes, this was an altar in memory of Frieda, there was incense burning as well.

My wife is a good witch, a mystic, a naturalist, perhaps a pagan. Her life and spirit are marked by the most beautiful rituals. Things appear and disappear all the time – stones, crystals, tiny figurines, bones, twigs, flowers. They appear at odd times and vanish at odd times, I live in a magical world.

The bone was a deer bone, Maria explained, as if it were the most natural thing to have a bone sitting next to your computer. Frieda liked to steal it and try to chew  it. Maria had Spanish music playing on her Ipod, she asked me if I wanted to dance, and so we danced for a bit, in her studio, after I killed the fliess and paid homage to Frieda, who still keeps Maria company in her studio. Spirit lives there.

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Poem: I See The Good Stuff

I See

I See

I see the anger and the hurt,.

I see the poor, left behind,


joy or hope.

I see the money,

drowning the national soul,

I see the angry men,

spewing poison on the cable news,

I see the hatred,

choking our spirit,

the angry messages,

every day.

I see the violence,

on our streets,

and in our world,

on our screens.

I see Mother Earth,

crying out for help and pain.

What do I do,

with what I see?

I do what everyone can


I pray to myself,

I listen to the animals,

I learn something,

I write something,

I take a photo,

I love a friend,

I kiss a donkey on the nose,

and walk a dog,

I love my partner,

I look for the good stuff,

and send it out into the world.

I know in my heart that one day,

all the good stuff will heal the earth.

I see the good stuff.

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The Windowsill Gallery: Installation



When the windowsill gallery changes, the installation is simple, an artist comes and moves the stones, or vases or flowers, today a rose, Spring is very welcome this year, and the Windowsill Gallery reflects our lives, is a record of them.

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