30 October 2012

hurricane victims on my mind...

My son and his fiancee are safe, dry, powered up and hosting unexpected guests. My niece is safe in Brooklyn. The blogs I follow whose writers live in NY, NJ and Philly - some announced they were okay, others were dark today. I live in Florida, where hurricanes have their own season and a dedicated aisle in Target. Sandy dumped snow on West Virginia (where I have family) and snow presents a new slant to this chaos; we never had to deal with snow and sleet post-hurricane, just cold showers and warm beer.

The Red Cross is accepting donations: American Red Cross

14 October 2012

i've been reading...

"We should turn on the radio" was all he could think of to say.

Ethel sat down across from him with her own cup of coffee. She took a handkerchief from the pocket of her black cardigan and handed it to him. "First cry," she said.

She gave him a gummy piece of honey cake and then, as she had on the night of his arrival, handed him a towel.

While he was showering, his grandmother shuffled into the bathroom, lifted the skirt of her nightgown, and, apparently unaware of Joe's presence, lowered her pale blue behind onto the pot.

"You don't listen to me, Yecheved," she said in Yiddish, calling him by his aunt's old-country name. "From the first day, I said I don't like this boat. Didn't I say it?"

Joe spoke English. "I'm sorry," he said.

His grandmother nodded and got off the toilet. Without a word, she turned out the light and shuffled back out. Joe finished his shower in darkness.

After he had warmed himself into an uncontrollable spasm of weeping, his aunt wrapped him in a bathrobe that had once been Sammy's father's, and led him to Sammy's old bed.

"All right," she said. "All right." She put a dry hand to his cheek and kept it there until he had stopped crying, and then until he stopped shaking, and then until he caught his stuttering breath. He lay still and snuffled. The hand on his cheek remained cool as brick.

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Klay, by Michael Chabon

02 October 2012

hello, october


BY STANLEY PLUMLY
Some nothing afternoon, no one anywhere,
an early autumn stillness in the air,
the kind of empty day you fill by taking in
the full size of the valley and its layers leading
slowly to the Blue Ridge, the quality of country,
if you stand here long enough, you could stay
for, step into, the way a landscape, even on a wall,
pulls you in, one field at a time, pasture and fall
meadow, high above the harvest, perfect
to the tree line, then spirit clouds and intermittent
sunlit smoky rain riding the tops of the mountains,
though you could walk until it’s dark and not reach those rains—
you could walk the rest of the day into the picture
and not know why, at any given moment, you’re there.

"Before you can blame an individual for their choices, you have to make sure they have the same choices as everyone else."

Bix , the fanatic cook.