Glimpses of places and people, trees and textiles found while traveling from May to December 2013. Coming your way in small wavelets from time to time.

Month: May, 2013

Waves of Slate


Nearly everything in the Lake District of England is built of stone. Slabs of slate to be precise.  Of all the stonework, the walls are my favorite. Stones are stacked horizontally and then topped with slanted upwards slabs that catch moss spores and flower seeds. These walls wind up and down the fields lacing land parcels and village properties with threads that both divide and tie together. The Lake District seen from the train is like a huge green/grey quilt. Clouds never hold still as the wind always blows, and their shadows shift and waver over it all. No wonder so many poets thrived here!

slate slabs with waves of May flowers

slate slabs with waves of May flowers

Love Wave

James and Wendi wed at the Swan Hotel in Windermere, Lake District. It was a weekend awash with love and good wishes, surprises and a mix of a sunshine, rain, wind and calm. Vows and readings were guided by a petite woman from the local Registry Office. The couple signed a huge registry using an ink pot and a dip pen.  The ‘wedding breakfast’ [at 2 p.m.] in a beautiful conservatory decorated with garlands of purple, blue and white flowers was followed by a ride on a boat on Lake Windermere. A jazz band, more wine and a magician doing card tricks came along. But, the real magic happened when the sun came out and a full rainbow appeared!  The most wonderful surprise of all was that at the ceremony Greg and I were seated in the front row on a purple cut-velvet couch. As we are James’ aunt and uncle, we were honored as the family elders. Another surprise was: no cake. Instead, after an elegant evening buffet, dark chocolate brownies and Eaton mess were served. Yes, you ask, what is Eaton mess?  It is whipped cream with crushed strawberries and broken bits of meringue, ever so delicate and very festive!

My wish for the happy couple: May Wendi and James ride the waves of life together safely and happily.image

Heat Wave

imageMay 6th, 2013 was over 70 degrees in England–a wave of warmth we couldn’t quite believe.  We walked to keep jet lag at bay, ate outside on our friends’ patio and soaked up the warmth.  It being England though, it turned cold after two days and hasn’t warmed up again since.  Yet, waves of flowering trees, tulips, daffodils and new buds on everything floral meant that we got to meet up with English spring at its beginning.

trees wave too

IMG_3271If you don’t already subscribe via email to Writer’s Almanac–just google it and join in.  It’s a great way to get a poem a day as well as entries about authors born on the day at hand.  Recently this poem appeared, A Final Affection by Paul Zimmer–a lucky link to my love of trees.  This tree lives in Balboa Park, San Diego, CA.

I love the accomplishments of trees,
How they try to restrain great storms
And pacify the very worms that eat them.
Even their deaths seem to be considered.
I fear for trees, loving them so much.
I am nervous about each scar on bark,
Each leaf that browns. I want to
Lie in their crotches and sigh,
Whisper of sun and rains to come.

Sometimes on summer evenings I step
Out of my house to look at trees
Propping darkness up to the silence.

When I die I want to slant up
Through those trunks so slowly
I will see each rib of bark, each whorl;
Up through the canopy, the subtle veins
And lobes touching me with final affection;
Then to hover above and look down
One last time on the rich upliftings,
The circle that loves the sun and moon,
To see at last what held the darkness up.

A wave of cold weather

May the first finds snow falling in St. Paul, Minnesota.  A cold wave for my first post of wavelets of conversation with you that will begin today and carry through to the end of the year.   Thought wave #1: A highlight of the play NICE FISH by Mark Rylance and Louis Jenkins at the Guthrie Theater came when the goddess Freya appeared as a green wave of light in the North sky.  See the play if you can; it’s full of whimsy and substance.  Thought wave #2: Weather aside, my wave good-bye to you is full of warm, good feelings as we get ready to fly to England and enjoy a wedding. I’ll miss friends and family here; but, I’ll stay in touch.  Promise. Thought wave #3: Please wish us blue skies and calm seas–just little currents and eddies; o.k., maybe a few waves.