"I am not one who was born in the custody of wisdom. I am one who is fond of olden times and intense in quest of the sacred knowing of the ancients." Gustave Courbet

31 May 2010


There will be days when the fishing is better than one's most optimistic forecast, others when it is far worse. Either is a gain over just staying home.
- Roderick Haig-Brown, Fisherman's Spring

A Frazier-eye view of the hole.

My hands smell really great right now.

Thanks Frazier & Mike!

Head in the clouds

A wonder-filled weekend for a watcher of the skies.


I listened to Tim O'Brien all weekend.



Mandolin and fiddle ... I LOVE THESE SONGS!!!

More here and here.

Mark O'Connor


Sara Watkins, "Long Hot Summer Days"

More here and here.

Persevere ...

... and kick ass.


Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.
- Plato


What one has most to work and struggle for in painting is to do the work with a great amount of labour and sweat in such a way that it may afterwards appear, however much it was laboured upon, to have been done almost quickly and almost without any labour, and very easily, although it was not. A beautiful thing never gives so much pain as does failing to hear and see it. If people knew how hard I worked to achieve my mastery, it wouldn't seem so wonderful after all.
- Michelangelo

Thanks Cultural Offering.


Eternal vigilance is required and there have to be people who step up to the plate, who believe in liberty, and who are willing to fight for it.
- Milton Friedman




30 May 2010

Head in the clouds

Tonight's sunset ...


Last weekend, John, Frazier, and I went south to see Peter Rowan at Jorma Kaukonen's Fur Peace Ranch.

It was a much needed trip of restoration. The time spent together enjoying sights, conversation, extremely childish humor, artistic music, and, of course, food, was so peaceful. By Sunday night, as I prepared for the last full week of school, it all seemed like a dream.




Bridges and barns.

Hot dogs.

Spiritual sport ... "You drive!"

Biscuits ... yes, they were BIG!


And ... milk.

Life is partly what we make it, and partly what it is made by the friends we choose.
- Tennessee Williams

Thanks boys.

29 May 2010


There are men who face evil
For the sake of all
By their stand
We realize
That freedom is not free


28 May 2010

Fierce caring.

Goose and gander both go
to protect gold goslings from
my kind.
To coil this strike shape
is wise.
Is not their fierce caring

Thanks Morning Earth.

Thinking of you, Drew & Zuzu.


Head in the clouds

Yesterday's trip home from school was fun.

All of these were taken within two minutes of one another, from the same spot.

26 May 2010


Sitting outside, awash in the moonlight ... at 10:19 tonight I noticed that the fireflies have come back to Appleton.

20 May 2010

Fill the void.

Losing daily all interest in the things around us, something else is necessary to fill the void. With me it is reading, which occupies the mind without the labor of producing ideas from my own stock.
- Thomas Jefferson

We read deeply for varied reasons, most of them familiar: that we cannot know enough people profoundly enough; that we need to know ourselves better; that we require knowledge, not just of self and others, but of the way things are. Yet the strongest, most authentic motive for deep reading…is the search for a difficult pleasure.
— Harold Bloom

If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

What are you reading?

'Tis the season

"Yankees are welcome to make these dishes."
- Eudora Welty

Read the rest here.


A fine collection has been robbed in the most intimate and horrible way of its treasures, and the world has – temporarily, we must hope – lost sight of some of the truly great works of the modern age.

Read the rest here

Happy Birthday John Stuart Mill

If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.
- John Stuart Mill

19 May 2010


Trunk slammers

Back Bay, Virginia Beach, VA

Defiance ...

... glory, and beauty.


The ancient view that saw happiness as the by-product of virtue, and virtue as suspended from the four 'hinges' of courage, temperance, prudence and justice, does not exhaust the precepts of morality. It tells us how we should care for ourselves and for others; but it does not tell us how to care for the world. Discovering the extent of our trespass on the natural order, we have come face to face with categorical imperative to live in another way. The message that Rilke read in the headless, legless torso of an antique statue of Apollo, we read now in every portion of our mutilated earth: you must change your life.

It is appropriate to begin from the feature of wine that has been most absurd: its ability to intoxicate. What exactly is intoxication? Is there a single phenomenon that is denoted by this word? Is the intoxication induced by wine an instance of the same general condition as the intoxication induced by whisky, say or that induced by cannabis? And is 'induced' the right word in any or all of the familiar cases? Why all this fuss about wine? Is there something about wine that removes it altogether from the class of drugs, as Chesterton once suggested, when he wrote that 'the dipsomaniac and the abstainer are not only both mistaken, but they both make the same mistake. They regard wine as a drug and not a drink'? It would be strange if Chesterton, who was right about most things, were wrong about wine.
- Roger Scruton, I Drink Therefore I Am

Find the answers to these and other questions of great importance here.


Performed by Il Giardino Armonico

Good morning.

18 May 2010


Performed by Il Giardino Armonico


Ry Cooder, "Maria Elena"

Rain falling.

The aroma of spring heavy in the air.

Flaco squeezing the accordion.

Wine in the jar.

A handful of smoked almonds.

All the lights off.

Standing in the open doorway.

Rain on my toes.

Mist on my face.

Sage wafting by.

Wish you were here.


A wise man once told me not to be frustrated by misunderstanding ... either by others or your own ... "Most of what we say and do is misunderstood."

That's difficult to handle.

But true, I guess.

Language is just sound. We give it meaning only after we "hear" it, and that only happens if we truly "listen."

But then ... we're doing the "listening."

As I get older I feel that less and less of what I say and do is authentically understood. Especially when I attempt the conveyance of compassion or care. Silence is often taken as apathy.

Russell Chatham is fond of the saying, "Most people get it wrong." He speaks of the authentic ... the real.







There's a Chinese proverb that I heard Gary Snyder recite once that says, "“The one who understands does not speak; the one who speaks does not understand."

Be still.


A good one ... for 5th graders and their teachers.

Wives and husbands.

Sisters and brothers.




Carl Jung ... “Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.”

Chop that wood
Carry water
What's the sound of one hand clapping
Enlightenment, don't know what it is

Every second, every minute
It keeps changing to something different
Enlightenment, don't know what it is
Enlightenment, don't know what it is
It says it's non attachment
Non attachment. non attachment

I'm in the here and now, and I'm meditating
And still I'm suffering but that's my problem
Enlightenment, don't know what it is

Wake up

Enlightenment says the world is nothing
Nothing but a dream, everything's an illusion
And nothing is real

All around baby. you can see
You're making your own reality. everyday because
Enlightenment, don't know what it is

- Van Morrison

I love the learning opportunities that being an elementary school teacher provides with. I learn every day, all day.






The most important thing my teaching mentor taught me during my first year was to "teach, help them and then let 'em go. Let 'em surprise you." Thanks Trisha.


The unattainable attempted. The journey is the destination.

Understanding? Knowing? Absolutes?

If you're on the path, just keep walking.

I love this clip from A River Runs Through It.

Drew ... "Dad, sometimes you just need a big hand in a little hand."

Thanks, Drew.



We are mere participants in natural cycles, not the kings of them.
- Jim Harrison

What if the point of life has nothing to do with the creation of an ever-expanding region of control? What if the point is not to keep at bay all those people, beings, objects and emotions that we so needlessly fear? What if the point instead is to let go of that control? What if the point of life, the primary reason for existence, is to lie naked with your lover in a shady grove of trees? What if the point is to taste each other's sweat and feel the delicate pressure of finger on chest, thigh on thigh, lip on cheek? What if the point is to stop, then, in your slow movements together, and listen to the birdsong, to watch the dragonflies hover, to look at your lover's face, then up at the undersides of leaves moving together in the breeze? What if the point is to invite these others into your movement, to bring trees, wind, grass, dragonflies into your family and in so doing abandon any attempt to control them? What if the point all along has been to get along, to relate, to experience things on their own terms? What if the point is to feel joy when joyous, love when loving, anger when angry, thoughtful when full of thought? What if the point from the beginning has been to simply be?
- Derrick Jensen, A Language Older Than Words


With a sense of humor, hate is all too funny and therefore it loses its power. Love, on the other hand, even with a sense of humor, becomes highly precious and large enough so that it can contain old hatreds quite nicely.











Singing. Silently.


Just heard this on the satellite while I was in the shower doing the daily poison ivy ritual.

A steaming hot shower, good tunes turned up ... it's going to be a good day.

Enjoy yours.

It was early one mornin’
Playa del Carmen
That’s when I first met Jose
He had a 12 foot Schooner
A 3 foot cooler
Full of the catch of the day
And he was wrinkled from grinnin’
From all of the sun he had been in
He was barefoot, cerveza in hand
He said “Gracias senor”, when I paid him too much for
All of the Snapper he had

Getcha some.

The remastered Exile On Main Street is out today.

16 May 2010


No man ever wetted clay and then left it, as if there would be bricks by chance and fortune.
- Plutarch

Think. Live. Free.

Hands off.

... [T]he best advice would be to think, improvise, adapt and overcome, man up, but by all means, leave me alone. You don't ban electric guitars just because someone may have a lapse in logic, goodwill and decency and spontaneously break out into country and Western music. The vast majority of sensible people will use electric guitars as God intended and whip out good, sexy rock 'n' roll licks.

I need my cars, trucks, chain saws, knives, crowbars, blowtorches, scalding-hot water, guitars and guns, thank you. Amazingly, I have mastered them all, and they are all wonderful ingredients for my American dream of rugged individualism, declared independence and self-sufficiency. They all serve me well, and I am not giving up any of them. Ever.

Read the rest here.