Monday, March 21, 2011

March 19, 2011, journal entry, Ode to Raggedy Ann's Camel with the Wrinkled Knees (and more of what makes me wickedly wicked happy)

Six miles.

My legs feel heavy. I don’t know if it is ‘cuz of the weights I’ve been lifting, the antibiotics for that long-lasting cough I am starting to kick, from the loss of four friends in two weeks in February, or just from the rebuilding of miles of recent weeks. No matter…I am determined to finish this slow and what-feels-loonnngggg six miles like how this year’s slow and long Winter finishes today. The Wheel of Seasons seemed to have hit a snag late February into March with Her repeated refrain of snow and cold much like how an old fashioned record gets stuck on a turntable, repeating over and over the same segment of song. I head out a little bit later than I planned, totally unmotivated from overnight’s snow, but less than a mile in, I have a realization: I am warm, and I believe I have overdressed today!

I am wearing my typical winter running gear of black tights and purple Adidas jacket, pockets filled with pencils, little journal, feathers, pennies, and acorns, and black headband covering my ears under my pigtails, and black and purple thick mittens. But Sun and blue sky in a quilt-like fashion patch downy white clouds, and it feels warm. And I feel warm…and overdressed. I stop to remove my jacket, and I see my reflection from Sun on grey cement…and see how my tights in shadow sag at my knees, wrinkled, in fact, reminding me of one of my favorite childhood books, Raggedy Ann and Andy and the Camel with the Wrinkled Knees.

I still have this book, as well as the rest of the 1920’s Raggedy Ann books by Johnny Gruelle. I love this book, where Raggedy Ann and Andy pause in their busy busyness of “thinking nice kindly thoughts” to rescue a kidnapped doll when they meet the Camel with the wrinkled knees, legs stickless and wrinkled, yet who is seriously okay with it all ‘cuz he can now walk softly without the graceless THUMPS of the sticks. Suddenly, my own legs, with my own wrinkled knees, don’t feel so heavy anymore as I start off again, my purple jacket tied about my waist.

I like Camel and decide to follow his directions: “you must go this way. Then when you get to this you must turn and go that way until you come to this way again. Then take the first turn this way, until you come to that way and after walking [or running] that way ten minutes you turn and go this way. Then you are there.” And, of course, you must spin around three times…or the 21 of my daily pre-run Tibetan rites… before you start so you don’t get mixed up in all your directions…

So I go this way and that through happy meadows before turning left and going this way and that, left and right, there to back, then straight and curve around by the lovely little nest sewn with Fairy blue, soon to be hidden by leaf green. Crocuses and tulips and daffodils are emerging, and robins call cheery cheery cheerily. My jacket pockets jangle and jingle with copper pennies and pennies copper, and I decide to add them to the wishing well in my study/office/studio/library-depending-on-what-I-am-doing room, when I finish my run. “Moon light, Moon bright/March’s full Moon night/Wish I may, wish I might/See your Super Moon tonight,” I think in tune with my running stride and chant as I drop my copper pennies in my wishing well as well.

Yes, I am overdressed today. This six-mile run has not felt as long as I thought it would've, and I had no idea where I was gonna go. But I like Camel-with-the-wrinkled-knees’s philosophy when he answers the question of “where are we?” with “I don’t know but that means then we must be getting somewhere!” Winter has been long and slow. I miss the four friends who have left this planet. But like Raggedy Ann, with her red heart tattoo, I, too, shall think nice kindly thoughts…thoughts about Spring. She is coming…tomorrow, according to the calendar, but in Spirit and weather, Her arrival, unknown…but, after twirling three or 21 times, I know we must be getting somewhere, me and my wrinkled knees.


Ode to Raggedy Ann’s Camel with the Wrinkled Knees (and more of what makes me wickedly wicked happy)

The last day of Winter today and Spring’s Vernal Equinox tomorrow.

The wrinkled knees of my running tights in Sun's shadow.

Nesting season two of Eagle Jack and Eagle-ess Annabell…and Lake Washington’s eagle-cam starting up again.

Awaiting Spring, the robins and red-winged blackbirds and eagles have returned. I wonder when the osprey will come back to her nest…

Hard hats atop utility poles, especially the white one recently placed on top of the pole just west of the one with the yellow. I am seriously wishing the next one is purple.

My dust covered Raggedy Ann and Andy and the Camel with the Wrinkled Knees (and the rest of my Johnny Gruelle collection), rescued when I was a teenager ‘cuz I hid these books when my brother and sister decided to get rid of their own collections of The Hardy Boys and Paddington Bear series. Yeah, I lied. I outright lied and pretended to be rid of these books and am wickedly glad and unrepentant for it...

And the soft heart-tattooed Raggedy Ann I got for my ninth birthday. Yeah, I still have her, too.

Mallard ducks on roof tops.

Spring’s upcoming farmers’ market!!! I bide my time impatiently by reading the brain candy mystery, Fruit of All Evil, a Farmers’ Market Mystery

My purple stripe in my blond-brown hair. I think I’m gonna go even more purple next time…and get purple glasses…

Crows crows crows...they are such a gorgeous, glossy blue black (can’t argue with that!). They are smart and saucy (yeah, can’t argue with that, either). And they make absolutely no apologies for who they are (can’t argue with that at all and seriously gotta love it!).

My new certification as a qualified mental health interpreter…my week in the deaf unit of Montgomery’s mental health hospital…and that 8 ½ hour written test…I almost ran out of time cuz I just simply don’t do things half-assed…

Copper pennies jangling in my purple Adidas jacket jingling into my wishing well. “Moon light, Moon bright/March’s full Moon night/Wish I may, wish I might/See your Super Moon tonight,”

And that gorgeous Super Moon. Yeah, She made Her appearance and I saw Her tonight. Makes me wickedly wicked and insanely insane happy.



GL, 3/19/2011. Prevail.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Super Moon

March's Full Moon

GL, 3/19/2011. Prevail.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Liquid Kaleidoscope

(through BlackBerry viewfinder)

GL, 3/18/2011. Prevail.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Friday, March 11, 2011

She's back!!!

The bald eagle calling
(makes me totally and completely wickedly wicked happy)

GL, 3/11/2011. Prevail.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Two Crows Chasing a Red-Tailed Hawk

Apparently, I wasn't the only one chasing this hawk.

GL, 3/7/2011. Prevail.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

February 28, 2011, journal entry, The Wind Almost Tripped Me

Five miles.

The wind almost tripped me today.

I start off my run YakTraxed ‘cuz as of late, it’s been so be-blizzardly and be-coldedly, so much so that I have needed to wear my ski jacket in the midst of all my Spring robin excitement. I find it is warmer today though, and the snow is wearing out at its knees like jeans, road surfaces knobby, more exposed than not, sloppy and thready. And, as my YakTrax are tightly squeezing my feet in an uncomfortable manner, I am wickedly relieved to happily remove them.

I do not mind carrying them for a couple of miles as I am used to carrying a small journal and pencils alongside the variety of things I have gathered on my daily runs. I stop for each precious copper penny I find, pocketing it for the Wishing Well I keep in my office/study/library/studio-depending-on-what-I-am-using-it-for room, and among the bags and bags of acorns and leaves I gather in Autumn, I have carried pinecones (they seem to me to drop more in the Winter-to-Spring turning of the Season’s Wheel revolution), feathers, marbles, and branches along with the small stones and rocks, even blocks of wood that have caught my fancy for my Cabinet of Wonders. And I have more than once even considered carrying the bricks I have seen from time to time, sorely tempted to scoop them up. What great bookends they would make, I think…or fabulous organic paperweights…or great plop-on-top-of-my-cookbook-to-keep-it-open-thingie while I am cooking…although when I am cooking rarely do I follow a recipe. It is kinda like my right-brained runs: I start with an idea of what route I’m gonna take ‘til I change my mind at the drop of a whim, adding twists and turns, compelled to add all the bizarre ingredients I might find in my run’s refrigerator.

Ahem…{cough}…ANYWAY. After contemplating the pros and cons of taking those bricks home on my run, despite their bookendedness, the cons literally outweigh the pros, so my Cabinet of Wonders and bookshelves remain brickless and my cookbooks flop closed…and I am content to carry my YakTrax…

Carrying my YakTrax, I loop west, and a gust of wind from north to south…or was it from south to north?... weighing more than all of me, cuts in front of me…and I almost trip, my shoe close to nicking my ankle. I catch myself…and do not fall…and am wickedly relieved to have not landed on the ground…so I decide to pretend I am frolicking in this wind among those saucy smarts crows… and, like those crows, make no apologies for it…

I Don’t Trip on the Wind Today and Other Things that Make Me Wickedly Relieved…and Happy

The orange of Spring’s robin that emerges from Winter like the orange that emerges from the Kraft cheese powder product that colors the bland beige combination of boxed macaroni noodles, milk, and butter…{happy sigh}…

That berry-eating orange Spring robin thru my BlackBerry viewfinder on binoculars. I A.D.O.R.E that picture.

The patches of slush and ice, like the splits mat halfway through a race that I pretend I am crossing…as long as it is mostly sloppy slush and not slicky ice.

The quick ten minutes it takes to chain up my tires of my purple Goddess-mobile (my third time this Winter) and the couple of minutes it takes to chain up my running shoes yesterday and the fewer minutes it takes to remove both.

The short shifts of the Moon these days as She rests, waning after long hours of Her working towards full.

Spring robin/jolly yellow cedar waxwing/crow chasing in Winter Snow.

And those gorgeous crows that ride the strong winds, holding their pose for minutes at a time on waves…preferring the tippy tops of those evergreens on which to perch.

Mary Oliver’s poem Crows

From a single grain they have multiplied.
When you look in the eyes of one
you have seen them all. At the edges of highways
they pick at limp things. They are anything but refined.
Or they fly out over the cornlike pellets of black fire, like overlords.
Crow is crow, you say. What else is there to say?
Drive down any road, take a train or an airplane
across the world, leave
your old life behind, die and be born again—wherever you arrive
they'll be there first, glossy and rowdy
and indistinguishable.
The deep muscle of the world.


GL, 2/28/2011. Prevail.