If I were asked to describe, in a word—two at the most—my recent travel to France and Ireland, magical would compete with wonder-filled. Wonderful hasn’t the capacity. I was away for seventeen days, and not until I returned did a single mishap threaten the absolute perfection of this trip. But it was only a threat; the piece of luggage was located and had not been left between here and Dublin after all. Glitch-free travel! Alright—one bellyache from downing a Guinness too quickly, when it was time to load up and get back on the road to the next attraction. . . (Try black current syrup with it the next time you have a pint. . .) Continue reading
Living on a rural homestead in Wyoming continues to exercise body, mind and spirit. I hung laundry outdoors today, after walking up from my writing hut (where I write–not the hut!). Shoots of tulip and jonquil measure three inches. Spring means snow squalls and biting wind in these parts. We don’t expect constant warmth until mid-May; we do expect blizzards earlier in the month. May the apple crop avoid being blasted again this year. This is not friendly apple-growing country–if dedicated to one’s sole livelihood; the weather gods laugh. But garlic and shallots do well. Roots revel. Herbs endeavor. And rabbits do what rabbits do.
Meanwhile, my “retired” educator husband prunes the orchard, clears winter debris, grinds tree trimmings to mulch–to name a few chores–and stays busy. It’s always something. Hundreds of cut twigs ring the trees, waiting to be gathered–my job. Like pick-up sticks, they fall in I Ching patterns, and I must ignore the possible significance.
Eddy, the aging Jack Russell terrier, spends hours criss-crossing yard, field and wood; sniffing out rabbits, squirrels, mice and old deer bones. She requires help to reach the soft chair cushion in the den–which begs the inference: how long may I be granted to do this thing, write and live on this most lovely land, before needing assistance? How long before a winter freeze blasts me? It’s a cusp thing.
My birthday coincides with the spring equinox, so this cusp thing plays havoc with intentions, wise or otherwise. It seems as good a time as any for relaunching a blog. One with my name attached. So I may be found (and possibly read), expression being the better part of hesitation (yes, yes, I know, not always). I have read the posts of similarly timid authors, and have discovered strength in numbers. That said. . .
I have completed the writing of two novels. The first (begun in January 2015) is now (March 2017) with an editor, and the second is undergoing revision. They represent two-thirds of a proposed trilogy, or quartet. The Country of Senga, my pitch reads, is “a generational story of loss, ambivalence, resilience, wild grace, passion and triumph.” (The stuff of saga.) Moving from 1960s western North Carolina, to contemporary Wyoming Black Hills, it’s a migratory tale exploring a slew of life’s mysteries. The working title of the second is Senga’s Stars, and centers on travel–to and from the past; love, and ultimately, belonging. A red thread of magic realism binds the three . . . or four.
I plan to post the occasional excerpt or, snippet, from these, from previous work, and offer “field notes,” and other observations. Perhaps a music video, if I can sort the technicalities.
Finally, welcome, and thank you for the visit. I wish everyone the best, especially good health.