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All material on this website is © Donna JT Smith unless otherwise noted.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

WRiTE Club 2013!


The 2013 bout of WRiTE Club is starting soon.  If you want to write for it...Sunday at midnight is the deadline for your 500 word submission.  If you want to be able to vote on the writing... you still need to sign up on the LInky to vote.  If you are not on the Linky and you vote for someone's piece of writing, your vote will be disqualified.
So write or read and vote, but go to DL Hammon's WRiTE Club 2013 to get more information, rules and regulations, and to register for a really fun writing bout!

Friday, June 28, 2013

I Told You I Would

Shiny, wet leaves this morning, looking out my window from my "blogging post".

I told you I would repost.  But I'm not.  Today is Poetry Friday over at Amy Ludwig VanDerwater's Poetry Farm, and I have linked my post from Sunday to it today.  So Poetry Friday people will be going to my post about the e-zine, Shadows Express to read "Two Rainbows and the Moon", while we stay right here...
So what shall we do?
We're here in Maine, Vacationland...ah, a trip to the beach, a picnic, hike the trails, go fishing, pick strawberries, kayak the bay, eat some Gifford's ice cream, do some hammock stretching exercises...
Oh, it's raining outside... again?
It's actually cold enough in the house to turn on the heat.  A while ago there were a couple of sweltering, days and nothing was funny.   It got so hot in the middle of June, we broke down and bought an air conditioner.  That was evidently all we needed.  I was amazed by its cooling effect.  Most people have to install the air conditioner to have it work.  Ours is still in the box.  I may have to return it, it's making it rain now, too.  I don't know how to turn it up with the box still sealed.
Well, time to get that sweater and some socks...
and a puzzle or the cribbage board...
and hot chocolate.
Ok, really, I'm getting my socks and sweater.  And Gifford's is going to have to wait (yes, we eat ice cream even in winter here, but that's when we're wearing socks and not standing in the rain... well, wait... no, rain doesn't matter).
Anyway, I'm freezing.  But it's better than being hot, I think. 

Totally unrelated event as I finished this post:
HA!  I just saw something out of the corner of my eye... a big ole' wild turkey was looking in my sliding glass door at me (remember the one with no porch).   I guess they don't mind the cold, rainy weather.  Barefooted, too.
I love it here.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Elevator Gate Photo - 15 Words or Less Poetry

Laura Salas has 15 Words or Less picture prompted poetry today.  Go there to see the picture and read more poems inspired by this iron elevator gate.  I had to write three....sorry!  I'm stopping before they become four, or five.  You are welcome.

Eight arrows flew
Into the air
And landed in
A row right there!

~~~or~~~

A fancy comb
for Queenie's locks?
Or the elevated part
Of argyle socks?

~~~or~~~

Elevator eliminator = stairs
Procrastinator terminator = deadline
Incubator hibernator = egg
Instigator propagator  = gossip
Alligator motivator = hunger










Sunday, June 23, 2013

E-Zine Published

Shadows Express e-zine has their Summer Edition out and available here free.  And my poem is in it!  Yea!  "Two Rainbows and the Moon" was written one year ago (less about a week) right after I saw that beautiful sky after a rain shower.  It just struck me as so beautiful, that I had to write about it.  Here's what I wrote the day I saw two rainbows and the moon, before writing the poem:

"But let me tell you what I saw.
On my left, the horizon was sporting puffy golden and pink clouds with upper highlights of silvery white on the light blue watercolored sky.  To my right, there were heavy gray clouds, threatening rain.  But in the middle of those gray clouds was a rosy deep pink glow, like the flushed cheeks of a child with a fever...the glow seemed to emanate from the cloud, but in reality it was the reflection of the setting sun on that cloud...and then...
two rainbows over that fevered cloud!
As I made a turning exit off the highway, almost reversing my direction, I saw now between the two sun creations, the bright white, almost full moon in the clearing between the clouds of the setting sun and the reflective clouds with rainbow.
How much beauty can you take at one sitting, I wondered.
I was mesmerized and wished that I could somehow get this recorded.
I guess I did in a fashion...
I hope my memory of it remains clear.  At least I've written a photograph."


Then I wrote the poem.  To read the poem, go to Shadows Express, and then read lots of good short pieces and poems by new writers... Hey, I'm on the last page!  How great is that!?!?!?! I love it!  And I love the photo they put as a background.  It isn't quite as lovely as what I REALLY saw that day, but it's still pretty great!
Thank you everyone who has encouraged me in my poetry.  I love doing it, and though sometimes I am still scared inside that people are just being nice to me and tolerating my  okay poems, I'm beginning to believe that some of them might really be pretty ok.  Why is it so hard to believe in ourselves sometimes?  I'm still sure someone someday is going to step forward and say, "Who do you think you are, girl?  You aren't a writer.  We've just been letting you write and making you feel good as best we could.  But your time's up.  Put your pencil down and get the laundry done."  Oh, wait, that "someone" saying that is me.
Anyway, I am going to be so bold as to say: I liked this piece -  I am pleased with this poem -  I hope I have more in me that can fall onto the page as well as this one did.
And it is so absolutely neat that on the last possible submission day, which also happened to be my husband's birthday, I accidentally re-discovered this ezine as I was blogging around.   And then I got so bold as to think "why not?"  And submitted a poem.  AND got it accepted.
If you saw this today, you will see this as a repost on Friday.  Readership is down on Sundays, and I'd like to have it posted for Poetry Friday.  So I'm pre-posted for two days.  I was going to wait until Friday to post this, but I just CANNOT.
Have a great day, all!
Wishing you two rainbows and the moon today!
Embedding it here:

Friday, June 21, 2013

Cat and Mouse Game

Today is Poetry Friday and it's being hosted by Carol at Carol's Corner.  Go there after you leave here and read some other great poems and things about poetry linked on that page!

A couple of days ago, we watched a robin in the middle of the road readying a caterpillar for its meal...not the caterpillar's meal... the ROBIN'S meal OF caterpillar.  I have to get better at the English language.  It's the only language I speak, so there are no other options or excuses.  Maybe I should learn French.  I might be better at it, who knows?

I wish I'd gotten a picture of this incident though.  It was cute in a kind of cruel way... but it was just nature's food chain thing:
 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Intent on a caterpillar crossing the road 
The robin ignores our car to do what he does
We wait a few feet away hoping no one comes
While he keeps a beady eye on the stretchy fuzz
  - and we wait.
The robin sees nothing but his prey in his path
As he keenly keeps his focus pointed then - jab!
Curled caterpillar bounces and rolls like a ball
He plays with it like a cat with mouse until - stab! 
  - on the plate.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Cute image, huh?  Okay, now for the short version:

Caterpillar crossin' -
Robin starts a'tossin'!
Caterpillar bounces -
Robin pecks and pounces!
Caterpillar's fate -
Robin's dinner plate!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
It's short and sweet...
           "Like a caterpillar!" declares Robin...


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Thank You for Yesterday

I was overwhelmed by the blitzing yesterday.  It was so incredible to have that many people visit my site.  I hoped that no one was disappointed in their time spent!  It occurred to me that it could have been a silly waste of time - a nice gesture - but still a waste of someone's time.  For those who don't like poetry it probably WAS a checklist item... go there, grit your teeth when you see it is poetry time, read it (maybe), comment, done, get on to something else.  And for anyone who was looking for tips about writing... not here.  For a paranormal experience?  Nope.  Won't happen here.  For a funny, squirt milk out your nose laugh?  Not yesterday anyway!  For a cute cat picture?  Sorry, not yesterday - Purrsee wasn't posing in our frying pan again.  For a cute, young blogger with fluttering eyelashes?  Ha! She's been here, but left a few years ago.

So...SO...for all of you that visited yesterday and read my poems of trees and sight, whether you got what you came for or just checked off a list item, I want to thank you.  Thank you, because whether YOU got what YOU needed...you were willing to give someone else something that THEY needed!

And I am so grateful for this experience and happy that I have blitzed others alongside you.  It's an incredible experience and I wish it upon everyone!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

In Celebration of Seeing Trees


At long last all the trees in Maine are sporting fresh greens, and I have sprouted glasses.  These coinciding events have made me doubly appreciative of each.   See yesterday's post "The Blessing of Sight".

I got carried away and decided to literally focus on trees for today.  I pulled the first rhyming poem from my file of poem parts and finished editing it, and then the second one, non-rhyming, is hot off the press, having just popped out of my brain and plopped out on the page.

So now the two Poet Trees to celebrate Seeing Trees... that would be ME seeing trees, not trees that actually SEE... but you knew that. 

Poplars never stand alone
Where one is there’s another
And if the other’s not a friend
It’ll be a sis or brother.
They shake their green well-spangled arms
When winds begin to shout
They flutter-dance and clap and swing
Till leaves laugh inside out.
A happy lot the poplar is-
So friendly and quite popular
From spreading roots below its trunk
To the upper tippy-topular.

And my second "Seeing Trees" poem today:


I never saw you
this way before
or maybe I have
but it's been so long
that I forgot -
I forgot
how your arms
could reach out
to greet me
how up and down
your rough exterior
valleys were created
for ants and caterpillars
and made harsh lichened wrinkles
that skinned my elbows and knees
I've rediscovered how
shadows play with you
and make you
twinkle and shimmer
I seem to remember
how crisp your leaf edges
could be
I am fascinated at
the perfection in
all your imperfections
elegant
flora of forest
with fantasy
roots housing
woodland fairies
and chattering
chipmunks
providing lofty shelter
for birds and
cupping feathered nests
shading turkeys and deer
that scratch and browse below
while overhead
squirrels make their
way on unnamed roads
and highways
overpasses
without stop signs
or speed limits
I want to see
all the splendor
of your world
If I were younger
I would climb
as I did in years past
to look at the world
surrounded by a leafy frame
but today I sit below
leaning against
the solid
age concealing bark
my head tilted skyward
looking up
at your leafy
kaleidoscope
world

Have a wonderful day!  Hug a tree if you get a chance!

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Blessing of Sight


Baby grasshopper by a small water bottle cap.

This morning, as I stood on my porch, I saw things.  I have new glasses.  I've been wearing reading glasses for quite some time.  Years.  And I just got bifocals.  I have a cataract in my right eye and my left has had double vision for a few years now.  I've made do with readers, refusing to succumb to the authentic need for vision assistance.  The cataract will be dealt with in a few months, but I decided I really would like to see before that.  So now I have my glasses. 
I almost cried in the office when I got them.  It wasn't a good cry.  It was not a cry of "Oh, how wonderful, I can finally see again!"  It was a cry of, "Oh, no, I still can't see and it's even worse with glasses on!"  The 200 pairs of glasses on the wall in front of me looked like 400.  The words she put in front of me to read, floated from large to small and wide spacing to narrow.  I could see nothing, and was nauseous to boot.
These can't be the right prescription.  She checked the numbers.  Everything checked out; it was my prescription.  Maybe the doctor had made a mistake?  I would have to go back to see him and get this straightened out - literally.
I put the glasses in their case and left the store with my son.  As we got to the parking lot, I told him that if these were supposed to be the right prescription, maybe I just needed to put them on and see if my eyes would adjust somehow.  It would have to be a miracle though.  These glasses were terrible and I didn't know that I could have them on long enough to even find out if they were ever going to work.  But I put them on anyway and made my way to the car.  I drove with them at the ready...ready to take them off, that is.  I didn't think driving was the best place to experiment, but I did it anyway.  Actually getting out of the office with all the glasses on the wall staring at me had helped immensely.  It was about a 25 minute drive home, and I took the glasses off a couple of times, when I really needed "familiar" depth perception - like pulling up behind someone at a stoplight.  But then I'd pop them on again.  My eyes  actually started getting used to the distance vision. 
As I pulled into our driveway, which is a wooded setting, I could see the light playing deep in the forest that I hadn't seen in years.  I could see the full roundness of the tree trunks, even the sharp edges of the leaves as they moved in the breeze.  It looked like the branches were reaching out to me now.  I laughed. The whole image was surreal.  I made the comment to my son that it was like being in a 3D movie...at which point he asked, "Mom, do you really think you should be driving?" 
I was in my own personal stereoscopic viewer world.  Yes, I should be driving.  I was going to keep my eyes open forever.
I realized because of the glasses I had been wearing, one eye had become dominant over the other with them on, and the other was dominant with them off.  They were never working together anymore really.  And now, with these glasses, my eyes were learning to work cooperatively again. 
The optometrist says it may take a few weeks to be fully comfortable with the glasses.  The close vision is still weird at times, but it's getting better.  I don't have to squint and rub my eyes all the time now.  I can see to read fairly well, and better than I could.  I'm excited to see things I didn't know I was missing.
The great part is, I can see how beautiful the world is again.
The not so great part is ... I have wrinkles.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Friday, June 7, 2013

I Wonder...

It's Poetry Friday!  Yea! Tabatha Yeatts of The Opposite of Indifference is our gracious host today.  Go find some great poetry links to sunny up your day and make your toes sing! (oh, yeah, they sing...ask my kids) 
Okay, here are my poems for kids at heart... all wondery today.  The first one, posted before but read very little, was instigated by Father Goose.  It in turn instigated the others poems.  I wonder what will be next.

How and Why

Are you supposin'
a rose is chosen
by a honeybee's nosin'?
Or thinkest thou
the hue is how
and why a rose gets chosen?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Ant Bee

An ant's as busy as a bee
without the wings to fly.
Do you think ants would love a chance
to strap on wings and try?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I Wonder

I wonder what a fish would do
if he had shoes like us.
Do you think he would walk to school
or ride in a school bus?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Who Is It?

When I was just a little one
I knew my momma’s voice;
And if I saw a hundred mom’s
There'd only be one choice.
I’d know my momma’s face and sound,
And run right up to her;
I’d snuggle close to go to sleep,
And then I’d start to ...
                             
                                        purr-rrr-rr.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I have a few more "wonders"...






Thursday, June 6, 2013

Drama in the Woods


I was working around the kitchen when I heard the little notification that my daughter was online and chatting with me.  So I went over to the computer on the kitchen table - well, one of the kitchen tables - the cat and computer table - and started chatting back.  I face the sliding glass doors to nowhere - twelve years and no deck yet - when I sit at my computer, so I can watch the backyard where turkeys and deer meander through occasionally.  My husband has been keeping up with a bird feeder out there that two red squirrels have taken a liking to, along with some gorgeous blue jays, some chickadees and a variety of other seed-eaters.  From time to time there is a ruckus as both squirrels arrive at the same time.  I've watched them stare each other down - one one the seed brick and the other on a nearby branch.  No one gets to eat then. 
Squirrel 1 on seeds, Squirrel 2 on empty corn holder - staring at each other.


Finally, I will see one chase the other up and down and around tree trunks until someone gets too tired and leaves.  I never know if it's the one doing the chasing or the chasee that gets tired...they look alike and it's a bit like a NASCAR race to me as to whom is ahead of whom.  I mean, when you are going around and around a tree trunk, how do you know who's being chased?
Anyway, as I was chatting...you know, with my daughter...I told you that.  I'm hearing all sorts of commotion in the woods outside.  Scampering, leaves and brush moving, squirrel barking.  Yes, they bark.  My husband is a squirrel eater and he knows.
This commotion seemed to go on for a bit, but I couldn't see anything happening, until suddenly this large bird flew quietly through the trees, and out toward the house.  Now the chattering, barking squirrel was really upset, wherever he was.  I grabbed my camera and went outside (not through the sliders though - and why not?) and slowly went around to the back of the house.  There in the tree just a few feet into the woods was a big ol' owl looking down at me (at this point I remember hearing the owl call just about 10 minutes earlier). 

The squirrel was barking at me now, too and I could see him on the tire of the old lawn tractor, hiding under the fender of the rear wheel.  I took a picture of him and then looked back to take one of the owl, but he was gone.  Just like that.  No noise, no commotion.  Just gone.

The squirrel stopped his barking.  I guess he was no longer mad at me.  He just stared at me from under his John Deere roof.  I went back inside and finished my chat.  The squirrel after a bit came out and raced up and down the closest tree three or four times.  On his last run up the tree he kept going.... hey, now I know why they call them routes and branches...well, roots and branches... they misspell root on the maps.

A blue tarp has been pretty much removed and its fabric backing torn off for some plush nests.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Sunshine

Thanks, Mary Hill of Maryeandering for passing on the Sunshine Award to me.  I would love to now pass on a little sunshine if I could today.

Here are my answers to the questions posed -

1. What inspired you to start blogging?  
I actually started blogging on a couple of my other sites,  one being "Wireless in the Wilderness" which was the start of a blog telling people where they could have a cup of coffee and be wireless in Maine - which are not always easy to find in the wilderness, and the other is "Talk n Tech" which was to pass along tech tips for teachers.  I then got involved with Two Writing Teachers through their Slice of Life daily blogging in March two years ago,  and from there I just kept on writing.

2. How did you come up with the name of your blog?  

Well, my site is main(e)ly my writing in Maine.  It just fit and no one had the name already.  Can you imagine if I lived in California...Californialy Write...nope.

3. What is your favorite blog to read?  

This is not a blog of one of my blogger friends out there.  It's just a blog I've enjoyed reading and recommended to my new mom of a daughter. I haven't visited it much lately.  The title is almost worse/better than the blog: Crappy Pictures.  A mom draws simple pictures to go with her all too real stories about her life with young children and family pets.  I find it hysterical most of the time. You need to read more than one post to get a real feel for the reality of it.  Maybe start with this one.
I have many other favorite blogs written by bloggers I've come to know a bit, but I hesitate to name them all, as I will undoubtedly leave out someone's blog.  So suffice it to say, if you know I'm talking about you, I am.

4. Tell us about your dream job: 

Being a writer and writing something really, really wonderful that even I like to read, as well as people who don't even know me, so they don't have to think it is wonderful because they know me, but think it is wonderful in spite of the fact that they don't know and love me already.

5. Is your glass half-full or half-empty?  

My glass is at least half full.  It's usually running over.  I really need to pay attention when I turn the water on.  A couple of days ago I was cleaning the kitchen sink and I left the water running.  Good thing there was that second drain...

6. If you could go anywhere for a week's vacation, where would you go?  

I would teleport to Newfoundland.  I don't want to go by boat or plane and a car is out of the question.  So I'd teleport as soon as that becomes available to people older than 6.  I've taught first grade.  They teleport.

7. What food can you positively not eat? 

It seems that I have developed an allergy to strawberries and grapes.  And I hate egg whites.  Uncooked they are gross and cooked you can chew them all day and you can't swallow them.  They just turn to fine particles that stay in your mouth forever.

8. Dark chocolate or milk chocolate? 

Yes, please.  (you know, for the longest time I was reading it as chocolate milk and couldn't figure out why the question would be worded that way)

9. How much time do you spend blogging? 

I don't think this is important for anyone to know.  I can quit any time I want to.  I quit before.  I could quit again.  I'm fine.  I can quit chocolate, too.

10. Do you watch TV and if so, what are your favorite shows? 

We are on AppleTV and watch mostly old shows on Netflicks.  We watch all the episodes of a couple shows at a time, one episode a night till it's over.  One of my very favorites is a British show called Doc Martin.  He's a surgeon who has developed a blood phobia and has moved out to a private practice in a rural coastal area.  He's a bit autistic, so it makes for very interesting viewing.
Okay, now for 9 out of the 10 bloggers possible, that I have nominated for the Sunshine Award - take the button and answer the questions, if you feel up to it!



Saturday, June 1, 2013

Saturday's Poetry Friday Continued

Well, Friday morning came way too early for me.  I was congested and up by 2 am and attempted to sleep in a chair.  That didn't work out.  So I was pretty tired for Friday.
While I was awake, I wrote my poems for Poetry Friday and posted them along with some tired drivel that I decided to leave up.
After I posted my poet/poet tree poem, I visited other Poetry Friday posts.  When I got to Father Goose's I read his poem about a bee, and then wrote the following poem as a comment.  I changed my mind, and didn't submit it as a comment.   I'm posting it now as a poem inspired by the poem written by Charles Ghigna at Father Goose's.

Are you supposin'
a rose is chosen
by a honeybee's nosin'?
Or thinkest thou
the hue is how
and why a rose gets chosen?

Oh, goodness.  The title that I was just about to write for this post has inspired me to write something else.  So I have to think of a different title, just in case I use the one I'm thinking of on some other piece of writing.  I'm becoming consumed by another idea now.  I should be sick all the time.