Saturday, October 3, 2015

Reflections on the lateness of being

Facing the ebb of life as you know it.  What life do you know?  I know I love the forest and flowers and

especially you.  Who will take it away?  Time maybe.  When joints are not able to be commandeered to do

what you command them to do.  I think of my groin tear.  Unable to walk.  Unable to hoe my garden or

cut wood to keep us warm for winter.  Oh, get a heat pump--not.  Unless I can't do all of the above, you say

that is not enough to cry about--I say it is enough to grieve deeply as a life loved was life lost.   I sat on the

couch; looked out into the forest and flowers and cried.  Big crocodile tears!  I'm no baby--physical pain

does not make me cry; although this groin injury did.   Normally, I cry like my dad did in the movie Old

 Yeller when I found out that roaring lion, my dad,  was really a softy pussy cat or when he saw me

  graduate  from high school.  A happy crier.  But this couch cry was grief.  Wet tears I could not see a

  future through.  Grieving for what I  thought I could no longer do.  Go sailing to Alaska with Aurelia Eco

Tour charters.  Luckily my old classmate said he could accommodate my handicapped state.  No cry there.

I am now better 2 months later but the doctor tells me it will be a while until I am back to full range of motion

in exercising.  Still, mortality raised its rattlesnake warning rattle.  Today I wait for our good friend, father-

like-friend, neighbor of some 30 years, principled, stubborn friend, to let go of his earthly spirit.  For some of

 us it is a battle to let go of what we called ownership of our life.  But then I write this to try and place myself

on my own death bed.  How will I react?  You cannot own what has been a gift.  You can be thankful for a

gift. But a gift is a gift.  Grace is free.  I am brought to another person's dying.  All of the possessions he has

amassed, the fat bank account, the  big Chrysler 300, the antique guns, cannot be held in his withering

spindle arms.  Lost control.  Clutching his stuff--no longer able.  That is his life story.  What will his obituary

say?  How will mine read.  A-hole finally dead--God, I hope not.  66 and 6 months.  Nooooo!  The

mystery unlocked.  How brave will I be?

                                    Dont weep for me
                                    Ive already cried a sea
                                    Looked into a crystal ball
                                    Seen everything in the future
                                    This is a preview
                                    I heard about old man Caldwell
                                    13 strokes crying on the porch
                                    In his rocking chair they carried him off
                                    Used up by the trees and farm
                                    Said he withered up in the city
                                    I hope I will be brave
                                    I hope my darling wont let them carry me off
                                    Cant I die here
                                    In the shady cathedral of fir and cedar
                                    Pile the Dido pyre wide and towering
                                    Let me take one last look from on high
                                    And as the smoke rises
                                    Carrying me through the boughs to the tree tops
                                    Let the needles feed on the CO2
                                    So that I may eternally
                                    Live on Sacred Ground

           Reflections was written after a conversation I had with Allen while his beautiful little girl,Una, was flitting around.  The epitome of genius & athlete gone; waiting for his fragile health & mind to be totally gone.  My hope for him is that he lives long.  I hope we all do.                                           

                                Reflections on the Lateness of Being

The body in the bathroom mirror

Looked a little like me

Thank God it was fogged a bit

I recognized the person sort of

Like an old high school friend changed

Conversations with frontal lobe impaired Allen

We heard together ticking ticking ticking

Better get the house in order

The inevitable visit is coming

Could be any day

Could be years we both hope

100 not looking to good

Who knows when

Perhaps I hope with him not today

                                    I know Im always late

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Ah, but I do protesteth

                                                  Ah, but I do protesteth

A recent visit to the Kayaktivists media splash, (see shell arctic drilling protests Seattle) gave me reasons for opposing the Shell drilling in the arctic north.  They have won me over to their side.  As I grow older, I have adopted a cynical old man’s world view. 
That it is hopeless to try and change the world.  I offer proof:  presidential underdogs that wanted to change the system that I supported in the primaries or general election:  Anderson, McGovern, Perot, Nader, Kerry, Paul and now Sanders snow ball in hell chance.  All underdogs I supported that were thrown under the wheels of the bus.

That a person, (Me specifically) is much happier to concentrate on the small world that I touch each day.  To make Sacred Ground a more beautiful place and follow Voltaire’s advice to Candide,”cultivate your own garden,” my mantra for so long, perhaps is to misanthropic; adding feelings of hopelessness for change to a world upside down with hate and religious wars.  To add credit to my small-world philosophy before I rant on the protest at hand; I offer several proofs.  I watched Marieke recreate an autumn wreath into a summer wreath that was given to her by one of her best buddies, AnnAlee.  As I watched, Marieke said to me that I probably thought she was wasting time.  Au contraire!  I felt and said that I thought these “making of wreaths” are what constitute the rich garden of our life that is certainly not measured in green dollars as they are woefully shy as a crop. (any donations made over 10 thousand dollars will be used for partying with the Clintons)  Creating those decadent pork chops from the Hanlin’s pig was a culinary masterpiece that nourishes our hunger for life.  A once in a while cholesterol packing is health-wise tolerable.   For me, the jewels that I plant are food for my soul, too.  My sore back is lessened when I look out our living room windows and see Erythroniums, or Bletilla, or Cypripediums join us on the couch.  I have had as many failures as watching the Cypripediums come back again and again.  I guess I can’t classify myself as truly pessimistic about the world.  I am that gardener that has failed with one plant, and failed with it again miserably, but this third and last time I am trying to grow it, I’m sure I know what I was doing wrong.  The joy driving into Sacred Ground makes my tired legs less weary.  Art for arts sake flies us up on a plane far above the animal world.  Do the pleasures of beauty  exceed the pain.  I’ll try chopping my ear off to find out.  I can’t say yes, but I keep on planting.  Sort of like that old hippy saying “Keep on truckin” but in this case it’s “keep on plantin.”   Working man’s pain deadened—my dad knew and I have learned the saying “feelin no pain.”  Enough medication, alcohol or whatever and you can extract a back or shoulder hurt; and say, “feelin no pain.”

My darling wife always poses a very pertinent question:  What will we do when we can’t keep the blackberries from forcing their way through the shingles into our bedroom?”  --Like some Richard Brautigan novel.  Was it Trout Fishing in America or in Water Melon Sugar or maybe you can tell me the novel in which blackberries were devouring a house.  Good question Mieki!  I envision the only use of my secateurs at that blackberry swallowing time, then a feeble old man that can barely squeeze the blade (and bladder) to anvil; cutting vining thorns from our lintel so we may enter our home.  Answer to my darling, “Who cares if the vines are inside?  Easy picking.  Blackberry fermentation—velvet on the palate desert wine.  There’s more.  Being loved is a humbling experience.  It gives up all robes of artifice.  There is only you, naked and vulnerable and still you are loved.  Is this a miracle like a seed?  Bare all bulges, blemishes visible, and still you are loved.  True love is very hard to find  

But hey, I was reminiscing with the kids, Ty and Kristin about how my stay at Stanford got shortened (Vietnam/CO).  I went up to Golden Gate Park with friends and added our number to the 400,000 plus Vietnam War protesters.  All 400 K became linked together like a single organism’s mind, filled with love and peace.  We did change the world.  We said enough is enough.  The powers of conspiracy listened.  So when you have kids to talk to and grand kids, you must look to an optimistic future.  They blew my cynicism, you might say, into the water with the Kayaktivists. 

Back to Black.  I don’t want to go to rehab so I return to the main reason for this blog: 
S-Hell no explorations for oil in the arctic.  At first I was sardonic about the protesters. 
Wow, they came riding into town in their gross gas-guzzling Mercedes SUSteeds; paddled their kayaks made of petroleum base and got their pictures on the 5 o’clock news in protest of Shell’s plans.  WooHoo!  How is that for ridiculing their protest?  But then I talked with my friend Vince, who was the spill and safety coordinator for the city of Valdez.  Remember the Exxon-Valdez?  How human error—actually the captain was snockered caused so much environmental damage.  Vince said the disaster is still there but out of sight.  There would be no way to clean up a bigger disaster spill in the north.  Look to the Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.  Scientists say it is still a disaster present despite clean up efforts.  So is the estimated 90 billion barrels of crude worth an irrevocable, inevitable debacle?  That is a lot of wealth.  The power of greed (the same greedy people who brought you the great recession in 2008)!  No wonder most Alaskans want it.  I bet Sarah wants it.  I’m disappointed Obama supported it.  I know American security and society benefit if the oil is tapped.  I need my gas tank filled.  Screw the Eskimos and polar bears and Salmon and Orca and all the species that have evolved since the beginning of time.  I’m willing to throw the dice and add 90 billion barrels for more global climate change.  Sea levels rising no worry.  I live at 800’ elevation—it’s a while before we have ocean front property.  Weather has always changed since biblical times.  Read your bible:  the bible says there will be 7 years of drought and 7 years of rain.  It’s god’s fault. Then there are advantages to this crisis.  It’s been the dream of sea-farers to save time and money to sail through the Northwest passage.  Let the roulette wheel spin. Am I being facetious?  Yes, I guess that is why I am opposed to nuclear energy too.  How can one drunken mistake or one I didn’t put the safety valve in correctly or one 3 mile island or one Chernobyl be worth our children’s children’s future to the 7th  generation.  I don’t think the gamble is worth our grandchildren’s future.                                                                                                                                                      

 Are you a gambler?

                        The idea
                        The very idea

                        When fortune strikes

                        Like a tree-snapping wind storm in November

                        Misses you totally in December

                        Was it because you couldnt even find a flashlight 11/12

                        Was it because you even had water for coffee and a flush on 12/4


                        Oh but poor fortune

                        Sang time and time again

                        Happening time time time and again

                        A neighbors well is dry

                        Your garden is a straight flush of abundance

                        Fate Fata always one side of the coin

                        What humor is needed

                        Laughter helps to cure

                        Only that fat Buddha  jelly belly shaking

                        I believe in fairy tales

                        That dont always come true

A wish for our children’s planet                       
                                                                Getting In Sync

                                                Can you hear the heart beat of Gaia

                                                Thump thumps in deep tuba tones

                                                Look out what do you see

                                                Mirror mirror of yourself

                                                Sitting on an empty shelf

                                                Look what is reflecting beyond

                                                What is all the clutter in the picture besides your face

                                                Just the world you are connected to

                                                Can you join in all the noise around you

                                                Harmonize with all that is found old-new

90 billion barrels of wildflowers

                                                        Quo Vadis

                                                Tell me where is Nirvana

                                                Do not tell me

                                                It is where the big leaves have gone

                                                Being part of something so big

                                                Or so small

                                                What does it mean

                                                Where will you go

                                                Rich food for your friends

                                                Or nothing at all

                                                What is better

                                                To pile up gold in your hours

                                                Or lay in a meadow with your lover

                                                Rolling in the wild flowers

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

I am a motherless child

                                                      Marie Eloise Gomulkiewicz Kemper

                                                      Holding Court on Sacred Ground

My mom has been gone, but not too long.  Today 4/21 is/was her birthday.  She would have been 95 years

 old.  April 21, 1920-August 29, 2012.  A good run.  She was a party girl.  There are things I can say that

could not be said in the eulogy for Marie Eloise (Gomulkiewicz) Kemper.  Pop always said he could never

recognize the person that was in the casket that the preacher was talking about.  It was if death erased all

sins from human memory.  She was human, she had faults.  Sometimes she was catty or down-right mean.

She taught me to always make sure the phone was hung up before she went on a rant. She would beg  for

 forgiveness. She had favorites.  Who doesn't?  The first dirty joke she ever heard not told in the eulogy:

Blind man walks by the fish store every morning.  Same greeting every day, "Good morning girls!"

Some are lucky to escape such flaws.  But she was a lover--she collected heart rocks and friends.  She had

five children and we all turned out okay--perhaps just not the vision she wanted us to see.  There were years

when I would call the family home and she would not say anything in greeting but,  "I'll get your father."  After

I was married to Marieke for  a while, she became friendly.  Marieke and I have no explanation for this

change in behavior towards me; but we enjoyed many years of  greater love.  She  was human.  All of her

flaws don't mean a thing.

 What's in this eulogy does.  It was hilarious to me that she would  ask me to give her eulogy long

before she was dead.

About 10 years ago Mom asked me to give her eulogy but made me promise I wouldn’t

 cry.  I’ll try MOM.

I say to you what many of you have already experienced: We Kemper kids are both

 motherless and fatherless children but we are not here to grieve

for ourselves.  We are here to celebrate our Mother, our friend, such an extraordinary

woman who died at the age of 92.  She passed from this world with little monetary worth

but the legacy of riches she left are here sitting right next to you.  Many friends are

 missing: our Dad, her sister Ann, brother Stan, Grandson Gabriel, Mart Klinger, Dee

 Sullivan, members of the circle guild, Saint Joseph’s banner makers and so many that it

 would fill this church to standing room only.  But we the living are here-Sister Connie,

 Brother Paul, nieces and nephews and many good friends.

Yes she died with few assets but she died the way she lived, the richest woman in the

world-the queen of hearts.  A heart so big it could hold us all.  She had a collection of

 Heart rocks that she found on the beach or anywhere she went, but it could not fill a

 Dump truck compared to the hearts she held in her soul.

My sisters Geni and Lisa, brothers Tom and Steve and their families and mine, I cannot

name you all, it would be longer than an Easter vigil service, but you know who you are,

 look around again, see how she brought us all together to share her love.

How the prettiest girl at McCoy auto company chose our Father to go on a 65 year dance

 of love sometimes baffles me -for they were fire and water.  Maybe the cliché is true:

 opposites attract, but no one could ever deny that our Dad loved her and cared for her

                                                                Pop and Mom

 until his last breath.  His final job was to find a safe home for her to live where she would

 be lovingly taken care of, with some old friends Allah and Sergei Tokorov.

When she was settled in her new home, his last act of taking care of her, he said, “I am

 tired,” and he left her and us.  She would always say, “I miss Pop,” and look lovingly at

his picture: but it didn’t stop her from continuing to live large.  She was taken care of by

an angel, Venice.  She wasted no time in making friends with everyone in her new home,

 including a little old lady, Phyllis-our Mom never ever considered herself old-well I guess

I am 92.

Later as Phyllis lay dying, Venice and Mom sat by her bedside, holding her hands and

 praying because no one should die alone.  She loved everyone and was strong in her faith.

  She grew up in the hands of the Sister of Providence, back when they could still smack

 the back of your hand with a ruler.  Geni graduated high school from the same academy

 and  Tom had the starring role as the little Maestro in his kindergarten play there.

She worked in the shipyards and after the war went to work for McCoy Auto company.

  There her virginal naiveté met our worldly wise Father, a handsome rake, wearing an

 earring from his navy days.  When they were out with friends and someone told an off

 color joke, (I could tell you the first one she ever heard but that is at the reception if you

 are interested) but my Dad would patiently explain the joke to her.

The courtship was guided by the old church, laws of mixed up, oops, I mean mixed

marriages.  I can picture our Pop, a loose Protestant, who even confessed to me that he

had gone to a few holy roller tent revivals for fun. Saying anything to the Priest, signing

anything and agreeing to anything as long as he got that girl.

And then came us-5 children.  Mom and Pop’s rhythm was great on the swing era dance

 floor at Jantzen Beach-not so good  in the bedroom, but all of us were wanted and loved.

  Always she loved and supported our Dad.  When we had little capital to begin the service

 station, she even let him put her beloved piano up for collateral-a piano that Geni and Lisa

 learned to play on and that now her Grandchildren make music on.  She loved music.  She

 always had season tickets to BRAVO that she enjoyed with her good friend Joan.

Ah, the widow years of the service station when Pop would have to work 16 of 24 hours.

She would bring him lunch and dinner and make part runs.  She did everything she could

 so we could survive and the service station thrived.

She felt it was of the utmost importance to dress her children in their Sunday finest for

 church, although having me wear my fine wool pants for baseball practice was a little

over the top.  She had running accounts with Meier and Frank and Nordstroms.  Several

 times our Dad would become exasperated with the balances and he would demand she

 hand over her cards and would make a show of cutting them up.  But oh Mom had a little

naughty in her and as soon as things quieted down she would take one of us for a first

 communion suit or confirmation dress- go to the billing office and say she lost her card.

  She could not let her children want.

We lived in a little 3 bedroom house on 13th street next to the best friends, the Klingers, 3

 boys in one room, 2 girls in the other.  Trying to keep a small house tidy was no small

 feat and when it was not and our rooms were messy she would go on the warpath,

 Chasing us with a switch singing, “the war is on, the war is on,” and we would begin to

Laugh and join in the chant, the war is on, the war is on and then she would say, “wait

 until your father comes home.”

Her capacity to adopt people as her own is testament.  When Marieke so grieved for her

 mother, Mom took her hand and said, “I will be your Mother now” and she did love her

 as a daughter as she did Melanie.  When Melanie’s mother died, feeling so lost, the only

 place she wanted to be was at Mom’s dining room table, getting fussed over along with

 her sisters.

Perhaps that is why she loved her baby Lisa, her favorite, although we were all her

 favorite.  I would always say to her, “you’re favorite son is here,” and she never denied it.

Just kidding.

Defining Heaven                 

What could  you say of hell

One would perhaps brimstone smell

The  chimnea embers danced hot

Butter on the skillet gone forgot

Could it be as they say

A presence never to visit or stay

I know the beauty of today

Heaped up around us lay

Sad never to hear see joy

Being grandparents to a baby girl or boy

                                          She loved her grandchildren and great grandchildren--not all pictured.

Lisa inherited that adoptive nature and gave her 7 beautiful grandchildren that she loved as

 her own.

To all of her grandchildren she was GrandMarie, Yes she was grand, Grant, Tyson, Gabe,

Noel, Alisa, Nicole, Madeline, Joe, Rose, Lily, Joe, Grace, Clare, John and Anthony.

  Remember making valentines and decorating cookies?  The hand made Christmas tree

 skirts and stockings?  She loved children-let the little children come unto me.

When she was semi-comatose the last full day before she died, Alisa brought her youngest

Great granddaughter.  She put the amazing Maisy close to her face and Maisy jibber

Jabbered  and mom came awake like Lazarus.  She opened her eyes, smiled,  tried to

sit up and reach to hold the baby, though we had been with her for hours.   During those

last lucid minutes I kissed her and she said, “ I love you.”

Her language was a language of love.  Though she had forgotten her Polish, when

 neighbor  Miraslavs mother visited from Poland, they communicated as only

grandmothers do.   When Terrie, who loved and helped keep our mother and father in

 their home until it was no longer possible, brought her mother from Ethiopia to visit,

 although they could not speak a word to each other, they communicated with hugs and

 kisses as if they had know each other for years.  No color, but the red hearts of love.

She was a party girl--taught our Dad when unannounced guests arrive to say, “ the more

 the merrier.”  Even though the last month of her life she would say to Geni on one of her

 many sleep-overs, “Why doesn’t the Lord take me to be with Pop”  Lisa added that the

 night before our 27th annual festival, of which she had never missed one. Mom said, “I

 can’t go to heaven until after the party.”  Alas, she couldn’t come but she called 3 times

 to see how the festivities  were going.  She never missed Annie’s  St. Patties Day party

 and Annie continued to be her friend bringing her communion and flowers.

Her cooking was legendary.  Everyone knows about her German chocolate cake that went

for 1000 dollars at the St Joseph’s auction.  She had the flourish of Julia Child when

cooking without the measuring.  She would taste and add a dash of this, a handful of that,

 and OOOH the spaghetti needs more fresh basil.  Her mantra was butter, but I could

never figure out when the 5 of us were at home we only had margarine.  She inspired

Steve to be the gourmet cook that he is.

Oh vanity thy name is Marie.  Can you imagine what person has 70 scarves to choose

from and that was after the number had been pared down by 1/3 when they moved.  She

 was always a stylin lady, up on the latest fashions, pouring over Nordstrom and Nieman

 Marcus catalogs.  When she was in her late 80’s she found a $500, dusty rose purse at

Nordy’s and said, “Oh Gene I have to have it.”  I might add his favorite saying “whatever

 Marie”  Our Father could never say no to the love of his life.

The last few years almost everyday she would be fixed up like she was going out and

 when she did go out Venice or Allah would apply make up and jewelry and a spray of

perfume.  Gerda would come and fix her hair and always bought flowers.  On her 90th

birthday Gerda hired a limo and many of Mom’s friends were waiting inside-they did the


Can I mention all the people that touched her life, the Westgates for years of friendship,

 Norann with all those shopping excursions that she loved best, Mary Natta for bravely

 taking her to lunches even though mobility was a problem.  Linda and Dell for bringing

 their daughter and grandchildren as Mom held court in her wheelchair and as they left

 Joan, Cathy and Fran, with Shaina and me circling around her, adoring fans in the

Sunshine of her last week.  Can I mention you all-loving neighbors, always ready to lend a

 hand,  Mike Klinger honored to play his original composition for her here today, Joe

 Kemper for the picture history of our Mom and the Mckeirnan kids for playing for their

 Grandmother here and at her home for the other members pleasure.

Finally Mom must thank Melanie, who took her to all of her medical appointments, out for

 lunches, was unflagging in her devotion to her mental and physical heath.  And to Tom

 who sacrificed and took her to church and worked hard so many years to manage the

Folks finances.

Mom thanks all of you who shared her LOVE!!!  .

Gin and I Ponder Death                                                           
The time has been well spent.
Did you want to repeat
What you said
Only a little
Was it worth saying at all or
Did you believe it was
A joke then but
Now it makes

There was someone else who believed
Not like a crowded church parking lot
Rows of Japanese maple clones are waiting
To be worshiped like emperor one
She said the words I have been thinking
For a long time maybe 90 years she said
What’s the matter with going to sleep?
We have no promises of smiling reuniting
Memories only that become the recorded word
Of  every brain’s man-consciousness
Saying I have not crushed the hummingbird’s dreams
I have built compost and planted all colored maples
I am happy to go to sleep each night
As long as I was aware the day before
And the day before that
And if I was sleeping while it was light
Forgive me

                                       How Rich

If you are the person

Who must have a clear cut around your home

Then you have not committed to faith and love

You have risked nothing

You have lost even

Where will you spend your whordes

What will you get for it

The time is coming fast

Then it is over

As we have known it

The Omega prophecy is here

Not some ticker board bouncing speculator numbers

Happiness fat gardens friends

All will dwell in love and harmony

Friday, February 13, 2015

Valentines 2015 flood the whole year with valentines


         It wouldn't be right if I didn't wax mushily about love on this day.   I remember a priest sermonizing about St. Valentine. He said this was the day that robins and other birds became flirtatious.  It's true!   Go out and watch a couplet of robins today!  What's a saint noticing stuff like that?  Also, I never got the point of his sermon unless the theme was love of all creation.

 And so:  Just an old fashioned love song  how would that come to be.  The 64 dollar question:  Always that question:  Why do you love me?  .  Love--we are talking about how do you care? What makes you like/love me with all my idiosyncrasies and faults let alone cherish me ("cherish is the word") like you do?.  Why?  You have all of the answers.  Still, I am remembering  the conversation of the other night; that we are discussing more of tonight.  I am trying to tell you that I thought we barely changed each others minds; but came to respect and accept the way you or I felt--after 30 years we are still defining our relationship.  Not to change each other--merely to have heard each others voiced opinions.  That brings one to say I was listened to and can I move in some closer direction to the other persons point of view?  Can I actually wear their heavy steps.  I saw give now; how can I give back?  Even the deepest love and commitments suffer waves of harmonious- less days.  The question is how can we survive these teensy to wiping out tsunamis?  Get a counselor or a life.or accept and embrace the other persons differences.  This is our 30th year together.  Certainly, calls for a summer party we will have in 2016,  maybe.  Is a trecade worth celebrating?  One cannot deny there were some hard times; but mostly it was 30 plus years of pure ecstasy and selfishness of being good to yourself and your other self.  To be seeing oneself in a mirror; yet the other reflected person is not a doppelganger, but the yang of oneself.  Am I making any sense describing love long lasted survives.  How it can still escape out of the same ole same ole.  How every time is new best ever.   Like the menu planning that gets repetitive and boring.  How can we change that?  I will always love sourdough (thanks for the starter Johnny B) just a little to much in pounds and they aren't  worth a  buck- fifty English.  Or homemade apple pie or chicken and dumplings.

                        Best ever biscuit recipe that yields the best dumplings that are light as a feather.  
                                 Have light as feather biscuits in the morning/feather dumplings that night

                                 2-cups of Flour
                                 1-teaspoon of salt
                                 2+-teaspoons of dbl-acting baking powder
                                 1/2 teaspoon of soda
                                  Sift 6 + times I believe this contributes to lightness/gotta tie-em to your plate

                                  Cut in to sifted product 1 stick of Tillamook butter
                                  Divide above in half  in separate bowls if making both biscuits/dumplings

  On to Biscuits half    1/4 cup of sugar cut in (almost double if you are just making biscuits)
                                  In a separate bowl

                                  2-eggs  beat until frothy (3 eggs if just making biscuits)
                                  1/2 cup of  heavy sour cream/mix with eggs (double if just making biscuits)
                                  Mix egg/sour cream into biscuit half . This product should be firm and stiff.  If not
                                  add flour to stiffness.
                                  Use an old fashioned ice cream scoop that turns out cool round uniform dollops
                                  onto a pammed cookie sheet

                                  Garnish with Raw sugar crystals friends brought from Hawaii

                                  Bake @ 450 in a preheated oven for 12 minutes

On to Dumplings half
                                  In a separate bowl

                                  2-eggs beat until frothy
                                  1/2 cup of heavy sour cream mix with eggs
                                  Add egg/cream to dumpling half.  This should be firm and stiff.

                                  With same ice cream scoop, drop dumplings into a simmering dutch oven/give them
                                   room as they will double.  Cover with lid.  Cook about 15 minutes.  Use the old
                                   tooth pick test for doneness

Why would I include a recipe for best ever biscuits on Valentine's day?  It's what makes life worth living:  the 3 F's.  Fooding, Friending (you), and I leave the 3rd F to your imagination.??????? Did you say Fidelity?

The lottery is now at 450 million.  If I won would I keep my day job?  I seemed silly as I tried to work the machine for a 2 dollar quick pick.  The lady behind me was so nice to help--I explained I was not a usual player and she said, " half a billion; who wouldn't try."  Out came the ticket and I said to her, " if I win I'll meet you here and give you a 100--that's a hundred thousand."  To have so much money is mind boggling. Keep our house, fix up a good number of things.  Keep the old lady--I would never talk about my wife the love of my life like that.  Of course I would keep her--that's what this Valentine blog is about.  True love, true love is very hard to find cause money can't buy me love  Could we keep our poverty of spirit? Well if we don't win, will still have poverty.  We'll always have fun til the money runs out.  Bunnahabhain, best ever biscuits and love--how rich can you be?

              For is it not true that we tie youth to spring and robins flirting.  Watching snowdrops, daffodils and tulips break out of sleep.Thinking of you and me in an old body;  I see you in the photographs in Spring or the summer of 30 years ago.

 Silhouetted in the setting Joshua tree sunset; or  in a sexy skimpily clothed perhaps too lean body languidly lounging in a skiff  in Ketchikan, or  in a bikini not too itsy but oh so eye-catchy on lake Williams--We see today what our eyes saw then and it is real.  It reminds me of the part in the Shining where Jack Nicholson is holding a beautiful woman in his arms and suddenly the years turn her wrinkled and old in his embrace and he is horrified.  We all go there.  I am not but a little afraid.  I still see you.  I still feel you.  We still have break through communications.  Maybe it is seeing your essence.  What really you are in body and soul.  It's confounding, but true.  My mind and my eye still see you.

              If you are that friend, truly captured in time, it does not matter if I see you yesterday, years ago or
tomorrow; it is always today.   There is always that magic--call it clicking--when life with each other continues as though time has never stopped from the last time we were in continuum.  That is friendship that is love that is forever.  Never forget, that is the true meaning of Valentines day.

Now some love poems from the Mossman

There is this kind of  love


Salt and scented sometimes

Trumps soap and squeaky  clean

Sweat and the musky smell are part

Of ordinary unscheduled days

When time has turned  to dark

You must not let this chance go

Without kissing her

Going to that place

Where tectonic plates collide

The wild earth quake ride

Tides rising and sweeping you away

Into another tomorrow today


There are all kinds of  addictive loves/some good

                                        Growing Heaven

Why do I Garden
Why do I love Camel cigarettes
So many dreams
What does the picture painted mean
Is it such deep loam the garden of Eden
Is that what we are trying to plant
In our bones in each shovel full
I cannot deny
Seeking koan answers
Whether it be the lilies in night breathing
Waiting for that warm late dark
When blooming jasmine cloyingly overwhelms
To have plant sharing friends
Pure joy of a pregnant red filled pod of Arisaema
Fall again
So many poems of yellowing big leaves maples
It is now happening again
But not quite yet
The field of ground fog flows portending
There is still time
The corn is not all shared
There is not gold kernels in freezer bags
Save some for the fattening pigs and chickens
No wine gurgling in fermenters
Lets whine go ahead raspberries crush me
It is all about you
All about flowers and friends
Oh you begonia garden getting ready for rest
I am the billion dollar counter
Counting counting blooms of grandpas morning glories
How I must  remember each velvet color
Wait you are still present
So I must remind myself
Take the scales from my eyes Jesus
This is the end of times again another season
When we will learn
To tend our garden with Candide
To grow only flowers for the bees
There are destructive addictive loves


My heart is broken  a million pieces on the ground

You stole our fat smiles

Left us only frowns

Grandchildren vanished 3000 miles away

You brought tears to eyes that never cried

Now we are the living zombies as if we had died

Love betrayed by lies

Trust stolen in all of our lives

Who can put humpty dumpty back together again

  Only you


There are trans formative loves

     Love Can Change You

Trite has been said before

How cruel and mean you could be


When you could kick a dog

Break a heart without remorse


I do not think I am talking about myself maybe

It is you you know who


Now people must take back everything

They said and thought about you


I never knew you then

But I know this you


Love can change you

Love did change you

Happy Valentines Day from the Mossman & Mieki!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

I'm Back

     Sometime in late Septober / The last babies are to bed--Begonias, Brugmansia, all our tender jewels--dormant in their 40 degree greenhouse.  I return to my blog--so unfaithful to thought. Buried in the soil--protecting garlic from choking weeds; planting more veggies; now protecting more; harvesting; putting up to jar and freezer; sharing; the wood shed full; tilling; re-planting the bounty of garlic and shallots.   #So much for good intentions.

      Now sometime in the baby '15 / I take to the key board--God I wish I could play music--tickling, no raging the ivories like Mikey or Gordon, or all the ones who just know.  Not that great at typing either--but this dyslexic can get criss-crossed letters right the second time.  Here we go.

      The faithlessness to my blog is couched in fear.  To say something significant when it has all been said is to dare that it can be said knews.  I wished I could say like my friend and blogger, Talon Buchholz (Flora Wonder) I have written every week for 5 or more years singing the praise of maples & beauty & sometimes pedagogic about any wild hair.  I salute you.

       So I want to brag about fixing my tractor.  Does this qualify as news?   Somehow the cap on the fuel tank blew off after my last fueling her.  Big winds and inches of rain down a three inch diameter opening for weeks means H2O oops, if you can believe that wind thing.  Assess the problem:  water in the tank.  Drain tank until no water is evident and in the meantime discover that the fuel filter has one inch of red nasty rusty gunk.  Go to Napa Parts how I wish I was in the other Napa, sunny wine country sipping, tasting, gulping till there is nothing but a dry green bottle of air that rattles like meditating on the sound of one hand clapping.  Maybe your clapping with two hands for me because my tractor actually ran. What is the lesson here? 

       We love vino or fructo or distilledo.  It is like most of the ways people can live with all of the injustices of the world by accepting the discounted $4.48 for daily consumption, knowing it isn't the best taste. Knowing what a good bottle tastes like--save 10%:  $9.90--Wow for a special occasion-- like tonight.  And I can forget the poor man hugging the steaming grate; with the cheap stuff I can forget but I will take personal responsibility for H20 in my gas tank.;" We all want to change the world." I don't know how to revolution, do you?  "THERE'S GOING TO BE A REVOLUTION..." like the Beatles, but that never happened; was somehow hijacked because there might have been more change besides long hair and herb on the table; and people pointed to hair and buried the meaning of the movement. Conspiracy to obfuscate--the old three card monte. God, that was my Sunday religion.  Now it's the Church of Basket Flat. Couldn't create a society of justice based on love.  Says an old man getting on the latter side of 65; though I wouldn't say long in the tooth.  (How old do you have to be, to be considered long in the tooth and why don't the say long in the teeth.)

      And there's the thing about the circle.  The older you survive, the faster the circle spins.  Repeating, but faster.  Recession--dare not call it depression--so call me selfish.  I want some seeds to plant.  Lots of seeds to try and to try and reduplicate the best times they were planted by little ole me.  I can't help what's going on.  They'll kill you with some crazy person like they did John and Martin and all the others.  Don't whisper "conspiracy" or they'll call you crazy.  They do it every time things start to get real.  Just give me some seeds and a few cuttings and I'll be happy.  Did I say what powers my life?  You don't have to guess for 30 years--she has taught me everything about loving and it's picking raspberries to crush (Red's Raspberry)--not to go on about Marieke.  Seeds and weeds rhyme too easily and the harmony is there if both happily coexist.  Me, I want to be happy.  I want a riot with some order to it,  and I don't want violence trying to make a point but the point is lost because of the act of negation.  It's hard to get it across to a hard head like me. It takes a few clangs to the head for me to understand.

So let's talk poetry.  Call it good.  Call it bad.  Give me scorn or acceptance.  But give me verse:


               The winter is cold

               The winter is long

               The winter is hard

               The winter is wet

               Pray for the baby Jesus

                                                                 Finding You

                                                  Most choices are guided by fate

                                                  The roads diverged

                                                  The next step was taken

                                                  Before you knew which path to take

                                                  There you were

                                                  The farm not returned to

                                                  A disguise with cookies

                                                  The apple from Eve

                                                  Her greatest gift leaving

                                                  Then there was you

                                                  Open sesame

                                                  It didn't matter where your steps led

                                                  Only that you were beside me

                                                  And in me

                                                  And out of me

                                                  The wooded trails are wild

                                                  Truth be told

                                                  They all lead to you

                            Its the Season

                   Its the season of the larks

                   Don't believe all their hark hark harks

                   They believe you believe their repetitious cry is true

                   They very slowly turn the screw

                   Fight the flock underground

                   There will come a time chased by these hark sounds

                   No more tea-filled ships from England

                   Dumped in harbors trampled in sand

                   I cannot leave this Sacred Ground

                   To fight a hopeless war

                   But we won that 76 one

                   Could you and I win in 15

                   Vegas odds are slim

      Bearing Gifts To Nothing

Can man ever change his flaw

Single I stand not wanting to be right

Asking only the chance to plead my cause

I cannot say but here is my light

Generic masses hold tragic failings

They die of greed  or humility

In Dutch phantoms or Caine sailings

Swearing oaths god damn their inability to sin

Who will kill you ugly hydra

I can only pique make you madder

Only to suffer as poor Phaedra

Does truth care does it matter

Blame the gods for such faulty workmanship

Or the stars not you dear Brutus

Your fathers worshipped the flag why not shit

One mans questions are koto notes in the wind 

Island or continent time grinds to sand

Despite our breathings for all our toilings

So I try to forget I am a weak man

Foolishly bearing gifts for nothing