Astronomy Picture of the Day

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Swallow Flight Training & Crow Talk

The swallows have been doing a bang up job dessimating many bugs, feeding their babies.
Now the first baby swallows are in flight school.
We watched them sit and a parent comes by and basically knocks them off into flight.
The parents are after the kids all the time to practice flying and learning to feed themselves, these 6 week old baby birds who, in another 12 weeks or so,
will fly to South America
with their next siblings soon to hatch.

And I got to talk with Mom as I sat out back on a nice day. We had a nice conversation as usual.
Then a crow cawed in the distance, a familiar friend.
Mom did not hear it, a thousand miles away.
Then the crow flew and hovered directly over my head,
Caw, Caw...how many I do not remember exactly, I think 5.
Did you hear that? I asked Mom.
Yes, she heard him that time,
our friendly crow friend.
"I didn't understand what he said", Mom said and then added, "I don't speak Crow."
I don't either, of course.
But I never tire of hearing Crow Talk.

Lawyering

Lawyering

Summer is a good time to bust on lawyers
because that is when they always take their vacations.
This is one strategy in my how to drive a lawyer crazy book.
I have not written it yet, and may never get to finish,
but here is the opening poem:

Lawyering
Back and forth they go
Poor folks suffer losing time
Property all gone

Believe me, this single poem is the most succinct way to see what lawyering is.
(it is not in the dictionary, for one thing).

Lesson 1.
In opposing a lawyer,
The first lesson is to determine what religious affiliation they are
and then you will know their vacation schedule.
Next, file the big motions right before a vacation.

stay tuned for more hints...........

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Garden challenges & Road

The Garden is giving us challenges we have not yet had.
So much snow, then rain, rain.
Last night a heavy dew?
Today, rain this pm.
Some sunlight drifting in from time to time,
makes you squint
since we have been living with the sky in greyscales.
What plants we managed to get out look marvellous,
reminding us that things could be worse,
and the food we grow
and store
becomes more precious
with all these challenges.

how about our road pics?
It is worse than it looks,
the camera failing to show our disappointment
(over $6,000 vt prop taxes due in 4 months on this property)
especially when a river is running through it...
I call this shovel ready,
where is my bailout?

Gunpowder Lane, Monkton, Vermont,US


Monday, June 27, 2011

Roses & Sundrops


Roses

Sundrops

We hurried to plant what we could in between
rain showers
&
cold fronts.
I snapped a couple of pictures of flowers
and had no time to edit.
We did stop once or twice to smell the fragrant roses.
Sundrops shunning the clouds and giving us bright color
and hope.




Saturday, June 25, 2011

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Eagle Dared

The Eagle dared to run this story,
when the AP buried it.

http://www.denpubs.com/Articles-c-2011-06-15-107570.114134-Sen-Delinquent-Taxes.html


And am grateful to Lisa Emrich for including my poem in
The Carnival of MS Bloggers.

Visit Lisa,
or grab her widgets in my side panel.

Thanks Lisa!!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Spasticity Poem I




Quit pulling my leg,
You rowdy MonSter,
Couldn’t sleep past 4
Again.





Never knew what spasms were
When patients told me,

Hard to see,

Calf goes flat,



The Pain,

A Whimper,


A Grimace,
A bite of the tongue,

A face washed of smiles.

First goes flat, then gnarly, the muscles contract

In a schizophrenic symphony,

Discordant,

All wrong.

Rub my knee, flex my foot,

Jump out of bed, stomp like a weird dance,

Go away you spasms and pain,


Die you MonSter,
Die.







Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Three Longest Days

Today is the second of the three longest daylight days for us in the Northern Hemisphere.
When I did a post of the Three Shortest Days, someone searched google for the three shortest days.
So, while I found it strange that I would do a post about some strange thought I had,
I found it even stranger that someone else thought something even similar.
We get a little daylight obsessed up here, are so light deprived in the winter.
So today being
The Longest Daylight Day
it is naturally special,
and a little sadness
leaks through
when we think
The light of day will get progressively shorter a tiny bit each day until December 20 something.
We managed to prepare a few more garden beds last night
and hope to plant some more before the next rainfall.
meanwhile,
Enjoy the Longest Day today
and try to hold that thought.
Summer begins today.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Universe

When the Planets come together




In a line



Or the Sun eclipses the Moon or the Earth



We see a special time,



A point,



A place,



So rare



And



Beautiful.







We are cavemen at heart,



A simple lot really,



Thriving on



Love,



Attention,



Recognition of our strengths,



And craving a Diminution of our failures,



We remind ourselves of every day.







Each of us are  human beings,



Born of



“a dream someone dreamed one afternoon, long ago…”



Still wondering how or why
we are where we are
as we gaze at the stars
that were once our guide.






Sunday, June 19, 2011

Potatoes

The Potatoes went in today and thus begins our planting season, better later than never.
I planted some of the bigger pepper plants & immediately a whipping wind came up.
It is not like we can just un-plant them...they were still standing when the sun went down.

We did stop to smell the old roses and cut a few stems for the table.

Next: rest & unconsious muscle repair aka sleep

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Button, Button

Button, Button,
Who has the Button?

The last and first words I remember my Grandmother say.
She is a shadow in my memory, a mirage, at times,
her soft face just out of reach,
wishing I had been a little older
when she let go.

Somehow I incorporate her few photos
into a person of 3 dimensional qualities,
but the reality sets in
and I am 2 again.
I just do not remember her.

Fanny is her name, I did another post about her as the stage actress.
She is a woman I knew from my Mother's stories.

My mother relied on Fanny to tell her about her Father,
my Grandfather.
Fanny lost Kelly when Mom was 5.

Still all I have is the memory of a button box,
I still have a few of those buttons.
Oh, and those bright Bohemian eyes,
that soft way Mom would talk about her,
Who has the Button?

And trying to explore who Fanny was,
The Woman
living through the last great depression,
with what she had to deal with,
and all they had were buttons to play with.

Who has the Button?








Thursday, June 16, 2011

4 Years

for
4 years

I have been
on this study,
to find a way to
slow down or
stop
The MonSter
called MS.

Every 3 months,
I visit my clinic
family,
some used to be my
coworkers,
on the neuro floor,
years ago,
soon to be
30 Years
ago.

It does not seem like
4 years,
or 30 years,
I feel little difference
in who I am.

The protein soup
or placebo,
is what
I ingest
parenterally,
through subcutaneous
or intramuscular
means using
sharp hollow needles,
(much better than the
bigger ones of 30 years ago).

It is thought
that perhaps it is a decoy for my
immune system,
but the bottom line you get,
they just do not know if it works,
or why.

Still, today,
in clinic
I felt like Hill
was sitting somewhere near me,
somehow in his afterlife,
was he still second guessing
his studies?

And I gave him a silent tribute,
all to myself,
thinking,
I loved that Doctor
and his ways
of looking at you
and listening...
so rare.

And when Angie came bouncing into the room,
Hill's Protege,
the right person to take his place,
I silently thanked Hill
for picking her,
for making this wonderful clinic,
for his brave bold studies,
and for his succession plans.

I never called him Hill,
but his friends did,
and after taking his study meds
for 4 years,
just thought I would get informal,
 like I worked there again.

I really felt his presence this time,
and as I laughed with Angie
and the other staff,
I think I saw him smile again.











Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Sunshine and Shadows

I am so honored to receive
The Sunshine award,
from my dear friend Herrad,
who lives across the pond.

Stay tuned, it will pass to another blogger soon.

Meanwhile, while moderating my comments, I received a comment
on "Which 251".
That post was an attempt to explain that there are 251 towns in the state and about
as many different tax codes with their different ways of taking property
when you do not pay
"the man".
So rather than just let this poignant comment just be put on the shelf,
I am posting on my Sunshine post,
So sweet of Herrad to give Sunshine,
and the light from these anonymous comrade from a neighboring town
has made my day all the better.

anonymously received from my comments:
We have a lot of empathy for you. Our /Charlotte property tax is 26% of our taxable income. We are elderly, and have been told that legislators want to help keep us (the elderly)in our homes and that they are working on restructuring the school tax (the culprit). The legislature knows about our situation--we'll see how long it takes to get relief! We are at their mercy unless something like a class action suit can be brought. I assume you have written to all the legislators? Best wishes!!

For every sunbeam,
a shadow.





Tuesday, June 14, 2011

More peonies

 

DSC00833

DSC00831

 

and what is going on down under?

don’t look if ant-phobic…

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an ant’s world….

 

Then more Rhubarb flowers for the heck of it.

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rhubarb racing hops vines…

monkton, vt 2011

Monday, June 13, 2011

Good Taste

Horseradish in bloom
Monkton, Early June 2011
Gardens too wet here to plant or even till.
This good tasting root plant grows by
our  back door:
Horseradish,
exudes the characteristic horseradish smell
 from it's delicate white flower spikes.
The Gardens we hope will dry out this week.
been enjoying Levon Helm's Ramble at the Ryman, a must for anyone....levonhelm.com

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Bumblebees and Peonies

 

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These bumblebees were drying off after torrential rain Friday pm.

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And the progression of the Peonies:

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DSC00827

DSC00829

I believe the lightning blew them wide open.

They always bloom just after a thunderstorm…

Friday, June 10, 2011

Lightning

I was born
of the
lightning
and the
thunder
and the rain.

And when
the dry spells happen,
there the rain is once again.

Sometimes too much,
Sometimes not enough.

Some days water pulls you down,
Some days it pushes you up.

Funny how the rain
it pours,
after lightning
and thunder,
sometimes that lifts my spirit
and
some days,
it puts me under.



addendum: did the massive solar flare touch off
the very impressive t-storms last noc?
We had a strike right behind the  house which inspired my poem.
I wrote it on paper because we had to shut down
all our phones with these storms.
Check out the links in the astronomy pic of the day-
awesome to watch the Sun close up....

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Peonies,Locusts & Rhubarb

 

 

Caution squeamish: ant images below….

 

DSC00805

The peonies are being prepped by their faithful ant colony

 

DSC00810

 

Rhubarb in flower & Hops (above)

DSC00811

Locusts blooms (above and below),

hard to capture on film,

the hum of the bees,

unattainable.

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And lastly, from the base of Dad’s tree (right) looking up.

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Summer’s images.

Halls of Shame II

The Halls of Shame II
by mary e. gerdt
2011 all rights reserved

the halls of shame
are dark and long,
a lonely place &
hard to escape

i published my rants
on my blog and wrote to
all the politicians
i could handle
about how property tax lien sales in Vermont
are
wrong,
mean spirited,
greedy,
evil,
discriminatory,
arbitrary,
and lack due process
by design

that the rules of abatement
are dependent on your stature in town &
how badly someone wants what you have
or wants to destroy who you are.

no response was seen
day after day
i recently started trying to blog & write to the so called free press
about towns and how they have powers
that take my rights away &
they censored me

and when the vt senator who nearly saw his 500k house sold
for 6k that was due 4 months ago
said, we have been shamed
i wondered
why did he think this was
shameful?

i guess the same reason i did

i hoped maybe he would re-look at all the laws
that allow
one local person in each town to foreclose on your
property to satisfy
taxes
and unconstitutional penalties
as if we taxpayers
are all sinners
and
scofflaws
as reported
by the national enquirer trained
so called reporters

what do they know of the halls of shame?

my reporting more street credible,
more personal


and when a lawyer says he cannot pay the taxes
because business is slow
and his legislation
became his own undoing

it is time for a change
in the halls of shame

"the best way to repeal a bad law is to enforce it strictly" Abraham Lincoln

Monday, June 6, 2011

Crown Point Bridge Update Early June 2011 and a few recent flood pics.




Normally I do not post twice in a day,
but I stayed up editing these pictures into a movie of the Crown Point Bridge construction update and a few flood pictures near there.

Locusts in Bloom

 

DSC00796

They were trees that Vermonters planted

100 or more year ago.

I believe the original intent was for a status symbol.

For us, a summer treat of flowers,

a great windbreak,

home for squirrels, starlings,

and endless sticks that shed on the ground.

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DSC00793

and a preview of my next photo-video

of the Crown Point Bridge

DSC00783

Crown Point Bridge and Flatiron construction crew.

These guys work all the time!

mini movie coming soon…….

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Summer Begins

Summer Begins
When the locust trees bloom
in long clusters of
soft full
white
fragrant
flowers,
and the bees appear,
having feasted fully
on
apple, cherry,
pear, mountain ash,
wild blossoms, dandelions
and
daisies.

Before the locust bloom,
the other leaves come out,
the maple, oak and other
hardwoods explode in green
that sooths your eyes
and reassures that
summer is near.

Before the locust bloom,
The locust are bare and
look like they are dying,
gnarly, rough and
dense hard wood.
Instead they are a living
breathing tree,
and the flowers prove
they are alive.

Today, 
the longer days here,
glancing at the locust,
a double take,
the blooms are here,
Summer has begun,
the locust are in bloom.