2 weeks ago
This morning before sunrise, the sky before me was a gorgeous fabric with powder blue and banana yellow stripes at the bottom and pleats of gold and gray above. Holmes Lake glowed metallic pink in a newly-greened park. All this beauty was a counterweight to my sad heart. ...
3 weeks ago
Last Friday, Jim and I went morel hunting with my son and daughter-in-law. Instead of Lincoln Journal Star, NPR and the New York Times, we had river, oaks, frogs and morels. On Friday night I sautéed our portion of mushrooms in butter and olive oil. As much as I enjoyed hunting morels, I liked eating them even more. They taste like ancient deep forests, like something that has been here long before humans became a species. When I eat morels, I feel as if I am tasting time. ...
ANTIDOTES TO FEAR OF DEATH
by Rebecca Elson
Sometimes as an antidote
To fear of death,
I eat the stars
Those nights, lying on my back,
I suck them from the quenching dark
Til they are all, all inside me,
Pepper hot and sharp.
Sometimes, instead, I stir myself
Into a universe still young,
Still warm as blood:
No outer space, just space,
The light of all the not yet stars
Drifting like a bright mist,
And all of us, and everything
But unconstrained by form.
And sometime it’s enough
To lie down here on earth
Beside our long ancestral bones:
To walk across the cobble fields
Of our discarded skulls,
Each like a treasure, like a chrysalis,
Thinking: whatever left these husks
Flew off on bright wings. ...
1 month ago
Just after the sun was above the horizon, I walked in the deep snow around my neighborhood. The light on the snow-covered pine branches sparkled and glints of ice diamonds drifted down from the branches. It was a walk filled with beauty and ruin. The forsythia, the Korean spice viburnum, the flowering crabs, the pink peach trees—all their blossoms were frozen, never to return to the former glory. We will have a spring without most of our flowering trees and a summer without apricots or peaches. And yet, the branches of the firs, the Norway spruce and the white pines, all bent low, these branches, even those on the ground, will bounce back as the snow melts. Let us praise all those beautiful things that cannot last. And let us praise the resilience of trees who have forever sheltered us through all of our troubles. ...