Sunday, June 24, 2012

Old Growth

 Old Growth Forest

 Leave it Be

 and other monsters

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


fun loving
endlessly patient with us AND with demanding parents
a beloved mother
a beloved wife
a beloved daughter
a person who made each of us feel so special
and as we learned
My last look before the diagnosis was her flipping that gorgeous red hair
revealing that growing lump that wanted to strangle her and would have
as she left to do down the road that brings us to today
I don't want to see that word again
She brought up the best kids
they love her so
first grandbaby coming soon will not be cuddled by Melanie
the arachno-whatever that paralyzed her from the waist down
the cells climbing the spine
still looking forward as of Saturday
to coming home
building strength
a phrase I love from Leah
May her memory be a blessing.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

United to Fight--Team Mel

Our school secretary is battling a particularly aggressive lymphoma, Burkitt's Lymphoma. She has undergone the most grueling chemotherapy of anyone I have ever known. Right now she is struggling to get her white count up enough to have the last two rounds of chemo that bathes her brain to keep the cells from climbing in.  Something else, arachno---- gripped her spine (from the many lumbar punctures) and paralyzed her from the waist down. Her first grand baby is due in October and she wants her life back. Tonight the restaurant where her daughter worked for 6 years as she put herself through college held a fundraiser for Melanie and it was packed. It was a very gratifying evening, her children, her mother in law, her children's spouses, teachers and administrators from all over the corporation, and life long friends of Melanie were and are in attendance. Beef O'Brady's is such a  terrific participant in the community, they do so much for so many and this was particularly wonderful. Our sweet tiny little Melanie has this cancer most common in young teenage boys of African descent. She does not fit the profile at all making this a difficult and unexpected diagnosis.  If you stop by here and read, rattle the universe, speak a prayer, send a warm thought of healing to a lovely lady who needs and appreciates all she gets from every corner of the earth.

Friday, June 8, 2012


When we moved in 35 years ago, our side yard was an open sunlit expanse of grass where you could play croquet. At some point we plowed it up and planted one of those big boxes of wild flowers and had fabulous displays of wildflowers for years.  We planted an English walnut which eventually shaded out all but a very few hardy coneflowers and the bluebells in spring. "Suddenly it seems" we have a shady breezy extremely pleasant arbor of trees, a giant maple towering over the walnut, an apple tree sweeping over the pond, and tiger lilies blooming nearby. It is wonderful. I know it isn't sudden, it just seems suddenly pleasant to have such an inviting spot to sit in the yard and read in the dappled sunlight. An English walnut tree grows branches highly suited to grandsons and tree houses. It also makes a lot of trash, but Larry and Henry built a little firepit and we can burn a few of those little branches when the boys are here.  If yard crashers saw this yard, they would scream in dismay, it is bumpy, scarred by a crazy digging dog and emergency plumbing work, there is a constant battle against encroaching poison ivy and that honeysuckle that is trying to take over the Midwest.. but, let me get another glass of lemonade ready and take my book outside to read.