Archive for May, 2015

May 20 2015

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Green World

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vernal eveThe sky breaks open just before dusk, giving the setting sun a chance to illuminate the verdure all around me. I haven’t been paying close attention. Suddenly all the trees have leafed out, lilacs and crab apple trees are in full bloom, and air is full of birdsongs. Where have I been?

Hiking through the woods the other day, I found only a few violets and lilies in bloom. The canopy has closed already, bringing an end to the opportunism of the early spring wildflowers so thick on the forest floor. It all happens so quickly.

The mosquitoes are out now. I took a few hits the other day. A few drops of blood seem a small price to pay for the vernal beauty that is everywhere on display. Dark clouds gather but now they only mean one thing: a good watering. Suddenly I am living with the elements, not against them.

We live in a green world. This is not apparent in the depths of winter, but in May it is undeniable. I work some bark mulch around the plants in my flower garden, surprised by how much they’ve grown already. I hadn’t noticed, until now. Nature steadily advances despite how distracted we are by other things. It seems a waste of time to do anything but revel in it.



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May 12 2015

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Maine Book Reading

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UT coverJust a quick note to let all of you know that I’ll be signing my new book, The Unexpected Trail, at the Eloquent Page in Saint Albans, Vermont this coming Sunday. That’s May 17th, between 1 and 3 in the afternoon. I’ll be reading a few excerpts from it as well. Even if you already have a copy, come on down and listen to a few stories that aren’t in the book.

Unfortunately, my canine companion Matika will not be there. She’s gotten a little grumpy in her old age.

Truth is, I’d rather be hiking than promoting my books about hiking. But it’s always a pleasure to read to attentive ears. So come on down!



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May 04 2015

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Spring Bloom

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trout liliesTemps skyrocket into the 70s, trees start to leaf out, and the forest floor is covered with wildflowers all of a sudden. It seems too good to be true. Then I remember that we’re in May now, thus convincing myself that this is the regular sequence of events. Nature is right on schedule.

A part of me remains skeptical, as if all this is just an illusion masking a colder, darker reality.  There now, right before me is a patch of trout lilies in full bloom. Beyond them round-lobed hepatica, Dutchman’s breeches, and trilliums. A few minutes ago, I admired the pure white flower of bloodroot, the half-hidden purplish flower of wild ginger, and blue cohosh. A few minutes later, I am snorting the sweet perfume of spring beauty. Then I roll onto my back and stare at the azure sky, blown away by the season. How many long winter days did I dream of this? It doesn’t matter. I’m here now.

The spring bloom always comes as something of a surprise no matter how much I’ve been anticipating it. I roam around the woods in quiet disbelief. A couple days ago, I went barefoot outdoors for the first time this year. Yesterday I broke a sweat walking about town in a single layer of clothes. Today a warm breeze caresses my brow, rendering me silly with simple elemental joy. Were there really snow flurries blowing around a week ago?  It doesn’t matter. I’m here now.



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