Saturday, March 29, 2008


When I started this blog I worried I wouldn't be able to post regularly, given my deeply entrenched tendency to drift (not always the good kind of drifting, as in the previous post.) My fear has justified itself, at least for the past couple of months. I have been round and about, but paying attention to other things--at least, I think I have. Who knows where the mind goes when you're not looking?

Thursday morning I went with my husband into downtown Washington, D.C. to see the cherry blossoms that line the Tidal Basin by the Jefferson Memorial. It was raining lightly, intermittently, the sky a soft, lovely gray, the water in the Tidal Basin the same oyster color, a few shades darker. Against that, the blossoms, just out, glowed a warm, pale pink. Because of the rain, the crowds had not yet descended, so only a small number of people were there and we had some privacy.

We also visited the new WWII memorial, plunked down in the middle of the Mall, which I had never seen before. It is ginormous and somewhat imperial, as the criticism has stated. But, to my surprise, I found it enormously satisfying. I'm not sure why. There were a good number of people about, but I was still able to feel alone--the good kind of alone--and think about the soldiers who were gone. A sad but peaceful moment.

I like all the memorials that I've seen in D.C. over the years, though I favor some over others. All are commemorations to the dead, famous and not. I often wonder if these same dead, now only spirit, lurk nearby. If they do, do they envy the living or feel sorry for them? I can't help but suspect envy. D.C., all dressed up in its spring finery, is gorgeous. I'd want to come back for that, too.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Lights! Camera!


That's the sound of me scre-e-e-e-e-e-ching back into my blog, having discovered that Cynthia Leitich Smith mentioned it in her world-famous ya and children's literature blog, cynsations . (Yay, Cyn! Thanks!) So wait a minute as I throw on some makeup (slap, smack, puff) put on something decent to wear (tug, swish, oof) comb my hair (snapple gapple pop) and stretch my lips into a giant pink grin. :-)

Okay, whew, I'm ready!

Been gone awhile. Been adrift. Not the bad, lost-on-the-stormy-sea-on-a-dark-night kind of drifting, but more of a gliding-slowly-across-a-motionless-lake-on-a-still-day kind. I've started writing a new book. It might prove to be a total stinker, suitable only for tossing into the trashcan, but for now I'm having fun with it. Moreover, finding words again after a long time of lost belief feels wonderful.

I attribute my reawakening, in no small part, to the tippy-end of the lake I mentioned in an earlier post. I walk there almost every day at lunch, on the days I work my paycheck job, and it refreshes me. It is not a beautiful lake--it is small and scrubby and littered at the edges--and yet, it is a beautiful lake! The water changes color with the sky and with the wind, but it also changes its intention. One day it is tame, even dull--just another ruined piece of suburbia--another day it is a dangerous current, a swirl tugging you down, a harsh wilderness. There are almost always a few Canadian geese floating around--small boats in the distance--and sometimes a couple of mallards, which are my favorite. Swimmers and bobbers, they seem impervious to being tugged down. Or, they go down but pop right back up, a trick I've never quite mastered.