Frost & Flame

Prairie Blues

I’m feeling on the blue side this evening, owing to some changes in the air, literal and social.

For one thing, it was a really windy day and the September wind had a bite. When the sky clouded over in the afternoon it was downright cold. Reality blowing in; summer’s gone. 😦 This evening the wind has died down, but the weatherman is predicting frost tonight: -1C should finish off most of our lovely blooms. I’m not rushing out to cover anything, as they’ve been looking straggly for awhile now. They seem to know their season is over.

Here's a poem I wrote long ago about the September Wind:

Damp September wind whistles
through an early August day, chilling
our summer-browned bodies.

Ever the schoolyard bully, it cuffs us
with an almost icy hand.  "Remember!"
It mocks our shivers, our calendar

consultations.  Dismayed, we grab
for hours as they bounce away, August
days slipping out of our lives forever.

With sighs we hunt for sweaters,
check the pockets of our coats,
while we’re at it, wash our gloves.

© Christine Goodnough, August 2012

My husband tells me that, as of tomorrow, here in SK we’re back to wearing masks when we go shopping and to gatherings. THAT is disappointing! When you wear two back-of-the-ear hearing aids, as I do, the last thing you need is elastic getting tangled with the hearing aid’s plastic tubes. But so many people haven’t gotten their COVID vaccination that our province is experiencing another surge in COVID cases.

After a couple of months mask-free, this feels like a giant step backwards. There’s to be a wedding reception Saturday at our church and it just won’t be the same with everyone masked. Another rule will be that you have to provide proof of vaccination before you can dine in a restaurant.

That said, we enjoyed a nice visit with friends from Quebec who came for lunch and stayed awhile this afternoon. And tonight we have a blazing sunset, with a brilliant ring of fire in the west and southwest to brighten up our world for half an hour before dark.

I spent four hours yesterday, give or take, painting another picture; today I submitted it to the Artist’s Atelier on Malcolm Dewey’s website and got some valuable suggestions for improvement. I started doing all my pictures on canvas, but these days I like to paint a “trial run” on watercolor paper and see how it comes out. I always find some changes and improvements I want to make before committing the final picture to canvas.

Well, enough griping. Wishing you a great weekend, everyone.

Fast Fly

The Ragtag Daily Prompt this morning is FOREBODING

And the Merriam-Webster Word of the Day yesterday was EGREGIOUS. Seeing that word, I tend to think of GREGARIOUS, which means sociable, friendly, outgoing,. However, EGREGIOUS means somewhat the opposite: obviously or noticeably bad.

As I sat at my laptop pondering what to write re: FOREBODING, a fly landed near my hand. Before I could terminate his existence he was gone. Suggesting a phrase — the first two lines of a poem, redirected from Joyce Kilmer’s “TREES”? Sure, why not? Bear with me here…

Fast Fly

I think that I shall never see
a fly that’s slow enough for me,
a boldly lingering freebooter
’til I can reach the flyswatter.
One lands, but when I blink my eye
it’s on alert and ready to fly
attuned to my egregious thought
of rendering it a bloody spot.

It seems to feel a faint foreboding
as tiny nibbles it’s uploading;
senses my unkind intention,
anticipates swift intervention
to its dining as I leave my chair
to grab the swatter hanging there.
Yet snails along, as flies are wont,
my sluggishness it seems to taunt.

I lift my swatter, all prepared
to deal with any fly that’s dared
check out my home for food un-grazed.
However, soon as hopes are raised
it will not move ’til I bring down
my swatter – such a crack resounds!
It spooks the cats but, woebegone!
that teasing fly is off and gone.

A Day To Lollygag

Here’s my response to today’s Ragtag Daily Prompt is LOLLYGAG

OUT FISHIN'
by Edgar A Guest

A feller isn’t thinkin’ mean
out fishin’;
His thoughts are mostly good and clean
out fishin’.
He doesn’t knock his fellow men
or harbor any grudges then;
a feller’s at his finest when
out fishin’.
The rich are comrades to the poor
out fishin’;
all brothers of a common lure,
out fishin’.
the urchin with the pin and string
can chum with millionare and king;
vain pride is a forgotten thing
out fishin’.
A feller gets a chance to dream
out fishin’;
he learns the beauties of a stream
out fishin’;
And he can wash his soul in air
that isn’t foul with selfish care,
and relish plain and simple fare,
out fishin’.
A feller has no time for hate
out fishin’;
he isn’t eager to be great
out fishin’.
He isn’t thinkin’ thoughts of pelf,
of goods stacked high upon a shelf,
but he is always just himself
out fishin’.
A feller’s glad to be a friend
out fishin;
a helping hand he’ll gladly lend
out fishin’.
The brotherhood of rod and line
and sky and stream is always fine;
men come real close to God’s design
out fishin’.
A feller isn’t plotting schemes
out fishin’
he’s only busy with his dreams
out fishin;
His livery is a coat of tan,
his creed: to do the best he can.
A feller’s always mostly man
out fishin’.
Image by S Hermann and F Richter — Pixabay

Air Traffic Control

Image by Orna Wachman — Pixabay
Negotiate the narrow aisle,
find Zone 5 Seat 21;
stow baggage in overhead bins,
take your seats, fasten belts
and become sardines
squashed in a can.
As engines roar to life
you all pray those bins...
and your bladders...
stay shut for the whole trip.

Home Joys

Many people have written about the joys of coming home, of rediscovering the treasures you were taking for granted, and one wise writer once declared that “HOME” is the nicest word. Yes, it was great to visit dear friends elsewhere, but now we are home again, and very glad to be here. 🙂

The Joy of Getting Home

by Edgar A. Guest

The joy of getting home again
is the sweetest thrill I know.
Though travelers by ship or train
are smiling when they go,
the eye is never quite so bright,
the smile so wide and true,
as when they pass the last home light
and all their wandering’s through.

Oh, I have journeyed down to sea
and traveled far by rail,
but naught was quite so fair to me
as that last homeward trail.
Oh, nothing was in London town,
or Paris gay, or Rome
with all its splendor and renown
so good to see as home.

‘Tis good to take these lovely trips,
‘tis good to get away,
there’s pleasure found on sailing ships,
but travel as you may
you’ll learn as most of us have learned,
wherever you may roam,
you’re happiest when your face is turned
toward the lights of home.

From the book, Collected Verse of Edgar A. Guest,
©1934 by the Reilly & Lee Co