Thursday, April 30, 2015

I Peeked Out Into The World And It Was Good

It's been quite a day and a good one and I ended up this evening going to Monticello to the Opera House to take cast pictures of a production that Judy is directing. She asked me to do it and mainly, I think, to force me out of my shell. I was glad to do it and it was so lovely, seeing my old friends, watching that incredible, creative endeavor coming together.

As I left to come home, this is what I saw.

The courthouse, the moon, the Opera House.

I have gathered everything I need to make a nice birthday dinner for Jessie and Vergil tomorrow night and I plan on spending tomorrow wallowing in the luxury of time and memory, of celebration and life, of cooking and baking and tasting every damn bit of it as I go. 

Good night. 

Love...Ms. Moon

I Am Breathing In All Of The Sweetness In The World

As the world goes ever and ever darker in so many ways, I am here and there is nothing but light and cool air and I took my walk, a good strong one, and the chickens are scratching in the noonday dapple and I am grateful.

It could be fall, the air is that cool and the sky is that blue.

Twenty-six years ago I was one day away from giving birth to my baby-who-is-having-a-baby and my dreams were sweet this morning and I am still listening to A Storm of Swords and I just have to say that George R.R. Martin may be one of the best story-tellers ever to have lived and I feel sorry for those who have only watched the series and have not read (or listened to) the words themselves and let their own minds make the pictures. As good as the series may be, as fine as the actors might be, as incredible as the sets may be, nothing could be as good as all of these words, unspilt from the mind of a writer.

Hello. I think I will sit on the back steps now and feed the chickens and ducks some stale bread and then take some to the mama hen and her two babes, just to hear the sweet peeps that they make.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

More News You Can Use Or Probably Not

I bought a new pair of men's black cargo shorts today which pretty much doubled my summer at-home-attire options. When my ex was here for Easter he and his wife and I were discussing clothing and how elastic waist pants just aren't as bad as we once thought they were. I extolled the comfort and utilitarianism of overalls and cargo pants, pointing out that I could get about half a dozen eggs in one pocket and enough greens to make a salad in the other of either garment.
For some reason my ex thought this was hysterical but I was being perfectly serious. Let us be practical.

Anyway, I went to town today and did some birthday shopping for Jessie. One is tempted to get her all baby-themed things but it is HER birthday and that child will be getting enough presents to fill a boat before he is born. So I tried to find things that would please her and I hope I did. I also got the cargo shorts for me and they are fine. I have indeed put eggs in a pocket and snow peas in another. I also pulled two carrots and some shallots for our supper. Oh, but it is an exciting life!
Another thing I bought was a Slip'n'Slide and I hope I don't regret that.

In political news, Justice Kennedy thinks that marriage has been defined the same way for "millennia." What fucking bullshit. That's all I have to say about that.

In Florida, the house Republicans decided they weren't getting their way and just shut the whole session down a few days early. Oh. Good idea, guys. You were doing such good work, trying to legislate what bathrooms people can use and requiring a twenty-four waiting period before a woman can get an abortion. Also, in Florida, this happened. 
It's not political news but it sure is Florida.

So there you go. Fashion advice, gift giving, AND politics. Just to round things off let's throw this in there.

Some of it's absurd and some of it's entirely true. But for a real laugh, don't skip the ad that comes on before it starts if it's the one about Florida politics.

Love ya!
Ms. Moon


We Shall Be Awash In Beautiful Boys

We are having another boy baby! A trifecta of boys! Jessie and Vergil have made a male.
That is what the technician told us. As we all squinted to make sense of what we were seeing, she herself was sure that she was seeing a penis and we trusted her.
Of course she also said that this is a human baby's profile and we trusted her on that too.

Is that baby smiling? He has every reason to be. What a lucky baby this is going to be!
What Jessie and I bought this boy yesterday were two shirts that look like the shirts his daddy wears- plaid with pockets and a pair of cargo shorts. Why didn't I get a picture? I don't know. I was overwhelmed. But Vergil was delighted when he saw them. Now all we need is a tiny pocket protector and a teeny slide rule. Not really! (Well, sort of.) I wonder if the baby will be more like his engineer daddy or like his artistic and emotional mama. We shall see, won't we? 

It's gray here again today and the baby chicks are fine. 

Willy and Lilly, the ducks, have already become separated and are honking and quacking in full voice. I love those ducks but they are not the brightest birds in the hen house. Okay. They've found each other again. Much contented quacking ensues...

Our new sheets worked perfectly last night. Unfortunately they did nothing to repel the insane dreams. Oh well. Maurice tried to get me up at a reasonable hour but I ignored her kisses and pleas and she settled down by my hip and we went back to sleep. She knows when it's time for Mr. Moon to get up and she knows when it's time for me to get up. She's not completely insistent, though. Which is good. 

And so it goes. I must take a walk and after that I have no idea what I'm doing and I don't care. 
Some moments I feel as if my life is whirling by so fast that I can't catch my breath and other moments I feel as if I am stuck in mud and molasses. 

Another boy. Can you believe it? 
Let us give thanks. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Chain Of Love

Lunch was so much fun. I got there first, dressed in an actual dress with make-up on and my hair braided and pinned to the top of my head in a grandmother crown, and asked for a table for eight and soon Lily and the boys came and I got such good hugs and kisses from them and after that, every time one of us got to the restaurant, whoever was already there got up and kissed and hugged the walker-in.
You know, I've made a lot of damn mistakes in my life but when it comes to having a loving family, I have not failed.
Mr. Moon brought flowers for Jessie, a dozen beautiful red roses and we all ordered our delicious foods and feasted.

Gibson, as usual, ate almost all of the edamame beans. His newest thing that he says that makes me laugh is, "I don't know." He says it in sort of a wondering tone. And so I ask him questions to which I am sure he will give that answer.
"Gibson, what is in that miso soup?" 
"I don't know!" 

I didn't get one picture of Owen. I am not sure how that happened. 
The only thing not perfect about lunch was that May was not there. She was working, of course. 
She works so hard. We love her so much. 

After lunch Glen and Vergil and Jessie and I all met up at the radiology place, the same place where I go to get mammograms and I was so glad to be there for a reason other than getting a mammogram and they called us back and they did the scan. 

Of course to me, everything on the screen with the possible exception of feet (and there are two!) looked like an alien baby to me. But I saw a spine and two legs and two arms and hands (two!) and a head (one!) and a bladder and ribs and a beating heart. Mr. Moon and I held on to each other as Vergil and Jessie held on to each other. 
The technician determined the sex of the baby and because Jessie and Vergil have not yet told all of their people, I am not going to tell you here either. 
But. Take my word. It is a baby. And all looks well with the baby and surprise, surprise! This baby has long legs and feet. 
We all cried. And hugged. And kissed some more. 

Before we got out of the parking lot to go our various ways, Mr. Moon had plundered two beautiful magnolia buds, one for me and one for Jessie. Here is what mine looks like in my hallway.

Jessie wanted to go shopping with me and so we drove off together, our magnolias smelling like lemony heaven, and she said something to me that I'd never really considered before. She pointed out that when she had been in my womb at the same age as this baby is in hers, all of her eggs were already there and so, in a way, this baby has been inside of me too.
I have often thought of the long line of mothers stretching back to the first mother, our hands clutched together in a chain. And this thought made that even so much more real. 
The mothers. 
Sort of blew my mind, to tell you the truth. 

And we went and I bought sheets and we bought the baby a few little outfitty-things because we HAD to and we wanted to, and then I took Jessie home and went by Lily's because I had forgotten to give her the eggs I'd brought for her and Owen handcuffed me to his wrist because after lunch he and his brother and mother went to Big Lots with Hank and Hank gave Owen money to buy something and pointed out that handcuffs would be really cool. 
I convinced him that since he had a T-Ball game this evening, it would not work for us to be handcuffed together and he unlocked me and I went to Publix and dropped off books at the library and now I'm home and the new sheets are in the laundry and soon Mr. Moon, the husband, the father, the grandfather, my love, will be here too after he's finished up assistant-coaching T-Ball. 
I cannot believe my great good fortune. The fortune of all of this love. 

As the baby's fingers came up on the screen this afternoon, Jessie said, "Soon I will be kissing those fingers."

As will we all. 

Love...Ms. Moon

The Finest Kind Of Day

Today is going to be a most special day. For one thing, I have to buy new sheets. I feel guilty about this. My mother would have just gotten out the sewing machine and stitched that rip up so good that in a hundred years, that stitching would be the only thing left of the sheets.
Me? I'm going to buy new ones.
Stitching sheets is, as our president might say, isn't on my bucket list but it's on my list that rhymes with bucket.
Did you see this?

Dear god, how I love that man.

Okay. So. Back to my exciting day. Buying new sheets.
Also- we are going to Japanica! Look, y'all. All joking aside, I am CRAVING the curry bento box at Japanica. Hank and Lily and Mr. Moon and the boys and Jessie and I are all going. So that's super exciting.

But. After lunch, Jessie and her daddy and her husband and I are going to go to an ultrasound appointment to see our little baby bean. Jessie and Vergil decided that they would get one ultrasound and if all looks good, that will be that. There are a few things their midwife likes to make sure of via ultrasound (although she is fine with people NOT getting them too) and today is the day.
And they want to know whether they have a boy baby or a girl baby and so we'll be finding that out too if this child-to-be doesn't get all shy on us.

And that- the opportunity to go with them to witness this moment is absolutely thrilling to me. Jessie's birthday is on Friday and I remember that day like it was...well, still happening. The same sort of day as today- drizzly and cool- and I labored at home and Mr. Moon and I took walks in the drizzle and he picked me magnolias and finally, around five o'clock in the afternoon, she was born and there was such huge excitement and joy and celebration and a rainbow in the sky and all of my brothers were there and Hank and May and Lily, and other loved ones as well and somewhere, in another parallel universe, that is still happening and yet, in this universe which I suppose I am choosing to call reality, she is a grown woman and is going to have her own baby in such a short time and today we get a tiny peek at that child, which she and Vergil have created.


What a day.

I'll be reporting in later.

Love...Ms. Moon

Monday, April 27, 2015

A Good Day With Good Boys

Waiting for his Boppy to get here. 

Blowing dandelions on the way to the Post Office.

Bloody In Tooth, At Least

There was trauma and sadness here last night. Mr. Moon and Mr. Williamson went out to put the chickens and ducks up and on a whim, went and checked on the mama and babies.
So. That oak snake which was relocated two days ago was obviously not the only oak snake in the yard. A different one had the little all-yellow chick wrapped up and was suffocating it.
Lis and I were in the house, merrily getting supper ready, the doors and windows were shut and the AC on and we didn't hear a thing but there was a battle in the chicken coop. Mr. Moon grabbed the snake, freed the chick, and seriously- he and Lon both attempted to do a little CPR on the baby which did not revive him- and then Mr. Moon chopped the snake's head off. He was furious.
Even after all this time trying to raise baby chickens, it's still traumatic when something like this happens. Too much nature, as we sometimes say around here. Anyway, there's Mama and the two remaining babies. See how her tail feathers are spread? She is in constant protection mode and is trying to make herself look as big and threatening as possible which did not, obviously, impress the snake. And as safe as that box looks (and at night we keep the heavy lid down on it) a snake can slither its way into it.
And while all of that was going on, I got a call from Lily who was trying to Face Time me which was not working, because Owen had something to show and tell.

They sent pictures and I talked to Owen who was so excited about the whole deal that he was screaming into the phone but not with terror. He told me to have Boppy call him as soon as he could so that he could tell him too. And so immediately after killing the snake and burying the baby chick, he did, and Owen screamed his news to him too. 
I can't quite believe that my Owen is already old enough to lose teeth but obviously, he is. He'll be six in five months. 

Well, life in Lloyd. 

Lon and Lis have hit the road, Mr. Moon is at work, the boys will be out later. I will see the gap in Owen's smile and they can see the babies. I feel almost as if I've been away for a few days and have, at the very least, stepped out of my routine. 
But now I am back in it and the candle I lit last night is still burning and of course they are still counting deaths in Nepal and yet here I am, contemplating a gray sky, the death of a very small fluffy creature, and wondering what the boys and I will be getting up to today. 

It's one of those days where all I can do is shake my head and think, "I really just don't know."

And I don't. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Sunday, April 26, 2015

I Don't Know Shit, Part Ten Thousand.

Last night was so amazing. I'm still thinking about it. I wish with all of my heart that I could have been able to record all of Lon and Lis's set. They played with their friend Jason Thomas and come to think of it, I've known Jason for a least a dozen years. He's an incredible fiddler and mandolin player. It was just such a beautiful night. Jason led everyone in singing "Happy Birthday" to Lis and then snuck in a few bars of the song again during a fiddle break.
It was just...perfect.
If I could give all of you a gift, it would be to see these sweet and incredibly talented people sing for an hour or so.

And then the band that came on after them, Wild Ponies, just tore my head up. I don't even know what I was expecting but I sure wasn't expecting what I saw. I posted a video of them last night singing a song about the grandmother of one of them. Iris. The couple in the band are an actual couple. Doug and Telisha Williams. Their percussionist is a a woman named, I think, Megan Jane. Holy shit! That woman! All of them. The song Iris first knocked the heart from my chest and then they did a song called Love Is Not A Sin and I'm getting chills thinking about it.
"When two lovers find each other I'd say it's sanctioned from above. It doesn't matter who you love."
Telisha dances with her upright bass, gracefully. Her hands look like birds finding roost on the strings, flying here and there. She sways and swings her hair and her husband plays rootsie and strong on his guitar and Megan Jane with her Little Orphan Annie hair and her steady beat behind them just knocked me out. Flat out.

Here. A video of Love Is Not A Sin.

During the break after the set, I went downstairs to the lobby and bought an album of theirs. Yes. An album. I could have bought a CD but I wanted the vinyl. Telisha was there and I may have offered to have babies for everyone in the band. She said that since she wasn't planning on having any, that was fine with her.
Oh golly. I just about would, too. I haven't even cracked the seal on the album yet. I feel like I'm waiting for the right moment. I want to listen with all my ears and heart.

So I've been thinking about those folks all day as I've piddled and puttered around here. Everyone's posting about the unbelievable horrors in Nepal but I can't take it in. I can't. I can't even bring myself to look at the pictures. Am I craven? Yes. So I've thought about cilantro sproutlings and wondered where in hell I've put my cow pea seeds and gone to check on the chicks and thawed out some shrimp and I guess that what I'm doing is just living my life and being grateful beyond the moon that it IS this life. Simple and easy and full and I am aware that anyone's life can be literally pulled out from beneath them at any moment and what can we do but live these lives we have? I'm not going to Nepal to offer aid. I know that.

Well, Lon and Lis will be here soon and Mr. Moon too. I better get some supper started. I need a shower too as I am not the sweetest smelling thing on the planet. Plus...dirt.

And I've got all these thoughts and feelings in me. Sorrow and horror and at the same time, contentment and peace. Hope and fear, joy and the tiny fret of whether the bread will rise in time.
And so much more.
We're human beings. This is how we are. We can hold so many different things in our hearts and in our heads at the same time, conflicting and not.
I don't know much but I know that's true.
And I know that love is not a sin and some people were put here on earth to make music and I'm glad as hell about that and I don't pray but I wish peace and safety and light and love for everyone even though I know that will never happen.

But we can wish. We can make our dancing into prayers. That's what I think.
And I think I'll light a candle.

Love...Ms. Moon


Last night we parked right down the block from a church which had an electronic marquee. I could not help but take a few pictures of the messages being displayed.

Well, I'm pretty sure I don't need crack OR Christ but I do need grace. Don't we all? And some of us do need grass in one form or another if you use the term loosely. 

Anyway, I'm just glad that I'm not in church this morning but have things like this to see.

And these sweetlings to check on. 

We made the executive decision to throw the rest of the eggs out. Quite frankly, they stunk (stank?) and were drawing giant big flies. So. Three babies. One fine mother. 
I have talked to my neighbor and her husband is ill so I do not think she has time to fuss with babies right now. I will be surrogate grandmother gladly. 

It is a beautiful day and I plan on working outside in the garden and in the chicken coop, cleaning things up in there for the day when the babies can run around in it. 

Grace. Yes.

Love...Ms. Moon

Next Lifetime: I Just Want To Sing

I doubt I've ever seen Lon and Lis do a better set.
And then these people showed up and blew my mind too.

And then I saw the Sarah Mac Band.

Lord, Child.

Sometimes it's really worth it to put on a bosom binding garment and go out into the world.
Thank you, Lon and Lis for making me leave my house and go to the Opera House.  You filled my soul and then these other musicians topped me off.

I'm thinking a lot about magic.

Love...Ms. Moon

Saturday, April 25, 2015

My Hero!!!!

Mr. Moon brought home starter feed for the chicks and then he got ahold of that oak snake! He hates snakes as much as I do. Not in theory as beings that we need to not just randomly kill, but as things you don't want to hold.
Or catch.
But he did it and I had a potting soil bag open and ready for the serpent and Mr. Moon put him in there (and the snake had egg all around its mouth) and just holding the bag open was enough to give me the shivershakes. Mr. Moon quick, quick gathered the mouth of the bag shut and then tied it up with twine and took it off to deposit it a few miles away.
He left, holding the bag OUTSIDE THE WINDOW because once when he did this, the snake got out of the bag in his car and he'll never do that again.

Phew! The reign of the Oak Snake has ended. The chickens can go back to laying in the hen house without fear.

And I love my husband with all of my heart and soul. He is indeed my hero on so many levels I can't even begin to tell you.
But snake-catching is right up there.

Love...Ms. Moon

Operation Save The Chicks Has Been Completed And It Is Lis Williamson's Birthday

It was a bit of a subdued group this morning who woke up in Lloyd. I'd been sitting with Lis on the back porch for five minutes before I suddenly realized what day it was.
"Happy birthday, darling!" I said, feeling so very ashamed because on MY birthday last year she gave me gifts every day for about a week, all wrapped and precious and lovely and treated me like a queen and here I was, almost forgetting that today is her day.
"There's your presents," I said, pointing out to the table in the backyard where an ashe magnolia in a pot stood as well as a little begonia in a green ceramic pot.
And I did have a card for her. So...I'm not a total jerk. But I'm sure not the kind of gift-giver she is.
Lis is just the finest kind. I made some toast and eggs for everyone in record time because Mr. Moon had to go help coach T-Ball and Lon and Lis are playing at a festival in Thomasville this afternoon. The T-Ball game got called for weather as it is raining and lightening and thundering but not until Mr. Moon had gotten there. We checked the weather report for Thomasville and it literally said "thunderstorms until 1:15 p.m. and then clear and sunny."
1:15 is the start time for Lon and Lis to begin playing.
God LOVES Lon and Lis as much as everyone else does.
So they got all spiffed up and took off but not before Lon helped Mr. Moon (who came back from the ball field) and me transfer the hen into the safety of the box-cage in the coop with her babies and eggs. When I went out to check on them this morning, a strange gray cat with a big fluffy tail streaked off into the woods and Mr. Moon saw the big orange and white feral cat last night in the yard. So really- we had no choice. I'm sure that orange and white cat killed Eggy Tina and Miss Missy and she'd have absolutely no problem eating those babies if not the mother, too. Hell- I didn't even trust Maurice around them.

So they went from this

to this

There are three babies and at least eight more eggs which I personally do not think are going to hatch. Those chicks are not newly hatched and I'd say they're at least a couple of days old but we put the eggs in there anyway and Mama clucked and gathered her babies around her and the whole thing didn't take two minutes. So maybe they won't be too traumatized. One of the eggs had a hole in it where the chick had tried to peck her way out and hadn't made it and it smelled rotten which was drawing critters, I'm sure. We left that one behind. 

Nature is cruel but nature is wise and I hope we've done the right thing. I think we've done the only thing, truthfully, in that it was inevitably only a matter of time before one of those cats got in there and slaughtered the bunch of them if a raccoon or possum didn't get to them first. Those babies are the cutest, softest things in the world, each of them weighing about as much as a feather, and they look very sturdy for all their light softness. I've seen all of them peck about for food. And their mother will teach them what they need to know. 

And so here it is, a rainy, thunder-rumbly Saturday and I'm glad I got that squash planted yesterday and I'm glad the chickens are safe and I'm glad that we had such a good time with Lon and Lis last night. The supper was delicious, the martinis more so, and the berry pavlova was...almost entirely eaten. Tonight Mr. Moon and I will spiff our own selves up a bit and attend the show at the Opera House where Lon and Lis will be playing their second gig of the day. 

A few minutes ago my phone made an alarm sound and the text message with it said only, "Take shelter immediately." The rain has almost died down and I didn't hear any wind but I went and told Mr. Moon who is taking a catnap in his chair. 
"It said to take shelter immediately," I told him. 
"And that's what we've done," he said, and closed his eyes again. 
I did just hear what sounded like a train but it wasn't a tornado. It was indeed a train. 
Which has now passed leaving nothing but the sound of very gently falling rain and the frogs back in the swamp have a good croaky concert. 

A nice morning and those damn cats are going to have to work harder for their lunch then they had planned on. 

I hope all is well in your world. 

Love...Ms. Moon

We Are Family

Amazing what these old hands can do.

Friday, April 24, 2015

A Most Delicious Day

That is a different chick. See the brown on the little downy head? The other one is pure yellow. I have seen her or him in entirety now. 
If I told you that I've been out to check on this hen at least fifteen times today would you believe me? Of course you would. Because it is true. I just checked my phone and disregarding the not-quite three mile walk I took this morning, I've walked at least another two miles and I bet you anything that most of that was recorded just going out to look at that hen. 
I have kicked ass today. Walked, went to the store, made a Pavlova for Lis's birthday celebration, planted squash, repotted some plants, swept the porches, did some laundry, have two loaves of bread rising, took the trash and mostly checked on the hen and her chicks. I have called my neighbor whose hen this is and I left her a message about the situation but I have not yet heard back from her. Although I do worry for the safety and protection of this little family, I have to recognize what a terrific place the mama chose to lay and set her eggs. It is completely enclosed in the fencing that we use for tomato cages and she has to have been sitting there for weeks to hatch these eggs and we never knew she was there. I am trying very hard to not get all human and interventive here and god knows we've lost many chicks while trying our very best to protect them so for right now, I'm letting her be. 
I swear to you though- as I told Hank today via texting, I do not know how I lived before I found chickens. It's like part of my DNA was going completely unused before Kathleen brought those first peeps over. I am astounded at the instinct within the hen to protect and nurture her babies. 

Here's something that would definitely eat those sweet little puffballs:

Damn oak snake. But at least as long as he's in the henhouse, he's not eating the baby chicks. I think he's gained an inch in girth since I first saw him. Probably all from my eggs. 

I just talked to Lis. They will be here within the hour. The martini glasses are in the freezer. Mr. Moon is on his way home. I have done almost no cleaning but there are nice fresh sheets on the bed and this on the bedside table. 

Little roses, confederate jasmine, lemon balm. 

Mr. Moon just called to say that he was within a mile of home and had to take a major detour due to a fallen pecan tree across the road. 

Life in Lloyd. It's not always the easiest place to get to, but once you're here, you're home. 

Love...Ms. Moon

New Life. I Celebrate

Oh my god! Such an exciting morning here in Lloyd where it is cool and sunny and green and blue and golden and very, very fine. First off, here's fourteen seconds of what my day looks like every day.

Open the door to the hen house and the ducks explode forth and waddle their way to that shed on the left where they shovel all of the cat food into their big flat beaks. And boy, are they happy about it!
As you can see, this is quite entertaining to Maurice.

All right. Here's the exciting part. Last night Mr. Moon discovered one of the hens from next door brooding on a nest in an outside corner area of the garage. We laughed and worried because she's outside and on the ground but...disturbing her would have been...disturbing.
I went to take a picture this morning and this is what I saw.

Can you see?

Look closer.

That's a tiny yellow peep head poking out there! They are so still. And I am so worried that something will come and eat them. But maybe not. I do believe that's probably the child of Elvis, Jr. 

I am filled with wonder and I'm not even kidding you.

And now I must go off for a walk and then get to town to pick up a few things because Lon and Lis are coming tonight and we will have a birthday celebration for my darling friend. 
Although I sort of just want to pull up a chair and watch this maternal scene all day long. 
Oh my. Oh my. Oh my. 

Happy Friday, y'all.

Love...Ms. Moon

Thursday, April 23, 2015

None Of These Things Go With The Other

This is what growing older means: you no longer just walk into a room only to have forgotten what you've come there for, you forget why you're leaving a room before you get out the door. You are on some errand- you have to retrieve...what?
A hammer? A polishing rag? The broom? The dust mop? Window cleaner?
It has fled from your mind before you've turned around to go.

The person who invents glasses who never need wiping will be the richest person in the world. For some reason it has become the most annoying thing to me to have smeared glasses. I mean, I cannot bear it. Forget the fucking jetpacks and vacations on Mars we were supposed to be enjoying by now. Just give me glasses that don't smear.

Why are we so thirsty? The other day at the baby shower, a few of us older women were talking about the things every parent seems to need now to raise a baby which we, back in the olden days, would have laughed at. A baby monitor? Butt wipes? Wipe warmers? Bottle warmers? Those pillows which provide the most perfect breastfeeding support? The list goes on. One woman said that she'd gone to Target to look for a baby present and that it was all "shit." That's what she said. Shit.
I had to agree. Anyway, this took us to other avenues of things we cannot now live without which no one had even considered forty years ago. Bottled water, for instance. If someone had told us that we'd be paying a dollar or more for a bottle of what comes out of the tap for free, we'd have laughed our heads off.
"But what did you carry water in?" Lily asked.
I pondered this.
"I don't think we were that thirsty."
Hydration was not a science. You got thirsty, you either got a glass of water or you went to a water fountain. Sip, sip, sip. Done. If you were outside, you got water out of the hose. I liked the taste of hose water. When you were on a car trip, there might be a thermos of lemonade or Kool Ade. If you were really lucky, you got a coke out of a machine when you stopped for gas.
Cars did not have cup holders. We held our beers between our thighs in the car. Haha!
Coffee you drank at home. You had a percolator. You made a pot of coffee, you had a cup or two, that was plenty. If you wanted coffee in the afternoon, you made another pot. Again- we would have died before we'd gone to a place like Starbucks and bought a five dollar cup of coffee that always tastes burned unless you load it up with sugar and crap. Whipped cream on coffee? What the fuck? And we didn't need all these snacks. We ate breakfast, lunch, and supper. We didn't need to take a power bar with us everywhere we went in case of sudden starvation.

Things have changed. Not all for the worse, I totally admit. White bread sucked although it made great fish bait, rolled into little balls. I don't care if I never see another slice of bologna in my life. But oh! Sometimes how I do wish for a meal of chipped beef on toast. Might have been called "shit on a shingle" but that was some good shit. I like eating fresh vegetables far more than I enjoyed canned vegetables. Or frozen vegetables.

I love air conditioning. People's cars don't break down every twenty-five miles now. Ice makers rock. Those stupid aluminum trays never worked right and were a pain in the ass. But fans were better then. You got a box fan, that sucker would move some air. These fancy-ass tower fans don't move air very well and they don't make enough noise in my opinion.

And of course we all know I miss dials. When the hell did it become acceptable to make you push buttons for five minutes to set your clock, your stove? That's some bullshit there now.

I could go on. But I won't. I'm too tired.

What is something that you either miss or are glad is gone forever?

Just wondering. Just thinking. I believe I'll go clean my glasses although I'll probably forget by the time I get back into the kitchen.

Love...Ms. Moon, The Old and Cranky

P.S. Owen's foot is all healed. The boot has come off. He is happy and will gladly show you how fast he can run now which is, in all actuality, so fast that he causes time to stop as he breaks the sound barrier, running on his two good feet.

Low Land

For the life of me I can't get a decent picture of that swampy area and I wish I could because it is so beautiful to me. The tannic acid which stains the water to tea, the fallen trees, the sturdy palmettos, the light which spills and dapples, which hides in shade.

I never get tired of it. I never fail to really look and to see when I pass it by. It is, to me, a magical place where life and death commingle to bring forth more life in a watery shaded womb which is also a graveyard for the fallen trees. Doubly sacred. The woodpeckers feed from the trees which are dead but still standing, homes now to the insects the birds want. They swoop through the light and the shade to perch and peck and it is the most peaceful place, deceptively still as it all works together to feed and protect, to take back and give forth, with a beauty quite uniquely its own.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Truth Is Brutal And So Is The Run-On Sentence

So I did today exactly what I should have done which was to get on with it and let myself cry when I needed to (and mostly I needed to when I read y'all's comments, thank-you, thank-you, maxima thank-you) and I cleaned and tidied some and then the boys got here and then it got busy for awhile.
Owen wanted to go hiking which meant he wanted to take the tipi that Bug gave them outside and set that up and whittle his hiking staff into something resembling a weapon and get a backpack ready with supplies. The backpack part was easy as all he wanted was water and Cheeto's and the tent was easy because it's light as a feather and you just set it up by spreading the poles. The whittling was a bit of a problem in that I'd only give him a butter knife. But he did his best. Before he got everything settled and ready though, Gibson decided that he HAD to play in the water wiggler or whatever that thing is and I set THAT up and took off his clothes and he played in it naked until Owen observed that that looked like a lot of fun and he got naked and they played in the water long enough for me to drag a chair over, get a glass of water and my most recent Vanity Fair. By the time I'd just settled down into that, Gibson had had enough and was freezing cold and so he had be dressed again after drying off and given a piece of cheese and I got him cozy on the couch under a blanket to watch Tom and Jerry and then Owen had to get dressed again and that included putting his boot back on and that sucker has enough buckles and straps to adorn a strait-jacket and while he was getting dressed we had the best conversation ever.

"Mer, did you know that sometimes when people get really old they forget how to use the bathroom and have to wear diapers?"
I told him that yes, I knew that.
He thought about this a second and then he said, "Who has to change those diapers?"
Before I could even think about it I said, "Their grandsons."
He looked at me with horror, put his head into his hands and said, "Oh man. That is going to be disgusting!"

I am so damn impressed that he didn't just say, "No way!"

And after that conversation, what could I do but feel more cheerful and then Gibson fell asleep on the couch.

Owen finished up whittling his weapon and got his backpack on and went out into the yard to hunt animals and hike. I am trying very hard to let my grandsons be a little tiny bit more free range which means that I let them play outside sometimes where I can see them but that they can't necessarily see me. So I told Owen that he could hike and hunt animals in the yard but not to go out of the fence. I let him be for a few minutes and then went out to just get an eye on him and he was only a few yards from the kitchen door.
"How's it going?" I asked him.
"Fine," he said, poking his weapon-staff into the iron plant by the fence.
"What sort of animals are you hunting?"
"Have you seen any?" I asked him.
"Not yet."
"And what are you going to do if you see a snake?" I asked him.
"Let him be in peace," he said.
"Good plan."

He didn't find any snakes but he did find some interesting insects which he wanted to show me. I asked him if he wanted to go see if we could find the snake in the hen house which I saw again this morning.

"Are you trying to kill me?" he asked. Which reassured me that he's not really that interested in finding snakes. 

After his hiking and animal hunting were over he came into the house too and we had a quiet hour while he played a game on the iPad and Gibson slept and I read some Vanity Fair where I learned that Kate Atkinson's new novel, "A God in Ruins," is coming out in May and that it's a sequel to her "Life After Life" and boy oh boy, am I excited about that. "Life After Life" was one of the best books I've read in years and I hope with all of my heart that this one is as good. 

And then Gibson woke up in a fine and cuddly mood and Owen ate most of his Cheetos and gave the rest to the chickens and Gibson ate a muffin and they both had some ginger-ale and then their mama got here to pick them up. Gibson was ready to go home with Lily but he asked me, as he almost always does now, if I was coming home with them. I told him that no, I was not, that I had to stay here and make Boppy his supper and he did the thing where he grabs my chin and kisses me many times and then he said, "No more kissing," and that was enough and I kissed Owen good-bye and Lily too, and they drove off and I was so exhausted. Physically, it was the easiest day but emotionally, I guess it had been a bit more difficult. But I drank some iced espresso and got in the garden and weeded out a spot where I want to plant cow peas and mulched it good and even girded my loins and gathered my moral fiber and pulled the mustard plants and fed them to the goats and Mr. Moon got home with chicken feed and scratch and a new bale of straw for me to use in the nests and here we are. 

I will indeed make Boppy his supper which is going to be a reheating of last night's good soup with some of the last of the greens and carrots from the garden and also the first of the potatoes and lots and lots of other stuff. It was incredibly delicious last night and will be even more so tonight. And I made bread yesterday with rosemary and Calamata olives and I'll heat that up too. 

Well, best get to it. 

Happy Earth Day. I have earth all over me and will definitely be needing a shower before bed. 

Forgive me if this is all discombobulated and weird. I've been heavily disassociating all day long except for when the boys were here and my brain's checked out, filled with cotton and mist and I'm writing this on automatic. 
All-in-all it was a very good day and I hope I didn't scar my grandson with the diaper thing. 
He picked me a rose later on so maybe not. 

Frankly, I hope to die before I ever need to contemplate adult diapers but we get what we get. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Hold Tight, Believe In Light

Last night's dream was more about the stepfather than the house.
He's dead. Remember when I found that out? That he'd been dead for like a year and no one told me?
Will I ever get over this shit? Will it ever be done?
No. I don't think so.
And the horror of finding him alive in my dreams is pure never-ending torturous entertainment.
And yes, my mother was there too.

What happens when a child is abused by a loved one? A loved one. Someone the child may or may not be related to by blood and whom the child trusts and loves and looks to for protection and safety who takes that trust and that love and uses is as a force to harm, to hurt, to devastate, to destroy, to confuse, to damage, to steal and rob and take from the child any innate innocence and ability to love and to trust as fully as might have been. That's what happens. At least partially.

You know, you can spend your whole damn life contemplating this and getting therapy and learning to love yourself and healing the child within you by loving others and your own children and then your grandchildren and reading and attending group therapy and BEING loved by the most stalwart and truly good people on earth and figuring stuff out, day by day, and being on medication and exercising and communing with nature and digging in the dirt and creating life and art and you can do all of this stuff and still find yourself having dreams, night after night of the person who abused you and also the person who did not protect you and you go over it and over it again and again in your dreams (your mind) and you can know in your heart that disease was involved and that parents are merely human and sometimes the best they could do was the best they could do, and you will still wake up with a quaking soul and tears.

Or so it is for me.

In a way, having been abused is a bit like having a chronic illness of remission and exacerbation. You may have great, good days with barely any pain or problem and you can recognize and appreciate those days with every grain of every fiber of every molecule of your being and then one night go to sleep and have the dream or maybe see something that triggers something or hear something or who knows? Perhaps the moon and planets wend their way to another part of the universe and twist open some brain valve that lets out the poison again and there you are. Anxious, depressed, afraid, tearful,  fearful, paralyzed, fraught with feelings of self disgust, and having no belief in one's own self worth even if she is absolutely just as surrounded by beauty and love and tranquility and light and sweet air and scratching chickens and over-abundance of everything good that any human being on this planet could ever want, as she was the day before. The disease has somehow roared back and trying to figure out why is useless. It just is the way it is.

Well. Thank you for letting me write it all out here this morning. How it is. How it can be. At least at my age I know that every moment will not be like this. That the feelings are naught but the dregs of the live virus injected in the soul at an early age which disallowed the proper and true abilities of the brain to make sense of it all.

And to you who wonder why I never, ever get over this and who would be disdainful of my continuing to talk about it- I say to you- good for you! You don't know and thank your lucky stars for that.
And to those of you who do understand I say, "I am so sorry, so sorry, you are not alone, we are not crazy so much as just altered by what happened to us and that we survived all of that and we will survive all of this and don't be afraid to talk about it because keeping it in is as dangerous and pointless and painful as trying not to puke when you've eaten something poisonous. And if I cry, I cry for all of us and I cry for the victims of childhood sexual abuse and every sort of abuse and let us remember to love those given to us to love and to accept love from them in return because honest to god, we deserve both of those great gifts as much as anyone on this earth.

Good morning. Be well. We are here with each other and don't forget it.
Don't ever motherfucking forget it.

Love...Ms. Moon

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Every Drop Was Golden

It was so beautiful today that I just kept shaking my head in wonderment. Whether it was the fact that it was the first truly sunny day in a long time or whether it was the cool temperature or whether it was all the new growth, or whether it was just all of it- whatever it was, I was astounded over and over and over again.

And we did everything. 

And Mer Mer is as exhausted as she can be. 


Hippie Jesus was at the Post Office today and the way he walked reminded me of a dear friend of mine, the rise up on the balls of the feet, the little bounce before the coming down. Hippie Jesus, hello on this good day where the sun is shining but the air is cool and it felt so good walking, I was strong and finished up fast, fast, fast, grateful to feel strong, grateful to be able to walk the miles and there were path ponds from all the rain and every green thing is as green as the first fern, jutting from a new-made planet, there are shadows, there is light.

Soon there will be boys here and they will call Mer! Mer! and I wonder what we shall do today. Be glad of this sun, be glad of this day. Be glad of this birdsong, roostercrow, green-as-the-eyes-of-the-Irish-boy, breeze-kissing day of a day in April when the storm, for now, has passed and these feet, my feet, still stride and I feel strong and I wonder if I rise up on these feet to bounce into the next step like hippie Jesus.
I do not know.
But I am grateful.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Flowers, Fowl, Food, Weather And Asses

Tallahassee got some massively crazy weather today. Trees down everywhere, roads blocked, branches twisted and snapped off. Literally snapped.
There must have been some little twisters in that storm. On my drive to town I saw much of the same a few miles down the road and feel quite lucky that those nasty little devil winds did not visit me. The power was out when I left and when I got home three hours later it was still off. I had just texted my across-the-street neighbor to ask he had any clue as to when it was supposed to come back on and right after I sent it, it did.
I felt as if I had magical powers!

But everyone here seems to have survived the storm although I got half the number of eggs today that I usually get.

There are most of the birds, but not all. They were scratching in front of the little side porch and I took a panoramic picture of them and it sort of makes me dizzy to look at. I can't keep that little arrow on the line to save my life. 

Maurice is definitely fine. She has been following me around. Mr. Moon left for auction but not before he petted her and talked baby-talk to her. He kills me. "Oh, my little kitty. She doesn't want to sleep with Daddy anymore? She always sleeps with Mommy?"
Of course I talk to her like that but, well...
"You love that cat," I told him.
"No," he said. "I don't like her."
I laughed and laughed and Maurice just let him scratch her under the chin. She knows the truth of it, as do I. And the truth of the matter is, she stays on my side of the bed because she knows I need her there. That little solid chunk of warmth that I can reach down and scratch a bit when the dreams get to be too crazy. 
Last night I dreamed that Bill and Hil came over to my house for supper. It was not this house. No, no. It was the house with the Titanic ghosts in the basement and it was huge and filled with antiques and also filled with partying strangers. I asked the Clintons what they would like to drink and he said that he'd love a vodka tonic and she said that an orange juice would be nice. On my way to get their drinks, I kept trying to round up the partying strangers to make them leave. Most of them did, grumbling as they went, but a few very rough-looking specimens refused. May was making dinner which was a good thing because she is so good at vegetarian cooking and I know that the former president is eating a vegan, no-fat diet these days. But somehow, between the rounding-up of the unwanted people in my house and checking on the kitchen and all of it, I couldn't even get the drinks made or delivered and I felt so very, very anxious and rude and bad and once again I thought, "Jesus. This is just like my dreams." And then even, "God. This IS a dream. I need to wake up!"
And eventually I did and you better believe I needed Maurice to pet for a moment. 

Ah well. 

Since Mr. Moon left with his popcorn and his coffee drink and his snack bag to go to Orlando I have taken the trash and because the moon must be in some Suzy Homemaker mode I mopped the kitchen and two bathrooms. I also picked up some fallen branches and picked some kale for a salad tonight. The kale still has not gone to seed but some insect critter is turning the leaves to lace. While I'm waiting for the floors to dry (and this may not happen tonight- the humidity has to be at least 80% here), I am writing this and also went and took a few pictures both in my yard and down the road which by the way, looks like this tonight. 

Here are my Susan Suchan Day Lilies. Susan was my dear friend who died in 1995 and she had been pleading with me to take some of her lilies and I finally did after she took off to that other plane. I have transplanted them in three yards now. 

It always feels like a blessing when they bloom. They are beautiful but not nearly as beautiful as my Sue-Sue was.

My neighbor's magnolia grandiflora has begun to bloom and I want with all my heart to pluck one of the buds and bring it home to a vase to let it open in my hallway to fill the air with the sweet scent of it but I am not that sort of neighbor. I did take a picture though, of an open blossom.

And then because this pretty jenny was out where I could take her picture, I did. 

This donkey belongs to my next-door neighbors and I swear- if I ever get another animal for a pet, it will be a donkey. There is something about them which calls to me like chickens do. 
But I probably never will. Although there are such things as miniature donkeys...

(Image found here.)

How much would Owen and Gibson and Soon-To-Come-Baby love one of these?

Ah, lah. 

I think I'm going to go massage the kale. I am craving something oily and vinegary. I picked a few pea pods to add to the salad and a few collard leaves. No, I have not pulled all of the collards yet. It would still feel like murder. And one of my last carrots, burgundy and gold. And some shallots. 

Garlic and basil will be involved. 

Well, that's the report from Lloyd today. 

Please don't hate me because my life is so exciting. 

Much love...Ms. Moon

Made it home from my walk just in time. Another huge storm is kicking up. Mr. Moon reports from town that a huge pine tree where he works just snapped in half.

Oh, Florida.

Power's out. And so it goes.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

And The Rain Came Down

And rain it did and it cracked and it thundered and lightening lit up the sky and the ground, already so wet, could barely contain it. It was beautiful.

Before the rain came in though, I did weed those tomatoes and mulched them good. I got filthy. And when I was finishing up I wondered why I've ever let myself regard any time in the garden or in the yard as wasted time. My god! How ridiculous! Some people go to the gym and spend money to lift weights and run or walk or stairclimb or bike in one place and yet I can be outside, listening to birdsong and feel the breeze and the sun, squatting and standing up, bending and stretching and handling big bags of leaves that are pretty darn heavy and digging and pulling and I can see the results of my efforts when I look around me and it makes me so happy. The food I get is almost beside the point. The point is the very joy of the work of it. Bringing forth life in dirt. With chickens and ducks about to keep me company, listening to a good book all the while.
Ah, man. For me there is nothing better.
I came in when the rain truly began to fall, when the lightening and thunder started crashing about.

I did clean out some cabinets. And then I went totally Little Housewife On The Big Fucking Prairie and cleaned out the refrigerator. Child, please! Of course I'm doing laundry because I'm always doing laundry. And pretty soon here I'm going to make us a nice supper.

A little while ago I was out gathering eggs and I just had to take a picture of my birds, or some of them, at least, as they rushed me for possible food. I had already given them many delicious things from the refrigerator that were on the verge, to say the least, when it comes to use-by-dates. They adore old cottage cheese. And you should see them peck away at hummus.

I swear to you that when Mick comes up onto the kitchen porch and crows for me to bring them tasty treats, his crow can sound almost threatening. Not life-threatening but threatening like, "You better come feed us or else!" And this morning the ducks were talking about something in a most vocal and determined way and I went out to see if anything was wrong. There did not appear to be anything unusual going on and I said, "Y'all! Calm down!"
And one of the ducks said, and I swear this is true, "What?"
"Chill out!" I said.
And they did. 

And then this.

I had put that raggy old unraveling rug on the porch to prevent slippage underneath one of the leaky places and Maurice, being a cat and thus a supermodel who always thinks of her image and how she looks, had decided to curl up right in the middle of it to take a nap. 

The rain has passed, I have indeed found pea pods growing on their thick green vines, my back hurts like holy hell and so does my neck and so what? so what? so what? The frogs are croaking but not roaring, the hog dogs are barking and I suspect their owners are at Sunday night church but that's just a theory and I bet you anything that if I listen carefully tonight I will hear a Chuck-Widow's-Will out way behind the house. I hear the soft gray doves calling, the liquid song of the mockingbird. 

Here I am and so glad to be. 

Love...Ms. Moon

Another Pleasant Valley Sunday (Thank You, Steve Reed)

A band of rain is coming according to the radar. It stretches from Tennessee to the Gulf and the wind picks up and dies down and the leaves seem to have received the information without need of a website, the chickens and ducks too.
They are agitato.
I feel it myself.
Mr. Moon is mowing before the rain comes and I've been out picking up downed branches, kicking yet more bamboo although some of it has escaped me. There is a twenty-foot length of it growing up amidst the leaves of the Japanese magnolia, straight as a flagpole. It seems almost to have an intelligence of its own, choosing places to come up which will hide it until its size makes it too much to merely kick over. I think I may get back outside and weed the tomatoes which are coming along nicely. The peas are blooming profusely but I have yet to see a pod. Have we planted some ornamental pea by mistake? I hope not. Although pea shoots are delicious themselves in salads and in stir fries.

And so it is Sunday and for whatever reason, the day I find myself most apt to be in the yard. I suppose it is the day I am most in need of being on my knees in the dirt. It is so humid today though, the very air swollen with water. Ah well. If what "they" say is true, I am sweating out the toxins although it is of my opinion that I would be better off (as would we all) not to introduce toxins which need to be sweated out in the first place.

There was a possum in the hen house last night when Mr. Moon went to close the door. It had disturbed the ducks to the point that they spent the night in the pump house. They cannot fly up to a roost but sleep on the floor in the hay, cuddled together like two apostrophes. They are alive and well today though. Mr. Moon chased the possum into the run and opened the door to it so that the creature could get out on its own. I have no argument with possums although they will kill a chicken and are one of the things we need to be wary of.

So much nature.

I better get out there and weed those tomatoes. It is Sunday and the sound of the mower is heard in the land. Soon enough it will be raining if not storming and then the mower will be silenced and I will hear the water fall, the wind blow, the wind chimes ring and sing out with it all.

I might clean out a closet. Or a cabinet. That would feel good.
I typo-ed "that would be god."
Well, what isn't?

Happy Sunday or a reasonable substitute.

Love...Ms. Moon