Flight

DTW Detroit Michigan Airport is civilized at 9:00 AM on Christmas Eve day, Dec. 24th, 2015. Terminal A is fairly quiet, no one is freaking out or crazily running to catch a flight. A lot of airport staff are moving about in clusters, chatting with each other about hospital visits and annoying bosses.

I have a 4 hour layover, so after cruising the food choices, I decide on Longhorns restaurant, not least because they are playing one Motown hit after the next on a satellite radio service. The Claassic Breakfast is two eggs, biscuit, hash browns, bacon or sausage. Outside the enormous west-facing windows, the rising sun illuminates the space between the A and B terminals over the tunnel, where Delta jets taxi in and out like graceful solo skaters. Every few seconds a clean, crisp Delta jet leaps off the runway just beyond, into the cloudless morning sky, into the southerly wind. The jets escalate swiftly, just like all things that fly.

DTW tunnel Screen ShotEarlier, a tiny girl trailing her mother attempted the down escalator to cross the tunnel from B to A terminal. On her back she carried the obligatory overstuffed backpack. Her slightly older brother was several strides ahead of her, and ahead of them both, already on the way down, was their mother, a roller board suitcase in each hand, and another large backpack on her own back. Escalators still alarm me, I remember when I was this little girl’s age, the risk of falling or worse, the nervousness of my own parents, being forced to choose the terrible second when you must step onto the moving stair, the visual disorientation – where do the strairs come from, where do they go? – the sound that the escalator makes, rumbling, clicking, whirring, sometimes screeching. Terrifying.

The tiny girl hesitates. I am right behind her, anticipating this very thing and ready to assist. She steps down, not holding onto the handrail, loses her balance, stoops, and begins to cry quietly. Mom is unconcerned, or not showing it. “C’mon, she chirps, “Let’s go.”

I gently grasp the girl’s upper arm with my left hand, saying, “You’re OK.” She is crying but not too hopefully, looking at her feet, at the stair she is half on, half off. We are descending. A man on the parallel stair is also descending. He reaches over the divide, touching her shoulder with his big hand and says loudly, “You’re OK, you’re ok,” repeating it because the tiny girl is not convinced. Slowly she reaches up with her left hand to hold the handrail. “Good job,” I say. She continues to cry quietly. “C’mon, we gotta go,” says mom, looking back over her shoulder, getting ready to step off at the bottom.

The girl’s brother watches from a few stairs down between mother and sister, a bridge between them. At the bottom, he hops off, turns to watch her. All the adults nearby are ready to intercede. But we know she has to learn the escalator rules, to conquer her escalator fears. We remember.

The cloudless Detroit sky absorbs all birds leaping up and curving away, going everywhere. Diana Ross sings, Set me free, why dontcha babe.Ā All Green sings, Let me know that love is really real.

Blank Books made from Album Covers

Blank Books made from Album Covers

I’ve made a bunch of these blank books using recycled and repurposed paper and old LP covers found in thrift stores, yard sales, or from my own collection. I could do this for you, too šŸ™‚

Spring Haiku 2011 – Part 2

a single eggĀ fell
from the nest in the pine tree
doves in grey mourning
4/17/11

sometimes when I ride
i want to close my eyes and
let the horse rein me
4/19/11

having a kitten
means going through bandaids
likeĀ a house afire
4/20/11

on May twenty-first
at precisely twelve a.m.
rapturous moonrise

as the clouds were limned
just before the moon came up
i heard coyotes
5/21/11

Spring Haiku – 2011

4/8/11

now my sunrise year
of gray to crimson beauty
has come full circle

april to april
spring to spring, sunrise sunset
i’m the book between

4/3/11

remember april?
birth, death, anniversaries
unforgettable

house finches scolding
heavy cat kneading my arm
red deer in sunrise

3/29/11

the itinerant
doves of mourning have returned
for summer love songs

3/28/11

the lake is fierce
whipped tourquoise and aubergine
brave gulls time their dives

3/26/11

damn snow obscuring
stealthy black frozen puddle
ouch – i have fallen

hobbled by mishap
suddenly i see grey wings
northern harrier

3/25/11

sunrise slides northward
each day a bit farther left
Democratic sun

3/22/11

caked, stained tails andĀ manes
the old grey mare turns to brown
mud season is here

they open the locks
far far north of here and the
lake level rises

vernal equinox
i feel a gut twinge, a cramp
like a teenaged girl

"super moon" march 2011


supermoon rises
in a cold clear sky
due east: proud blushed perigee

3/9/11

all careful plans have
larger forces at work, like
weather predictions
..
ladybug plays dead
good strategy, good for you
and good luck with that
..
cardinal treetop
bluejays in the apple trees
no bobolinks, yet

3/8/11

sugary branches
ice fog: what chilling god would
create such a thing?

2/28/11

february gasps
trees are figured in the rain
resolving details

April Fool : Music Video

My song, “April Fool” (from CD ‘Tell The Wind,’ produced by Rich DePaolo) with my own photos* and video —

*the CD cover image is by James Nelson (Getty Images).

Jury Selection Haiku

I was called for jury duty in my county’s Supreme Court. Like most people, I saw this as an annoyance, an imposition and interruption of my own affairs, a selfish but justifiable sentiment. I forgot to bring a novel to fill the boring empty hours of selection, so I wrote some haiku.

jury duty call
a case of mental hygiene
clean, i am biased

no, i’m impartial
where my own bias occurs
cut from colored cloth

i feel dutiful
responsible, capable
also recluctant

marble leather stone
eaglesĀ brassĀ rosettes bunting
words: in god we trust

if i am asked to
swear, “so help me god,” will i
be telling the truth?

so much waiting time
should have brought a book to read
crime and punishment?

church pews in the court
i guess justice is just like that
uncomfortable

what is he thinking
the accused sex offender
sports scores? what’s for lunch?

waiting for the judge
a juror parts her long hair
weaves a skinny braid

the court attendant
relaxes, along with us
reading the paper

all rise – we all rise
be seated – everyone sits
here come the judgement

some are duly sworn
i am not among them, i
am unselected

why disappointed?
partiality revealed
sets me free, or not