mid October

RCE_3988-PanosmKiller frost playing hell with the vibrance.

The leaves are thinning, starting at the top. I can’t say I’m sad to see them go. Green has always tricked my eye. I can’t see depth or discern between it’s different shades. The bush is turned deep again. The bears are revealed, along with elk, a mile away, scratching on slides, and dead trees, way back, begging to be cut and split, and I’d agree with them if only they were closer to the road.

The Tamaracks are turning, the snow is lowering and it’s getting damn cold in the morning. The long underwear is on till April, even if we do get a warm spell. Willow is taking no time growing her winter coat. She gives it a scratch now and again.

_LME3622Willow hanging in the skuff.

The wood is in. Next year’s still has to be piled. And I’m the shits at piling. Crooked rows, uneven spacing between blocks, shaky disbursement, all in an effort to mix up the types of wood.

IMG_2372Many brag, but few can deliver both length and girth.

An armful of split wood for the fireplace should contain at a least two, if not three species, cedar to get it going, pine to create a good hot base and larch to burn hot and slow, crackling once and awhile just to keep you hypnotized while the snow builds up.

It won’t be long now and we will start work in the dark and get home in it as well.

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Bradshaw Shank Redemption

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The good neighbour and I were given a few plants this year. I’d requested them and thanks to a couple sisters three plants were given to me in early spring. Much earlier than I usually start plants.  I passed on two to my neighbour as he is much better with young plants than me. The last one I was able to keep alive until it was ready to be transplanted outdoors in May.

They were seeds from Aaron Bradshaw’s plants that he gave his sister, Linda the year before. 

Linda started them on her windowsill. Aaron had left the parent plants for his sister when he died of cancer.

The plants were young at the time he passed, but grew in his sister’s backyard. It’s possible Aaron used cannabis for pain or comfort during his battle with his sickness. More than likely, it was something everyone here grows up with and knows helps with many everyday events, happy, sad, life affirming or life threatening.

Aaron was a year or two older than me. We ran into each other plenty. His father and my Grandfather were good friends. The first time I met him, I remember clearly, we were both just tots. My father took me to visit his father. Aaron was running around their house wild. Of course he was showing off for me and probably wanted me to play. But his speed intimidated me and I stuck by my father’s leg.

After that, even later, he knew he had my number, I knew it too. Growing up in this area you had to be tough. Aaron always knew I looked at him meekly. Once, long ago, he stopped me on my bike and asked me to borrow it. This is how a bike was stolen in those days. It happened a lot to me before I hit ten. He said, he just had to do something then he would give it right back. 

I gave my bike to Aaron, figuring where he might dump it twisted and broken. Instead he brought it back just like he said he would. 

Later in years, when ever we ran into each other, usually in the bar, we would talk, share some stories, about fishing and hunting. We always mentioned his Father and my Grandfather’s friendship. Like there was a bond. And there was a bond. We both grew up in this place. A place that seems to be cruel to some of the people who have been here the longest and love it the most.

Our families have had their share of feeling it. 

The plant in my garden put out some big early buds that have been enjoyed by many. I am unsure what strain it is, but it’s a deep powerful one.

My good neighbour’s plants turned out to be a male and female. After I told him about Aaron and the origin of the plants. He decided to breed the two plants  and we now have seeds for many years to come.

The good neighbour calls the strain Bradshaw Shank Redemption. I think Aaron would have got a helluva kick out of that.

I’ve heard it

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Seen it this way before.

Still disconcerting.

It looks hopeless,

this time with science

on their side.

It was in the sixties. . . or seventies

eighties even

they said it the same

but different.

addiction

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It’s time to get serious, I’ve been told and I’ve been told more than once. The rivers sure look promising, same as the muddy water in those gypsum sink holes, I used to dive when I was younger. Every single time I thought I was going to die. Sometimes instead of coming up I’d keep swimming down. I did it because it was hard. Everything trying to pull me up. The air in my lungs, lifting, my eyes open, facing the current. Stinging. Looking for a breath. That’s the way it is on any given day.

mouse

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My dog has her tip toe shoes on. She is after a mouse. Walking slowly from edge to edge. While, more than likely the mouse is running scared. The mouse’s best chance is Willow falls asleep.

Surprise, surprise we have more than one mouse.

the turn

_LME3320Late light.

The garden is looking weary. Plenty of yellow leaves. The vegetables are churning out, knowing fall is upon us. The carrots have the best growing in front of them, same as the cabbage

_LME3331Old peas.

The nights are longer. It’s already cool in the mornings. Orion is rising when I awake. It clears the mountains before light.

_LME3338Why the long face?

The peas have to be pulled. The ones I find I give to Willow. She appreciates them more if I open them. But what am I. . . her servant.

The stars and moon tell the story better.

Perseids

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You know you’re getting old when you go downstairs to get something but forget what it was once down there. Then as soon as you are back upstairs you remember. . . ah my teeth.

***

Wet on and off most of the weekend. I can’t say I’m disappointed. It’s good to face the warm rain. I prefer it to smoke any day.

***

The Perseid Meteor Shower is underway, but will be obscured by the moon and clouds, at least, for the next few days.

***

Was behind the mountains looking for Huckleberries. There was a few, along the cut, under the small pines. Picked enough for a taste. Time is scarce these days. It seems I’m due off the mountain as soon as I work the tension out of my joints.

***

These days it’s the far off dangers we fear while the small seemingly inconsequential pains go ignored. Crooked small town politicians, poor education and inadequate health care for everyone but the rich gets a pass in the face of such impending doom dominating the 24 hour news cycle.

We would all better off if we worried about the crooked little bastards running the local schools, weaselling away money while looking forward to retirement. Or the entire bunch of our small town and provincial politicians, changing the landscape to benefit themselves.

There is plenty to get riled up about right under our noses, before even thinking of Trudeau or Trump, in truth, two narcissist, blowhards that should be ignored while we focus on events closer to us, including the lives of neighbours and family, substantially more important.