deer

Apr. 26th, 2018 08:58 am
asakiyume: (shaft of light)
Deer have been wandering through the woods/swamp behind my house in the mornings, it's on their route from one place to another. I love how they're both present and invisible. You have to wait for them to move to see them, just ripples in the air, they blend in so well, but with watching eyes and their white-flag tails if they're startled.

I think with their camouflage they could wander across worlds and dimensions and centuries. It makes me understand why the shishigami, the forest spirit, in Princess Mononoke, is a deerlike creature.


He grants both life and death; maybe he moves between those worlds or states.

And it gives me new insights into the end of Chekhov's short story "Ward No. Six," where the main character, just before dying, has a vision of deer:

There was a greenness before his eyes. Andrey Yefimitch understood that his end had come, and remembered that Ivan Dmitritch, Mihail Averyanitch, and millions of people believed in immortality. And what if it really existed? But he did not want immortality—and he thought of it only for one instant. A herd of deer, extraordinarily beautiful and graceful, of which he had been reading the day before, ran by him; then a peasant woman stretched out her hand to him with a registered letter . . . . Mihail Averyanitch said something, then it all vanished, and Andrey Yefimitch sank into oblivion for ever.

(The collection of Chekhov short stories from which this is taken is available to read for free on Project Gutenberg).

I remember almost nothing about that story, except that image. ... I might reread the story. I took three books with me to England when we lived there as a family; a collection of Chekhov short stories was one, and I read and loved most of them. My memory isn't what it might be, but I know what roads to walk down to recover things.

And deer know all the roads, and how to be a part of the landscape and yet not of it. That's their magic.
asakiyume: (cloud snow)
Today's sleet and rain has broken the spell that hid the true nature of our driveway. In reality, it is a whale shark.

Sorry we've been parking on top of you, whale shark!

whale shark?
asakiyume: (cloud snow)






It is very satisfying to walk out into the deep cold well enough wrapped up to not be bothered by the chill.

I paid a visit to a frozen creek. I didn't pick the ice flowers.

here abide frozen things )

Last year I resolved to write creatively at least two days a week, to work on Spanish every day (or to make up days I missed), and to record the things I notice each day. I failed at the first and third of those, but I did the second and am pleased to know significantly more this year than I did this time last year.

Two of my goals this year are related:

(1) Continue to work on Spanish in the same manner, but added to that: find a person or people to practice conversation with. The duolingo bots have their limits. I'm aiming for in-the-flesh rather than online, although with skyping, etc., I know online can be very good ... I should probably set a date by which I'll achieve this. How about the end of January...

(2) Write a bit every day. Maybe phrasing it that way will make it more achievable than saying "Write at least two days a week."

(3) This is the different goal: Read a bit every day (not counting social media). I can double-dip with this a little as I have a Spanish-language book to be working on.

I'll be looking at my friends' entries to see if they've got goals/resolutions, but if you haven't shared in an entry and want to share in comments, I'm all ears!
asakiyume: (cloud snow)
It's cold out today. I grabbed my car key in my bare hand after driving a brief way in the cold car, and it *stung* my hand. I felt like I'd been bitten or burned--I guess because the key was so cold? But I've never felt cold metal like that before. Maybe I always have gloves or mittens on? But suddenly I understood exactly what it must be like to be one of the fairy folk and touch cold iron.

a cold day

Dec. 13th, 2017 05:44 pm
asakiyume: (november birch)
I had to walk back to the house along the highway this morning, after dropping the car (the remaining car...) off for scheduled maintenance.

It was so cold, penetratingly cold, killingly cold, and windy--but it was morning, and the sun was out.

dramatic

This afternoon, walking that same route back to the mechanic's, it was a race between me and darkness. The clouds were rosy when I set out, and there was incandescent golden-orange brilliance behind the supermarket. But the light was dying and the wind was fierce, and I felt *very fragile* walking against the stream of homeward-bound cars. Almost no one walks that bit of road. Where there was briefly a sidewalk, I passed a woman walking her dog. Otherwise, I had my footprints from the morning for company. Somehow, my journey felt supernatural. When I was walking, step after step, through the crusty snow, pushing aside briars and the skeletons of mugwort or goldenrod on the safe side of a crash barrier, I felt that I wasn't in the same world as the people driving in cars. I was in some huge, howling, dark world, a world of coldness that would be happy to extinguish every living thing. When I made it to the mechanic's and opened the door into that warmth, I felt staggeringly relieved.

And then I drove home. And I myself was in that nice, ordinary world that I'd been on the outside of, walking on the roadside. But I could remember it.

in prison

Oct. 27th, 2017 11:47 am
asakiyume: (black crow on a red ground)
Is it a human person or a fairy being, imprisoned behind the leaf-vein bars? What was the crime, or were they falsely accused? When and how will they be freed, or will they free themselves?

in prison
asakiyume: (feathers on the line)
When the curtain parts, when the doors open, when unknown beings from there come here, they always arrive in an empty parking lot, at twilight, when the sky is glowing but the earth is dim, and the electric lights of humankind seem as weak as a last breath.

portentous sky
asakiyume: (shaft of light)
Because yesterday and last night were unseasonably cold but the air was warmer this morning, there was mist everywhere when I went out.

Everywhere was gauzy.

misty trees

sun through mist

Up the street, down the street--ethereal

looking up the road

looking down the road

It seems that otherworldly dancers passed through, too, leaving behind their handkerchiefs, as they often do, on lawns, beside paths, and in the woods:

fairy handkerchiefs

fairy handkerchief fairy handkerchiefs


asakiyume: (the source)
I picked some violets after a run today--I saw them on a hillside, a really rich, deep purple. At home I have lots of violets too, but the purple ones are more washed out. Then there are the white ones with purple veins, and best of all, the speckled ones.

Here they all are in a little vase:

violets

And here is a photo of one of those trees of gold that grow in fairy woods, along with trees of silver and trees of crystal. This one has been felled by a beaver. Look how beautiful its bark is.

golden bark

And here is a tree that has been gnawed at three different spots. Three beavers sharing a meal? Or one beaver not satisfied with the taste and hoping it gets better if he tries a different spot?

beaver breakfast table

fairy path

Mar. 10th, 2017 11:49 am
asakiyume: created by the ninja girl (Default)







Missy went walking
On the fairy path one day
And this alone remains
After she was spirited away




asakiyume: (squirrel eye star)






On my way home two nights ago, I passed a church blazing with light, and it was so unearthly and beautiful, I stopped to take a picture.

The picture turned out even more unearthly than the actual scene. Creatures of pure light, with too many wings and eyes, must have been gathered within, flaming coolly in the February night, singing hymns in forgotten languages and in frequencies beyond the range of human ears.




asakiyume: (glowing grass)






I have a plan: I am going to grow a mangrove. You can do it! I checked, and the Internet said yes. First step is to get the seed to sprout. It's possible this seed won't germinate as (a) I picked it (rather than it falling of its own accord--in other words, it may not be ripe yet) and (b) the seeds mustn't be allowed to dry out, and it might have, between the time I picked it and the time I hit upon this plan. But I'm hopeful. And if this seed doesn't work, I'll get another one. Somehow. I think you can order them.



And here is a lawn that is crying out for a thyme pun (I lost track of the thyme... I had all the thyme in the world... )

From a distance



Up close, with bonus clover



And lastly, during my travels this weekend, I saw mermen reclining at ease, while nearby children frolicked. Here is one of them:




asakiyume: (misty trees)






Work's been intense, but I took a break and met [livejournal.com profile] wakanomori for lunch, and we read a little from this book, The Old Ways, by Robert MacFarlane, and there was this passage:

The way-marking of old paths is an esoteric lore of its own, involving cairns, grey wethers, sarsens, hoarstones, longstones, milestones, cromlechs and other guide-signs. On boggy ares of Dartmoor, fragments of white china clay were placed to show safe paths at twilight, like Hansel and Gretel's pebble trail. (p. 15, italics mine)


May you find your glimmering twilight path.

Dartmoor (Source: Dartmoor Hail and Sunbeams, southdownswalking.com.)






asakiyume: (feathers on the line)
I had to drive the healing angel in to school this morning, and on the way, we cross railroad tracks. There's a sign warning you you're coming to a railroad crossing, and I thought, yes, trains cross here. Watch out!

But what if it were a something-else crossing. I know you can get signs for deer crossings or moose crossings or turtle crossings. Those creatures don't cross on a schedule the way trains do, though. They're more unpredictable. No flashing red lights or bells when they're coming.

Whereas, if you had a crossing of the Wild Hunt from elsewhere, I just *bet* you'd get flashing lights or bells.

Though they probably wouldn't cross on a schedule, either. Or would they? Always at midnight, maybe? Or just after sundown in the twilight glow?

How about a memory crossing, when the stored-up memories of the area cross by. Haywains for instance, or Wampanoag hunting parties. Flocks of passenger pigeons.

Here's the view, by the way, at a different time of year, courtesy of Google Maps Street View:




asakiyume: (dewdrop)






May I offer you a plate of rain?

oak leaf and raindrops


asakiyume: (feathers on the line)
What if when you journeyed, the road only appeared after you? I guess that's the case for explorers--they create paths behind them. So, snails and slugs are explorers.

... Also, when you see a slug's silvery path, you expect some amazingly lovely creature must have made it.

"And you'd be right," says a self-confident slug, maybe blushing a little that you should reach such a flattering conclusion.

shining trail


almost across the Great Hard Waste




asakiyume: (cloud snow)
It's hard to get to now, because the former entryway has been turned into houses, and due to its being swampy, it's pretty much inaccessible except in winter. I found it again yesterday, though:

place I love

The snow is sparkling ♥

And there is hoarfrost growing on top of the snow:

hoarfrost on snow

(Speaking of hoarfrost, here is a leaf with a melting veil of it)

hoarfrost leaf

... goodbye November... hello December


asakiyume: (feathers on the line)
Alongside the road and in the woods, the pine needles have dropped. Where the woods path goes through a stand of white pine, I met a grandmother and granddaughter raking up the fallen needles with small bamboo rakes. They were putting them in a long bag, like a cotton picker's sack. Remarkably, they were both wearing coats of exactly the same shade of copper-orange as the pine needles.

"Are you going to put the needles around blueberry bushes to make the soil more acid?" I asked. "Or are you making baskets? Or maybe you're planning a fragrant bonfire?"

"None of those: we're gathering these for felting," the grandmother said. "I didn't realize how much Bethie'd grown this past year--show the lady, Bethie."

Bethie stuck out an arm and I saw the skin on her bare wrist between the end of her coat sleeve and her hand.

"We're going to make you a bigger one, aren't we?"

Bethie nodded.

"Wow--I didn't know you could make felt out of pine needles," I said.

"Oh no? Well, you can, if you have the knack," the old woman said.

I looked more closely at her coat, and at Bethie's, and saw now that the rich, fuzzy orange fabric was decorated with geometric starbursts of pine needle embroidery--a marvel. The grandmother caught my admiring eye and smiled.

A red-tailed hawk screamed, and for some reason that put me in mind of time passing. Work called.

"Well, good luck with the gathering and the project," I said. "The coats are amazing."

"Thank you," the grandmother said, returning to raking. "You have a nice day now." Bethie waved goodbye, and I continued on the woods path. I looked back once, but they were lost from sight.

Photo: "Carpet of Needles, Delamere, Cheshire," by Ian Helsby on Flickr
Carpet of needles Delamere Cheshire


clouds

Nov. 13th, 2014 07:35 am
asakiyume: (far horizon)






I hadn't gotten the photos off my camera in a while, and I discovered these clouds there:

first this...
clouds, earlier

then a few minutes later, they had moved a little....
clouds

There's a circle of brightness on the leaves at the top of some trees in that one:
clouds, spotlight on leaves

I found those pictures when I retrieved my camera from the car, to take the pictures that will be in the next entry...


asakiyume: (autumn source)
I had a lovely time with [livejournal.com profile] sartorias this past weekend, a consequence of which is that I haven't been online much at all, and may only slowly catch up with people's entries.

[livejournal.com profile] sartorias brought me cactus candy--and cactus honey--and cactus marmalade! All delicious. I AM HAPPY TO EAT CACTUS!

And she taught me some yoga, and it was so right and good, it made me cry a little.

you were always nice to me )

chestnuts and horse chestnuts )

Some treasures: in the pocket of my sweater are silvery mica and white marble from my walk in Holland Glen, back on Saturday. And on the dashboard of the car is a milkweed pod, spilling milkweed seeds--ballet dancers in long white skirts, like in Fantasia--a Swan Lake corps de ballet. More anon. Work calls--not to mention everyone's blogs! I'll get there, friends.


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asakiyume: created by the ninja girl (Default)
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