could not stand (the summer)

trapped by heat the relentless wave

of sun. gimme a lemon

ginger ale

on ice

 

my mind in a prism my thoughts burn through me like sea

salt the machines and engines double

down like doom

 

throw me in a swimming pool turn the sky to liquid falling

down. cool rain reaches demigod status in the valley

leaking antifreeze side by fields

 

rivers are  the queens

 

sacks of ice pulled down from freezer doors to fracture

on the tile

 

night sails in like allies freeing

paris circa

1945

painted fences

i was moody

i was ready i was

running through a field

i was young i was

adventurous

i was heading for a fall

you were walking

you were friendly eating raspberries

off the bush

you were older

and reticent and you

wanted to protect me

we were unlikely bound for friendship

in a deep and southern

town we drank orange juice

walked the shoreline

painted fences stood us

down

mid august melody

you were space
you were operatic

i was listening
but could not hear

like a potted plant i
needed time to take on
water. once i drank
i was full

i need to paint my nails
a soft shell blue
to remember me
with you

you are angry
i am yelling
you are pacing
i am telling myself
not to cry

i believe i’m gonna
sound the pitch of railroad tie
a’buried in the ground

locked in there. to stabilize
a nation. split in two

i am crying the earth away
so i can see you
again. next to me
saying your sorries

they mean nothing
they mean nothing

i am space
washing saucers
operatic

you are history
you are gone

i am thinking of you
i am typing

you are reading
i am writing we are
dreaming we are
one

summer’s gone
and come

you are dreaming
i am typing we are
reading in the
sun

mag.pie

magpie valley summer

i bent down by the river and cupped water to cool my face and hair. the summer was hot as ever and not letting up. you flew down and hopped over to me, where i could admire you in the half-light. little magpie of the valley, what have you seen and where have you been? your tail feathers long and dark, of blue and purple hue, your legs like twigs and feet splayed. cocking your head to one side so i can meet your parrot eye. what can i do for you, brave bird?

you told me of the coyotes and their dens above the levee, and how they walk the rails to get from town to town. you told me of the river and how it made its way. you told me of your kind, long gone from here…and yet, you stay? there is an old man comes from the city to see you, he cracks a beer and lies down with a jacket rolled up under his head. you look after him. he speaks to you in a calm and gentle tone. you climb upon his shoulder where he takes selfies with you. then feeds you shavings of turkey and ham…dear magpie, i am hot and tired and wish to rest for a while. what more do you know? would you share with the likes of me?

cycling

cycling adventure (part II)

I remember the moment, standing over my duffle bag full of camping gear at 4am, half-awake and trying to choose between a pillow and long underwear. The pillow won. Over the next several days we woke up from camp @ 530am to a car alarm someone was setting off on purpose (and i thought i got away from the city) to sucker us out of our sleeping bags and tents and inside for coffee and breakfast before heading out for our long daily adventures up in and around Auburn, California…  my decision would come back to haunt me… zooming down steep hills at 7am in nothing but a cycling jersey and t-shirt clocking 40 miles an hour max was a fine recipe for bronchitis — and yes, it was so worth it. We had a blast, me and my team ladybugs compadres and i definitely contributed at least 250 miles (i confess i didn’t do them all this year).
 
The weather was outstanding, the crew was incredible, the food was excellent, the cyclists were friendly, and the Gold Country Fairgrounds was a very nice homebase. Nobody got injured (i heard one person maybe fainted) and everyone worked together to make it a safe and sweet trip. I particularly loved listening to tent zippers and trains chugging along, rattling through the night. I hope to stay on the every other year plan but who knows. I seem to have less and less time anymore to do anything. For now my plan is to get back and finish Book #3 of my trilogy — the Daughter of Darkness series — so you probably won’t hear from me for a while about running or cycling events.

Oh! I forgot to mention i could not wear my prescription eyeglasses so i got a little bit lost every single day of the ride. We were trying to follow arrows taped to the ground to know where to turn and thankfully we had maps and crew looking out for us, so i never went more than a mile or two off track. Also, in Auburn i greeted a unicyclist with a coffee who was riding a steep grade like a pro, and one gorgeous solitary deer the last day on the American River Trail heading home. There were plenty of horses and cattle and goats and bees in boxes, and the occasional snake which had unfortunately been run over. We also got crop dusted the first day at one of our rest stops. The planes seemed to be dusting us more than the fields! Don’t know what that was about – we don’t look like crops? – but it felt like a mean country bumpkin trick and we got out of there as soon as we could!

The final day we rode into William Land Park [via the Sacramento Riverside road and Marina and Old SacTown and a desperate turn through Loaves & Fishes and the Railyards] to a staging area for lunch, and I was the VERY LAST one to arrive because i got lost again that day, somewhere near Loaves & Fishes. I got on course and pedaled hard and made it just in the nick of time, as we had to line up and ride with a motorcycle escort to be at the Amphitheatre by noon for the celebration. A cyclist with a puppy dog in his basket fell over and some asshole almost ran him over. Everyone got scared and angry for a second. Then he was back on his bike, puppy intact, and everything was golden again because the group that was there to celebrate our homecoming was spectacular and loud! And the mayor of West Sac was there to give a nice speech as we stood up with our bikes on the stage and hero medals around our necks. I shed some tears myself, which immediately crystallized into salt on my cheeks. I was rather dehydrated.  
 
Anyways, thanks to all our friends and supporters, and to the organizers of the event! This year we have thus far raised close to a quarter million dollars! Love from me to you.
KatYa  ‘just another ladybug on wheels’

pause into super fun

What I love about life. The fireworks stands have risen like cardboard flowers and stand in church and pharmacy parking lots selling small explosives at small expense, so common people can contribute a bang and a kick out of stars into the dark night and anniversary of our independence not long from now.

Today is the 7th in our latest summer wave of heat. Almost everyone has a roof over their heads. Almost everyone has a freezer, an ice cube tray, water gets frozen and cracked, only to melt down the throat and pissed out steaming, flushed and back to the ground and up into the plants, or out into greater bodies of waters, then subject of the sun and burned into haze cooled into fog, condensed into air, risen into clouds, cooled again at night and dropped…

The opening eyes of children, the tall ones first, all the way down to the middle ones and then the littlest ones holding their hands looking up up and incredulous, just as you all strike the matches and ignite the sulfur with twine and flame made from fluid, the spark off the side of your thumbprint grinding alloy with the flint, rubbing your identity right into it, and your small stars shot into the night with all the others, aginst the rippling flags and melting pot of frozen sugars…

If we could only all see, only see, you and me, from above, all the breaking apart and coming together of material, the tension, the unity. Cries of joy, subsiding, crackling seconds of attention and paper particles confetti the air, then back to subdued tones and complaints and kids running and using legs like trees to hide behind and duck around. Then looking up again and the thunderous sound far above makes you realize how small you are, and the adults become kids all over again. Fifty years or more of this. Rocking chairs on porches and reports like gunfire but without the violence, only to be super fun times, and the kind-like voices over radio. Television flashes through the windows in the dark.

Headlights cast across the knees. Some are walking and others on bicycles, and many now driving away. Listen. Crickets and squeaky wheels. There will be no less struggle between me and myself, you and yourself, and ideally we can be our own best friends, i can be my own as i display the best of my abilities in plain view,  up against the best of yours and everyone else’s. Perfectly on hold and iced until tommorrow. Four of swords. Pause into the super fun into the calm afterward.

The material of life. The mercury makes a difference, tomorrow more pressure and harder to breathe. My fair skin is nothing to the sun. The body is much on the mind, is nothing compared to the spirit. We will sleep and wake again into the beauty of the fullness of light and the breakfast table. If I am lucky I will continue to fight my own desires, my own ennui every day, blasting it to hell and confetti myself into paper. Being alone won’t matter. Could be a great day coming and why the hell not.

august walks in

July left the dance with a sway and a sigh, drunk off the summer sun high, the fan and her shoulder blades evenly matched as the crickets kept time safe beneath the wing. August came in hot, on fire, with something to prove… boy, did he know how to move.