Found words

Ruminant (Deerfield Fair)

I was at a loss for words.

But I looked around and found some in the junk drawer with the batteries, rubber bands, thumbtacks and matches. There was braided string, rummage, hodgepodge, and ladyslipper seashell. Also, close before striking.

In the refrigerator, I found tangerine, provender, sustenance and savor. Piquancy was in a small bottle on the door. In the vegetable drawer, with the baby carrots, I was surprised to find both dessication and putrefaction, together.

Most of the words in the dryer come from pockets. I kept Sacajawea. But I already have too many melted Chapsticks.

When I emptied the vacuum cleaner canister into the garage trash cans, I saw grit, filth, sediment and loess fall before I could do anything about it.

Childhood was in the toy chest, with nostalgia and pang.

Ennui had slipped down in the couch cushions, along with torpor and supine.

In the mirror, I discovered verisimilitude.

In a glass bowl on the coffee table, the goldfish makes words that rise in bubbles and float on the surface for a moment where they may be scooped with the small green net from the pet store. I caught supple, jeweltone, oddity, and charm.

The dog came in from the woods and brought thistle and sticktight seeds in his fur, russet oak leaves caught in his tail feathers. I picked them off and saved them in an old coffee can with a lid. Already inside: persnickety, cache, and hoard. I keep the can on a bookshelf.

Books have a lot of words. But the only way to get them out is to read the books, the words going in through your eyes, and then at night while you sleep the words fall out of your ears and corners of your mouth and sink into the pillows where they get caught in the eiderdown. In the morning, shake the pillows over a bucket then sift through the words to see if there are any keepers.

I read some poetry the other night. I woke up with white apples, twenty-foot waves and black-faced sheep.

Play a good word game…

Help end world hunger

Storm gone out to sea

Rough water in Rye, NH.

I drove north on Route 1A this morning, on my way to the gym to gerbil wheel my way to fitness. This photo was taken south of Petey’s Summertime Seafood Restaurant, looking north at the last house on that little peninsula.

There were surfers at Bass and Jenness Beaches and a few intrepid runners on the roads. Marshes were in full flood. Waves were washing over the Rye Harbor breakwater jetties.

The rain is finally fizzling out and temps have climbed to the upper 50’s.

The Nautical Roots of 9 Common Phrases

Top Ten Sea Monsters

Ida aloha

Near high tide, North Hampton Beach, 9:30 a.m.

Saturday morning along the Seacoast of New Hampshire. The self-appointed Inspectors of Storms and the conscientious Watchers of the Waves reported for duty all along the coast in their pickup trucks or Subaru Outbacks, with to-go cups of coffee in hand.

The remains of Tropical Storm Ida are dumping heavy rain on us all day, today and tonight. Onshore winds and building seas, plus astronomical high tide bring splashover and coastal flooding. Next high tide is around 9 p.m.

Little River Marsh near the Rt. 1A culvert, North Hampton.

The last of the leaves are blowing off the trees in our front yard today, even the oaks and the river birches. Now is the bare, cold, gray and brown and often white half of the year.

Console me with stuffing and gravy, and multi-color chasing-action mini-lights on the biggest tree we can fit through the front door. The TV we bought last Christmas pays off this month.

Semper fidelis

Four great commercials to celebrate the 234th birthday of the United States Marine Corps.

And a video, The Warrior Song, with vocals performed by a Marine, dedicated to all members of The United States Armed Forces, past, present, and future…

All profits from purchases of the song on iTunes are donated to the Armed Forces Relief Trust.

Also support the troops via the non-profit Soldiers' Angels.

Support families and survivors of the Fort Hood shooting at the Fort Hood Chapter of the Association of the United States Army website or donate via the USO.

Local worthy cause: The Pease Greeters, veterans and volunteers who greet military flights arriving from and departing oversees…

They will greet flights returning from oversees today at 2:45 p.m. and heading oversees on Thursday at 5:20 p.m. More about the Greeters.

2009 USMC Marine Corps Birthday Message from the Commandant…

"This is my generation's story and I want to be a part of it. I don't want to sit back and watch it happen." – a Marine.

"Marines have a calling. They run to the sound of the guns." – a Marine.

"Marines fight because it's in our blood. We're gladiators, we're warriors; it's in our spirit. It's what we do best and we do better than anybody else in the world – that's why the Marines will always be victorious." – a Marine.

Nothing much was expected of us and no one knew where we were

Donkey investigates camera.

My daughter and I visited Churchill’s Garden Center in Exeter this afternoon. A donkey, two goats and three chickens have a pen and a shed of their own out back.

Sunny and 60 degrees today. So after I cleaned downstairs windows and stored screens for the winter, cut back some dead plants and flowers, and swept cobwebs off the sides of the house and porch, I took Laura out for some fresh air.

She is recuperating from what is assumed to be swine flu. First day was last Tuesday. Lots of kids and teens are sick around here and according to one of the nurse practitioners at Hampton Pediatrics it’s the only thing going around right now.

She had a fever for a few days last week. The dry cough persists, but not as bad. Fatigue lingers. Mild chest pain when she takes a deep breath – I’m keeping an eye on that.

Christmas stuff for sale inside Churchill’s. Pretty trees decorated in themes like crystal winter wonderland, or birds and nature.

Laura is threatening to really get in the Christmas spirit this year. “You know, make decorations, be of good cheer.” I made a grumpy noise. “I don’t mean buy too much stuff or expect a lot of presents. Just really celebrate the meaning of Christmas.”

“Maybe we can do something good this year,” I said.

“You can give my gift money to Heifer International, if you want,” she said.

“I was thinking even closer to home, but I’m not sure what. We can think about it. Not money so much as something we do.”

“Yes, let’s.” She held her potential goodness inside like a secret and we kept looking at Christmas. We looked at orchids, wreaths, glass terrariums, and a pair of doves in an ornate cage.

“Doves should be free,” she said, in passing.

“At least they look happy to be together,” I said.

High Street, Exeter.

More slow walking and window shopping. We wished this used bookstore that also sells paintings was open.

Promises to each other to shop locally for gifts this year. A diversion into the rock shop to touch smooth beads, weigh rocks, marvel at a ship carved from jade, and consider the variety of animals shaped from different types of polished stone – dolphins, bears, cats, howling wolves, giraffes, lions, and more.

“The owls are really catching my eye today,” I said.

“I will always like turtles,” she said.

We watched the river flow under the bridge we stood on, we admired autumn flowers in restaurant window boxes, and we were witness to the way the November afternoon light illuminated the brick storefronts and clapboard siding of old houses. People were out walking, but no one was in a hurry.

On a day like this where there’s nothing you have to do, when the weather is better than expected, when sickness is mostly behind you and the holidays before you (at an ideal distance), when you notice things and have ideas and talk about nothing much with someone you know well, you unwrap the gift of an idle hour in sunshine and see that time is gold.