I hear water pushing past granitic forms like antlers cutting past snow ladened wind — elemental and musical, tooth and nail.  Pine and fir are rusting in a smoky breeze.  I smell the rot of dead salmon.

Closer to the lake, the kokanee are running.  I stand on a cut bank, look out over their neon bodies and watch them stack up in a deep pool, ritualistic, mildly pissy and faithful to their ancestry.  I, too, must make my journey, pass upward against the current, be cut down by wind, whittled by water and refined by flame.

 Two boulders down, I see a sipper surface.  I open my fly box and choose again.

http://www.thenoisyplume.com/blog/2017/09/09/integration/

My gardens have such a strange way of lending me peaceful energy.  I like to pick in the cool of the morning and tend in the waning heat of the evening.  Today was such a long, hot day, nearly 100F and full of soft struggles that nipped at my patience and felt pathetic and like suffering.  This evening, I mustered the last of my strength and set out with a desperate heart to catch up on my tangled cucumbers and eggplants divine.  My garden sits in a hollow beneath a rise of stoic sage, pine and poplar.  As the sun sets, the light dims and fades until my plants are in delicious shadow and the mysteriously dank scent of tomato leaves begins to spiral upward.  The cool of wet earth spools around me and I find myself refreshed and invigorated in a quiet, sensory way.

I think this is how flowers feel

when the day finally breaks back upon itself and a riptide of night moves fast to the West

and the bugs spread their wings and fly towards the last of the sun.

http://www.thenoisyplume.com/blog/2017/08/29/13208/

In The Breaks

I am sipping an Americano in Great Falls in the brick and stone historic downtown.  Tater lays at my feet on a sidewalk that is warming in the late morning sun.  Everyone walking past me pauses to pet him and they lift his face to meet his eyes with their own and they declare, “He is beautiful!” And it’s true.

Every woman I’ve seen on this city sidewalk looks lovely and put-together in skirts and heels, make-up on and hair smoothed.  I look like a tangle of Provence and hippy in a beautiful pocketed linen skirt, a sloppy tank top, layers of wild jewelry and bed head.  I did sleep in a tent last night.

I slept in a tent last night alongside an easy curve of the Missouri River beside the shadows of the cottonwoods that grow so wide and resplendent in this part of the state.  I like this part of Montana, beneath the High Line in the Missouri River Breaks where the land looks like deflated lungs and the deer grow big.  It’s my sort of country, scrappy but secretly tender; true to itself to such a degree that it is entirely unfettered and free as the wind.

In the morning, I stepped out of my tent and felt the sun on my face.  I stretched my arms out wide and found myself suddenly surprised by my wingspan.  It is wide.  It is wider than ever.  I slid my feet into my shoes and began walking.

When I pass through, when I slip through the golden grass beneath the cottonwoods alongside the river, I imagine myself quadruped and fat on summer.  It is late in the season now and the fresh shoots have to be sought out thoughtfully and teased up out of the dry earth so that the simple action of feeding myself the richest things resembles a kiss.

Meanwhile, at the farm…


…everything is growing beautifully, I am at war with a skunk, the kittens are hunting, I’ve started my 2017 canning/preserving as well as infused oil and tincture crafting (wildcrafted and homegrown), we took our second cut of hay, the orchard is about to be ready for the first harvest of plums.

Old Fashioned Summer Holiday


Just as long as I’m with you, babe.