THe first one suffers from lack of water time. It’s a response to Millay’s “My heart, Being Hungry”, and its startings came to me while I was out rowing. But I haven’t been in a boat for a while (and I won’t be, until after the Holiday Challenge at least) and so finishing it was a plod. In particular, Millay has that beautifully polished lapidary ending (“Nor linger in the rain to mark the smell of tansy after dark”) while here I was trying to evoke grander pleasures with the idea of working up to them, and I think in the process I lost the tight specific focus that makes a good poem. But anyway:

A Growing Heart

Millay would deprecate as meager gain
the sweetness of a stolen ear of corn,
the smell of sagebrush desert after rain,
a red moon rising, early in the morn.

She’d swear a well-filled heart would never feed
on pillow’s kiss that ends a weary day
or sunglow captured in a field of weed
or kind-eyed stranger’s smile shared on the way.

But, rudest wildflower or cultured rose,
on these quotidian pleasures my heart grows
and burnishes a place with anxious care
with room enough for any it might snare:
sprawled mountain views, a star-filled night
heart-filling dreams of love and hope and light.

And this one is part of my annual light-in-darkness series, but it’s purely a romp:

When days draw down and nights grow colder,
Tasks seem endless, aching joints feel older
All ahead looks only weary,
Joyless, rocky, grey and dreary,

Then light a flame to call the dragons!
Roast the feast and fill the flagons,
Sing your songs of light and better days.
Dream of wild rides and plan adventure,
Hoist your flag and flee the drear indenture,
Kindle fires to keep your life ablaze.

In other news, I’ve done 121,000m in the Hoiliday Challenge – 79km to go before Christmas so I’m well ahead of schedule. I can’t say all this exercise is making me feel fitter, but it’s affecting my sleep for sure. feel like I begin each week rested, sleep lightly the first two nights, and then by midweek I’m just zonked and being surprised by the alarm every morning. My head is getting better at distance, at least; whenever I start working on longer pieces, they go on f-o-r-e-v-e-r, and then eventually I get to where I can zone out and focus on the view of my audiobook. I’m at that point now and it definitely makes the whole experience a lot pleasanter.

I’ve got one present to buy and about 5 cards to write, so I’m in decent shape for the holidays. We won’t decorate until the weekend before Christmas when we get to the lakehouse, so the only thing I need to do right now is start planning menus and shopping lists. (Other than Dec 25: turkey.)

And I’m due for a new phone, which I’ll go order probably today or tomorrow, so I need to deciude between the iPhone 6 (big) or the 6+ (bigger).