rife with life

image of night smelting from wikimedia

Spring in Maine is mud. We don’t call it spring, but mud season. It is mud and road surface load limits written in bright orange; it is frost heaves and more mud. There is mud, congealed or stiff, in ridges and ruts at the local airport. The light planes, clearly things of the air, can hardly negotiate the rugged unpaved ramp.

I pulled out in the Subaru, driving slowly past the yard next-door where the otherwise unemployed fishermen—laid off from the ski resort—were planting shrubs for their landlord in partial exchange for rent. There was a bit of yardwork and clean-up to be done after winter and, as I passed, the tall one displayed a large fish head. Grinning at me, he dropped it into the hole he had just dug for a flowering shrub.

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Surprised by Maine

Christmas Eve


You may think this post will connect in some way with CS Lewis. There are a number of “surprised by” titles in Amazon, including, at the top of the lists, Lewis’s own “Surprised by Joy.” In other titles we find authors surprised by Hope, by Oxford, Motherhood, Christ, Sin, Forever, Laughter, Healing, Truth and other wonders. So I’m following a Lewisian established tradition with this entry’s title.

I do consider Maine a very surprising state—whether as being or place.  I leave these as imaginative suggestions. A surprising thing happened on our road Tuesday, three days before Christmas. I won’t say what it was. Or I will say that it was out of the traditional character of Maine.

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Learning Fishing

When we lived next-door to some fishermen…


…I was watching these neighbors fish for trout at Indian Pond, small and round and snugly hidden in the granite hills.  The protective circle rises above a dimple full of water.  Maybe a kettle-hole, sunk by glacial ice.  Miles of mountains, the woodland roundabout—flatlanders can have scant idea Indian Pond is here.

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