Posts Tagged With: Essay

Blue Bird


The area we live in is rural.  It seems like it shouldn’t be because the Trader Joe’s is less than two miles from the house, and the nearest Target only ten minutes by car.  There is a Starbucks down the street.  But our neighborhood is bordered to the south by a fancy drainage ditch dug in the 1820s called the Mill Creek Zanja that is rimmed with eucalyptus.  There’s an empty field beyond.  To the west, we’re bordered by the orange grove side of the University of Redlands campus.  Add that to the manicured but still wild hiking trail, and it’s prime territory for critters.

We had gophers in the yard all last summer until I put chicken wire under the raised beds.  There is a hawk that makes his home in one of the eucalyptus trees nearby.  We had a family of doves try to nest in our tree last spring until they decided they didn’t like how often we used the front door.  Birds both brown and blue hop on our backyard fence. The hiking trail is forever littered with berry-filled coyote scat, and occasionally a white-tailed bunny will hop ahead of you into a bush.  House cats roam the streets. Occasionally you can hear the coyotes hunting one.

When I went out to go to work on Friday, I noticed a feather near the grapevine in our yard.  It was vibrant blue.  In fact, there was a stack of them, a pile of tiny down underneath.  No body, but obviously something got caught and torn to pieces in our yard – a bluebird.

I don’t know if it was a cat or the hawk, and there was no actual body to contend with nor any blood or gore.  But what struck me was how beautiful it was, that blue, blue pile of feathers.  The tips were striped black, and the ridge in the middle was pristine white.  They fluttered just a little in the breeze, scattering out of their neat pile and moving into hieroglyphics across the cement walkway, exposing the gray fluff underneath.

The detritus is still there.  I don’t have the heart to pick it up, and some small part of me likes to see the blue feathers, cheerful and not at the same time.  It makes me realize that even a small and unknown bird can leave something behind after it’s personal end of all things.

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A Troglodyte Cleric Romance

I often write little essays and sketches of moments that I put away and then find later.  I was sifting through the files the other day, and found this one. It made me laugh, and then I read it to Brian and he cracked up and said I should post it.  I thought, since Valentine’s Day was yesterday, that I would.  So here you go:


Sometimes he’s just so handsome sitting there that I can hardly help myself.  That’s how it was last night, he sinking into the plush couch in our living room, leaning forward, typing on his computer screen.  I have never been able to resist a writer.  He was only writing a new Dungeons and Dragons module, but it didn’t matter.  The greatest urge came over me to rub my face on his face.  There is something so compelling about the way he pushes his hand through his hair and leans back, lithe and deliberate.  When he realized I was watching, he looked up at me with a smile and made a place for me to sit next to him.

I tucked my head under his chin, and he took my glasses off.  He rested them on the pile of books next to him on the couch.

“How are you?” I asked, and then I kissed the underside of his chin.

“The module’s going well, I think,” he said.  He launched into an explanation that I hardly heard.   I could see every blade of stubble on his five-0-clock shadow, his long eyelashes, his deep brown eyes.   His jaw is so perfect, the pointed shape of it that gives him that crescent of a smile when he grins.  I thought about what his hair would feel like through my fingers; soft and stubbly in the back, until I rake a whole fistful of it near his crown, soft and longer.  He will roll his eyes back in sheer bliss if I do it, but I don’t want to interrupt him.

“I have the three main guys all written,” he said.  He held up three fingers.

I smiled, and then I leaned forward and kissed the third finger.

“No, no… you just kissed the Troglodyte cleric,” he said.

I grinned, nodded, and then kissed him near his ear.

“They have a stench, you have to make a fortitude save to get near him.”

I kissed him on his cheek.

“You can’t just go around kissing Troglodyte clerics you know,” he said.

I kissed him on the mouth, and when I pulled away we were both laughing.

“I’m on a roll tonight,” he informed me.

“I know you are,” I said.

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