Tag Archives: autumn

Halloween Jack


October 26, 2008

Autumn leaves
Crackle and fold
Full of fiery brightness
October breezes
Chilly and bold
Our shadows blown steeply behind us

And so it looms before us. Halloween. The height of Fall. Another chance to whistle past the grave as the season brings about the death and slumber of the natural world. Oh, it is nothing to feel down about. Death, as much as life, defines our experience… makes everything precious. Is it any wonder we have a holiday that celebrates death, in a way. Not just as an ending of things. But as a transition that life undergoes to allow for the birth that is Spring after a long Winter sleep. That transitional gate is Halloween and it’s gatekeeper is Halloween Jack:

Halloween Jack

When the moon glows full
And the night burns black
And a bone dry wind
Covers fresh laid tracks
From a cemetery gate
Hinges creak unoiled
And the earth feels moist
With an unseen spoil
The misty air is thick
With the scent of the dead
And the little ones trick
With a sense of dread
Through the twisting branches
A firefly dances
From the depths of his hollowed out head

What a frightful grin
What a ragged tooth gash

Halloween Jack
Halloween Jack
Head picked fresh from a pumpkin patch
Watch it roll forward
Watch it roll back
Watch it roll back and

Lawnmowers, Leafblowers, and Rakes, Oh My!

Foothills 9

November 23, 2008

It’s Fall. And what happens to leaves in Fall? That’s right. They FALL. And when you live in Sonoma County, Fall can be both warm and wet… so grass still grows. And if you have a lawn, you still need to cut it.

I’ve got nice neighbors. We don’t talk much, but we’re square with each other. The other day we arrived home in our driveways at the same time. After hi, he commented “if only leaves were money, huh?” I looked at his lawn: cropped with a sprinkle of dead leaves. I looked over at my lawn: shaggy beneath a carpet of leaves that crawled onto the sidewalk and driveway. I can take a hint. Time to get busy.

Now when my neighbors cut their lawns it looks like an ordeal. They bring out their lawnmowers, their leafblowers, their rakes, their brooms and dustpans, their croppers and their clippers and their kitchen sinks. Half a year later they’ve got a yard to crow about. Does it really take all that work?

When I manicure my front yard I’ve got one tool: a lawnmower. It’s really all you need. The lawnmower has a bag so crap doesn’t go everywhere. Cuts the lawn just fine. Lawn needs edging? You just lower the wheels and edge it. Bushes need a trim? Tilt the mower up and trim them. And the leaves? You just mow them up. It might LOOK a little silly… some clown mowing his driveway and the sidewalk. But it works. Because it’s simple.

Sure, there’s a little bit left over: some crumbles from the leaves; some grass shavings. I could break out the broom and dust pan, but why bother? I’ll just use my leafblower… The Wind.