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California to Kilimanjaro: Part 3 — Life Doesn’t Get Any Better

April 21, 2020

what my hair felt like sans comb

I didn’t have a comb so I couldn’t comb my hair.

There are worse things than a comb to be missing when you’re at 12.2k’.

On your way up Marangu Route, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania.

Some people would say I’d clearly lost my mind long before this, and certainly proven by being up here in the first place. Read more…

National Poetry Month 2020: April 20 — COVID is this?

April 20, 2020

Is this dry cough COVID? Is this itchy rash COVID?  I’m worried too.

National Poetry Month 2020: April 19 — LET’S GO

April 19, 2020

LET’S GO says teen and I agree: sick of home because of corona.

Today’s American Sentence. Pictured are three books I got my spouse for our anniversary; I bought them on sale at AAA before lockdown not realizing their significance two months later.

American Beat Poet Alan Ginsberg came up with the idea of American Sentences: an American sentence is like a haiku in that it has 17 syllables but it’s not three lines in a stanza but one line. As a haiku offers an image that generates emotion and conveys a moment in time, the best Sentences do more than just offer a sentence in 17 syllables.

I learned about American Sentences from Paul E. Nelson who I met at the Taos Poetry Circus in 2000. According to Paul, the key to writing a good American Sentence comes from Ginsberg’s notion that poets are people who notice what they notice. He has been writing one a day since January 1, 2001. Learn more about American Sentences and how to write good ones from Paul here.

National Poetry Month 2020: April 18 — 17th Anniversary

April 18, 2020

Good Friday April 18 we married — happy anniversary!

Covid: we celebrate seventeenth anniversary at home.

Life in the time of the corona… during National Poetry Month. Daily I am writing and posting one or more American Sentences. Beat Poet Alan Ginsberg came up with the idea of American Sentences: an American sentence is like a haiku in that it has 17 syllables but it’s not three lines in a stanza but one line. As a haiku offers an image that generates emotion and conveys a moment in time, the best Sentences do more than just offer a sentence in 17 syllables. I learned about American Sentences from Paul E. Nelson who I met at the Taos Poetry Circus in 2000; my friend who turned me on to the Baudelaire quote above I also met at Taos. According to Paul, the key to writing a good American Sentence comes from Ginsberg’s notion that poets are people who notice what they notice. He has been writing one a day since January 1, 2001. Learn more about American Sentences and how to write good ones from Paul here.

National Poetry Month 2020: April 17 — Shiny Fish

April 17, 2020

Eucalyptus leaves shimmer in morning wind: a school of shiny fish.

 

American Beat Poet Alan Ginsberg came up with the idea of American Sentences: an American sentence is like a haiku in that it has 17 syllables but it’s not three lines in a stanza but one line. As a haiku offers an image that generates emotion and conveys a moment in time, the best Sentences do more than just offer a sentence in 17 syllables. I learned about American Sentences from Paul E. Nelson who I met at the Taos Poetry Circus in 2000; my friend who turned me on to the Baudelaire quote above I also met at Taos. According to Paul, the key to writing a good American Sentence comes from Ginsberg’s notion that poets are people who notice what they notice. He has been writing one a day since January 1, 2001. Learn more about American Sentences and how to write good ones from Paul here.

 

 

National Poetry Month: April 16, 2020 — Combat Coronavirus with Compassion

April 16, 2020

Do you see the nest?

Prayers yes but we combat COVID with compassion, constructive acts.

Today’s American Sentence is inspired by an essay composed by the Dalai Lama and published on April 14, 2020 in Newsweek and on Facebook where I saw it. The Dalai Lama points out that just praying aren’t enough to fight the Covid-19 pandemic; instead, we need to face the challenge with compassion and constructive acts.

He means, I think, that with compassion, to combat COVID we must get out there AND DO SOMETHING. Don’t just stay slumped on the couch, as tempting as that might be.

Grow something; notice what’s happening in the natural world by you!

I’ve seen a pair of scrub jays at my feeder and perched on the top of my sycamore tree. Today the pair of jays were fending off a pair of ravens (maybe crows?). I went out to disrupt the action and saw above my head the nest the jays had been defending.

I don’t know the fate of the lives within the nest yet, but I do know the jay is back on the regular spot. And now I know why.

American Beat Poet Alan Ginsberg came up with the idea of American Sentences: an American sentence is like a haiku in that it has 17 syllables but it’s not three lines in a stanza but one line. As a haiku offers an image that generates emotion and conveys a moment in time, the best Sentences do more than just offer a sentence in 17 syllables. I learned about American Sentences from Paul E. Nelson who I met at the Taos Poetry Circus in 2000; my friend who turned me on to the Baudelaire quote above I also met at Taos. According to Paul, the key to writing a good American Sentence comes from Ginsberg’s notion that poets are people who notice what they notice. He has been writing one a day since January 1, 2001. Learn more about American Sentences and how to write good ones from Paul here.

What’s your American Sentence?

Matilija poppies with sycamore and fremontia in the background.

 

National Poetry Month: April 15, 2020 — Busy Bees

April 15, 2020

Lupine in bloom with bee hives above the Clos des Amis Estate vineyard on South Mountain, Santa Paula.

Busy bees buzz oblivious to our coronavirus concerns.

Oblivious to buzz, Cisco gets bee stuck on his snout; I flick off.

I am fortunate that vineyard work is considered essential, and that there are vineyards just a few miles from my home that need me to help prune and thin the vines inspiring today’s American Sentences. I write monthly about what I do and learn over on Wine Predator, and two days of American Sentences this April have also been inspired by my vineyard and cellar work here and here. Read more on Wine Predator about Clos des Amis,  the winery where I have been working and learning. 

American Beat Poet Alan Ginsberg came up with the idea of American Sentences: he says that an American sentence is like a haiku in that it has 17 syllables but it’s not three lines in a stanza but one line. As a haiku seeks to conveys an image that generates emotion and conveys a moment in time, the best Sentences do more than just offer a sentence in 17 syllables. I learned about American Sentences from Paul E. Nelson who I met at the Taos Poetry Circus in 2000; my friend who turned me on to the Baudelaire quote above I also met at Taos. According to Paul, the key to writing a good American Sentence comes from Ginsberg’s notion that poets are people who notice what they notice. He has been writing one a day since January 1, 2001. Learn more about American Sentences and how to write good ones from Paul here.

 

Cisco the Wonder Dog rests in the shade of a tangerine tree after doing battle with a bee. The grenache vines pictured have been chomped on by deer.

 

California to Kilimanjaro: Roof of Africa Journey Part 2

April 14, 2020

 

After waiting

and waiting

and waiting

we finally started hiking from the entrance gate to Tanzania’s Kilimanjaro National Park up to 9000′ Mandara Hut.  Read more…

National Poetry Month: April 14, 2020 — Always Be Drunk says Baudelaire

April 14, 2020

As time crushes you, bends you earthward, be drunk: with wine, poetry, earth.

Today’s American Sentence is inspired by this quote: Read more…

National Poetry Month: April 13, 2020 — Monday’s #COVID19 Agenda

April 13, 2020

I’m rage sighing, no pants wearing, headed for electric chair eating.

Also: day drinking, toilet paper hoarding, weed pulling, cat walking.

Hand washing, hand washing, hand washing, hand washing.

What’s your coronavirusitis Monday Every Day Agenda?

April is National Poetry Month plus locked down with stay in place orders so I’m posting an American Sentence or two every day along with an image that reflects my experience during life in the time of the corona. 

Today is the predicted peak day of COVID-19 in California. My agenda usually includes lots of outside time and exercise including traveling, skiing, walking, hiking, gardening, yoga, pilates, and Foundation Training. I’m fortunate that my home is near the beach, hiking trails, and the Ventura Botanical Garden.

But we are supposed to stay home and we are doing our best, and other than gardening, I’m just not doing much, not even my yoga practice. At least I’m doing my writing practice here with these American Sentences and writing about my travels plus lots of writing on my wine blog, and getting out and working in my yard.

It’s worth it. It seems we are flattening the curve. We’re doing it right in California. We’re saving lives.

According to today’s Press Play with Madeline Brand on KCRW, Read more…

Elizabeth Gabay MW

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