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...and they lived happily ever after. Smith & Lady: poets, artists, photographers & adventurers.
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Archive for April, 2015

Poetry Month Poems – Lady’s #25

Saturday, April 25th, 2015


we’re like a glacier leaving a trail
in our hurtling maneuverings for convenience
whatever’s needed’s forced import like
for inhabitants of Alaska

Tattered matters dash past, the handle
let loose on a neighborhood, some
future land bank

Unleash summer’s moist green season

Dip us in fat softness of renewal

Think, just going down the freeway
past the rubbery clusters of chicory
Queen Anne’s lace, secret feet of
animals living quietly
on sacred soil

~ Lady



Poetry Month Poems – Lady’s #24

Friday, April 24th, 2015


Dots and dashes like the
intention of typed lines, current
carrying swirling, wandering zooplankton,
players in various trophic levels, consuming
and scooped by consumers
sieving blooms

God welling up and down
on water columns in the biological pump
eider ducks diving in the polynyas like
lifeguards for the Inuit, down
for the Sami

“Hail Queen of Heaven
Ocean Star
Guide of the wanderer
here below
Thrown on life’s surge
we claim thy care
Save us from peril
and from woe”

~ Lady



Multiple Choice

Friday, April 24th, 2015

Multiple Choice

Some say answers come in dreams.
Some say we are but dream.

Some say we come from God,
but don’t say whence God came.

Some see us rise from ooze
and godless walk to dust.

Some insist we’re not here at all,
just part of programmed hologram,

bits and bytes of code
to keep the godz amused,

or self-replicating slapstick sitcom
on perpetual renewal with no residuals,

and if we have a sponsor
they must be from the madhouse.

– Smith, 4.24.2015


1st hive

Thursday, April 23rd, 2015

Lady holding our 1st batch of bees.
We are now official beekeepers

Picked up our packet of bees Tuesday morning – 3 pounds of approximately 10,000 bees from California, with one queen bee added at pickup. This is our first batch of bees ever.

All those stacked boxes are 3 pounds of bees shipped in a trailer truck from California. The young girl in blue is marking queen bees, putting a large blue dot on her back so we can more readily find her when the hive reaches 60-70,000 bees. Need to find the queen or evidence of egg laying to know if you have a healthy hive . . . no healthy queen, no honey money.

MandyCat checking out the buzz. We sprayed the bees with sugar water and put them in our darkened bedroom for 6 hours until we could drive them out to our hive on her parent’s farm. I lay down on the floor with my face 5 inches from the bees and gently talked to them. At first they were a bit angry, but as I talked telling them what we were going to do and how it would be alright and we would take care of them, they calmed down considerably. The sound from the box was very similar to a high powered electric wire.

3 pound box of 10,000 bees.

Me dumping bees into hive, fotos by Lady K.

The whitish box at the top of the frame is the queen cage.

I over sprayed the bees with sugar water and had trouble dumping the sticky bees into the hive, so I was violently shaking the bee box back and forth and there was a swarm of bees buzzing angrily around my face, bumping into my head, but none of them stung me. I don’t use a head veil or bee suit or gloves, so I’m quite vulnerable. But I trust the bees, and so far they give my amateurish actions slack. But every beekeeper gets stung, hundreds of times over the years they say, and the venom is supposed to be good for you, helps ease arthritis, get rid of scars, etc. Honey is also an excellent healer for cuts and lacerations and dry itchy skin . . . the Chinese use it extensively.

And just for the record, honey never goes bad. They’ve discovered 5,000 year old honey that is still edible.

One more tidbit – the word honeymoon comes from the old pagan practice of having the newly wed couple drink honey mead for the first month of marriage to ensure their first born is a male, so technically every time you wish someone a happy honeymoon, you are being sexist by encouraging male births.

A bee on my shirt. The white patch near the top of the 2nd foto is duct tape we used to hold the queen cage in. The queen is in a wire cage for 3 days because she is new to the hive and they are upset by her pheromones and they want to sting her to death. There’s a hole in the top of the cage stuffed with fondant (or marshmallow in our case) that the bees have to eat through to get to her, but by the time they eat through to her, they should be used to her scent and she’ll crawl out and rule the hive. If they are not used to her, she’s dead, and we’ll have to buy another queen and reseed the colony, losing about a month, which could seriously harm the hive’s chances.

If everything’s okay, she’ll go on a maiden flight with the male drones who will copulate with her in the air, and she’ll spend the next 2 to 3 years laying eggs until she dies or runs down, whereupon we have to buy a new queen and go round again.

My pa-in-law, wife-in-law, and brother-in-law walking down to check the hive . . . my dog-in-law is just outside the foto.

The most excellent hive stand was designed and built by pa-in-law, a retired engineer.

The box beneath the stand is left open so the sticky bees can lick each other off and fly to the hive above.

We go back out tomorrow to see if our queen is released. If so, we check every 7-10 days until winter because we’re newbie beekeepers and need to learn the signs of a healthy hive. After the first year, you need check only a half-dozen times or so. During the winter you pretty much leave them alone, although you do need to check now and then to see if they’ve enough honey and/or sugar water / pollen patties / grease cakes to get through winter.

As the season progresses, we’ll add 3 more levels to the hive. If they expand more than that, we’ll have to buy a second hive and split them.

A hive can generate 60-90 pounds of honey a year, although usually not the first year. The first year your concern is keeping the hive alive, healthy, and there . . . you may harvest excess honey, you may not.

Right now honey is selling for $8 a pound.


Poetry Month Poems – Lady’s #23

Thursday, April 23rd, 2015


Curlicues of boogie woogie mugwort dreams
eddies from the white buffalo pipe pooling
into wintergreen calm of yellow birchbark,
living breath of the Great Grandfather
Mystery, the present of the Wild White
Buffalo Woman

The pipe circles around hand offering to hand
for the songs of the four directions, White North,
Morning Star East, South Wind, Sunset West

Keen beauty of traditions indigenous to this land–
can we find them again?

Get away from our empty ghosts
of oblivious disregard

Some thoughts
I believe

~ Lady



Poetry Month Poems – Lady’s #22

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015


Life and love, what a wonderful world
we can return to paradise in, finding
secret zen gardens of woodland reservations
streamers of cosmic rays gilding openings
of green, saplings sprouting under the tall
dark elephant legs of their mature parents

Walking along sweet creek waters,
slight dashings of wakerobins–woodland
spring bloomers–in the enlivened humus
of earth, the peter peter peter of tufted titmice
flocking with chickadees, nuthatches &
thuddy knockings of woodpeckers like
faint Cherokee pow wow drums

~ Lady



longest short term memory gap in town

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

stiff drink

Our first box of bees has arrived. We’ll pick them up this morning and begin being beekeepers.

And now back to our regularly scheduled blog.

Sober 24

April fools day plus 20
makes me sober 24.

Two dozen years living after death,
a score more than thought before.

Beat the booze, oozed the odds,
now fighting bedeviled ego.

– Smith, 4.21.2015

24 years without alcohol. I drank 26 years, but it was the last ten I really poured it in until I bled to death from an ulcer.

So I rose from the dead, quit drink, lost 100 pounds, and became a hermit.

Booze Lose Blues, 2012, 4:42, music Peter Ball, words & vocal me.


Poetry Month Poems – Lady’s #21

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015


Bees on their sweet trips to and from the hives
impossible to valuate, to place a ceiling on their lives
in terms of how important they are to us, to fruiting plants,
to animals, to life–their impact like looking in a room
with mirrored walls both rippling forever into distant
realms, and to the immediate

~ Lady



Poetry Month Poems – Lady’s #20

Monday, April 20th, 2015


My bike swishes past
umbels of Queen Anne’s Lace
like platforms of white paint

informed by

~ Lady



Poetry Month Poems – Lady’s #19

Sunday, April 19th, 2015


Flying saucer groups, crystals,
Japanese dolls using tachyon phones on hedge funds
big bunches of syllables spilled like pickup stix games
on abstract, unproven foundations for theoretical esoterica
held up like talismens by us primates

So many things
I just throw my hands up in the air about
unless I can get my hands down into them like
an engineer tinkering with ABC wood blocks
a diamond cutter parsing chaff from reduction

Also for me
bird calls mingling with melodies
messes of bees, bees floating on whatever
the label of their cause is, whatever it is,
I call it all God and they are a whole bunch
of buzzing blessings

cartesian, and not–
a diver swimming in
the manifest

~ Lady



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