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The wild irises are blooming, and yes, I do have a fine rapturous love for these small flowers. I’m putting them in yet another painting, this time with their inner fringes in silhouette. My LJ icon is another wild iris painting, in case city folk out there don’t know what wild irises look like. In this valley folks get pretty wild about the flowers, because we know they are more than just flowers. They are messengers of Nature wisdom, ineffable and understood only through the ecstatic observation of their miraculous beauty. I might have missed the trout lilies, but so far there have been all manner of violets, wood asters, bloodroot, blue cohosh, and nodding trilliums. The mountain mint is now a good six inches high, and when I go on my daily hike I sometimes just snip a leaf and breathe in that sharp tingling fragrance. The ferns nearly unfurled, too, except for the large cinnamon ferns in the especially damp places.

McKinley and I were hanging out with an especially large patch of wild irises just yesterday. And then he cut out and decorated a picture of a pileated woodpecker just for me. Oh, the love, the love, the love. Renee made a bird book for her Daddy featuring cardinals and hummingbirds. Mmmmm. Sweet Love.

So many little oddball things running around in my head. This week has not let up with the hungry this and the thirsty that demanding my attention. And, if regular life isn’t enough, we’re going to be taking care of three extra teenage boys this weekend, and two through next week. OK, I’m griping now, and I’m going to stop because…

My short story “What the Midwife Told Me” won third place in a regional mag contest, and is up on their website. You can read it here. It’s in the voice of a young mountain girl. I haven’t written a short story since high school, so I was rather pleased with getting third place, AND they also published my essay “Struggling for Joy” in May’s issue, too, but there’s part of the essay missing.  I suppose I should email them and let them know.  The mag will be out in print form in early May, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it!  And if you think  you might love wild irises like I do, you might like this poem, from April’s issue.


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