Is Was

The title for the job ad says, “This is not a job.” I think that this is a coded reference to the Rene Magritte’s famous painting The Treachery of Images.” So I follow the link, and the first line says “…it is a career!!” Two exclamation points.


Yesterday at around dusk I walked out into the side yard. There was a quail standing in the walkway. I wondered if it was the mother quail I’d seen out with her chicks the day before. Just as the quail started getting nervous and prepared to flap its wings, my focus shifted and I saw the others. There were thirty adult quail scattered all across the yard. The first bird’s flight triggered fifteen seconds of chaos. Thirty birds rustled away in every direction.


A man with shaved head and tidy beard wearing a long gray cowl with a wooden crucifix hanging from a knotted rope belt, all the trappings of a monk, surrenders a disposable camera to a tourist couple and poses at the railing with Alcatraz over his right shoulder. After the picture is taken, he walks quickly away.


Yesterday on the bike path that we walk on to get to the park and the plaza in our new suburban neighborhood, I noticed a sprinkling of orange flowers (this kind), all wound tightly into little buds. In Seattle these flowers are already open, I told Tricia. This morning I walked up the same path. The flowers had all opened up and flattened out wider than I ever see them in Seattle.