Other Creative Pursuits
Writing is my first love but I also practice music and visual arts. Watercolor, mostly, along with woodcuts and drawings. A couple of my books feature photography, another of my favorite art forms.
I think when you get stuck on a writing project there is nothing like dropping it for a moment and doing something else. Non-verbal creativity fits the bill for me.
Safe Deposit Box
In a folded Ziplock bag,
under deeds to cars we no longer own
a household inventory in need of update,
the only contents of value are two wedding bands
from the turn of the 20th century. Old gold,
heavy and simple, no inscriptions or stones,
rings made for hands that worked.
I imagine those hands, his life
in the forests of Wisconsin
cutting the last virgin white pine
milling it tossing it onto freight cars
into rivers going back for more
hunting whitetails to feed the camp—
He must have married later.
The woman's ring slides off my thumb,
could hold my pinkies like a handcuff.
She kneaded lumps of dough
enough to cover the long floured table
enough to feed the camp
she wrung laundry hung it under
a sheltering pine to keep it out of the rain.
She might have married later
but her work remained the same.
At night their fingers entwined
loosely, like the ring around my thumb
as they slept after another long day's labor.