Category Archives: Maine

march is a straight up lion.

(please read the whiny post first, and then watch the video. It will make you smile, even if it’s currently snowing outside your window. I promise.)

We all know the old saying, “March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb”.  Well. I’m beginning to think it’s just something we say to ourselves in early March to get through what is certainly the most dismal month of the year. Perhaps it’s never been true for Maine. Or perhaps every year we just survive it and then block it out. A few weeks ago I thought we were entering mud season, a sloppy, inevitable time of year that generally gives way to flowers, robins and an improved mental outlook on the world.  Sadly, it proved a messy 2 day tease and now the “driveway” is a frozen mud puddle that crunches slightly as you walk across. The daffodils and lilies that poked up during said tease have not grown a fraction of an inch in the past 2 weeks and are likely just as irritated as I am about the whole thing. Continue reading


writer’s block.

I haven’t written since May.  You all know that, of course – just look at the date of the last post.  I’m sitting here at the Bangor Public Library – it’s quiet, i’m surrounded by books, the sun shines in the big old windows behind me and I have to type in my shadow.  But I’m just not quite sure what to say.

Out of desperation I began going through my old musings stowed away in various files on this laptop, knowing that I’ve started dozens of pieces and posts that died a quick death, thinking perhaps I could finish something I’d started. And I find this piece that I wrote, over a year ago, before, before I moved to Maine, before I spent a season working on a farm. It seems I abandoned it, but re-reading it now, it’s better than anything I’ve got in my brain.  And so I’ll post it, unedited, because it’s still true, and hope that it will inspire me to get crackin’.

Ellms’ Farm
I’ve spent the past few years getting to know farmers, working in their fields, traveling around and asking questions, writing stories, reading books, getting as intimately involved as I could, short of committing myself to one farm and one project. I travel around like a bit of a hobo, learning about yeoman plows here, heritage cattle breeds there, draft horses here. One morning I’m kneading dough for sourdough bread, another I’m learning to slaughter chickens. I’m picking up bits of knowledge, but in preparation for what? Continue reading

sardine sandwich, anyone?

I’ll admit it: I like sardines. Yes, sardines – the oily little fish that come in a can. In fact, I bought some just last week. Wyatt’s response, “Are those sardines? Gross.”  is fairly typical of the way people view sardines in this country.  I, however, have a genuine fondness for the little guys, and it has nothing to do with the sweet graphics on the old tins.

When I was in the Gambia 6 years ago, we took a trip “up country” stopping at several remote villages.  There was no refrigeration and it was too hot to cook – temperatures were steady at nearly 130F.   It was there, several hours up country along the Gambia River, that I was introduced to the sardine sandwich.  Continue reading