Category Archives: wandering

#285: Surfside Beach, Nantucket

To love Surfside beach in the summer
is to love family times, tumbling in the surf,
riding the waves, soaking up the sun:
OK, maybe not always the sun.
Even the foggiest days were beach days!
To love Surfside in the off-season
is to love solitude, 
an empty beach,
and the early morning sun.

#278: Nantucket Sign

Dirt roads have the best signs.
Folks feel free to write whatever they like.
 Dr. Lepore’s kids once
had a Lemonade 25 cents sign
 on their tree in the front yard on Mill Hill.
And he put a sign underneath that said:
Appendectomies $25.
Here’s one I saw the other day on
Hawthorne Lane:
Would that be ‘No Littering’
‘No Drinking’?

#275: Everyday Wonders

Day before yesterday we had
a full, double rainbow over the island.
I was just leaving work and there it was.
I called home to tell the kids and they
went out on the roof for the best view.
Rainbows lift you right up, don’t they?
Anyway, as I didn’t have my camera on me,  
Click Here for Dr. Hinson’s picture of the rainbow.
You don’t have to wait for a rainbow 
to wonder at beauty,
grass has its charms.
As do the tiniest asters,
And red sumac against the sky.

#269: A Strong Tower-with windows

Windows let you see in and out.
In ancient times they were small, and deep;
a potential weak point in a wall.
But necessary, one had to be able to see,
and breathe.
With high windows to the North, South, East and West.
There were four levels, reached by ladders, inside.
In fact, you couldn’t even get in without a ladder–
the door is 12.5 feet up from the ground.
One can imagine the monks and students
fleeing to the tower when the Vikings came rampaging.
The story of Rapunzel becomes plausible.
And this proverb:
The name of the Lord is a strong tower,
the righteous run to it and are safe.

Nantucket’s towers have 360 degree windows:
To shine into the night,
warning of treacherous shoals.

And to show the way home.

#263: Things hidden

Nearly half of Nantucket is under some sort of conservation.
As in, can’t be built on, ever.
This makes for lots of secret, wild places:
 In Quidnet

And Sconset

Nantucket is an explorer’s dream.
My favorite?

The dwarf caves

  mermaid pools
 in the maples of Squam  Swamp.

#247: Does Nantucket have squirrels?

Indeed she does.
They first arrived via the ferry on trucks
bringing over firewood
 Wauwinet has had them for decades.
Now they’re all over, plenty of scrub oak acorns to eat.
This fellow did even better:

I found him feasting in a tree at 
the Mile 4 marker on Milestone Road.
Beech nuts!
The ground is littered with their shells.
We aren’t the only ones enjoying God’s bounty
in the Fall.

#221: Dead Horse Valley

I’m guessing this is where they buried the horses 
in the old days. 
Now it’s the premier winter sledding hill:
Waiting for the snow.
From the bench you can see why
local runners use it to practice their hills.
A whimsical heart, courtesy of whoever mows the grass.
Last spring I was at the dump and a lady called
to ask about bringing out her horse
which had died.
The person said sure but…
it had to be cut up into three pieces.
Oh, my.

#211: Calm before the Storm

There’s a hurricane coming, so they say.
The last one, Earl, was just a breeze on Nantucket,
we tend to see more damage from nor’easters.
So, before the storm pictures,
Under the crabapple tree,
Overlooking the swampy place that the 
fire department used to flood every winter
so kids could skate and neighbors would bring hot cocoa,
Sits a bench where robins rest,
Placed a decade ago in memory of an amazing woman,
Madelyne Perry, the Town Clerk.
blooming with lichens,
have a seat and listen for the still, small voice of God,
whispering before the storm.

#205: Sconset Sunrise

People come to Nantucket to relax.
In August, when it’s busiest, 
where do local folk go to relax?
Sconset, at dawn:
David and I strolled through Codfish Park
Not the only lovebirds
 (actually turtledoves but lovebirds is more poetical)
Morning dew reflects the sun
The sun rises slowly…
The heavens sing God’s glory

Won’t you join the song?

#202: Maybe

Maybe I ‘ll clean the sunroom.

 Or maybe I’ll finish cleaning up the seeds I spilled all over.
 Or maybe I’ll get an attention span or the ability to focus for longer than the life of a charm quark.
charm quark, charm quark, charm quark.
 Or maybe pigs will fly or maybe rainbows will fall out of the sky and turn the ocean purple and orange. Maybe I’ll go for a bikeride.

Yeah, bikeride,
and pick the last of the highbush blueberries.

Maybe …