stopping with eyes wide openthe Weather Report

TO NEVER LOOK AWAY

“To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget.”

Arundhati Roy, The Cost of Living


Resident Flamingos at toMake™ Studio

Out & About
The Resident Cat Taking a Break From Her Stressful Life

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THE ABILITY TO SPEAK THE TRUTH

“It is truth that is at stake, and I believe that the ability to speak the truth, even when it does not reflect well upon oneself, is a paramount quality we seek in our nation’s most powerful judges,”

Chad Ludington:
in a statement to the NY Times regarding his classmate Brett Kavanaugh

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SLOW GROWTH

It’s a slow Saturday here at toMake™. Laundry, the market, cooking, and little stuff in the corners.

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The bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™
Badlands Slow Growth
Badlands: Slow Growth. A new CD from my niece Adrian

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Meena the Cat at rest, again
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The studio alleyway gets a second teapot
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Bedside reading . . . Slow Growth

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ATTENTIVENESS

“This is the first, wildest, and wisest thing I know, that the soul exists and that it is built entirely out of attentiveness.”

Mary Oliver

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A Message For the Human Tribe’ . . . The Bulletin Board in the Alleyway at toMake™

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CO-PAY & THE MORAL CENTER

“Jesus set up free healthcare clinics everywhere he went. He healed everybody and never charged a leper a co-pay.”

“He (Rev William Barber) reserves particular contempt for politicians who rely on racial dog whistles, voter suppression and gerrymandering.” The Guardian.

Meena the Cat says; “Listen to Rev Barber and the Rev Judith.”
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Meena the Number One Guard Cat at Her Post

“There is no religious left and religious right . . . There is only a moral center. And the scripture is very clear about where you have to be to be in the moral center — you have to be on the side of the poor, the working, the sick, the immigrant.”

Rev William Barber

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CAT NAPPING

Meena the Cat takes, yet another, cat nap. . . with me. Not a surprise as it being spring she’s out and about exhausting herself in the sunny backyard hunting bugs and little tiny stuff.

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.”

Thich Nhat Hanh

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TO BE ALIVE

“The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves.”

Alan Watts

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TASTING OUR INSUFFICIENCY


“Francis of Assisi says in his Testament that when he kissed the leper, “What before had been nauseating to me became sweetness and life.” He marks that moment as the moment of his conversion and the moment when he “left the world.” The old game could not, would not work anymore. That seems to have been the defining moment when he tasted his own insufficiency, and started drawing from a different and larger source - and found it sufficient - apparently even more than sufficient.”

Richard Rohr | Falling Upward

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Meena the Cat getting ready to read the morning paper; Support The Nation.

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PUT EARTH FIRST !

I’m always happy when Meena gets on my shoulders, but when I read The Nation I get very very upset. And so should you. This weeks bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™, as is often the case, is full of pages ripped from The Nation. I’ve been busy with Meena the Cat in the pressroom mixing inks and printing all week. And the big news is we are almost done paying off the loan on the house we were forced to take out to repair tenant and prior owner damage; Ugh! and Yea! Although we are still unable to afford to live in our own house at this time, maybe someday I’ll get my studio back. And I’m working on the ‘PUT EARTH FIRST !’ broadside and hope to begin printing of these later this month.

“When people are ready to, they change. They never do it before then, and sometimes they die before they get around to it. You can’t make them change if they don’t want to, just like when they do want to, you can’t stop them.”

Andy Warhol | Andy Warhol in His Own Words

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Meena the Cat often escorts me, making sure I stay in line.
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Mixing ink and ink draws
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There is always something new to stop and read on the bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™

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THE IMPORTANT THING

YA) ’Making the unknown known.’ Must listen, stop and carefully listen, discard the baggage and see the unknown, known the unknown, experience the Other. . . .
Recently I’ve not been successful on the press and after another difficult & stressful day of disappointments Meena the Cat came into the pressroom, got on my shoulders, and nuzzled, kissed and comforted me as I was cleaning up. We go on with the practice, the effort, with making the unknown known.

“Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant, there is no such thing. Making your unknown known is the important thing.”

Georgia O’Keeffe

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BEING GRATEFUL DOES NOT MEAN

I managed not to slip and fall today; making a challenging 9 mile loop around town, up into the north hills and along the river corridor. But winter running means cleats, keeping a watchful eye and a slower pace. Meena the Cat seems to be professional couch cat these days. I’m grateful for many things and many people these days; especially my wonderful wife, the cat, my feet . . . and a warm place to live and work.

“Being grateful does not mean that everything is necessarily good. It just means that you can accept it as a gift.”

Roy T. Bennett

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The bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™ . . .

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Winter walking & running is dancing of a sorts.

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We take a cat nap together.

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SATURDAY

Saturday and in the early first light I go on an 8 mile run along the river stopping at the bend to watch the mist, I do the laundry, bring back a bounty of our ‘winter harvest’ vegetable share from the market, walk endlessly about with the cat on my shoulders in the afternoon sun, count the fallen leaves, pick a few remaining apples . . . YA) my life is burning with beauty.

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“Beauty is something that burns the hand when you touch it.”

Yukio Mishima | Forbidden Colors

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The Moon Is Alive

We’re spending the summer all together here in this northeastern Wash. valley; recovering, processing loss, wondering what the future for us holds. I miss my press, creative work-space & the river . . . but the present moment brings me here together and to say goodbye.

Meena and Me

“Under your skin the moon is alive.”

Pablo Neruda, “Ode to a Naked Beauty”

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the Keep-Alive List

Meena the Cat has been keeping me company here at toMAKE™. To imagine that, as Amy Leach suggests In her “Memorandum to the Animals” and our current lifestyles indicate, there is no intention to find a place for Meena’s tribe in the Keep-Alive List … troubles me. After all she told me one night she had consciousness, whispering in my ear to wake me in the dark still silence; informing me of her place and importance. That our objects and vanity are more important than Meena’s tribe, or any other tribe, is to profane the miracle of life leaving ashes and toxins and little pieces of plastic everywhere. This essay of hers, the Keep-Alive List, the round revolving watery blue we inhabit … are you acquiring more objects that are displacing the other tribes from the Keep-Alive List ‽

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May 4th 1970 Kent State Massacre

Warm weather and working on several editions right now both maps and prints. I hope to get a complete font of lead type for the letterpress someday. It would be nice to start on the book of birthday poems book. I’ve yet to come up with the plan for the illustrations. A series of block prints would work well with the poems; maybe one each decade 20s 30s 40s 50s 60s … Meena the Cat and I have been spending together time. Aside from the head bumping, nibbling and kissing that happens around 5AM we are having a good time together. She stays close by. In 1970 I was nearby the Kent State Massacre; 13 seconds and four students murdered (Agnew’s words). This present moment changed it all for me.

May 4th 1970, The Kent State Massacre
An emotional Governor Rhodes, yelling and pounding his fists on his desk called the student protesters un-American, referring to them as revolutionaries ”…They're the worst type of people that we harbor in America. Now I want to say this. They are not going to take over [the] campus. I think that we're up against the strongest, well-trained, militant, revolutionary group that has ever assembled in America…..” and then the Kent State massacre … the shootings of unarmed college students protesting the Vietnam War at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio …The shootings were ordered by members of the Ohio National Guard on May 4, 1970, agitated by an undercover FBI agent. Twenty-nine guardsmen fired approximately 67 rounds over a period of 13 seconds, killing four students and wounding nine others, one of whom suffered permanent paralysis.


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YA) the river

Monday, after Easter, I journey east with Meena the Cat, along that blue highway 200 and stop again along the Flathead River. For only a short time, put feet on the soft earth and walk off the highway down a small path overlooking the river. And for a moment everything stops and I stop and enter the place itSELF. YA) and all this disturbance, all that is unsettled and set in motion … is just. I move downstream with the river.

Flathead River April 17 2017
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An Uncertain Future

With spring announcing itself with a violence of weather, flooding, rain, snow, and a not altogether unexpected but nonetheless unwanted forced departure from Chewelah and the Parsonage, we look to an uncertain future. Meena the Cat and I went out in the blue sky sun today and watched a train make its way south past the meadow.
Just a few more times to run in the valley. I made a nice circumambulation this morning, 7 miles and stop’d to watch the mists lifting effortlessly off the fields and dance away. Mid-sixties with little savings and no jobs we are nevertheless blessed with many strengths, even a nice studio space, and faith that the Joy and deLight and the miracle of life and beauty will cary us on.

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” Albert Einstein

Meena the Cat
train passing by

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self and other

Snow, rain, hail and the wonders of weather blowing past greeted Meena the Cat and me as we made our way west along the beautiful Flathead River yesterday. Birds and swirling patterns of green water and the ubiquitous trash were in abundance.

“At root, there is simply no way of separating self from other, self-love from other-love. All knowledge of self is knowledge of other, and all knowledge of other knowledge of self. I begin to see that self and other, the familiar and the strange, the internal and the external, the predictable and the unpredictable imply each other. One is seek and the other is hide, and the more I become aware of their implying each other, the more I feel them to be one with each other.”
Alan Watts, The Joyous Cosmology

Flathead at Perma

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Taxes

Meena the Cat and I are finishing up the taxes this weekend. She has yet to understand the concept of helping. We didn’t do very well financially this year but we did live, share, enJOY, make and participate.

Meena and the Taxes

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Silly Human & High Water

I got a new old rug for the upstairs studio, cleaned it and set it on a nice pad. This will make morning exercises a bit more comfy. However Meena the Cat has decided that the rug is hers, not mine; silly human. I cannot keep it flat on the floor ! The snow is mostly gone from the river trail making morning runs less hazardous, I was able to go out along the trail all the way to the gate this morning without having to jump snow patches. The Clark Fork River is muddy and high. The river usually crests in late May to early June but right now it is 12,200 cf3/s which is considerably greater than the usual mean discharge for March; 3,490 cf3/s. If I read the data correctly this is a record for this time of year, the previous being from 1972. On another water note; once again our insurance will not cover damages to the flooding in the Parsonage basement. I wonder what good is insurance‽ I’ve submitted several claims over the years always having been rejected. They pay their adjusters a lot of money to find out how not to honor any claims, always in the small print there is a reason. Silly human don’t you realize that insurance is just another word for scam.

Meena the Cat

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Sucking Wax

Saturday at the Parsonage is quiet. I did the laundry, took a long run with some hill work covering a good 8 miles, fed the cat, vacuumed the house …. but all along I’ve been thinking about different kinds of food. What comes to mind are summer trips into the backcountry of Glacier-Waterton International Peace Parks. It’s an amazing and generous place with all that rock, water, sky and the weather. It’s food. Not so far distant from oatmeal really. Because, as Ali Akbar Khan said about music, without this I die. AND, it being spring, between a long winter and summer and a lot of soft earth … I’m like Meena the Cat, dreaming of that summer paradise.

“When spring comes, go to the flowers — why keep on sucking wax?” Antonio Machado

Meena the Cat

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winter blue sky sun & run

Winter blue sky sun and a run. Just 12˚F but the RH must have been near the same as all parts of my body turned a delicate white. I didn’t use the cleats as the roads were clear but there was a lot of ice to watch out for. When you sweat as I do, run as I do … you need to do the laundry. And I do like running in color. Meena the Cat was out in the winter sun to supervise and look-see-smell-watch.

"There are crimes that no one would commit as an individual which he willingly and bravely commits when acting in the name of his society, because he has been (too easily) convinced that evil is entirely different when it is done 'for the common good.'" Thomas Merton

RH and Air Temp

Meena the Cat

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laundry day

Laundry Day. Hanging the sheets in the cold dry winter blue sky sun warmer day. Meena the Cat asleep in the sun. I am wondering if I have a voice, what I can do, what difference I can make in this world

“There is no difference between the Divine and the one who desires to see the Divine.” Papaji


still going strong after all these years


Meena the Cat

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snow and light

Meena the Cat takes me for walk down our street … we check out the snow, the light, sounds and smells and the day itSelf together.

“I came to this world to protest.” Maxim Gorky


snowy day at the parsonage
snow at the parsonage in chewelah 2017 ©steven r holloway

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