Mr. and Mrs. Parrot

They come most mornings at about ten twenty-five. Each vivid green, with a brillant scarlet helmet and a shrill accompaniment of squawking voices. They chatter, squawk, yell at each other incessantly. She hears them, looks out to the large palm tree interrupting her view south easterly and there they are, silhouetted against the sky, balancing and bouncing on the swaying palm fronds.

Nude or Naked or Not

Lucian Freud, one of the foremost painters of the twentieth century, died a week ago. He was best known for his life-size portraits and larger than life-size paintings of naked people. Freud eschewed the formal term for these renderings of large, fleshy and lumpy models. He chose not to call them nudes, but naked paintings.

Fellows and Flowers

He was there at the corner of Carmel and Clayton. A skinny guy wearing a fedora, with a Chihuahua-type dog on a leash at his side. They waited patiently in theLois Goodwill morning mist for the light to change as I observed the oddity of the leash. It appeared to be fashioned from yellow “police—do not cross” tape. There was more of that tape dangling from a bouquet of bluish-toned hydrangeas carried on the fellow’s arm.

A First

This is closer to first steps than to First Lady, but I am off the diving board and possibly into deep water. If swimming is the metaphor for writing, then I suppose I will be okay on this aquatic adventure, since it is motivated by the need to publicize my just-released first book ever: Entangled, coauthored with Don Asher. With the book already published by Heyday, in the stores, and on Amazon.com, I guess I can write…but can I blog?

DESERT WORD WALK A literal and literary journey through California’s desert and some of its finest writers and writings

“Void of life, it never is, however dry the air and villainous the soil.” —Mary Austin, from The Land of Little Rain, 1903 It’s 4:00 p.m. on a July afternoon. It’s 117 degrees. I back my car out of the garage of my Palm Desert home, turn the air conditioner up as high as it […]

Valley of Shadows and Dreams: DUMBO, Spring shows, Las Posadas

Valley of Shadows and Dreams continues to march forward. Like the parents of a small child, we are preparing the manuscript to go out into the world. After gestating for several years as Ken and Melanie Light shaped the work, the project was essentially born during our get-together three weeks ago. The introduction by Thomas Steinbeck, the field notes […]

San Joaquin: Valley of Shadows and Dreams

One of the most moving, thought-provoking, and significant books we have under development is San Joaquin: Valley of Shadows and Dreams by Ken Light (photographer) and Melanie Light (author). Ken, a world-renowned documentary photographer, has been shooting black-and-white photos of the changing San Joaquin Valley as suburban development springs up on the world’s most fertile […]

A Literal and Literary Journey through the California’s Mojave Desert

“Void of life, it never is, however dry the air and villainous the soil.” – Mary Austin, from The Land of Little Rain, 1903 It’s 4:00 pm on a July afternoon. It’s 117 degrees. I back my car out of the garage of my Palm Desert home, turn the air conditioner up as high as it will […]

Desert Word Walk

Hello, and welcome to Desert Word Walk! My name is Ruth Nolan. I am a poet, writer, and professor of English at College of the Desert in Palm Desert, and I’m also editor of Heyday’s exciting anthology of California’s desert literature, No Place for a Puritan: The Literature of California’s Deserts, published in November, 2009. I was born […]