Early am fogHalf past sunrise.

The woodland mist around my house dissipates.

Damp dirt, pine, and wildflower fragrance tease my nose.

A light breeze brushes my face and the underbrush rustles.

Are forest dwellers changing shifts?

Or dryads winding down their overnight play?

Early morning fog

A lone mourning dove sings its sorrow.

I close my eyes and contemplate my mountain home.

Gentleness and wildness,

hospitality and hostility,

mythology and reality

all meld together.

I yearn to capture this moment, keep it forever.

Early morning fog

But I can only create a memory.

I sip my strong espresso.

Something stings my ankle. I set down my cup, swipe the culprit away, and scratch. It flies into my coffee.

I lift my camera, scan the bush through its lens.

I snap my photos and muse:

Can treetops touch the sky?



The Hiker

DSC_0344The hiker climbs a mountain and explores forests thick with unknowns.

Her senses sift through myriad notions.

She brushes against thriving sages of centuries past,

inhales their pine scent, absorbs the strength inherent in knotted bark,

and she’s encouraged.DSC_0400She moves through damp, shady inner woods,

climbs over stripped impressions, weathered limbs, and rotting leaves–

the decay atop nature’s compost long ago felled by weak ideas.

DSC_0395She scrutinizes muck for a hint of green or fibrous thread–

any viable root she can claim as her own,

She wraps an inkling in warm thoughts and sets it inside a sensitive pouch.

Her soft words soothe it. Her tenacity infuses confidence,

and she continues her trek up the high peak.

2Mt Equinox

At summit’s edge she witnesses endless possibilities

Stratified hues and layered perspectives flow to the horizon

and the wind frees her from stale, worn-out conceptions.

2Lake Placid

The hiker shapes her parcel’s substance

and her mind’s eye spins its tale.



Photos 1 & 4: Views from Equinox Mountain summit, Green Mountains, VT

Photo 2:  A view from the woods around Lake Luzerne, NY

Photo 3: A view from the woods around Tupper Lake, NY

Photo 5: View from Whteface Mountain summit, Lake Placid, NY

All photos were taken with a Nikon 7100 camera with a Nikkor VR 18-105mm/ 3.5-5.6G lens by Joann Pensabene




American Independence Day


celebrate our investment in our right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,”

aspire to our “American Dream,” a home, suitable work, and a good education,

hope that each generation prospers better than the one preceding it,

pledge our commitment to “liberty and justice for all,”

strengthen our proclaimation that our  government is

“of the people, by the people, and for the people,”


when the barbeques, baseball games, and fireworks are over,

we remember how our country paid for it’s freedom,

review the reasons we call it home,

and reaffirm that

“we the people” have an obligation to come together as “one nation,”


participate in our political process

by keeping ourselves informed,

by debating our goals and principles,

and by striving toward “the will of the people.”

We Americans have been around for 237 years–not a long history within the context of measuring civilizations, but long enough to look back and review and accept who we are, what we’re really about, and how we arrived at our present place. Then, perhaps, we can ask where we want to go from here and plan politically, socially, and culturally inclusive ways to get there.

The Gift

courtesy of Joann Pensabene March 2013

courtesy of Joann Pensabene
March 2013

The icicle descends from the roof’s overhang.

Nature’s Sculpture.

Title: Extended Chicken Leg with Attached Foot.

Given to: ME.
A parting gift from the winter that started late and outlasted its welcome.

Response: Weird, wonderful, exquisite. Unique.

My pulse soared.
I grabbed my camera and clicked.

Next day, the slow metamorphosis–
Ice. Water droplets. Condensation atop my deck’s wooden floor
swept into the windy night’s vast frost,
it’s essence,vaporized, it vanished in the warmth of yet another day’s morning sun.