How to Age Gracefully

How to Age Gracefully

~ ~ ~

keep smelling, stay
interested in all the
messages that come alive
like signs,
there are sighs and songs
in every blade of grass and
shift of wind

keep moving, even
if only your eyes
look everywhere,
there is beauty and
movement to watch
like leaves that lift
and fly like birds

~ ~ ~

Maureen Shaughnessy


Photo Friday: Textured

Snow Angel II, originally uploaded by MontanaRaven.

Posted for

Love the Place You're With:



Ancestor, originally uploaded by MontanaRaven.

This is my great grandmother on my father's side of the family. Her name is Alice Dunnigan Shaughnessy. She was around 19 in this photo -- photo was taken in approximately 1886.

The collage is made with 8 separate images in Photoshop. For those who have asked me how I make these collages, I will be publishing a separate page with the original images and a short narrative about (in general) my methods. Check back for a link from this post to that page in the next week or two.


Photo Friday: Self Portrait 2007


Happy Valentine's Day

I will share this post with e.e.cummings, whose love poetry always seems fresh and relevant: here is an excerpt from his poem, "somewhere I have traveled gladly beyond"

your slightest look will easily unclose me

though i have closed myself as fingers,

you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens

(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and

my life will shut very beautifully ,suddenly,

as when the heart of this flower imagines

the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals

the power of your intense fragility:whose texture

compels me with the color of its countries,

rendering death and forever with each breathing

Happy Valentine's Day to each of you. May you always find the love that lives inside your own heart.



RaceToTheSky, originally uploaded by MontanaRaven.

I fell in love with this dog. She was a classic beauty -- so graceful, elegant, coy yet fully engaged with me and not afraid to look directly at me. I am putting together a collaborative photo essay with my friend, Chris Lombardi, who works at NewWest Network in Missoula. Our photo essay is about the mushers and dogs who run the annual sled race in Montana, Race to the Sky.

Please check back for updates on the essay (it will be published next week) and for more photos and stories about the dogs and the race here on my blog. Thanks for looking.

If you can't wait, you can see more photos in the flickr set about the race, by clicking on any of the photos in the sidebar. Enjoy!


Photo Friday: Sky

Watching and Waiting


Poetry Thursday: Winter Light with Lilac

Winter Light with Lilac, © 2007 by Maureen Shaughnessy


Curled in a warm cocoon,
from the splintering cold
and brittle light outside
I hear a high pitched pulse,
hurled snow crystals, glass
against glass, enlivened by the play
of light and dancing dark
against the rhythm of lilac branches
in their patient sleep straining
toward light or shadowed tracery.

I hear the winter-weakened sun
roll across a shortened sky,
silence fractured
by icicles clinking like chimes
cast on the frozen ground.

Copyright 2007 by Maureen Shaughnessy

See the 6 photos I used to create this composite.

Though I did not follow the prompt for this week, this post is for Poetry Thursday, begun by poets, Liz and Dana. Click on their names to see their blogs, or check out the other poetry posts for this week by clicking this button:

Here's the prompt for this week's poems: Poetry Thursday: proof positive

Lap Trance

Lap Trance, originally uploaded by MontanaRaven.

There are two kinds of cats. Those who won't let you rub their bellies ... and those who love their bellys rubbed. Baggins is the second kind of cat: "Ohhhh, that just feels sooooo good. don't stop. don't stop now ..."