Sunday, April 22, 2012

Me, I Like Rocks

Me, I like rocks.

That's what I was thinking as I looked at a picture of my son from his trip to Japan.  He was standing with another person from his high school and two girls from Japan.  They were all laughing and smiling.  Mark-he is a people person.

He said as much when a friend asked him what was his favorite part of his trip to Japan.  He replied the day they visited local high schools and spent the day with other students. (You see he went on a trip with his high school to sing at the World's fair in sort of an exchange program with Cupertino's sister city, Toyokawa.)  When he said that it was when I realized he enjoyed being with people-more than performing, more than seeing temples and caves, and more than sites.  Mark is a people person.

Me, I like rocks.

I have always liked looking at rocks; to climb to the top of a good-sized boulder and to conquer it.  Or to look at a cliff side and see what God has made.  I always liked living in Utah because of the rocks.  But life took me to California where there are less rocks, and I don't get to see them as often.

But we're different, my son and I.  I wonder if my other children are like Mark, or like me.  Natalia (my oldest daughter, Mark is my second) she likes books, and kids.  I guess I need to ask her which she likes more.  She is going to school studying to be and Elementary School teacher.  Maybe her love of kids wins out.

Jeremy, my son after Mark, I would always have said he likes sports.  Now though, he is in sort of a blaugh stage and I'm not sure if that's true anymore.  I could say he likes girls.  His life seems to revolve around them.  He is happiest when he has a girlfriend, and miserable when a relationship breaks up.  We have gone through some rough times with him over relationships ending.  But then this last relationship wasn't so bad.  He is 16 now and maybe he is maturing.

Charity, is my 14-year-old daughter.  She likes singing, and dancing, and acting and performing.  She loves those things and yet she gets stage fright from time to time.  I remember when she tried out for a play.  She practiced and practiced her song-but when she auditioned she couldn't remember a things.  Her brain just went blank.  I was the hardest thing to watch.  We had forgotten to take the music and she was going to sing to a tape.  The director asked her to sing "Happy Birthday" and she couldn't even remember that.  That was not her best moment.

But since then she has had many chances to perform and is more comfortable with things now.

Miranda my 12-year-old daughter likes to dance.  She also likes dolls, but I think she is starting to grow out of that stage.  She use to spend hours and hours playing dolls.  She also had way too many.  Of course they would make a big mess with them.  One thing Miranda doesn't like is picking up.  There were often dolls left out her and there and nobody liked to share a room with her as a result.  I guess it's easier to play dolls from where you left off the day before, rather than having to start over from the start every time.

Caleb, he's my youngest and he is 10. I think he just loves life.  He seems to be able to have a good time any old place.   But he likes to be busy doing something.  He plays hard.  He does sports hard.  And then he remembers hard.  He is always talking about his run in flag football where he ran the entire length of the field for a touchdown after almost being trapped in the end zone for a safety.  I was coaching and had a close look at the play as he sprinted around the left end and just barely missed having his flag pulled.  He had to loop back into the end zone to get around one defender.  After he got around the end he was off, cutting back and forth down the field giving everyone on the other team a couple chances to grab his flag, but he was always a step ahead of them.  He finally broke into the clear and sprinted the last half of the field to the touchdown.  That was a fun play.

My wife, Sheri, likes to read.  She likes a clean house.  She likes a made bed.  She likes friendships.  She likes walks.  She likes pretty things to put around the house and make it looked somewhat organized.  But to be honest, I really don't know what really causes my wife to burn inside.  I guess she loves the kids.  She at least spends all her time with them-camping, Great Americaning, watching movies, cleaning etc.

But me, I like rocks.  Well maybe I like more than rocks.  I like my family, that's for sure.  I guess if I had to pick between my family and rocks, I would take my family.  I really can live without rocks.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

My poetry: Squirrels

 I wrote this poem after Caleb told me a story


                               By: Billy Wardle

Two squirrels, one chasing the other,
Ran across the electrical line, over the road
As I drove underneath.

I've never seen that before, I thought,
But a couple blocks later,
I saw another squirrel, running along
An electrical line, crossing the road.

We must be having a squirrel infestation.
The population is really out of control.

Caleb, my son, came home with a story.
He was driving his bike home from soccer practice,
And saw a car run over a squirrel,
Not the entire squirrel, just its head.

He said the squirrel squirmed for some time,
Even though it was already dead.
He was traumatized, not because a squirrel was killed,
But because he saw it happen, and saw the struggle of the squirrel
Through its last breaths.

When we drive past that same location now,
He looks for the squirrel,
It's still there, but now the whole body is squished,
Not just the head...
There is a lot of traffic.

By: Niel Frank

My Poetry: Melancholy poems

I don't remember when I wrote this, but it must have been some time ago


When is Love

When do you love me?
How do you love me?
With what do you love me?
Where do you love me?
Why do you love me?

I feel alone,
Like a stork standing on a pier pole,
One leg in the air, the other on the pole.
The storm hits, and there I stand,
As the waves roar and lap against the pole.

What is Inside?

What is inside?
Is it just blood, and guts and goo?
Am I but gristle and sinew?
What's inside?
What is inside?
Is there besides tissues and bone?
Is there more than emptiness and stone?
What's inside?

What's inside my head?
Cranium, and folds of brain,
Rocklike skull, blood in veins?
What's inside my head?

At times I feel like I'm hollow,
Like there should be no tomorrow.
At times I feel empty,
Like there should be more to me.

Am I different than others?
Or are we sisters and brothers?
They too feel pain and loss?
That life is a double cross?

Damn I'm glad those times don't last long

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Summer Science Camp: 1971

I'm pretty sure it was between my 8th and 9th grade years that my dad signed me up for Summer science camp.  A couple teachers from South Cache directed it.  One of them was Ed Jensen, who taught math.  It was a field program, where they took us to different locations in the environment every week.  One of the first trips we went up Wellsville Mountains, following a t.v. transmitter route.  We got on the hillside and looked at the plant life.  We saw a sego lilly, which had been important to the early pioneers for food and is now the state flower of Utah.  We went that way again, following the highway through Sardine Pass, and stopping almost opposite where Sherwood Hills is located, and climbed on a hill know as Coral Mountain.  We looked all over the mountain for fossils of horned coral.  I actually found one and brought it home with me. 

We made a trip up to Porcupine Dam.  I remember this trip as Dave Jensen, who was a Pony Baseball pitcher, threw a rock off the dam underhand, a lot farther then I could ever think of throwing. 
The biggest trip of the summer was to Minnetonka Cave over by Bear Lake.  That trip was an all day one and we had to take a sack lunch.  Minnetonka cave is very cool, even in the summer and it has lots of stairs and is a pretty good climb.  It is also very pretty inside the cave. 

Another trip was to Tony Grove, and this trip marks the time when I was lost in the wilderness.  We hiked from the parking lot to a lake a bit more than a mile away.  We used the buddy system.  I can't remember who was my buddy.  Going to was pretty well marked.  It was coming back that we had a problem.  Somehow we missed a turn,  My buddy and I continued following a creek when we should have crossed.  We continued walking to the East for some distance before we realized we had gone he wrong way.  By then every one else had passed, and we couldn't find the trail.  We continued following the way we were going, knowing we would come out eventually.  We had to wade through a couple of creeks.  We did cut across so we didn't have to walk all the way to the highway, but found the road going into Tony Grove.  This saved us time, because going cross country is slow going.  We weren't on the road long, when the bus pulled up, as they had been looking for us.  I guess we were pretty lucky, because people have gotten lost in the same area for days.