Saturday, August 31, 2013

Saturday Farmer's Market - More Roses & Fall is Coming

Created by Heather at Capricious Reader, and now hosted by Chris at Stuff as Dreams are Made on.

UPDATE from Last Week:     

A while ago I transplanted a creeping rosemary (gift from departing neighbor) from its urn to a spot near the roses, because it wasn't healthy where it was. Now, the yellow has almost completely disappeared, it is spreading out nicely under the roses, and the blooming shows no sign of stopping.

They say that rosemary near your roses helps to keep the pests away from them. That we'll have to see, but I'm glad it's finally happy.

UPDATE #2:  
I extended and reran the soaker hose in the herb/rose beds this week. That will cut my time watering and make it more efficient. It also means that if I have a bad spell and can't work in the garden for a while, my roses won't pay the price. (The herbs have always been very resilient, but I just can't get them to do the watering.)

The hose actually ended up being too long for the space I had, but the shorter length would have been far too short. After careful consideration, I have decided that the best thing for me to do is increase the size of the bed. What choice do I have, really? There is a plan in my head that I'm working toward, and the expansion will happen over time. (Limited money and energy make the going slow and will help me build my patience. Yippee!) I'll be watering grass for a while, but I can plant new plants as I get them, without major issues; and as long as I keep my low maintenance rule in mind all should be well.

And the secret garden bloomed and bloomed 
and every morning revealed new miracles.

If you look the right way, you can see that
the whole world is a garden.

I watched a rosebud
- Christina Rosetti 

I watched a rosebud very long
Brought on by dew and sun and shower,
Waiting to see the perfect flower:
Then, when I thought it should be strong,
It opened at the matin hour
And fell at evensong.
I watched a nest from day to day,
A green nest full of pleasant shade,
Wherein three speckled eggs were laid:
But when they should have hatched in May,
The two old birds had grown afraid
Or tired, and flew away.
Then in my wrath I broke the bough
That I had tended so with care,
Hoping its scent should fill the air;
I crushed the eggs, not heeding how
Their ancient promise had been fair:
I would have vengeance now.
But the dead branch spoke from the sod,
And the eggs answered me again:
Because we failed dost thou complain?
Is thy wrath just? And what if God,
Who waiteth for thy fruits in vain,
Should also take the rod?

This time of year seems to revolve around harvesting & preserving, and for me, that means mostly herbs. I had a big lavender harvest and a small harvest of my mints earlier, and it looks like I'm going to have second harvest of all of them soon. Right now I am hanging pineapple sage, garden sage, lemon balm, and lemon grass. 

Our summer fruit harvest was short (but sweet) and is just a pleasant memory.

But this fall we will have some oranges, pomegranates, and kumquats. (fingers crossed)

The poms are on the left, and then
 on the right we have oranges on the top
 and kumquats below.

It is also rose time. 

This is the time of year that I tend most closely to the needs of my roses. (and will soon be adding to the family) They thank me with blooms through all but the coldest part of winter. Actually, if we don't have many freezes, they will bloom all winter and into spring.


Where, you tend a rose, my lad,
 A thistle cannot grow. 


I planted my beautiful new birthday rose bushes, and they look lovely even though the bed as a whole looks rather wild and haphazard right now. The pictures of them in the garden didn't turn out well, so maybe at a later date . . .

I also moved my tea rose away from the florabundas so it will have more space to stretch out and not be overshadowed by them.

I'll just leave you with a picture of the urn that previously held the creeping rosemary. I tucked in an aloe and a few hens and chicks. Succulents are a fairly new addition to my garden, so here's hoping they do okay.

"I watched a rosebud" from: Goblin Market, The Prince’s Progress and Other Poems.
Copyright 1879.
The Secret Garden (my all time favorite book)

Book Reviews. Sort of.

BrainPickings had a post about a book that occupies the little cubby in my slant top desk. I hadn't thought about it in a long time, so I pulled out out and reread it.

Rules of Civility and Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation - George Washington 

The Father of our Country, a plagiarist?!? Here are a few gems. (The misspellings are the property of the author.)

22. Shew not yourself glad at the Misfortune of another though he were your enemy.
50. Be not hasty to beleive flying Reports to the Disparag[e]ment of any.
64. Break not a Jest where none take pleasure in mirth Laugh not aloud, nor at all without Occasion, deride no mans Misfortune, tho’ there Seem to be Some cause.
65. Think before you Speak pronounce not imperfectly nor bring ou[t] your Words too hastily but orderly & distinctly.
82. Undertake not what you cannot Perform but be Carefull to keep your Promise.
110. Labour to keep alive in your Breast that Little Spark of Ce[les]tial fire Called Conscience. 

Darkness, My Old Friend (audiobook) - Lisa Unger   

Is the past really over?

Or does it continue to hold on to us?

2nd Chance (audiobook) - James Patterson  

Volts. Not watts. Don't you just hate that?

3rd Degree (audiobook) - James Patterson   

I knew going into this series that there was danger, but I ignored it. 

The series is okay, but not great. I, however, am stuck. I now feel compelled to read them all.

My OCD kicks in at the strangest times. 
I read quite a few series, and at least two of them are against my will.

Flatland (audiobook) - Edwin A. Abbott

This was a reread for me. It had been about t*@# years.

This is not a book well suited to audio, or maybe it was the narrator, but I struggled to stay awake and attentive throughout.

Poems of Rumi (audiobook) - Jalaluddin Rumi

I have always enjoyed Rumi's poetry, but this recording irritated me. It was more like a piece of performance art with drums and other instruments. I'm sure that the aim was to evoke a certain atmosphere, but it failed for me. I'll stick to reading Rumi in the future.

A Stone I died

A stone I died and rose again a plant;
A plant I died and rose an animal;
I died an animal and was born a man.
Why should I fear? What have I lost by death? 

The Knopf National Poetry Month(TM) Catalog Collection (audiobook) - Various

This anthology sprung from a really great idea for celebrating National Poetry Month. Subscribers were sent a poem a day by email, 30 in all.

Of the thirty poems included, many read by their authors, only four are by women, and several poets had multiple poems included. When you consider the number of poets from which the editors had to choose, this is an incredible lack of variety.

Black Labrador
  - David Young

Churchill called his bad visits from depression
a big black dog. We have reversed that, Winston.
We've named him Nemo, no one, a black hole
where light is gulped — invisible by night:
by day, when light licks everything to shine,
a black silk coat ablaze with inky shade.
He's our black lab, wherein mad scientists
concoct excessive energy. It snows,
and he bounds out, inebriate of cold.
The white flakes settle on his back and neck and nose
and make a little universe.

It's best to take God backward; even sideways
He is too much to contemplate, "a deep
but dazzling darkness," as Vaughan says.
And so I let my Nemo-omen lead me
onward and on toward that deep dark I'm meant
to enter, entertain, when my time comes . . .
The day wheels past, a creaky cart. I study
the rippling anthracite that steadies me,
the tar, the glossy licorice, the sable;
and in this snowfall that I should detest,
late March and early April, I'm still rapt
to see his coat so constellated, starred, re-starred,
making a comic cosmos I can love.

The Good old days at Home Sweet Home
  - Marge Piercy

On Monday my mother washed.
It was the way of the world,
all those lines of sheets flapping
in the narrow yards of the neighborhood,
the pulleys stretching out second
and third floor windows.

Down in the dank steamy basement,
wash tubs vast and grey, the wringer
sliding between the washer
and each tub. At least every
year she or I caught
a hand in it.

Tuesday my mother ironed.
One iron was the mangle.
She sat at it feeding in towels,
sheets, pillow cases.
The hand ironing began
with my father's underwear.

She ironed his shorts.
She ironed his socks.
She ironed his undershirts.
Then came the shirts,
a half hour to each, the starch
boiling on the stove.

I forgot bluing. I forgot
the props that held up the line
clattering down. I forgot
chasing the pigeons that shat
on her billowing housedresses.
I forgot clothespins in the teeth.

Tuesday my mother ironed my
father's underwear. Wednesday
she mended, darned socks on
a wooden egg. Shined shoes.
Thursday she scrubbed floors.
Put down newspapers to keep

them clean. Friday she
vacuumed, dusted, polished,
scraped, waxed, pummeled.
How did you become a feminist
interviewers always ask,
as if to say, when did this

rare virus attack your brain?
It could have been Sunday
when she washed the windows,
Thursday when she burned
the trash, bought groceries
hauling the heavy bags home.

It could have been any day
she did again and again what
time and dust obliterated
at once until stroke broke
her open. I think it was Tuesday
when she ironed my father's shorts.

The Pyramid (audiobook) - Henning Mankell

I don't know if it's a tribute to Mr. Mankell's powers of description, the interpretation of those responsible for the TV series, or the acting chops of Kenneth Branagh, but as I listened to these stories I was transported to the same dreary, grey world I saw on television.

I have to be honest here. The plots of Mankell's stories are quite good, but poor Kurt Wallander lives in a bleak, cold world, indeed. The scenery around him more than matches the landscape within.

Friday, August 30, 2013

I Know that Among My Small Following are a Few Teachers.

I have a few question for you:

Do you like to teach poetry? How do you do it? What are your favorite poems to teach? Are there poems that you feel are important to teach?

I know, I know. These aren't simple questions. But they are on my mind lately.

I'm curious since I feel so strongly about the importance of literacy and critical thinking. Our poets are often, like the proverbial canary in the coal mine, the first to raise an alarm and hold a mirror up to our warts and such.  (mixed metaphor alert)

All students deserve every opportunity for rich and fulfilling lives, and I believe that poetry can be an important part of that.

Poetry Foundation has an article by Eric Selinger, entitled "Ten Poems I Love to Teach: Surefire poetry hits for the classroom and beyond," and in it he discusses 10 poems he loves to teach, and why.

"Some poems you love, and some you love to teach.
What’s the difference?"

Here are Eric's ten. Check out the article to find out what he has to say about them.

1. “To My Dear and Loving Husbandby Anne Bradstreet
2. “Wild nights!—wild nights!by Emily Dickinson
3. “Those Winter Sundaysby Robert Hayden
4. “The Sun Risingby John Donne
5. “Theme for English Bby Langston Hughes
6 & 7. “The New Colossusby Emma Lazarus andIf We Must Dieby Claude McKay
8. “Easter, 1916by William Butler Yeats
9. “How Do I Love Thee?by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
10. “Beam 10” of ARK by Ronald Johnson

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Little One

- Kjerstin Gurda

Just darkness.
Black and white and
silence where
movement should have been.
That bright-heart flicker –
so much like spring peepers,
a star blinking from behind the swaying
branches of a tree –
has grown still.
Sacred work, this,
at the open and the close.
I had pressed my belly against a tall, old oak,
breathed in the sunset and
hoped the same rooted strength and longevity for
you, little one.
Whom we had called in, ready, waiting.
You came silently and
remade me,
even as my body worked to craft your own.
From the heart of creation
you came,
fashioned into form:
a new creature.
Gathering strength,
stitched together atom by atom, cell by cell,
pulled into human shape.
Crossing the threshold.
Oh, little one,
the thread was snipped;
a sacred stitch undone.
Losing that energy back
to the universal embrace,
back into the mouth of creation.
Leaving only form, entombed in womb.
Like being visited by a ghost,
your father said.
To touch the great mystery,
of which you know more than I.
And when the body let go, to open,
I felt the ancient pull of muscle against bone,
knew the deepness of the ache,
as a crimson river bore me to the other side.
Leaving us to the soft animal sadness
of ourselves,
tending the wounded,
the shards of hurt rounding dull.
Leaving me crying to the cabbage as I cooked,
taking away the promise of that unfocused,
thousand-mile stare
of a newborn babe,
giving it to me instead.
And releasing me back to
myself, singular,
my body disorganized, uncertain,
made new.
Having crossed a threshold, too,
joining those who harbor life in womb.
Reminding me of my place
in the order of things.
For I am not the Writer, the Master, or the Maker,
only with a hand in holding.
This brief life:
a tiny pearl,
sliding along the sacred spiral,
a short revolution of the wheel.
We honor you, little one.
You were here,
and now
you are everywhere.

from: DONA International 21 (2013)

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

President Obama on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington. As Our First African-American President, He is the Living Embodiment of that Dream, and Hope for Our Future.

Quote of the Day

The Standard You Walk Past is the Standard You Accept.

- Lieutenant General David Morrison,
 Australian Chief of Army.

I already posted this quote, but given the growing uglies in the world around us, I don't think these words can be repeated often enough. I've also printed them on my refrigerator white board.

Still Life with Book and Flowers . . .

Monday, August 26, 2013

Kilt Monday!

'Cause let's face it,
Mondays can be so rough, hard, difficult.


- Natasha Trethewey

What's left is footage: the hours before
Camille, 1969—hurricane
parties, palm trees leaning
in the wind,
fronds blown back,

a woman's hair. Then after:
the vacant lots,
boats washed ashore, a swamp

where graves had been. I recall

how we huddled all night in our small house,
moving between rooms,
emptying pots filled with rain.

The next day, our house—
on its cinderblocks—seemed to float

in the flooded yard: no foundation

beneath us, nothing I could see
tying us to the land.
In the water, our reflection
when I bent to touch it.

from: Native Guard: Poems by Natasha Trethewey. Copyright 2006.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Quote of the Day

There is no need of knowing whether, by pursuing justice, we shall manage to preserve liberty.

It is essential to know that, without liberty, we shall achieve nothing and that we shall lose both future justice and ancient beauty. 
 – Albert Camus, Create Dangerously.


“A true Arab knows how to catch a fly in his hands,”   
my father would say. And he’d prove it,
cupping the buzzer instantly
while the host with the swatter stared.

In the spring our palms peeled like snakes.
True Arabs believed watermelon could heal fifty ways.   
I changed these to fit the occasion.

Years before, a girl knocked,
wanted to see the Arab.
I said we didn’t have one.
After that, my father told me who he was,   
“Shihab”—“shooting star”—
a good name, borrowed from the sky.
Once I said, “When we die, we give it back?”   
He said that’s what a true Arab would say.

Today the headlines clot in my blood.
A little Palestinian dangles a truck on the front page.   
Homeless fig, this tragedy with a terrible root   
is too big for us. What flag can we wave?
I wave the flag of stone and seed,
table mat stitched in blue.

I call my father, we talk around the news.   
It is too much for him,
neither of his two languages can reach it.
I drive into the country to find sheep, cows,   
to plead with the air:
Who calls anyone civilized?

Where can the crying heart graze?
What does a true Arab do now?

from: Words Under the Words: Selected Poems. Copyright 1995.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Saturday Farmer's Market - Roses!

Created by Heather at Capricious Reader, and now hosted by Chris at Stuff as Dreams are Made on.

UPDATE(s) from Last Week:   

I finally gave up and pulled the camomile. In the end it only produced about a half cup of flowers this year, unlike last year when I filled a quart jar. Some winter reading is in order, I think, to find out why.

After in depth research, I found that the Scotch broom is maintained quite well in suburban type situations, but they seed profusely and it only takes a few birds dropping them in fields to precipitate floral devastation, because they crowd out native plants very quickly. Ranchers and orchard folks around here are begging people not to plant them, so I am choosing not to cultivate this plant.

I noticed tiny tomato plants all over my back yard. It seems a shame to get rid of them all . . . It looks like maybe the birds need some little baskets to carry their share of the harvest. I also continued hacking back my big tomato plants. They had grown so thick that I couldn't get to the fruit in the center.

Well, this update is depressing. On a brighter note . . .

UPDATE #2:   

My birthday was last week and that meant that it was time to try the cherry liqueur. The cherries, themselves, will be used on ice cream.

I'm not really much of a drinker, so I found it quite potent. In the end I wussed out and drank it mixed with some 7up. Not half bad, but it's the sort of drink that you have to be careful about sneaking up on you and kicking you in the back of the head.

Also, I think I might like to add some spices next time.

UPDATE #3:  
Our Orchard Supply (OSH) is going out of business. (They were bought by Lowe's.) The employees found out the same day the public did, and although they are welcome to apply for jobs with Lowe's, their time with OSH doesn't get them anything - no priority in hiring, no seniority, no nothing - and some of them had been at OSH for 35 years. That sucks.

On the bright side (yes, I know I'm sick) plants were being clearanced!

I bought a beautiful spider plant. It's nice and full, with a lot of babies.

The Sunlight on the Garden
Louis MacNeice

The sunlight on the garden
Hardens and grows cold,
We cannot cage the minute
Within its nets of gold;
When all is told

We cannot beg for pardon.
Our freedom as free lances
Advances towards its end;
The earth compels, upon it
Sonnets and birds descend;
And soon, my friend,

We shall have no time for dances.
The sky was good for flying
Defying the church bells
And every evil iron
Siren and what it tells:
The earth compels,

We are dying, Egypt, dying
And not expecting pardon,
Hardened in heart anew,
But glad to have sat under
Thunder and rain with you,
And grateful too
For sunlight on the garden.


My husband gave me two beautiful rose bushes for my birthday, a yellow one called 'Grandma's yellow rose' and a white one called 'pillow fight.' Yellow roses are my favorite, and white floribundas in full bloom seem to light up the night garden.

My grand babies gave me a bouquet of yellow roses and some black licorice.

The side of my yard with the fruit trees and flower beds is mostly under control and doing quite well, with only a few weather related issues. And it looks like our experiment with permaculture is off to a good start. But because my garden is in transition, the herb side is still a bit wild. 

This weekend I need to pull up and rerun the drip hose, expanding the beds. It was never just an herb bed. It is more like an English garden on this side, with a mixture of herbs and flowers.

I used to have a large collection of roses, but roses are finicky creatures that need a lot of attention - and chemicals - so I had to let them go. My garden needs plants that are strong and can hold their own without poisons.

About four years ago I took a chance on an 'Iceberg' florabunda that is just covered in snow each spring. Inspired, I am slowly expanding my rose collection again. Yellow roses are my favorite, but I hope to open up my palate this fall.

As of this writing, I have six rose bushes, and of the six, four have been gifts from my husband.

Friday, August 23, 2013

(A Repost) For All Those Teachers Heading Back Into the Classroom . . .

- Mary Rita Schilke Korzan

When you thought I wasn’t looking, you displayed my first report, and I wanted to do another.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, you fed a stray cat, and I thought it was good to be kind to animals.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, you gave me a sticker, and I knew that little things were special things.
When you thought I wasn’t looking, you put your arm around me, and I felt loved.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I saw tears come from your eyes, and I learned that sometimes things hurt--but that it’s all right to cry.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, you smiled, and it made me want to look that pretty too.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, you cared, and I wanted to be everything I could be.

When you thought I wasn’t looking--I looked...and wanted to say thanks for all those things you did when you thought I wasn’t looking.

Biology Fans + Sciency Illustrators =


Flying Squirwolf

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Quote of the Day

If you’re really serious about protecting children, the formula is to foster their creativity, encourage them to be independent, teach them to explore and learn, and also provide them with security so they have a refuge they can voluntarily enter when they need to. 

Children brought up in a dark box learn to live in a dark box. 

Children brought up in the light learn to illuminate the world.


We Must Defend . . .

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Daddy Longlegs

- Ted Kooser

robotic daddy long legs spider
Here, on fine long legs springy as steel,
a life rides, sealed in a small brown pill
that skims along over the basement floor
wrapped up in a simple obsession.
Eight legs reach out like the master ribs
of a web in which some thought is caught
dead center in its own small world,
a thought so far from the touch of things
that we can only guess at it. If mine,
it would be the secret dream
of walking alone across the floor of my life
with an easy grace, and with love enough
to live on at the center of myself.

from Flying at Night: Poems 1965-1985. Copyright 2005.
Photo source: Jacobscreen.

Gardening as Social Consciousness

I found this fun little essay at when women were warriors.

My mother is a radical feminist gardener. If you don’t believe me, just ask the post-modernists flowers who survived her latest militant action against patriarchal culture weeds. I have her to thank for my extremist ways.

When I was a child, she’d coax me out into the yard for a day of gardening, which involved planting new flowers, checking on the vegetables, and pulling up weeds. I was always assigned the task of weed annihilation. She explained how these damn weeds work. They suck the life out of the other plants in the garden, grow wild, take up space, and eventually kill off their neighbors. Vigilant little sprout that I was, I took my job to mean I should run through the dirt from spot to spot and rip off the tops of everything creepy and evil I could see.

Pleased with my efficient counter-warfare efforts, I reported to my original post with the emphatic, “Done!” I’d saved the garden, and I was ready to move on to something fun, like putting new seeds in the ground and plucking ripe strawberries from the vine. But my mother was a radical feminist gardener, as I mentioned. She scouted the soil and then sighed. “You’ve just ripped off the tops of them all.”

“Yup. They’re gone!’” I exclaimed, satisfied deluxe.

Then she indoctrinated me with her extremist view of the garden. What I was about to hear, at such a formidable age, would stay with me for life. She wanted those weeds out by the ROOTS!       . . .

. . . Continue reading . . .

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Vive La Revolution!*

On May Day, after an exhibition at Smart Clothes Gallery in New York, Molly Crabapple released her latest collection, "Shell Game" to the public quite literally - under a Creative Commons license.

It was the year when everyone sat down in the main squares of their cities and said the old machine is broken.

Each of her paintings depicts a news story from 2011, including the mortgage bubble, the Greek anti-austerity protests, and Occupy Wall Street. Her tribute to the revolutions and crises that echoed around the world was inspired by by dissidents and activists, supported by crowd sourcing, and then given back to the world.

The Great American Bubble machine

 The Business of Illness

Creative Commons License
Shell Game by Molly Crabapple is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at

* English translation: "Long Live the Revolution!"

Monday, August 19, 2013

Kilt Monday!

Happy Birthday, to me! Happy Birthday, to me!
 Happy Birthday, to me-ee! Happy Birthday, to me!

Today, I Am Lanthanum.

Lanthanum is a soft, (well I could use a few hours in the gym) ductile, (yes, I do get bent out of shape under extreme stress) and malleable (not so much, no) silvery-white metal, that burns easily when ignited, (no, you don't want to see that) and is used in the manufacture of expensive camera lenses because it gives glass refractive properties (funny, that's my job too: helping others focus).

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Save America With Poetry! Day Twenty.

What all Tony Hoagland's poetry choices have in common is that (among other things) they foster critical thinking, make us think of others, and their themes are applicable far beyond themselves.

Do you have any poems that you feel fit Tony's criteria? 

Can they spread themselves out into society, like a healing balm, healing pain or bringing understanding?

If you have any suggestions, 
please share them In the comments. 
I would love to see what touches your hearts and minds.

Our Dust
- C D Wright

I am your ancestor. You know next-to-nothing about me.

There is no reason for you to imagine the rooms I occupied or my heavy hair. Not the faint vinegar smell of me. Or the rubbered damp of Forrest and I coupling on the landing en route to our detached day.

You didn't know my weariness, error, incapacity. I was the poet

Most Recent Book: Further Adventures with You (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 1986)

of shadow work and towns with quarter-inch phone books, of failed roadside zoos. The poet of yard eggs and sharpening shops, jobs at the weapons plant and the Mabelline factory on the penitentiary road.

A poet of spiderwort and jacks-in-the-pulpit, hollyhocks against the tool shed.

An unsmiling dark blond.

The one with the trowel in her handbag.

I dug up protected and private things.

That sort, I was.

My graves went undecorated and my churches abandoned. This wasn't planned, but practice.

I was the poet of short-tailed cats and yellow line paint.

Of satellite dishes and Peterbilt trucks. Red Man Chewing Tobacco, Black Cat Fireworks, Triple Hit Creme Soda. Also of dirt dobbers, nightcrawlers, martin houses, honey, and whetstones from the Novaculite Uplift. What remained of The Uplift.

I had registered dogs 4 sale; rocks, shit, and straw.

I was a poet of hummingbird hives along with redheaded stepbrothers.

The poet of good walking shoes—a necessity in vernacular parts—and push mowers. The rumor that I was once seen sleeping in a refrigerator box is false (he was a brother who hated me).

Nor was I the one lunching at the Governor's mansion.

I didn't work off a grid. Or prime the surface if I could get off without it. I made simple music out of sticks and string. On side B of me, experimental guitar, night repairs and suppers such as this.

You could count on me to make a bad situation worse like putting liquid make-up over a passion mark.

I never raised your rent. Or anyone else's by God. Never said I loved you. The future gave me chills. I used the medium to say: Arise arise and come together.

Free your children. Come on everybody. Let's start with Baltimore.

Believe me I am not being modest when I admit my life doesn't bear repeating. I agreed to be the poet of one life, one death alone. I have seen myself in the black car. I have seen the retreat of the black car.

Imagining a renewed role for poetry in the national discourse, and a new canon.
by Tony Hoagland.

Here are TONY HOAGLAND’S twenty poems: Twenty-First. Night. Monday., by Anna Akhmatova God’s Justice, by Anne Carson memory, by Lucille Clifton A Man and a Woman, by Alan Feldman America, by Allen Ginsberg Bamboo and a Bird, by Linda Gregg A Sick Child, by Randall Jarrell Black People & White People Were Said, by Kerry Johannsen Topography, by Sharon Olds Wild Geese, by Mary Oliver Written in Pencil in the Sealed Railway-Car, by Dan Pagis Merengue, by Mary Ruefle Ballad of Orange and Grape, by Muriel Rukeyser Waiting for Icarus, by Muriel Rukeyser American Classic, by Louis Simpson The Geraniums, by Genevieve Taggard Song of Speaks-Fluently, by Speaks-Fluently Traveling Through The Dark, by William Stafford When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer, by Walt Whitman Our Dust, by C. D. Wright

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Saturday Farmer's Market - More Odds and Ends

Created by Heather at Capricious Reader, and now hosted by Chris at Stuff as Dreams are Made on.

UPDATE from Last Week:  

The African daisies are filling out, looking beautiful and right at home in that bed.

UPDATE #2:   

Remember my expanded bed? Well I have four sunflowers growing from the spilled birdseed, and I decided to let them grow and see what happens.

It's past time for sunflowers. In fact, in the fields it's what I always refer to as 'sad sunflower' time, where the farmers withdraw the irrigation and dry them in situ. Since we have a long growing season and relatively mild winters, they should have time to grow, but we'll see.

UPDATE #3:   

My tiny, 3 foot tall, navel orange tree is loaded with oranges.

Some More Odds and Ends . . .     

Had a fun little encounter with a run away dog this week. I saw a Bull terrier (Target dog) digging enthusiastically in my front corner bed (probably looking for a contribution from my resident fertilizing feline) and when I went out to shoo him away, he thought it was play time. The next thing I know, a red faced woman with a leash is running down the road looking like she's about to have a heart attack. My new little friend got really excited then, and the bed got a bit torn up before we corralled him. 

'Bubba' had gotten away from his mom two streets over and she'd been chasing after him. I gave her some water and had her sit for a while. I really thought the poor woman might not make it for a while. She was so upset about the flower bed, but I tried to reassure her. I'm not sure I succeeded though. My Petunia gets out occasionally so did I understand her situation.

The mums were dug up but intact, and since I was going to dig them up and divide them in the spring anyway, I figured I might as well do it now. I moved them to the side of the house and put coreopsis in their place.

I've harvested the last of my cucumbers. My three little plants gave me two huge batches of refrigerator sweet pickles and some cucumber salads.

I took this picture of the spent vines right before I pulled them up.

*moment of silence*

Can you see another of my little buddies? This praying mantis is in shades of brown. He blends in much better than his green cousins.

In spite of triple digit heat, it still feels like an early Fall to me. I don't know why; It just does.

Don't take my word for it. My Japanese Maple seems to be feeling the same way. It has already started putting on its Fall crimson, a whole month early.

Do you have a favorite cookbook? As gardeners, do you look for recipes to utilizes the fruits of your labor in books or online? Do you have a favorite chief?

I don't really use recipes much. In fact, I tend to wing it when I cook. And even if I do use a recipe, I'm pathologically incapable of following it exactly.

But, strangely enough, I have a collection of cookbooks. It's a fairly unusual collection.

I have two from the kitchen of Kay Scarpetta, and one by Harry Hairsteen's Little sidekick, Sneaky Pie. Nero Wolfe's favorite dishes also grace my shelf, as do those of The Cat Who and Harry Potter worlds. (Can you tell I'm a murder mystery fan?)

I also have a zombie cookbook and one whose recipes are cooked on your car engine.

There are others, tea time recipes and general cookbooks. But my all time favorite is Jamie Oliver's "Cook Your Way to the Good Life." It's the only cook book I've seen that is organized by the seasons of the garden and the different crops it offers up. Jamie offers basic down home type dishes that showcase and celebrate their ingredients.

Why, you ask, am I talking about cookbooks in a gardening post? Simple. I'm hungry.

A while back I offered my Refrigerator Sweet Pickle recipe. Has anyone tried it? Here is another one of my staples that might have broader appeal, my Simple Sweet Scones. I've changed the recipe mostly because of my disability. Scones (including these) are usually kneaded and cut. If you want, you can do that, but dropping them works just fine for me.

I usually make a double batch because they seen to disappear quickly around here. If I haven't seen the grandkids in a while I just bake a batch of these and they show up. Somehow they just know.

Simple Sweet Scones

2 1/2 C all-purpose flour
1 T baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
8 T (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut up
1/4 C granulated sugar (or 1/3 C for slightly sweeter scones)
2/3 C milk

1 egg
granulated sugar

Combine dry ingredients in mixer bowl, then add butter and mix until mixture looks like fine granules. Add sugar and mix again. Add as many raisins as you like (I use about 1 1/2 C) and mix again. Add milk while mixer is running, and continue mixing until a soft dough forms.

Drop by spoonfuls (in size you like) onto parchment lined baking sheet.

Wash with beaten egg and a sprinkle of sugar.

Bake at 425 degrees F. for about 12 min. or until medium brown on top.