Friday, June 26, 2009

Slug love

Slugs have taken over my garden for the first time, ever. All sizes. All colors. They've turned the zinnias to skeletons. Ditto the eggplants. And now they have gone to work on the cucumbers and
marigolds. I bought a special flashlight to go slug-hunting at night. They creep out after dusk and
I found dozens and sent them swiftly to the beyond.

However, I did notice that while I was in a frenzy, they were not. The slug "vibe" is very peaceful,
almost sweet. This prompted me to learn about them. And they are remarkable. They can stretch, if need be, 20 times their normal length. When one set of teeth wear out, another set appears from
behind and sets to work. They are hermaphrodites. Made mostly of water, they thrive in wet, cool weather. (Hence, the appearance of tens of thousands of them in my garden.) Sometimes they swing from thin strings of slime while have slug sex. I'm not so jazzed about the slime but do love the concept of joining in midair while being buoyed about by wind. . .

Long and short of it -- I am leaving them alone now. It's just as much their yard as mine. More theirs. Slug love. It's a good thing.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Verbal sunlight/Poem by Kate Burns

My friend, Lisa Siemans, is both a wonderful poet and teacher. She sends me poems that her kids write. (And if I can get her to send me one of her poems, I'll put it here as soon as I get it! ) This poem is by Kate Burns who was only in 2nd or 3rd grade when she wrote it.


I have a secret about art.

Listen to your art
as you draw:
The roller skate talks to you,
your birds sing to you,
your cat purrs for you,
your people watch
as you draw
the parts
around them.
They are happy
to be art.
Feels like it has been raining here for
decades. Well, a month at least. The sun came out this afternoon for about five minutes and even the old cat woke from his nap, started at what appeared to be warmth coming through the window. Near sunset, too, just five minute's worth of sunlight broke through and I took pictures, just in case the deluge continues and I need visual proof that sunlight, somewhere, exists.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Poem by Jared Carter

Mourning Doves

That all my life I have listened to the calls
of mourning doves, have heard them hidden far back
under the eaves, or perched among sycamore branches—
their five still notes sometimes lost in the wind—
and not known how to answer: this I confess,
lying here now, on a summer morning, in a dark room
no less lit by the sound of their soft calling

than by your breathing. And though you might dream
that I lie stretched beside you, I am alone again,
and a child, hearing these same dim voices drifting
high outside my window, explaining to myself how
these are the cries of the newly dead, in the dawn light,
rising toward heaven. Only that, and a child's need
to make up stories on falling asleep, or waking.

And though you might speak, out of that dream, or form
some forbidden word on your lips, my response
would be no more than the music two of them can make—
matching their notes in time, setting up harmonies
that are clear, and pure, and accidental even
to their own reckoning, since all of their singing
is circular, and comes back to the same stillness.

It is back to that place they are calling us now,
and it is out of not knowing that I brush away
strands of hair from your face, and begin to kiss
your eyes, your lips—that I might take sleep
from your mouth into mine, that we might dream invention,
and you hear my confession, and I your answering,
like a song traded back and forth in the morning light.

-Jared Carter
Spent 8 hours yesterday weeding out a very small patch that contained, to my surprise, some very determined, sturdy, entirely hidden wild roses. Invisible yesterday.
And today?
Rain-glazed and, I am fairly sure, very happy.