Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Blogging and me

The unexamined life is not worth living - Socrates

I have said that Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility - William Wordsworth, preface to Lyrical Ballads

I am definitely not these fellows, but I do understand each of them with relation to blogging and me. I need to write down things that are swirling around in my head. Writing is very different from talking. Talking involves other people's thoughts and opinions, and mine can be lost or changed in conversation. This introvert needs the quiet of writing to sort out exactly what I think or feel about something. Even if I write only a few lines, or quote someone, or share a poem, it does me good. 

I haven't written nearly as much in later years. Well, duh! Three grandchildren came along in quick succession. And my emotions have been coming fast and furious without much time to "recollect" them in any sort of peaceful moments. But now the children are older, and though we still see Hazel many days, we don't see the boys as often because of distance, the busyness of the family, the virus. 

So I would like my compensation for their getting older and starting school to be  writing my "letters from a hill farm". A part of this is also spending more of my time at your blogs. I have visited as often as I could but not nearly as often as I wanted to. Reading another person's words and taking the time to respond is another kind of recollecting. I can take my time thinking over what they have said and then write back if I feel I have anything to contribute.

I am quite happy about my resolve to do this. I have really missed the connections, and have missed taking the time to write about even the small things. It is good for me. It clears my head and helps me to notice things I might not have in the bustle of the day. 

Today's Poem - Hare Drummer by Edgar Lee Masters

Autumn began in my part of the world at 9:30 this morning when the sun went into Libra. I went back to my beloved 

for a poem to share. This is from Masters' Spoon River Anthology which is a collection of poems that are epitaphs of people who lived in Spoon River. You may read more about it here. It has been a very long time since I've read it or thought about it. Tom remembers he didn't like it, and I wonder if we were both too young to understand. I feel encouraged to pick it up again since I really loved this poem. I'm much closer to the age for an epitaph now! 😲

Hare Drummer

Do the boys and girls still go to Siever's

For cider, after school, in late September?

Or gather hazel nuts among the thickets

On Aaron Hatfield's farm when the frosts begin?

For many times with the laughing girls and boys

Played I along the road and over the hills

When the sun was low and the air was cool,

Stopping to club the walnut tree

Standing leafless against a flaming west.

Now, the smell of autumn smoke,

And the dropping acorns,

And the echoes about the vales

Bring dreams of life. They hover over me.

They question me:

Where are those laughing comrades?

How many are with me, how many

In the old orchards along the way to Siever's,

And in the woods that overlook

The quiet water?

Edgar Lee Masters (1868-1950) 

Monday, September 21, 2020

Back To School

 I am tempted to say "the new normal". Though we are probably all sick of hearing it these days, it really is quite a good phrase. And I would say especially for children.  They go with the flow in a way that is hard for most adults. What is, is, and that's it. 

So here is our granddaughter Hazel today on her first day of school since March. 


Those eyes are still smiling under the mask. 

Nana is doing my best at not being nervous. We have no cases in our town as of now. The children all live here. Some have traveled over the summer, but have quarantined when they returned. Most have stayed right here, and had their own "pandemic pods". These groups have mingled with others as the summer has gone on, and we all feel pretty comfortable. We wear masks in stores and in outdoor groups like the Farmers' Market. 

The grandsons, Campbell and Indy are being remotely schooled at home. Their school is a bit different in that the kids come from different towns, and the boys' parents wanted to see how things are at the school before letting them go back. So far, so good.

Addendum: Just got a text from Margaret, and Hazel had an "awesome day"!!

Monday, September 7, 2020

Poem and song for these times in particular

The news from all around is so very upsetting and hugely anxiety provoking. It seems the "opening up" and the going back to school, maybe particularly colleges with their large, mask-less parties, are bringing new cases just when we had begun to relax because the cases had gotten fewer. And the tourists. If you live in a tourist area, you know. I can't understand why people feel they have to travel now. And these aren't poor people who are stuck in terrible city conditions. Tom saw a Tesla in our little Co-op parking lot and he looked up the price, and mon dieu, the car's base price is 80 thou. Our local lawyers are crazy busy because of people buying houses to get away from the cities and the virus. Anyhow, it's enough to drive one mad so here is a little respite. 

If we can't actually be there, let us have such a place in our hearts and imaginations when we are "on the roadway, or the pavements grey". 

The Lake Isle of Innisfree
By William Butler Yeats

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee,
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.

Saturday, August 15, 2020

Eating like a child; and another sweet grandchild saying

 Last night, this is what I had for supper.

Lettce, yellow beans, and corn from local farmers, our cucumbers and potatoes, and a glass of milk. These happen to be all my childhood favorite foods for summer suppers. The only thing missing is peas, which we will probably have tonight. 

And before supper, Hazel Nina and I were outdoors at our new fire pit which we haven't lit yet because the weather is too hot. She suddenly told me I looked "so cute" that she had to go get a phone to take a picture. As with Campbell Walker's adorable words the other day, I will say again, how many 72-year-olds hear that adjective applied to them! She also moved around a bit because she wanted to include the barn. Photographer in the making?

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Blueberries - 2020 Report

 I just went looking through the blog, and apparently I didn't post about the blueberries last year. I'm so surprised because I had been doing so for a few years.

Anyhow, today was the last of the blueberries we bought from our neighbor. 

This year the price was $5.75 per quart, down from $6 two years ago. Who knows why? What I do know is that there weren't very many - 17 quarts in all.

July 30 - 4 quarts

August 2 - 3 quarts

August 4 - 3 quarts

August 6 - 3 quarts

August 10 - 2 quarts

August 12 - 2 quarts

In 2018, we got 26 quarts, and we thought that was a small amount!  In 2017, 43 quarts. In 2016, 61 quarts!

We are friendly enough with this man and his wife, and in fact sell them a dozen eggs a week, but we don't know them well enough to comfortably ask them why they think there has been such a steady decrease each year. One year, I did give the man a list of the differences in amounts for a couple years, but he gave no response. I sure wish I knew how many we got last year! 

We've eaten quite a few fresh, and the rest are frozen for breakfast smoothies.

Monday, August 10, 2020

Dennis Waterman - New Tricks Theme EXTENDED

The Traveling Wilburys - End Of The Line (Official Video)

How did they get away with it?

 I'm watching the British television show New Tricks for maybe the sixth time, and every time I see it I wonder how Mike Moran, the man who wrote the theme song got away with such a copy of The Traveling Wilburys song, End of the Line.

I have searched and searched and can't find any controversy about it, though I did find this:

A version sung by Dennis Waterman was used as the theme too for the pilot of another BBC production, New Tricks, although this was soon replaced by a similar-sounding song, "It's All Right", by Mike Moran, which is easily mistaken for End of the Line.

Yet, apparently, there was no brouhaha, no lawsuit, and as I've found, barely a mention.

What do you think? 

And after I wrote the above sentence, I went to YouTube and tried to insert the video of both songs, but something has changed. This may be to do with the new Blogger. Anyhow, as with most things in life there is good and bad about it. I can now "share" immediately on a blog post, but I don't seem to be able to insert into a blog post. The only solution I have for right now is to put up both videos in separate posts, and hope you come back here to see why in the world they are there! 

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Quote du jour/Campbell Walker

Our grandson Campbell Walker spent the night at his cousin, Hazel Nina's house for the very first time last night. The two of them showed up at our door this morning and I was in my nightgown. Campbell said, "You look like a young girl!" How many 72-year-olds hear those words first thing in the morning?!