Sunday, November 11, 2018

November 10

Ted Kooser's poem for yesterday.

november 10

    High winds all night

Most of the snow passed north of us,
but this morning we're given the fancy white lace
on the edge of that blanket,
every weed on the roadside coated with ice.

Behind the counter at the post office,
somebody's small carton stamped with block letters:

I drive very slowly all the way home.

Another little gem! In snow country, "blanketed with snow" is quite a common term, but the idea of "the fancy white lace on the edge of that blanket" is completely fresh and new to me. That's what poets do. They see the world in a different way. He uses the familiar "blanket" but gives the reader a new way of thinking about the "edge". And, as is often the case with poetry, readers see different things in it. Tom interpreted the icy weeds as the "fancy white lace" and after he said it, I thought of course, but I had read it in a broader way - that the blanket of snow missed his area; it was on the "edge" of the blanket.

And what's with that carton at the post office??! I bet he wondered about it on his slow drive home. I think I wouldn't have been able to stop myself from asking what in the world it meant!

I went for a walk from 3:40 to 4 pm. We had a snow squall earlier in the day but by then the sun had come out and it was just beautiful.

The weeds were indeed "coated with ice". I tried to capture this beauty but it doesn't work well taking a picture into the sun. The little green dot must be some kind of sun reflection, but still you can get the idea. They sparkle like the proverbial diamonds.

Amazing, amazing clouds

I love the late afternoon light on the house

Abbey Road  oak leaves (in homage to my blogging friend, Penny who so often finds whimsy in the natural world)

This is one of my favorite spots. I really should put a chair or bench there.

Soon after my walk we drove down to Michael and Estée's house to take care of Campbell Walker and Indy Thomas while the parents had a "date night". We had a wonderful time, as you might imagine. And we had the joy of putting them to bed. Is there anything so precious as a sleeping child? It fills me with feelings that are so deep I can't begin to put them into words. Probably Ted Kooser could though!

Usually it is a straightforward ride between our houses - about 45 minutes on mostly highway. But not last night. Tom wanted to get some coffee. We pulled off in one place, but everything was closed so we drove on to another town, and went to a MacDonald's. There was a stretch limo in the parking lot and quite a line of cars in the drive-through lane, and we thought uh, oh, they've been slammed at  10:30 at night. We waited half an hour! When we finally got to the window, the man gave us our order free (I, of course, couldn't pass up French fries and milk) because of the wait. He told us his employee just walked off the job. Can you imagine doing such a thing?

So we continued on our way. It was snowing further north. At one point we found ourselves behind two side-by-side snowplows. We went 25 mph, and had the safest drive in town! Driving slowly just like Ted Kooser.


  1. Always interesting to hear about what you two are up to. Precious pictures of your little boys. And snow already - love those pictures too. Enjoy the cold, Nan! I'm not enjoying ours even a little bit. Ha! It's supposed to freeze here tomorrow night - pretty early for our part of the country. Sigh.

    1. Thank you! Your weather does seem to be changing with more rain and perhaps more cold. Mostly we are the same. Just hoping the summer heat was a fluke. For me, a happy day is when I must wear long sleeves. Ha!

  2. This post made for such a lovely read, thank you!
    I am glad you had a safe drive home. Snow on the roads is not to be taken lightly, and as far as I'm concernded, the snow in my area can stay away for several more weeks. Having said that, we still have very mild, spring-like weather here. People still run around short-sleeved! (Not me.) I just wish we'd finally get some rain.

    1. And I thank you! Still no rain??? How long has it been?

  3. Nan, I liked your interpretation of this lovely poem, both clear and refreshing, and it all read so well with the scenic pictures and your beautiful grandchildren.

  4. I'm going to enjoy revisiting Kooser's book/poems thru your blog posts, Nan. Thank you for sharing them with all of us. I can just picture Ted's slow drive home, as I have a pretty good sense of where he lives.

    I love seeing all of your pictures of the snow and clouds and your lovely home. And Abbey Road with leaves! Love it! The pics of the little boys are darling, especially the one of them listening to Tom read their bedtime story. I'm glad you made it home safe & sound!

    1. I love it that you can picture where his drive home is! Thank you for your words. And you got the AR picture! I had to explain it to Tom. haha. The boys are exceptionally dear kids.

  5. They are so sweet -- you are so right about sleeping children.

    1. You are so very kind to stop by and leave a note. Yes, they are so very sweet.

  6. I looked out this morning to find the edge of the blanket here. I too love this thought. I am so glad you introduced me to Ted. Our library actually had 2 of his books. They just made me want more. I think you should put a bench where you find such peace.
    So glad you had a safe trip after tucking in your Grands. Nothing more peaceful that doing that.

    1. I'm really happy the library had his work! They could probably ILL more if you wanted. I don't know what it is about that spot, but I've always been drawn to it. And yes, nothing is more peaceful!!

  7. The "Abbey Road leaves" picture shows exactly what I thought of when I heard about the lacy edge. Poets sure do open up the world for us. Thank you for sharing this one! I can think of a few more poems from your phrases. Surely "Angel Moments with Snail" begs to be its own poem, as does "Behind the Plow."

  8. How about "the cold porcelain knob of the moon"?
    So lovely it gave me goosebumps.
    I think it's one of my favorites.

    1. If anyone reads this, and thinks they may have missed the line, - it is in a poem I haven't posted. Yes, Karen. Just magic. Makes me think of the Narnia closet.

  9. Replies
    1. It's just that probably very human desire to find a portal to another time, or the future, or to see a dead person again. He expressed it exceptionally well.


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