Thursday, June 06, 2013

In the land of ice, the black Angus

Looking for something else, this just turned up. The green turns white when one uses the infrared-seeing converted camera. It is one of the mysteries of science. Besides the contrast, and the great big guy in the  foreground, I love this photo because of the lying-down cattle in the back. And, also, because it reminds me of my Aunt Dorothy, my mother's brother's wife, who was at my parent's wedding, and who had a sardonic voice unlike others I heard in my childhood. As a cash-producing sideline to his work for General Electric, my uncle raised a few Black Angus on his small farm, But he left for his real job every day, and if the Angus escaped and began to roam, people would call Dot and ask her to corral them. I don't know how she managed--she was a slight, and slightly dotty, woman. If I were a steer, I wouldn't have paid her any mind. She used to call them "Black Bastards." Many of my other relatives were quite saintly--I myself was a classic Good Girl. I never knew what to make of her, but I can see now she was quite unhappy. Eventually she and my Uncle Windy divorced. That was tonight's memory thread; where do these come from?
And for tonight's poem (the rhythm, the sound, the beautiful simplicity; where did it come from?) we return to Louis Simpson:

As Birds Are Fitted to the Boughs

As birds are fitted to the boughs
That blossom on the tree
And whisper when the south wind blows---
So was my love to me.

And still she blossoms in my mind
And whispers softly, though
The clouds are fitted to the wind,
The wind is to the snow.

From The Collected Poems of Louis Simpson, Paragon House, NY, 1988, page 48. (Reprinted from his 1955 book: Good News of Death and Other Poems.)

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