Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Possibilities, like buds

More yesterday from the lavender rose; the other one with the sweet scent seems to be the one we lost, and we have forgotten the name of this one, too. One always wants a record, when it is too late to begin keeping one. I remember reading about keeping a garden journal early on; I sort of planned to do so, there are lists here and there inside the back covers of gardening books. I know a fellow, DM, who has kept a journal of the books he has read for many, many years, He showed it to me once, and I was alive with jealously. The other day I found the only one I ever started--it is in a blank book with a Gnome on the cover, a Gnomebook. Remeember when those gnomes were ALL THE RAGE?? Must have been the 1980s. I didn't even keep it for even a year. And with this Kindle and the Amazon used books thing, I start many more books than I finish these days. One more whine and then the poem. Today I read the book Urban Sketching by Thomas Thorspecken, Barrons, 2014. He has been sketching EVERY DAY FOR FIVE YEARS and posting the sketches on his blog. These sketches take him one to two hours EVERY DAY! And I was so proud of my one-year-plus daily blog!! The other day Mary Ruefle was recommended to me and her book came yesterday. So tonight, here she is with a wild rose, instead of a tame hybrid tea, as in the picture.

The Wild Rose Bush

Undone chore: pruning the wild rose bush. If
I had pruned the wild rose bush today, my life
could continue walking on new stilts, I would have
a better view of the future and be able to go further
than I can imagine at this moment. But the bush
has been pruned many times already, it has lived through
sixty years of childhood, it has felt its hips swell
and offered their red pips to the birds, it has watched
the bee pumping the foxglove, swelling her cups
with astonishing quickness, and heard the enormous rose
applauding, it has died of embarrassment and never been able
to so a thing about it, the way I can't bring myself to do
a simple chore like pruning, which is good for the world,
which pulls the world back from the brink of disaster,
which helps it forget its recent grief and not so recent grief
and ancient grief. You can hardly call me human, 
though I own a pair of clippers. I have never suffered
and I have never known a hero. My father never said or did
anything of interest. He never said "If you are angry
pour everything you have ever eaten into the sea,
let the sea foam at the mouth, keep your own lips clean."
He never said that. He just sat in a comfortable chair
and let the news slip out of his hands and onto the floor.
He could not compete with it. He didn't even try. He seemed
to reach a point where he realized the news would go on 
without him, long after his little nap, and later his death.
When he reached that point his head lolled to one side,
the way a rose will if left unwatered.
Sometimes I say he was saved.

from Mary Ruefle, Selected Poems, 
Wave Books, 2010, pp. 60-61.

Follow the play of the mind (with its surprising shifrts) through this poem. Although at one point you feel she is being unfair to her dad, it turns out OK and anyway, he has gone beyond caring. Take a look at some chore and see if you can let your mind play silly games, See what youcan come up with. I think my library used to have a children's book called Write Me A Poem, Baby! so that's what we ought to do tomorrow.Tonight it is really too late to get started.

We took the remaining dog with us on the Daily Walk today, It wasn't that long -- (and we didn't meet any other dogs) just around a long block, but she licked the bottoms of her feet for a long time after we got home. Not used to sidewalks, I guess. She has been sleeping ever since we got back.

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