4.26.2008



There's something so splendid about a quiet house behind me & oak moth larvae swinging through the breeze, their silken threads shimmering in the sunlight. They are interesting additions to the neighborhood, part paratrooper, part acrobat. I like to think of them out there, living streamers, festooning the air like God's throwing a birthday party or is advertising a used car sale in my driveway. Their threads cover everything-I open the front door and suddenly it's Miss Havesham's garden-roses, clematis, watering cans, G's sand buckets & compost bins are all covered with a network of glistening strands. Not unwelcome, exactly. I always assume them to be gathering in the oak limbs above, rapacious, eyeing the new growth below; ready to fling themselves towards earth's green & succulent feast. But each year, the damage is minimal, and I lose more plant material to slugs coming from the ground, than pests from the sky. From our vantage on the porch the sunlight through the oak's branches coupled with the green waterfall of redwood branch & trunk provide many backdrops of tea and talk in our green-painted, helplessly battered & scavenged wood chairs. Each year there is a natural progression outside, and the garden becomes an extra room in which to live: on one's back in the grass, spreading fingers through soil, reading lazily & squinting upwards.


Tonight's Soundtrack: 'Meditation on Commemorative Transfiguration and Communion at Magruder Park' by Sufjan Stevens.


Tonight's reading: picked up last night at Logos ($3.50, not bad):'The Path Through the Trees' by Christopher Milne. (That's right-Christopher Robin Milne.)

It's interesting so far, he's talking about when he was 19, going off to fight in the second world war. Both his father and himself were passionate pacifists, until WW2....I was very interested to hear that A.A. Milne's reasons for renouncing pacifism were "that Hitler was different; different than anything he had ever imagined possible; that, terrible though war was, peace under Hitler would have been even more terrible."
I've been reading about the Christian opposition to the Nazis from within Germany. Pretty much the only organized resistance from within Germany came from Christians, the Confessing Church. I don't know yet what to do with this, I am definitely still ruminating (chew chew). I end with another quote from Milne:

"Indeed I am doubtful if pacifism vs. militarism, either in general or in any particular instance, is a proper subject for argument-anymore than one can argue about love. War and love: they have much in common. You can theorize about them, but until you have experienced them you cannot know them, for the emotions they engender are as complicated and as conflicting, as noble and as ignoble, as any that life has to offer."

Worms, War & Winnie the Pooh. You never know what a new post will bring.

2 comments:

Esther Montgomery said...

I tried to come to this posting through Blotanical so I could put a 'Pick' on it. (Failed.)

It might have been a way to show how much I appreciated it - even though I have nothing to say.

Esther

rosa said...

aww! thank you!! I don't think I've ever had a post "Picked". The thought was very nice! It's so muggy and hot here today, as well as overcast, it reminded me of London in the summer, or Bath.

Read Your Way Through the Garden: Choice Tomes From Garden Literature

  • A Book of Salvias by Betsy Clebsch
  • Botany for Gardeners by Brian Capon
  • Making Bentwood Trellises by Jim Long
  • RHS Encyclopedia of Plants & Flowers
  • Rose Primer: An Organic Approach to Rose Selection & Care by Orin Martin
  • Start With the Soil by Grace Gershuny
  • Sunset Western Garden Book
  • Sunset Western Landscaping Book
  • The Book of Garden Secrets by Patent & Bilderback
  • The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Botany
  • the Gardener's Table: A Guide to Natural Vegetable Growing and Cooking by Richard Merrill & Joe Ortiz
  • The Gardener's Year by Karel Capek
  • The Hutchinson Dictionary of Plant Names: Common & Botanical
  • We Made A Garden by Margaret Fish

lotsa latin: rosa's botanical & etymological ruminations

  • vespertinus: flowers in the evening
  • vernalis:spring
  • veni vidi nates calcalvi: we came, we saw, we kicked butt. This was printed on a T shirt I bought at Abbot's Thrift many years ago. It encircled the NEA symbol. I wish I knew why.
  • superciliaris: shaped like an eyebrow ex: sturnella superciliaris, the White-browed Blackbird
  • rosa-sinensis: species of Hibiscus: Hibiscus rosa-sinensis. Lit. Rosa of China, so named by British plant hunters.
  • placentiformis: shaped like a cake ex: discocactus placentiformis
  • nudiflorus: flowers before leaves show ex: flowering quince, magnolia
  • nivalis: growing in or near snow ex: galanthus nivalis (common snowdrop)
  • muralis: growing on walls
  • mirabilis: marvellous, wonderful
  • formosa: beautiful ex: dicentra formosa, a.k.a.western bleeding heart/dutchman's breeches/lady in a bath
  • carpe vitam: get a life
  • Carolus Linnaeus: Latinized name of Carl von Linne (1707-1778), Swedish naturalist considered the father of plant taxonomy. Whatta guy.