Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Poem for Wednesday

Gardening in Cardoso
By Michael Longley

Wildflowers become weeds
In this small triangular
Garfagnana garden
Where I uproot herb robert,
Spurge, wall-devouring
Valerian, garlicky
Ramsons, dead nettles.
What about oregano
No higher than dogs' piss,
And pennywort protecting
The lizard's hideaway?
I cut back the wild fig tree,
Its roots under the casa
Squeezing our water pipes,
Dozy snails its only fruit.
From acacia—beeless,
Unrelieved—a sexual
Heaviness marries me
And five old women—last
In the village to chant
The Whitsun rosary next
Door at San Rocco's shrine.
I leave them shepherd's purse's
Seedpods—little hearts—
Spoon-shaped petals on spikes.


From this week's New Yorker.

It was not a terribly eventful Tuesday. The main event for me was my annual mammogram -- it's National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, ladies, go get screened if you're late! I have never found mammograms all that uncomfortable, so the main stress for me is simply having breast cancer in the family and Jewish genes which automatically mean I fall into a higher-risk category. I never want to go anywhere right before a mammogram because of the no-deodorant rule, and afterward I want to go right home and shower and put deodorant on...hey, I am perfectly happy to go out with no earrings, no bra, even on occasion no shoes, but take my antiperspirant away and I feel exposed and icky! So there went my morning and early afternoon, bookended by loads of laundry and a long walk because the weather was simply too gorgeous not to enjoy.

Adam wanted me to track down an eclectic list of songs for him for his MP3 player in the afternoon -- some of which (Weird Al's horoscope song) apparently won't even be released until next week, some of which (some song by DJ Splash) apparently only exist on YouTube videos -- so that took a while. After dinner (low-sodium pumpkin sloppy joes, which were fabulous) I put on Due South to watch while folding laundry and folded very slowly so we could make it through both "A Likely Story" and "Odds," both of which I enjoyed, though I preferred the former...I like the show's self-awareness this last season, the fact that they know enough to try to defuse "all Italians have Mob connections" stereotypes before launching into yet another storyline about Italians with Mob connections, the fact that both Fraser and Kowalski's completely screwed up attitudes toward and relationships with women are discussed. Then we watched this week's Sanctuary since we forgot about it Friday night and I really enjoy the actors no matter what sci-fi flaws the show may have.

The Alabama Memorial at Gettysburg National Battlefield.

The Tammany Regiment, 42nd New York Infantry. The Tammany Society (which later became the Democratic Party's Tammany Hall) was named for Native American leader Tamanend.

The 11th Mississippi Infantry Regiment Monument.

The Pennsylvania State Monument.

The Louisiana Memorial.

A statue of General Warren on Little Round Top from the spot where he looked out to find that General Sickles' Third Corps had moved, leaving the high ground undefended until Warren sent for reinforcements.

A Pennsylvania Reserve Infantry memorial that I liked because it looks like a henge.

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