Sunday, April 18, 2010

Poem for Sunday and Countryside Tour

Now This
By Carlos Franqui

I discover my photographic death.
Do I exist?
I am a little black,
I am a little white,
I am a little shit,
On Fidel's vest.


Cuban writer and political activist Franqui wrote the poem above after learning that his image had been doctored out of photos with Fidel Castro because he had become an outspoken critic of Castro, though he had joined Castro's rebellion against Batista. Franqui died on Thursday in Puerto Rico at age 89.

After a quiet morning while Adam was working at Hebrew school and I was doing thrilling things like putting away laundry and reorganizing a closet, we went with my parents in the afternoon on the Countryside Artisans spring tour. We went first to Star Gazing Farm, which was having a shearing day, which was fun for us though apparently stressful for the sheep! The farm is a sanctuary for neglected and abused farm animals and has several goats, cows, a pig, a donkey, and a baby llama who seems to think he's one of the horses, plus chickens, including eight chicks less than a week old. The wool of the sheep being shorn was collected to be sold, plus there were demonstrations of spinning and weaving, but we spent most of our time there watching the tiny chicks sneaking under the wire of their pen and being clucked back in by their mother.

From there we went to Dancing Leaf Farm, which has a flock of sheep and the most beautiful yarn I've ever seen, and nearby Sugarloaf Studio, where Susan Due Pearcy had her Stonehenge prints for sale on inexpensive cards -- if I had the money I'd buy a set of the lithographs. We ended at Art of Fire, where we watched two of the artisans create a decorated tumbler from a blob of molten glass and talked for a bit with Foster Holcombe, who does glassblowing demonstrations at the Maryland Renaissance Festival. All of the artisans were serving cookies and drinks, so the kids ate a lot of snacks. Then Adam went to a birthday party at his favorite Indian restaurant, and the rest of us went to my parents' for pizza. In the evening we watched both "The Eleventh Hour" and "The Ultimate Guide" on BBC America; we'd seen the former before but we wanted to make sure Comcast registered that we were tuned in so they'll keep BBC America in the lineup, and the Doctor Who history was fun though I still have some reservations about Moffat and Smith.

A hen and her chicks at Star Gazing Farm...

...which had an open house today in honor of spring shearing season.

Adam pets Dee Dee, the miniature Sicilian donkey adopted from a horse rescue farm to be a guardian for the sheep and goats.

The farm's baby llama seems to believe that he is one of the horses.

Dancing Leaf farm has sheep as well. They provided the wool that produced these skeins of yarn...

...and some of the gorgeous work inside as well.

Here is one of Art of Fire's cats, who wander freely among the display cases and glassblowing equipment.

This is the decorated glass tumbler they created while we watched. Once it was removed from the metal it was placed immediately in the annealing oven.

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