Saturday, December 28, 2013

Poem for Saturday, Canal Locks, Reign of Fire

My Bright Aluminum Tumblers
By Michael Ryan

Who are you
long legged
woman in my dream
kissing me open mouthed
pressing me for ice
we fetch together naked
from the freezer
with bright aluminum tumblers
red deep blue purple
icy water
so cold it hurts
lips and teeth and membrane
lacy lattices of ice
shattering on our tongues
who are you
how could I have forgotten
my bright aluminum tumblers
I had to hold with both hands
they couldn't be broken
even if I dropped them
that's how little I was


"Aluminum tumblers--neon-bright, slippery, colder than the liquid inside them--were my first drinking glasses after sippy cups," Ryan told "Why did they surface fifty-something years later in this erotic dream? The poem doesn't know, and neither do I."

It was warmer on Friday and extremely sunny. We had a relatively quiet morning that involved a Reddit vs Tumblr debate and may have involved eating chocolate-covered toffee. Then we drove down River Road first to Riley's Lock, then to Violette's Lock, where in both places we walked under the trees along the somewhat muddy canal towpath and saw the sun gleaming on the Potomac. It must have been too cold for turtles, but we also saw herons, ducks, and lots of other birds at both parks:

A great blue heron at Violette's Lock.

One of the gates that let the canal be filled from the Potomac River is here.

We saw ducks in the canal...

...and white oaks growing alongside it.

We saw a heron at Riley's Lock too, though across the muddy canal basin...

...and these diving birds which may or may not be grebes in the river.

There were a whole bunch of mallards in the canal, too.

And the sunlight on the Potomac was dazzling.

After a stop at a food store, we came home, watched Maryland lose the Military Bowl, and went to dinner at my parents' where my mother made chocolate roll for dessert. We were going to watch the Nikita series finale but realized we really needed to catch up on last week's episode first, so we watched Reign of Fire, which holds up pretty well, even the special effects -- the cast is much better than the script, but Bale, Butler, McConaughey, and Scorupco give their all, and it's fun to see Siddig, Krige, and Gleeson.

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