Sunday, July 31, 2011

Poem for Sunday and Bohrer Park Animals

From 'The Vision of Sir Launfal'
By James Russell Lowell

And what is so rare as a day in June?
     Then, if ever, come perfect days;
Then Heaven tries the earth if it be in tune,
     And over it softly her warm ear lays:
Whether we look, or whether we listen,
We hear life murmur, or see it glisten;
Every clod feels a stir of might,
     An instinct within it that reaches and towers,
And, groping blindly above it for light,
     Climbs to a soul in grass and flowers;
The flush of life may well be seen
     Thrilling back over hills and valleys;
The cowslip startles in meadows green,
     The buttercup catches the sun in its chalice,
And there's never a leaf nor a blade too mean
     To be some happy creature's palace;
The little bird sits at his door in the sun,
     Atilt like a blossom among the leaves,
And lets his illumined being o'errun
     With the deluge of summer it receives;
His mate feels the eggs beneath her wings,
And the heart in her dumb breast flutters and sings;
He sings to the wide world, and she to her nest,—
In the nice ear of Nature which song is the best?

Now is the high-tide of the year,
     And whatever of life hath ebbed away
Comes flooding back with a ripply cheer,
     Into every bare inlet and creek and bay;
Now the heart is so full that a drop over-fills it,
We are happy now because God wills it;
No matter how barren the past may have been,
'Tis enough for us now that the leaves are green;
We sit in the warm shade and feel right well
How the sap creeps up and the blossoms swell;
We may shut our eyes, but we cannot help knowing
That skies are clear and grass is growing;
The breeze comes whispering in our ear,
That dandelions are blossoming near,
     That maize has sprouted, that streams are flowing,
That the river is bluer than the sky,
That the robin is plastering his house hard by;
And if the breeze kept the good news back,
For other couriers we should not lack;
     We could guess it all by yon heifer's lowing,—
And hark! how clear bold chanticleer,
Warmed with the new wine of the year,
     Tells all in his lusty crowing!


The TV meteorologist says that we have had 23 straight days at 90 degrees or above in the DC area, and that is not supposed to change in the next five days. So it's a good thing I will be at the beach before it ends. As a result, we spent most of the day indoors. We had a quiet morning during which I reposted to LiveJournal all the files I'd been saving in Google Docs until LJ was back up and running, though I'm still having issues with comms. After lunch and before we had to drop Adam off at his final health class for the summer -- where he had a final exam that he declared boring, while the rest of us stopped for Slurpees -- we went to Gaithersburg's Bohrer Park and walked around the little wetlands and pond. There were turtles and geese and birds, and a bunny who hopped away too quickly for photos:

We went to the food store and CVS to get necessities for our trip (bread, cheese, sunblock, bug spray) and tried to avoid hearing about the Orioles' embarrassment and humiliation against the Yankees (at least the Nats beat the Mets). After dinner I went looking to see what was disappearing from On Demand at the end of July and discovered that it was my last chance to watch Remember Me, so I put it on. It's very depressing -- I was spoiled in part for the ending, but really I found it pretty bleak overall, there are not many movies that make me so glad I've never lived in New York. Pattinson's not bad -- I can see why they cast him, it's like an AU Twilight, his love interest is even the daughter of a policeman who doesn't understand her -- and de Ravin's okay, but I have no idea exactly what Pierce Brosnan is doing in the film. Did it occur to the director that casting people with authentic New York accents might be a better choice?

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