Monday, September 3, 2012

Dappled Shade

 

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The last few days have been hot and windy and dry, and it’s so hard to be indoors.  Yesterday I spread a quilt in the dappled shade and read an entire book. I tried (in vain) to make a chair out of two pillows and a tree.  My hair grew wild in the wind, blowing into my eyes and the pages of the book flapped and fluttered, and at one point, the cover tore off and sailed into the bushes. Leaves and half-ripe crabapples tumbled down onto my head.  My dress lashed against my legs.  There’s been some knitting, but mostly not.  There’ve been blackberries at $1.00 a pint, and millions of tomatoes, and a bit of sewing (more later!) and laundry.  So much of that.  When it’s hot and windy, I get to washing things.  Sheets on the clothesline whip and snap like sails, and everything is dry in about four minutes.  

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There is a rustling grayness to the garden now, a spent quality.  Exhaustion.  Readiness.   See the spider?  The wind broke his web and he has (yiiiiikes!) vanished again.  I’m giving those tomatoes up.  Forget it.  Not worth it.  Goodness only knows what all could be lurking in there.  One day awhile ago, I reached down into the deep thicket that is the center of this tomato patch, and suddenly felt something clinging to my finger.  It was a cicada the size of a pony, just clutching my finger like a baby, its skinny legs curled like a tendril.  It was unexpected, this clinging, and I screamed.  Cicadas look prehistoric, probably because they are.  He jumped calmly onto a leaf, looking bored, and I got my wits about myself long enough to peer at him.  His eyes looked like marbles.