Archive for May, 2011

#2 Pig’s Ear

Today was Sunday, a perfect afternoon to have a dinner party.  Everyone who came brought an item of food:  dessert, green salad, pasta salad and fruit.  We provided the soup.  It was a nasty, cold May day, and beef barley  was a good choice for all, except for OJ, our pug.  He dined on pig’s ear that  one of our guests  had brought him.   ” Ug!” I thought as I unwrapped the plastic casing that held the brown-flecked ear.  I asked, “is it real?”  Everyone was focused on the food, and no one answered, so I thought, “No, it can’t be real.”

OJ took the ear and went into his bedroom.  Yes, he has his own room in the vintage Federal home on the river.  There is a door that leads to the enclosed  deck that overlooks several gardens.  Since the door was open, he chose to chew his ear there.  When the guests left three hours later, he was still in the same inert position.  Except for the chewing, he was lying perfectly still on his belly with front paws holding the object now turned gross. Initially the shape of an ear, it had been stretched and pulled until it resembled a ribbon of taffy.

We offered the dog a cookie; he wouldn’t accept our bribe.  I said, “Hike OJ!  Let’s go the car.”  He stopped chewing for a moment, but then thought better and resumed a  recumbent stance.  We waited, and it was cold with the door open.  Nothing could separate him from the ear.  ”Unless,” I thought, “we opened the freezer door and he anticipated licking the ice cream bowl .”  My husband and I went into the kitchen, making all of the attendant noise, opening the door, slamming the frozen box of ice cream onto the counter, taking down the bowls.  It was at that moment that OJ trotted  into the kitchen; he had left the ear on the deck.

Acting swiftly as only seasoned team workers can, my husband grabbed the dog’s collar, and I ran to the deck.  Picking up the slimy ear, I gave it my best throwing arm beyond the stand of trees at the garden’s edge.  It soared over the stone wall and then, I envisioned, down the hill until it plopped into the river.

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Heaven #1

The clouds look as though layered:  three images deep of white and grey, some black edges.  The sky, its base, is translucent blue.   Distant rumblings and flashes of light hint of heaven coming down for a better look.

The garden soil is rich with earthworms, and I kneel in thyme, a soft bed for aged knees, pulling weeds.  Grass, the killer, must be unearthed with a sharp spade, the tip of my knife to terminate.  The air grows heavy and warm, and I remove my jacket, wipe sweat from my brow. 

A man watches from across the way.  He stands still, a long black coat covers black trousers and shoes; a wide-brimmed black hat shields his eyes.  I look up and cannot see his eyes.  There is an aura of light, as though he’s in a spotlight, around him.  I continue my work moving down the newly edged front of the garden. 

As I look up, my thoughts take me to the heaven I see in the parting of the clouds.  I imagine that the man is in front of me, his hand extended.  I take it and together we soar far from the earth into the gardens of heaven.  There are mansions and houses of  humble origins.  I choose the one by the river, a  filigree gate opening as I walk towards it.  The house is charming, compact and vintage, I believe.  The man leaves me, and I explore the rooms:  brick, floor-to-ceiling fireplaces in each of the rooms, random-width wood floors, tiny second-floor bedrooms with window seats that overlook the river.  I lay down and pull up the covers, lulled by the sounds of water hitting rocks. 

I awake with a start.  Rain has begun to fall and the distant rumbling of thunder is above me.  I leave my jacket, my hoe and knife and run for cover.  Heaven will not collect me today.

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Here in the Northwest Hills of spectacular Connecticut, we are experiencing a splendid week of rain. 

The greenery is prolific, and the sounds of the Bantam River and our little waterfall to the side of our home bring soothing sounds that placate our needs to become part of the landscape.  A croaking frog on the rocks of a  pool of coy fish add to the delight. 

I am happy to be part of the 100 day challenge.  S.

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