Search This Blog

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Bright Spring Yellows

Several days without postings. There was the trip, first, and then a computer hardware problem--home now and solved, respectively. Here then are some seasonal images to make up for the long silence.

When I left Leelanau County for Kalamazoo, forsythia was in full swing Up North, and I found it still going strong on my return. The marsh marigolds (cowslips) had just begun and are now in their glory. What can I say of the poor little goldfinch in the trowel? It flew into one of our porch windows, nevermore to fly, but even in death it was stunning in its perfection. Dandelions are also bright yellow and abundant: David said they quite surprised Sarah the first morning she saw them. The first dandelions of her life!

As for books, I finished both CLARA CALLAN, by Richard B. Wright, and Wole Soyinka’s AKE and have begun LIVING AT THE END OF TIME, by John Hansen Mitchell; THE LAST CHILD IN THE WOODS: SAVING OUR CHILDREN FROM NATURE-DEFICIT DISORDER (which starts off in such a promising tone that I can only guess it was the publisher who came up with the lame subtitle), by Richard Louv; and—for a little fiction--THE RAINS CAME, by Louis Bromfield. Generally speaking, I love Bromfield’s books on farming but not his novels. This novel, however, was the basis of one of my favorite old movies, “The Rains of Ranchipur,” and that makes it irresistible. Travel? Try Ontario, Nigeria, Massachusetts, my own backyard, and faraway India.

Coming soon: another Bruce Balas staff book review. It’s okay to “touch that dial,” but don’t forget to bookmark first.


Anonymous said...

What lovely photographs! I'm glad you're back online: I missed your posts and correspondence.

dmarks said...

Poor birdie. I saw a bluebird like this once. It is the only bluebird I have seen.

dmarks said...

Maiya: I saw Wabasha on your blog. Have you been to Book Cliffs?

P. J. Grath said...

It was good to be away, but now it's good to be back. Maiya, have you seen the recent Lake Pepin postings on dmarks' blog? Wishing everyone live bluebirds this glorious, sunny day!

Betty Carlson said...

That goldfinch photo is so touching and lovely -- it made me want to cry!

It's funny, I go beserk if a bird is in a building, but I feel so sad when I see a dead one. I guess I have a strange relationship with birds.

P. J. Grath said...

Louv does recognize that kids and parents going out 4-wheeling in the desert aren't going out into "Nature" but hurtling through it. I had some reservations about one of his quotations, someone reading about nature on the porch: when I was a kid, out on the front porch with my "nose in a book," my mother tried to get me outdoors. Wasn't my reading time a "mediated" experience? It's a big topic. Living in the country, with my bookstore in a very small town, I don't see the kids I know as being all that distant from nature, but I can imagine things are as Louv describes in cities and suburban malls. Does Nature need or want us? Probably not. That indifference is part of what appeals to me. I can accept indifference more easily than certain human motives. Not a cell phone owner or user, I was also frecognize my good fortune in growing up free from constraints now imposed on young people as a matter of course. Nostalgia? In part, I'm sure.

P. J. Grath said...

Betty, your relationship with birds is similar to that of my husband. If one gets in the woodshed or, God forbid, the porch, I have to "deal with it, and over the years I've become very calm and efficient at guiding birds toward open doors.

Mike, I realize I need to read your fully essay before giving any kind of adequate reply. A lot of problems with my computer in the last couple of weeks have kept my online time to a minimum, with many days of no access, but I do intend to read your essay and then to reply to your comment. Thanks for visiting Books in Northport.