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Friday, April 25, 2014

So Much, Sometimes, for Planning

South Fox Island from Jelinek Road near Kovarik Road
I'm starting with yet another ice-on-Lake-Michigan picture, just because it's a shot I especially like. I'd planned to put up a bit of original fiction today but didn't plan well enough. (Yes, that's it -- not that planning failed but that not enough of it was done.) I'm sure the story is somewhere, undoubtedly on a CD in a stack at home. It's actually an chapter of a YA novel I never finished, a chapter I think won't need much editing to make a decent short story; for today, however, I'll have to make do with odds and ends for a blog post. 

(But why, when the phrase "make do" comes to my mind, are my fingers tempted to type "make due" instead? Seems an ill omen with a spelling bee coming up in nine days.)

It was too cold for the peeper chorus in my favorite frog pond, but there was lots of bird life. The mallards had gone on down the road, where they found a temporary pond in a small cornfield, but plenty of other birds were busy in the frog pond.

I'll ask my birder friends to confirm and narrow my tentative identifications of the following:


Ring-billed gull?


Farther along our back-roads route to Northport, timber cutters had been at work.

Who doesn't love the smell of fresh-cut wood? And yet, it made me think once again of a W. S. Merwin title I have in stock at Dog Ears. See what I mean? It's a lovely book, too.

And now, here is some of the excitement in the shop today. First, just in time for the last week of National Poetry Month, a fortuitous discovery: a few more signed copies of Fleda Brown's lovely book of poems, No Need of Sympathy. Yea! And then Dan, the UPS man, brought a book order, and there was the irresistible A Farm Dies Once a Year: A Memoir, by Arlo Crawford, and the delicious-looking Low and Slow: The Art and Technique of Braising, BBQ, and Slow Roasting, from the Culinary Institute of America and Robert Briggs. Beautiful, beautiful books!

"Farm to table" is more than a marketing phrase. Nurture and cultivate are words that apply to the soil, the palate, and the mind. And it's all here, on my little treasure island, just up Waukazoo Street from the -- sigh! -- big construction site. I sigh because, as I've already mentioned today to a couple people, all the new building in town is exciting, true, but so was the past winter, with all its ice and snow, and now I'm ready for both construction and winter to be over, for streets to be cleaned, for trees to blossom, even for grass to grow. Aren't you?

A week ago in the woods, at last....


Kathy said...

I love the smell of fresh-cut wood. Ice in late April--not as much. Hoping you are well, Pamela!

P. J. Grath said...

We still have some ice out in the Manitou Passage, and north Lake Leelanau was ice-covered yesterday (Monday, 4/28). Lots of ice in Grand Traverse Bay out by Cherry Home on Saturday evening -- photographs will be posted when I find time -- but down by Traverse City is open water.

Today? Rain! The kite winds we should have had in March were active yesterday, and now as we're almost into May we're getting April showers....

Quite well, however, thank you!