Sometimes I can’t remember whether something in my notes is original or cribbed from somewhere. For example, did I write this? or was it possibly Lorine Niedecker?
Changed two words.
What I call
a morning’s work.
It’s very like some of her short work:
Remember my little granite pail?
The handle of it was blue.
Think what’s got away in my life—
Was enough to carry me thru.
* * *
screwed to the wall
over a hole
so the cold
can’t mouse in
Both those are hers, and I can’t remember for the life of me whether that three-line stanza is mine or hers. Someone might know…
In any case, I thought of it, because my day’s work today was to come up with the phrase “the darning needle of dread,” which came out of reading Robert Kroetsch. His mother called dragon flies darning needles. I liked that idea, and so it goes. Though I’m not too crazy about his prose so far. A little too Hemingway-wannabe? a little too peppered with self-consciously quotable phrases? I’m not sure just what I am finding off-putting. I haven’t gotten to the poetry yet. But I do like Lorine Niedecker! An underrated poet, I think. She lived into her late sixties, but I couldn’t find a good later photo. She wasn’t as secluded and little known as Emily Dickinson, but you don’t get too famous if you live a quiet life in the wetlands of Wisconsin.
Foggy Berkeley summer mornings abet the lazy web discovery process. What a treasure the internet is. How delicious that the military invented it, didn’t really know what to do with it, and gave it to us.
Here is a short poem I found on Samizdat Blog this morning by Robert Kroetsch:
A lemon is almost round.
Some lemons are almost round.
A lemon is not round.
So much for that.
This led me to search for his work at UC Library and reserve several items for pickup Monday. His date of death (June 21, 2011), still an open dash in the library catalog, is already updated on Wikipedia!
For those of you who cut recipes from the newspaper and actually cook them, here’s a winner from Wednesday’s NY Times that I made to use the plethora of peas bursting from the garden. I used a small Thai chili and three kinds of peas (snap, snow, and English) as that’s what I had, but otherwise followed the recipe almost exactly. Couldn’t resist adding a squeeze of lemon at the end. It was cut and on the counter…
And for those within shopping distance of Berkeley Bowl, you can get fresh turmeric, black mustard seeds, and even Kaffir lime leaves there.