Peevish Pen

Ruminations on reading, writing, rural living, retirement, aging—and sometimes cats. And maybe a border collie or other critters.

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Location: Rural Virginia, United States

I'm an elderly retired teacher who writes. Among my books are Ferradiddledumday (Appalachian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story), Stuck (middle grade paranormal novel), Patches on the Same Quilt (novel set in Franklin County, VA), Them That Go (an Appalachian novel), Miracle of the Concrete Jesus & Other Stories, and several Kindle ebooks.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Mudlicious Things in Bloom

We’ve had rain for three days. It’s been wonderful! The fields are green; the trees are budding. I haven’t seen so much green in a long time.

Or so much mud.

I’m reminded of phrases from “In Just-” by e.e. cummings: “In Just-spring when the world is mudlicious” and “when the world is puddle wonderful.” We have lots of puddles.

In the kennel, the dogs don’t mind the mud at all. Or the puddles.

Maggie in the mud.

Harley in the mud.

Emma rolling in the mud while Hubert stands by.

I’ve never seen so many blossoms on the cherry tree beside the kennel.

The profusion of cherry blossoms reminds me of A.E. Houseman’s poem:

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now

LOVELIEST of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

—A. E. Housman (1859–1936). A Shropshire Lad. 1896.

Houseman made it to threescore and thirteen. I hope he saw lots more cherry blossoms.

I’ve already passed threescore and two. While life expectancies are greater now than when Houseman lived, I know I have limited time—another score, maybe—“to look at things in bloom.”

Meanwhile, I’ll enjoy looking at these tulips in one of my flowerbeds:

And I’ll enjoy the mud, too.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have dedcided not to keep 'score'....after watching last nights program about the 86,000 americans 100 years and older!Think young, think spring..ever renewing life..every day is a blessing to me..and the pictures are great!!Maybe instead of side-stepping mud puddles, we should jump in as children and animals do!!

8:11 AM  

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