Saturday, July 29th, 2017

Finding North Hatley

Papa has to return to Shelburne to do some work on the house.

The rest of us take the electric bike down the bike path to North Hatley.

We find a tree to climb,

 

 

 

a pier to look about,

 

 

 

a wall to walk upon,

 

 

 

and Lac Memphremagog, where there is no place for swimming.

 

Friday, July 28th, 2017

Looking for a New Blue River

The Coaticook River is only a minute’s walk from our house.

 

 

 

Industrial town. Industrial river.

 

Monday, July 24th, 2017

Go.

 

The day we left, our sadness poured down from the heavens

poured down upon us as we left

the rain poured down

upon us.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday, July 16th, 2017

Laplatte

 

 

There will be a last time that we pass between these trees.

And there will be a last time that we walk among the flowers.

There will be a last time that we wade across this river

and wander uninhibited amongst the ferns for hours.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We miss you.

 

 

Saturday, July 15th, 2017

Trip after trip, trip after trip—

Because we cannot bring our houseplants to Canada, we bring them to Chloe’s house.

 

Sunday, July 9th, 2017

Cow Tales (New Village Farm)

 

“Moo?” quoth the cow.

 

 

 

“Moo,” said the other.

 

 

 

“Moo,” said Akiva, spinning from the tree.

 

 

 

and he tried to moo on the blowing-horn but knew not one end from the other.

 

 

 

“Moo is right,” said Iris. She helped him balance. Moo.

 

 

 

“Moo?” said Dan, and the swing creaked, “Moo.”

 

 

 

And “Moo” we said. And “Moo” we all said. And we tucked up our legs.

And we swang in speckles of mid-day sun as the cows sang “Moo” in the shade.

 

Friday, July 7th, 2017

Playing on the Lawn

We had such a good time at Clark Reservation yesterday, we went back again.

 

 

 

Then we went home.

Uncle Dan makes for a large horse, so Iris has to help Akiva up.

 

 

 

Plop! Up on top.

 

 

 

And they’re off!

 

 

 

Akiva checks to see if Uncle Dan is prickly. He says he plans on being hairy and prickly when he grows up.

 


 

 

Mom’s vision for her yard is to make a miniature replica of Clark Reservation on her quarter-acre plot in the suburbs.

 

 

 

Over the past 40 years, she’s transformed it from a slope of grass to a miniature wildlife preserve and national historic treasure.

 

 

 

The good thing about having a miniature wildlife preserve in one’s own back yard is that one does not have to go very far to visit it.

 

 

 

When she is not gardening, plastering, wiring, insulating, cooking, sewing, repairing machines, reading, or sleeping (the last of which she does very little of, as far as I can tell), Mom likes lounging on the lawn. She keeps a small amount of lawn just for lounging. If she did not like occasionally lounging on the lawn, I’m certain there would be something more interesting than grass growing in this spot.

 

 

 

Lounging in good company is much more fun than lounging alone.

 

 

 

This is what Mom looks like when she is happy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday, July 6th, 2017

On the Sixth of July

In the morning, we went to Clark Reservation. I love this place. Iris calls it “The Place With the Rocks.”

 

 

 

When I was not too much older than Iris, we went here with Pop.

He said to me, “Jessi, do you know how these rocks got all broken up like this?”

I thought about it for a while, trying to remember if anyone had told me. No one had.

 

 

 

 

“Well, at one time, it was all just one big rock,” said Pop,

directing my gaze across the broad expanse of fissured rock with a sweep of his arm,

“then your mother came by with a sledge hammer and broke it all up.”

I was impressed.

 

 

 *   *   *

 

 

Later in the day, we explored the gardens surrounding my mother’s house.

They are impressive, billowing over with blooms,

framed by stone patios and walls she built herself from rocks gathered at Clark Reservation.

Turns out, the reason she broke all those rocks up with her sledge hammer

was because she wanted to take a few pieces home.

But that’s not what these pictures are about.

These pictures are about Mom, in her gardens. They are also about photography.

Pop was a photographer.

Photography gives one the ability to capture and hold a quadrangle of light

without allowing in any distracting interference that the surroundings might provide—

 

 

 

leaving the viewer unaware that, just 30 degrees to the right, chaos abounds.

 

 

 

 *   *   *

 

In the vegetable garden, there are always extra vegetables. You might not hear about them, because usually the woodchucks and the rabbits get around to hearing about them first. But they’re extra, so it’s okay. Sometimes, we get to play with the extras. Usually it’s just things like onions. Bunnies don’t like to eat the onions because they don’t like to have bad breath. So they leave the onions alone.

 

 

 

Akiva uses them to make some onion soup.

 

 

 

On the far side of the fence, Mom (a.k.a. Grandma) gathers berries while eager mouths await.

 

 

 

As she waits, Iris finds some berries on her own side of the fence.

 

 

 

Photo-op with adorable children:

 

 

 

 

 

 *   *   *

 

We had a wonderful day.

 

 

Wednesday, July 5th, 2017

Baba Miller’s 100th Birthday (party date)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Actually, she was born yesterday. Apologies for being a lazy photographer. I took no photos of her.

Tuesday, July 4th, 2017

Independence Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Location: north side of Gramma’s house