Showing posts from April, 2010

Nerds just have more fun

This Sunday, the batch of dandelion wine that Emily and I started 2 weeks ago had finally finished fermenting. So to finish it up, we had to strain all the chunky fermenting bits out (raisins, lemon and orange slices) and then let it settle a bit and then strain it even further to separate as much of the cloudy yeast-silt from the golden liquid as possible. Finally, we bottled and sealed our herbal moonshine--but not without having a celebratory test sip of our golden wine. I was pleasantly surprised to find that I did not hate it. It is very, very sweet and definitely potent--more of a dessert wine, I guess. And just a few sips will do ya'. P.S. I've decided to name my beloved typewriter Hildegard , after the sassy Medieval saint of Bingen, Germany who was part composer, part herbalist, part early-feminist, and known to have said: "Woman may be made from man, but no man can be made without a woman." That was one cool lady.

Snug as a bug in a rug

This weekend's crafty project was to make a cozy cover for my beloved typewriter. You might be surprised to discover that fashionable typewriter covers aren't easy to find for sale and the ones I have found are mostly opaque white plastic. Yuck. Anyway, it's more fun to make things yourself sometimes. My friend Emma, web-searcher extraordinaire, found an example online of what I was aiming to make. This gave me a bit more confidence, especially seeing as how I didn't have a pattern to use and I had never attempted any three-dimensional sewing project before. So after shopping for fun fabrics--a medium blue denim and a pretty illustrated patterned cotton--I set straight to work: measuring up my typewriter and cutting corresponding sections of fabric. I'm quite happy with the end product. But now I think my typewriter is deserving of a name. Any ideas?

Weeding by moonshine

It certainly is dandelion season. And I recently stumbled across a fun-looking recipe for dandelion wine that I thought I could actually manage. I love these sorts of experiments! Making fantastic new things from something we already have and have prematurely designated as useless. The inspiration for the dandelion recipe search actually came from a poem fragment I had been developing on my typewriter. It involved a character who had gathered a lot of dandelion blossoms, but then I couldn't figure out what the hell she was going to do with them: Rabbit (version 2) She fetches a few shaggy dandelions then off with their heads-- a collection of sallow plumes, skeletal stems tossed back to the yard. Blooms gather in her apron like buttons, blunt and beggarly. Common and curious as coins. So, when Emily came over for tea on Sunday, we collected a quart of dandelions from the yard on Goose Hill--blossoms only, there is no need of bitter greenery and roots in this wine recipe. I

National Poetry Month

Last April , I was surprised to find myself at a loss as to who my favorite poet was (is?). Over the past year, I believe, I've finally come to a conclusion. Although there are many poets who I adore fiercely (Anne Sexton, J. Allyn Rosser, Louise Erdrich, Sarah Lindsay, Sarah Hannah, Louise Gl├╝ck, etcetera etcetera), the one I love above all is Elizabeth Bishop. I can't say exactly why. There are so many things about her life and her work and her person that I admire. But as a poet, she is vivid in her description and images, yet always a bit subdued in tone; simple, but a bit complicated beneath the skin; precise and not always beautiful. This last might be her finest poetic attribute, in my opinion, that she focuses on things that aren't necessarily pretty and she doesn't romanticize them until they become so (in the traditional sense of beauty, that is). A celebration of plainness. My two favorite poems of hers are actually very similar to each other: "T