Margaret, are you grieving Over Goldengrove unleaving? Leaves, like the things of man, you With your fresh thoughts care for, can you? Ah! as the heart grows older It will come to such sights colder By and by, nor spare a sigh Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie; And yet you wíll weep and know why. Now no matter, child, the name: Sorrow’s springs are the same. Nor mouth had, nor mind, expressed What heart heard of, ghost guessed It is the blight man was born for, It is Margaret you mourn for.
Construction on the 16-story apartment building has come to a halt. An occasional car passes by, and a few people are out walking their dogs, but nobody is running downhill to catch the commuter train to New York City. Nothing seems to be happening, yet this morning when I raised the shade, I witnessed a miracle in progress! Tiny leaves are making their appearance on the oak tree outside my window, and the tree is wearing a light green halo.
It reminded me of a poem Herb wrote that will appear in a forthcoming volume of poetry—Poems and Prayers—now in the hands of the book designer.
How strange that we applaud a fake
as he unspools a ribbon from his ear
or pulls a rabbit from his hat
But yawn next morning when we wake
and see a universe appear
from nothing, just like that!
I hadn’t intended to be back at the blog so soon, but wanted to share this thought. The certainty of the return of spring and the summer to come is surely a comfort in what, to say the least, is a most uncertain time.
I’m working on understanding the Victorian woman, trying to get inside her head. More on this subject to come.
About the same time as I was writing my last post on the importance of conversation, Herb was working on a post of the same subject for his blog. We didn’t plan it that way. That sort of thing happens when you’ve been married a long time. Here, from his blog, paintingsandpoems.home.blog:
Usually it happens later in November. But it happened last night on the street where we live. The two ginkgo trees outside the window decided “that’s it! we’re out of here!” and dropped all their leaves.
Ginkgos do this. Unlike modern trees like the maples, oaks, and beeches, which put on a dazzling show of color and then turn brown and gradually drop their leaves, the gingko opts for a dramatic all-at-once exit. No one knows why they do it this way. They say it somehow has to do with its antiquity and the way it has evolved since before the days of the dinosaurs.
The gingko is a tough tree, able to withstand a lot of abuse, which is why you find so many of them on New York City streets. And when it’s time to go, they do it with authority and get the hell off stage. And you know then that winter is really around the corner. Time to get out the humidifiers and the Verilux sun lamp.
Monday was one of those dismal, dark days with periodic rain and no sunshine. As I gazed out the window, here is what I saw—and thought:
A pink umbrella And a yellow taxicab. Things aren’t all gray.
Hey! That’s pretty poetic. Actuallly, It sounds like a haiku. That ancient Japanese verse form doesn’t employ rhyme and meter like English poetry but specifies three lines, a total of 17 syllables, distributed so: 5-7-5.
I counted the syllables. Only 16 syllables, so I fixed it. And there you have it! I’ll call it
A Rainy Day
A pink umbrella And a yellow taxicab. Things are not all gray.