I am either thirty paces ahead or years in the past.
Today I took a stroll down memory lane thanks to a kind letter from one hell of a woman in my life. You know who you are, you struck a pretty chord! I have been having strong visual memories of when I was a small girl, 8 or 9, drawing at the table while my pops drank his morning coffee black and the rest of the house slept; sitting on a bowed board hauled across a country floor, barefoot, those hardened feet dragging against the current of Tobacco Creek, the stream I was so proud of. Proud of a creek, that sums my childhood.
Such contentedness then, a simple picnic for one (chewed up soda crackers that I tried to feed Erin but she would have none of it), a tightrope walk across the dam in my backyard, my only audience the cranky river chugging along and the catfish on the high side watching as I whipped across, mushroom cut flying. I miss the days of yon.
Oh Megan, let bygones be bygone.
And today? Le Poulet made me laugh aloud as he somehow managed to free himself from the stroller and climb out to lick the wet sidewalk as I sat on the front step eating a pear. Alright darling, one lick is all you get. Mud will always taste like mud. His dirty face was incredible, where was my camera? At home. Spring is coming, the wait is always worth it. Leo reaffirmed my faith in the season today with his own mute enthusiasm. Maybe I should get down and give the sidewalk a good licking. Snap me out of this 'thang.
Shake loose the Doom Cloak with a good mouthful of earth.
I guess I am a bit of a spoilsport these days knowing that with Spring comes the spring plant, and oh how I long to be on that bus. Not the Dryden bus of course, as my Northern Ontario days are over. But a bus heading to the mountains sounds about right. I want to plant with Liza's food in mind, wash my face and hands up to the wrists, and eat off the most beautiful blue plate. Liza, you will do wonderfully as a planting cook!
Planting, as horrendous as it can be, is good for me. It centers, calms and mediates. I long for the air on the Block, wind whipping, secret headphones on a head bowed, flying through the furrows like a little woman possessed. Holding hands with the earth, a face tilted to the first real warmth of the season, shedding clothes like snakeskin. Ahhhh, sweet land. I smell it in the air sometimes (with luck) while out walking with my friend Leonard. I catch it in whiffs of woodsmoke, of turned soil, wet branches, light rain.
My planter's livelihood came rushing back yesterday as Vincent and I pushed Leo through slush swamps on St. Urbain, both of us forgetting to push the carriage at the heigh of our bush talk, hands flying. They need a cook. I am a cook. But stay I will, as Montreal is my summer home. I have visions of building up a utilitarian Mom Bike (yes, you heard me). Gears, brakes, pizza rack, baby carrier. Leo and I are going to explore this town, helmeted, the summer sun on our backs.
Surely there is more than one way to brown one's forearms.
Sister Spring, you are UP.