(Warning:graphic rodent pictures!!!)
I was snoozing on the couch, as you do, on a Sunday afternoon, when I heard a rumbling tumbling noise. From the kitchen. Specifically from the pantry. It was a very unusual noise so I got up to investigate. As I opened the door the stack of egg cartons I had on the top shelve came spilling out of the door. That’s weird. Sometimes things tumble if it’s really windy or I have something in the washer (I live in a mobile home and the shakes are something I’ve learned to live with!!). But it was dead calm and I had nothing in the wash. I looked closer…OMG!!! There’s mouse poop on the top egg carton. I started pulling things off the top shelf…mouse poop everywhere!! Long story short–major pantry purge and clean. I don’t know how long the mouse was in the house but from the evidence he left behind, it wasn’t long. It’s always nice to have a clean pantry. I dug around in one of the other cupboards and found some super snappy mouse traps. One I baited with peanut butter and one with part of a fruit roll up. He really liked the fruit roll up.And so did his buddy two days later. And now, a couple weeks later, the traps are still set but empty.
One year I had a real mouse invasion. I remember vividly how I would catch flashes of movement in the corner of my eye and sure enough, it was a mouse. Or rather mice. I remember sitting with a cat in my lap, watching in astonishment as a mouse ran along the wall under the tv!! I think I caught upwards of a dozen that year. But I found the hole where they were getting in and plugged it with steel wool. And at night, I can hear them sometimes, inside the rim of my bathtub!! Sorta creepy!! The joys of living in the country.
The mice were here first!!
In general, I don’t like poetry. Especially modern free flow verse. Give me a good rhyme and a rhythm and I can read/enjoy/remember a poem. Yes, there are a few poems that I remember. I mean, who doesn’t? The Cremation of Sam McGee for example. Or really anything by Robert Service. The Robert Frost poem whose name I can never remember (which actually is Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening) is etched into my memory from school. Who can forget this last stanza…(teenage angst, right??)
The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
But yesterday on CBC I heard Shelagh Rogers interview a young Canadian poet, Rupi Kaur. She’s just finished a second book called “the sun and her flowers“. She read two of her poems, and perhaps its having someone read the poems that makes them come alive. The poem called, “Advice I Would Have Given My Mother on Her Wedding Day” is such a beautiful love song for all mothers, and in fact all brides and mothers to be. An acknowledgement of the sacrifices made for their families, and a plea for them to remember to be their own person. (Listen to the interview here: http://www.cbc.ca/radio/thenextchapter/rupi-kaur-eliza-robertson-jen-sookfong-lee-1.4342103/how-rupi-kaur-pushed-through-writer-s-block-to-create-her-second-collection-of-poems-1.4342161 )
Rupi arranged the chapters of her book according to the life cycle of a flower. She starts with “wilting” in order to “get the hard stuff over with first”, and ending with “blooming”
I liked the word. An alternative to aging, or maturing, or getting on. There’s a sort of dignity, a beauty to the natural end of the life cycle. I don’t mean like the lettuce that is wilting in the bottom of your crisper drawer and I don’t think we should be aging like a cheddar cheese either. Its more organic than that–like the leaves on the trees in autumn, or like this rose, which always blooms late in my garden, and the blossoms wilt in the first frosts of the season. (I ran out to the garden this morning in my housecoat and slippers to take this picture–the sun was just perfect!!)
Anyway, I like the word in spite of the negative meanings associated with it. I will not wilt like a lettuce but more like this rose–and I am definitely reading this book of poems.