Spring is Here, With All Good Cheer. Birds Chirp. Frogs Burp.

     Bargainhunters, Runts and Punters,

     If the title of this post sounds familiar to you, it is because it was lifted from a book by the late Bennett Cerf, called Write Me A Poem, Baby.  This was a favourite book from my youth, in which Cerf asked children to write poems and collected them into a book, maybe even a second volume.

     What does that have to do with ratty, old shoes?  What?  Do you think we start these blogs without a solid purpose in mind for each and every one? Of course we don’t!  We write these by the seat of our pants for a few lovely people who look forward to them.  The shoes, by the by, have seen more wildlife than many children who live in the city.  They have been thrown at rabbits, squirrels, dogs and a few other small mammals. 

     Purchased in December of 2002, while picking up a pair of black oxfords to wear to my dad’s funeral, these became my ‘going to the office shoes’ until we were downsized in 2004.  They had an easy life for a year after that, until they were no longer fit for casual wear in public.  At that point, a new pair of dock shoes were purchased and these became the ‘lawnmowing/snowshoveling’ shoes.  They have weathered feet of snow, countless walks through my lawn, which by any definition is not actually a lawn.  At this time, it is mostly pretty, blue violets, as you can see…

     This sort of thing drives my neighbors crazy, as they think lawns should be green and comprised of grass.  We do not have a lawn so much as some grass mixed with violets, strawberries, dandelions and whatever the birds drop there.  The birds come for the flowers, we think.  We also believe that the creator puts those blue flowers there to sooth us and get us through the days of Spring Fever.  We enjoy sitting on the porch and letting our eyes relax to a blur and letting the colours sink in while we listen to the laboured grunts of all the neighbors who are on hands and knees on their lawns, digging and poisoning these little gifts of the season.  These people wear big boots and use noisy equipment in the maintenance of their yards, protecting their tootsies from mower blades, slips from ladders, icy patches and all those thing we ignore while shovelling and mowing barefoot in worn-out dock shoes.  These people have a work costume for each season.  It is the only funny thing about living here.

     The birds do enjoy my yard, as the returning families of robins, bluejays, cardinals and doves attest.  Plants are put in for their benefit, so that they swoop in and expose themselves to my cats, who sit in the window and think about what they would do to them.  This year, we may build a small chicken-wire-and-wood house for the kitties, so they can be outside on nice days.  Up until now, they have had to settle for the fresh catnip which grows out back and is already about eight inches tall, as you can see…

      If you have cats and do not grow catnip for them, shame on you.  You need to be a better pet owner and that is the fact, jack.  It is pleasant to see the catnip up so early and our pals, Inkie and Budderz, are quite happy with the fact.  What does worry us a bit is the early bloom of the lilacs.  We love the smell.  Some are put in a bedroom vase to evoke dream images from Springs Gone By.  It seems that they usually do not bloom until late May or early June but it is time, as you can see…

     That smell sure brings back the memories.  It reminds me of Mother’s Day and the hope of Summer.  The lilacs are nice and we are proud of them, even though they were here when we bought the house.  Prouder still are we of the fern, which we planted along the whole North side of the house and the tendrils of which are just pushing through the soil and reaching to the sky, like so…

     If you were to see the neighborhood the house is situated in, a white trash hell where Nascar is King and the proof is in the trucks parked on the lawns, you might understand why plants and pollen are so important.  Most of these plants upset those boot-people near me, since they cannot cut them to a height of one inch nor be sure all the blades of grass point in the same direction.  Birds appreciate what humans do not.

     As we started this rambling tome with a poem, allow us to end it with a piece of primordial literature, mined from the files and spilled from the skull of a nine-year-old Michael Hendrick, who in the Fifth Grade showed great slyness in using words to waste space in order to avoid being ruler-whipped by a nun who was easily enraged by blank spots on sheets of paper.  This may be one of the earliest works of art by the young Poet, as he learned words were to become his salvation.  Please enjoy ‘Spring’s Charms’.


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