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We have a drought here man and even a whistletop by yer president didn't make the rains come. And we are heading out of Spring into Summer.

 Cheers Pete


That time of drought the embered air
burned to the roots of timber and grass.
The crackling lime-scrub would not bear
and Mooni Creek was sand that year.
The dingoes' cry was strange to hear.

I heard the dingoes cry
in the whipstick scrub on the Thirty-mile Dry.
I saw the wagtail take his fill
perching in the seething skull.
I saw the eel wither where he curled
in the last blood-drop of a spent world.

I heard the bone whisper in the hide
of the big red horse that lay where he died.
Prop that horse up, make him stand,
hoofs turned down in the bitter sand -
make him stand at the gate of the Thirty - mile Dry,
-Turn this way and you will die -
and strange and loud was the dingoes' cry.
                
                                        - Judith Wright
 
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Richard Seddon 
  To: [log in to unmask] 
  Sent: Thursday, October 23, 2003 1:36 AM
  Subject: Off topic: winter


  Dear List
   
  Last night's low was 31.1 degrees F. ( -.5 C).  Yesterday's high was 80.5 F (26.95 C)  Snow is forecast for Northern New Mexico this weekend.  My place is just south of the forecasted snow but who knows.
   
  The frost is on the pumpkin.  The trees are turning.  The Russian olives are sadly worn.  Grass has stopped growing and is turning brown.  The sandhill cranes are here for the winter and the hummingbirds are gone.  Quail are everywhere but the doves have departed.  Crows are seriously depleted in number and the hawks that are going to overwinter are sitting on their power poles (man does provide nature with some good things but I'm sure the hawks would get by without the poles).  Snakes and lizards are asleep.  Hairy critters are getting  a little shaggy.  My neighbor just finished harvesting beans and corn (maize) is being chopped into silage throughout the valley.  Soon he'll go Elk hunting and then settle into his barns and sheds and start the greasing and overhauls of his equipment for next spring.  The days grow short while the night grows long.
   
  As Ezra Pound wrote:
   
  Winter is icummen in, 
  Lhude sing Goddamm,
  Raineth drop and staineth slop,
  And how the wind doth ramm!    
                                 Sing: Goddamm
  Skiddeth bus and sloppeth us,
  An Ague hath my ham.
  Frezzeth river, turneth liver,
  (etc. etc.)
   
  I'll not quote it all.  see page 120 of "Personae" for the whole poem and then see page 1 of "The Oxford Book of English Verse" edited by Christopher Ricks for the 13th century poem known as the "Cuccu song"
   
  Sumer is icumen in-
  Lhude sing, cuccu!
  (etc. etc.)
   
  Hope rains eternal. (pun intended) And the hummingbirds will return as the sandhill cranes leave and my neighbor will plant beans and hope but also work for a good harvest when the hummingbirds leave and the cranes return.
   
  Rick Seddon
  McIntosh, NM