Ou sont les neiges?

Here is the last of this winter’s snow in my backyard.

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It’s likely to disappear this afternoon.  I will not miss it.

Winter is icumen in, Lhude sing Goddamm; but we’ll always have memories of Malcolm Butler to keep us warm

This latest snowstorm has changed my poetical mood from A.A. Milne to Ezra Pound:

Winter is icumen 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
Damm you; Sing: Goddamm.
Goddamm, Goddamm, ’tis why I am, Goddamm,
So ’gainst the winter’s balm.
Sing goddamm, damm, sing goddamm,
Sing goddamm, sing goddamm, DAMM.

The problem now is that there’s nowhere left to put the stuff you need to shovel.

On the other hand, here are some fan reactions to Malcolm Butler’s interception in the Super Bowl.  Trigger warning: lots of profanity.  Also, may not be suitable for Seahawks fans.

We saw the game in the company of these lovely young women, whose parents were at the game.  Our reaction to the interception was comparable to some of those in the video, and I’m not sure the girls made the most noise.

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A Nocturnal Upon Saint Lucy’s Day, Being the Shortest Day

Saint Lucy’s Day is December 13, which used to coincide with the Winter Solstice.  “Lucy” is derived from the Latin word for light, and Saint Lucy’s Day is celebrated as a festival of light in Scandinavian countries.. Here is John Donne’s great poem about dark and light, loss and love, death and rebirth.

‘Tis the year’s midnight, and it is the day’s,
Lucy’s, who scarce seven hours herself unmasks;
The sun is spent, and now his flasks
Send forth light squibs, no constant rays;
The world’s whole sap is sunk;
The general balm th’ hydroptic earth hath drunk,
Whither, as to the bed’s-feet, life is shrunk,
Dead and interr’d; yet all these seem to laugh,
Compared with me, who am their epitaph.

Study me then, you who shall lovers be
At the next world, that is, at the next spring;
For I am every dead thing,
In whom Love wrought new alchemy.
For his art did express
A quintessence even from nothingness,
From dull privations, and lean emptiness;
He ruin’d me, and I am re-begot
Of absence, darkness, death—things which are not.

All others, from all things, draw all that’s good,
Life, soul, form, spirit, whence they being have;
I, by Love’s limbec, am the grave
Of all, that’s nothing. Oft a flood
Have we two wept, and so
Drown’d the whole world, us two; oft did we grow,
To be two chaoses, when we did show
Care to aught else; and often absences
Withdrew our souls, and made us carcasses.

But I am by her death—which word wrongs her—
Of the first nothing the elixir grown;
Were I a man, that I were one
I needs must know; I should prefer,
If I were any beast,
Some ends, some means ; yea plants, yea stones detest,
And love; all, all some properties invest.
If I an ordinary nothing were,
As shadow, a light, and body must be here.

But I am none; nor will my sun renew.
You lovers, for whose sake the lesser sun
At this time to the Goat is run
To fetch new lust, and give it you,
Enjoy your summer all,
Since she enjoys her long night’s festival.
Let me prepare towards her, and let me call
This hour her vigil, and her eve, since this
Both the year’s and the day’s deep midnight is.

Winter Images

Following up on my new year’s resolution to include more photographs in the blog, here are some winter images. First, a Tom Whelan photo of frost crystals:

He says:

[Ice crystals] only form on cold nights, with temps from 5 to 12 degrees F. These were on a leaf in a shallow brook, just an inch or so deep. The black water was a welcome background. I think it looks like a butterfly!

This one, from Michael Leacher, is called “Winter Water”:

Last but least, here is one I call “Some big icicles I saw one time when I was out taking a walk”:

ice

Stay warm!