Sunday, July 19, 2020

Keepers of Kettle and Scummer

  • Sargent Mountain via Hadlock Brook Trail, Sargent Mountain South Trail, Maple Spring Trail, photos Earthgirl, ten miles, kicked. our. ass. sweet
  • Can uphill all day, downhill hurts, the scramble of Maple Spring Trail after I back-flopped on wet downhill granite, I'm told I fall gracefully and instinctively raised my head, elbows, and wrists to avoid breakage
  • We did, by the way for those who gave advice, drive the New England via Scranton route, the New York/Connecticut state line almost exactly halfway to where I am in Maine, the New York/Connecticut state line on 84 to Hartford section the only with construction, and minor, fourteen hours, counting piss-stops, would be thirteen if I'd stayed on 95 to Bangor instead of getting off on 1 in Brunswick, will be 95 from Bangor on the drive home 
  • Fly in the United States of Dystopia next summer 
  • Happy 88th to my father! 
  • First cairn photo:

  • Covid test came back negative
  • Domain name renewal came back positive
  • Hiking only time I wear red, Earthgirl's request, complement the green
  • Police state (as in, I am telling you three times there will be no election in November)
  • Creeping surveillance (as in, what other info was recorded from my swabs?)
  • I am telling you three times there will be no election in November
  • Police state (as in, I am telling you three times there will be no election in November)
  • Kettling

[We are the knife people...]

John Spaulding

We are the knife people, iron men, coat people
       and he-lands-sailing.
Souse eaters, house makers, husbands
       of kine and goat and swine, farm builders
       and keepers of kettle and scummer, word
       scratchers, corn stealers and bad sleepers.
As if towns could build themselves.
As if stumps jumped from the ground or
       flesh of beasts fell into trenchers.
As if paradise prevailed on earth.
To come to rich moulds and lush plantings,
       long-necked trees and tongues of land,
to redd the wild for the unborn.
       To reck not the peril.
Suffering snakes that may fly, wolves
       that may ravish. Kingdom
       of sachem and sagamore.
Kingdom of corn and thorny promise.
To satisfy our appetite of spirit,
       our thirst of property.
To seek not the opera of war but
       belittled by the possibilities
to stand silenced by the task before us—
these be my sudden and undigested thoughts.


  1. Glad you drove through my part of the old country. 95 is a nightmare and picking it up past Boston is sensible.

    I once almost got trapped by a medevac accident on 84 for 6 hours, but bailed onto a workaround just in time. On the other hand, I once got trapped on 95 in Philly for 6 hours by an exploding tanker truck, so sixes there.

  2. REDD

    from our friends at the Free Dictionary

    redd 1 (rĕd)
    tr.v. redd·ed also redd, redd·ing, redds Chiefly Pennsylvania
    To clear: redd the dinner table.
    Phrasal Verb:
    redd up
    To tidy: redded up the front room.
    [Middle English dialectal redden, variant (probably influenced by Middle English redden, to free (from an encumbrance), rescue) of Middle English riddan, to clear (an area, a way), clear out; see rid.]

    Our Living Language The terms redd and redd up came to the American Midlands from the many Scottish immigrants who settled there. In the meaning "to clear an area or to make it tidy," redd is still used in Scotland and Northern Ireland. In the United States, the word is especially common in Pennsylvania as part of the phrasal verb redd up.

    redd 2 (rĕd)
    A spawning nest made by a fish, especially a salmon or trout.

  3. speaking of digestion, as spaulding does in his last line, reminds one of the book

    Civil War Recipes: Receipts from the Pages of Godey's Lady's Book

    by Lily May Spaulding (Editor), John Spaulding (Editor)(University of Kentucky Press, 1999)

    School Library Journal says

    YA-Motivated by their interests in cooking and history and the search for a plum-pudding recipe like Grandma's, this mother-son team has compiled a cookbook that is rich in Civil War information. Drawn from a 19th-century women's magazine, the recipes were usually submitted by middle-class readers from the rural North and South, and were intended for "common dishes of every day" rather than grand occasions. The authors have added facts about Confederate and Union army rations, customary cooking utensils, and food substitutions frequently used by Southern cooks. Recommended menus, or "bills of fare," for each month, and dates of each recipe's appearance in Godey's are also included. A glossary clarifies terminology rarely used by today's cooks. YAs will be intrigued by this exposure to everyday life during the Civil War. Quaint language ("Thicken some scalding hot milk with a sufficiency of potato flour") enhances the enjoyment of the book, and most recipes can be successfully prepared by modern chefs.

    Pamela Cooper-Smuzynski, Fairfax County Public Library, VA