Wednesday, May 7, 2008

While Grading Papers the Air Force Arrives









So much depends
upon

an afternoon
grading

at the kitchen
table with

B-52s
and various

birds lined
in red

I heard the loudest rush of jetness in my life, and for good reason. The B-52 is the largest bomber in the world and has 8 engines--all needed to make its very tight turn in high wind for the runway, and luckily not over my house. It has tiny wheels at each wing tip because when it lands the length and weight makes each wing touch the ground. Eh. This one did around 3-4 touch and goes at the airport, and being a military plane nerd I enjoyed seeing my first one in person. (I'm eclectic--I like poetry, war movies, middle eastern music, gardening, cleaning up hairballs, failing students, and eating very expensive desserts for dinner. Not in that order.)

And birds. We had birds today. Red house finches, yellow finches, a grackle, the cardinal couple which must be nesting so very close by, a robin, a possible sparrow, red wing blackbirds, and a mourning dove.

We've new neighbors slowly moving in next door--please, please do not have big loud dogs or a trailer to adorn the driveway. And please don't stand on your deck overlooking my garden, holding a beer, scratching your belly, just staring at me with a glossy-eyed look that I could interpret in any number of creepy ways (a previous neighbor). The river birch can't grow fast enough along that side of the house.

Speaking of the garden: we've got the young and brightly variegated leaves of Eupatorium altissimum ‘Prairie Jewel’ Mistflower; Viola 'Ultima Morpho'; Ivory Halo dogwood #1; a very Mellow Yellow spirea; and the only two colors of tulips I'll ever have--blackish purple and white.




6 comments:

Les, Zone 8a said...

This area is chock full of military bases, including 3 or 4 with runways. The air space above the garden center is off limits to commercial flight and we get to see lots of military craft of all ilk. The ones that amaze me the most are the giant transport planes, and when they fly over it still stuns me that anything that massive doesn't fall straight to the ground.

When I am not watching the sky for aircraft, I enjoy watching the herons, egrets, bald eagles, the ubiquitous Canadian geese, and the daily harassment of the hawks by all the brave little grackles.

Frances, said...

Hi Benjamin, you do have eccentric interests. The military planes that fly over us and small, super fast and loud, although I did see a transport lumbering along once. Neighbors said that the jets are there for security of a nuclear plant nearby. Your black and white tulips look great, and the river birches should grow quickly. That is the same tree that we planted, a row of six, to block the view of the house next door from the top of your hill, they grew incredibly fast in just a few years. The view of the roof of that house is blocked for the most part even in winter with the dense branching.

Layanee said...

I had a clear picture of the belly scratching neighbor (How will I erase that image)? I hope they are quiet and unobtrusive. I am spoiled here with no neighbors in clear view. Freedom!

ourfriendben said...

'Ultima Morpho', eh? Perhaps the color reminded someone of the Morpho eugenia butterfly, which of course reminds me of the marvelous film "Angels & Insects." Rent it if you haven't seen it!

Iowa Gardening Woman said...

Lovely photos, my violas did not come back this year for some reason.

Benjamin Vogt said...

Les--Oh I know, how can they stay up? Some of thes eplanes seems to be going so slow on final approach, and you can hear those engines working hard. I enjoy, as well, wathcing planes AND birds--we've so many birds out here!
Frances--I'm glad I don't have a nuclear plant nearby, but I must say I've recently decided nucelar power is the way to go (as a transition energy source) to get us off coal and oil until we make better solar panels and such. Good to hear the birch grows fast! I'm super anxious!
Layanee--Rub it why don't you. Just for that I'll write more descriptions of belly scratching strangers.
OFB--No one tells me what to do. I will not rent it. No. Hmmph. :)
IGW--I thought violas were pretty weedy? Huh. I had a SEDUM not come back this year--that is the strangest thing, too.