Sunday, October 23, 2011

One More Spin

70s the next two days (not the era, the temp), then 50 and freezes by the end of the week. I've set out all my cut flowers for the insects since a lot succumbed to the 22 degrees we had last week. I'm trying to fully immerse myself in autumn, in the garden, not just like a squirrel gathering nuts for the winter, but a squirrel gathering nuts for years (perhaps). I don't mean to sound melancholy--if anything, I'm seeing more in the autumn garden than I ever have before. And having fun with the camera along the way.

Cosmo v. fly

Tachinid fly--scourge of the monarch

Paper wasp

Unique design

Add caption

I've had the house to myself the last few days, and in an effort to focus on the next book by making metaphorical room, cleaned up my office (I see carpet!) and tossed many old student papers. The latter is always particularly sad for some reason--all I need to do is see a name or read a sentence, and I instantly know that student again, the class, the context, the conferences we had, the good agony of living through language. It's hard trashing all that work, but I don't have any need for it. At the same time, I feel cruel--like a mother robin pushing out young from the nest. I suppose I had my chance, did what I could when I could. Fly, papers, fly. (Better than burn, papers, burn--right?)

12 comments:

Gaia Gardener: said...

Wonderful photos! Thanks for posting them.

James said...

Nice macros. Your week's weather sounds like a California year. 70s in the summer, a quick slap of frost in the winter. Repeat.

I feel your pain on tossing the papers. The students' work obviously took them a lot of effort. Hopefully you're not the final keeper of the papers, and that the students have kept copies for themselves.

Jeff said...

"Papers"? Who knew students still wrote or printed-out their papers?

Julie Stone said...

Well said, we have to make room if we're to grow. Plus, I don't want to be seeing you on any future episodes of "Hoarders".

I love the picture of the Argiope spider, they are beautiful.

Benjamin Vogt said...

GG--That'll be $5.
James--Trust me this ain't CA. -15 is right around the corner. As for student papers, I'm sure I'm way more nostalgic than they are.
Jeff--I bad you from this blog. Are you serious? Yeah, I guess writing isn't not so very like importancy and all. I will demand my students print papers until the last printer on earth is melted down.
Julie--Oh no, no hoarding for me, though I may have a mild case of it according to my wife. Every time I move is when I dump lots of stuff.

Donna said...

It is hard to not feel melancholy as the cold weather hits, stays and freezes our gardens to the ground...I too have been out working in the garden and taking hundreds of pics to hopefully sustain me until spring...who knows maybe it will be a tad warmer and few less flakes this year. After we saw the snowiest Dec and winter last year...we are due for bit of break in NY..oh who am I kidding...

Heather@RestoringTheLandscape.com said...

Nice shots! I have yet to see a tachinid fly in the yard, they must be there somewhere?

Benjamin Vogt said...

Donna--You know, winter is always good to me, I'm forced inside and write write write. This winter I plant to do a 90,000 memoir, so I sorta look forward to it--plus my office is the warmest room in the house! I think though, hate to say, this will be a hard winter. Very cold. That's my knee talking.
Heather--What's up! I'm getting the hang of my camera after a few years. I'm surprised how many flies of all kinds are in the garden. They must be a larger pollinator than I ever realized.

scottweberpdx said...

It's always hard to face the long, cold winter ahead. I remember when I was living in Nebraska, but the time Christmas was over, I was over winter...and there were still at least 3-4 months left. That's when gardening books and magazines (not to mention that glut of seed catalogs) saved me from insanity!

Benjamin Vogt said...

Scott--what Nebraska did you live in? It's only really bad here in Dec and Jan. March gets warm fast and plants are coming up by 3/15. It's a delight here! Of course, I grew up in Minnesota where winter runs from Nov to April. I get so much good work done in winter, and need that time, as the garden does. Absence makes the heart grow fonder!

Corner Gardener Sue said...

I sure enjoy your awesome photos of insects and flowers. I love all the details. I haven't seen any wasps lately.

You asked me about the threadleaf ironweed. I wish I could remember where I got it. I am thinking it has a taproot, so I won't be able to divide it to put some in the front yard. If I see it for sale anywhere, I'll let you know, and if you find some, will you let me know?

As for the Witchita Mnts goldenrod, I have several plants, and have put a string around at least one of them. I can't remember if I used it on all of them this year.

Benjamin Vogt said...

Sue--I knew string was the secret! :)