I'll go with thee to the lane's end... I am a kind of burr, I shall stick. Shakespeare, Measure for Measure

I write not to teach but to learn. Rebecca West

drew's writing:

  • "Always Forever Now," Ideomancer volume 13, issue 2
  • "Black Sun," Black Static # 32
  • "Bread or Cake" and "Pride/Shame,"2nd Annual Philadelphia One-Minute Play Festival
  • "Copper Heart," Polluto Magazine issue 5, A Steampunk Orange
  • "The Accomplished Birder's Guide to Overcoming Rejection," Last Drink Bird Head, edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer
  • "Another Night With the Henriksens," Player's Theater Halloween One-Act Festival NYC 2008
  • "Hating the Lovers," and "Pipe Down!" Geez Magazine: Thirty Sermons You Would Never Hear in Church
  • "Beth/slash/Nathan," Paper Fruit Blogiversary Contest

Thursday, October 08, 2009

sycamores give me wood

Jay Z said that being conceived under a sycamore tree made him a more sicker MC. I learned recently that sycamores themselves are sick--but not in a way that enables them to rhyme cleverly. Our native sycamores caught an exotic fungus from a Eurasian cousin; it usually doesn't kill them, but shortens their growing season. So the sycamore is always the first to turn in the autumn.

The aisle of sycamores above is the glory of the Ben Franklin Parkway--which was supposed to be Philadelphia's Champs Elysees but thanks to the invention of the automobile and a tragic lack of vision is mainly an expressway connecting Broad Street to Route 76. Still, it's great to walk through this grove and look at the light on the bark and listen to the wind in the leaves. It makes me feel like my approach to the library is a hallowed walkway to Parnassus.

(The misuse of the Parkway is ongoing--in addition to the parking lot on Eakin's Oval and the recent statue of a fictional boxer adored by idiots there is a another residential tower being planned--this one at the intersection of the Parkway and 22nd).

My dad is a landscaper; he told me recently that because sycamores stand taller than other species people once planted them near springs. I marveled that our ancestors would bother to leave signposts in the landscape that were useful only after their deaths. He said that when he was a boy he knew a ninety year old man who planted an orchard. Although the word virtue has been abused to death by conservatives I would identify that kind of civic-minded foresight a virtue.

More on my mania for sycamores here.

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