After our long drought, last year's rains encouraged the daffodils to multiply and prosper. In the first decade we lived here at MeadowKnoll, planting daffs was always an important September/October project, and I planted as many as we could afford, in as many different varieties as I could find. In our second decade, I bought a few but mostly divided and replanted in the woods, along the garden fence, in clusters under the trees. Now, in our third decade here, I'm simply enjoying them. Every morning, I walk along the woods, appreciating their jaunty optimism among last summer's leaves. They remind me that no matter how much me-me-me chaos exists in our human world, the daffodils just go about their modest lives, being fruitful and beautiful without boasting about how many they are, or how clever, or how gorgeous. A daffodil just is, its own incontrovertible fact.
Homestead report. I put chicken wire across the bottom of the gate where the bunny was getting into the garden. Then replanted the spinach (he ate the first crop) and a row of snap peas. The perennial onions are yielding plenty of green onions for salad, and the potatoes survived our mid-week freeze. Our six Girls are producing five eggs a day (somebody apparently didn't get the memo). Omelets, fritattas, and quiche are on the menu--and today, a coconut cream pie, if I get around to it.
Book report. I've shelved the Gertrude project for a while--I need to think longer thoughts about the voice. Instead, I'm spending my writing time on another Dahlias mystery--because you asked. I hadn't intended to continue that series, but so many people have written to tell me they miss the books that I decided to continue. It's comforting, in a way, to step back into that little town and revisit the characters, each of whom has her own story. It's also interesting (and more than a little frightening) to see the parallels between the 1930s, with the ugly rise of fascism and ethnic intolerance, and our own time. As I work, I can't help reflecting that we haven't learned much from history. Which means, if history is any guide, that we are doomed to repeat it.
The General's Women will be out in another couple of weeks; please ask your library to order it. I'm selling signed copies for Story Circle--you can order yours here. Also for Story Circle, we're raffling off my needlepoint project, "Shining Star." You can see it here.
She wore her yellow sun-bonnet,
She wore her greenest gown;
She turned to the south wind
And curtsied up and down.
She turned to the sunlight
And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
"Winter is dead.”
--A.A. Milne, When We Were Very Young