Sunday, July 31, 2011

July 30

Quiet day - did my morning at Sisters (only 4 people all morning but it's a long weekend here and a lot of people are out of town) and then lunch and a nap as I slept VERY badly Friday night. I hate it when the night is marked off in hour and a half chunks.

Going to be a quiet weekend for me - a little reading, stitching, visit with a friend. It's hard to believe it's August already - or will be in less than 10 hours.

This should be a familiar poem.

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night
Sailed off in a wooden shoe--
Sailed on a river of crystal light,
Into a sea of dew.
"Where are you going, and what do you wish?"
The old moon asked the three.
"We have come to fish for the herring fish
That live in this beautiful sea;
Nets of silver and gold have we!"
Said Wynken,
And Nod.

The old moon laughed and sang a song,
As they rocked in the wooden shoe,
And the wind that sped them all night long
Ruffled the waves of dew.
The little stars were the herring fish
That lived in that beautiful sea-- -- --
"Now cast your nets wherever you wish-- -- --
Never afeard are we";
So cried the stars to the fishermen three:
And Nod.

All night long their nets they threw
To the stars in the twinkling foam-- -- --
Then down from the skies came the wooden shoe,
Bringing the fishermen home;
'T was all so pretty a sail it seemed
As if it could not be,
And some folks thought 'twas a dream they'd dreamed
Of sailing that beautiful sea-- -- --
But I shall name you the fishermen three:
And Nod.

Wynken and Blynken are two little eyes,
And Nod is a little head,
And the wooden shoe that sailed the skies
Is a wee one's trundle-bed.
So shut your eyes while your mother sings
Of wonderful sights that be,
And you shall see the beautiful things
As you rock in the misty sea,
Where the old shoe rocked the fishermen three:
And Nod.

Eugene Field
1850 - 1895

Friday, July 29, 2011

It's been a running around kind of day. Spent a couple of hours working on Sisters' books this morning and then I was off. First a stop at my favourite news stand, then the Royal Bank for Sisters' business. City Hall to pick up my bus pass for August, then Sisters to give out a pay cheque and put some things away, then the Bank of Montreal to pay my rent. Treated myself to lunch at Fairview Restaurant, then up to the hospital pharmacy to pick up my Tamoxifen. They've moved the pharmacy and it's a little tricky to find as it is behind a door that says, in very large letters, "No Admittance". Now that's a head scratcher. Finally to Overwaitea for my weekly grocery shopping - some really good prices on fresh fruit so I have cherries, nectarines and kiwi in my fridge at the moment.

This is favourite anthology poem #375 and I remember my Dad teaching it to me when I was 5 or 6. I thought it was terribly funny back then. Never thought of it as a poem that would show up in a lot of anthologies. Anyone else remember this?

The Purple Cow

I never saw a Purple Cow,
I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you, anyhow,
I'd rather see than be one.

Gelett Burgess
1866 - 1951

Apparently Mr. Burgess wasn't all that thrilled with the attention it got, so a few years later, 5 presumably, he wrote this.

Cinq Ans Apres

Ah, yes! I wrote the "Purple Cow"--
I'm Sorry, now, I Wrote it!
But I can Tell you, Anyhow,
I'll Kill you if you Quote it!

Monday, July 25, 2011

The floss I ordered last week from Traditional Stitches ( arrived today. Janice is such a sweetie when you do an SOS order. Now I can start working on the red and the Chinese characters in the pattern. The lady who wants the piece only got one skein of floss and there is way too much red for that. And she had the wrong colour for the characters (which apparently mean "good luck"), so now I can start doing large chunks instead of bits and pieces. HOORAY!!

For a Dead Lady

No more with overflowing light
Shall fill the eyes that now are faded,
Nor shall another's fringe with night
Their woman-hidden world as they did.
No more shall quiver down the days
The flowing wonder of her ways,
Whereof no language may requite
The shifting and the many-shaded.

The grace, divine, definitive,
Clings only as a faint forestalling;
The laugh that love could not forgive
Is hushed, and answers to no calling;
The forehead and the little ears
Have gone where Saturn keeps the years;
The breast where roses could not live
Has done with rising and with falling.

The beauty, shattered by the laws
That have creation in their keeping,
No longer trembles at applause,
Or over children that are sleeping;
And we who delve in beauty's lore
Know all that we have known before
Of what inexorable cause
Makes Time so vicious in his reaping.

Edwin Arlington Robinson
1869 - 1935

Sunday, July 24, 2011

My boss is away until after the long weekend, so I'll be working two Saturdays in a row. Not a hardship by any means, but I am so spoiled normally having a four day weekend every second week. On a positive note, she has left me her vehicle which makes life so much easier when there are errands to run.

Been working on my Chinese wedding piece and it's going well, but all the red is going to be pretty monotonous I think. Oh well, I'll survive.


Quinquireme of Nineveh from distant Ophir
Rowing home to haven in sunny Palestine,
With a cargo of ivory,
And apes and peacocks,
Sandalwood, cedarwood, and sweet white wine.

Stately Spanish galleon coming from the Isthmus,
Dipping through the Tropics by the palm-green shores,
With a cargo of diamonds,
Emeralds, amethysts,
Topazes, and cinnamon, and gold moidores.

Dirty British coaster with a salt-caked smoke stack
Butting through the Channel in the mad March days,
With a cargo of Tyne coal,
Road-rail, pig-lead,
Firewood, iron-ware, and cheap tin trays.

John Masefield
1878 - 1967

Friday, July 22, 2011

July 22

We seem to be alternating between rainy days and non-rainy days. I wish I could say sunny, but they are not. Lawns are thriving and gardens need little attention - except for weeds- but it makes for a lousy summer.


I found a dimpled spider, fat and white,
On a white heal-all, holding up a moth
Like a white piece of rigid satin cloth--
Assorted characters of death and blight
Mixed ready to begin the morning right,
Like the ingredients of a witches' broth--
A snow-drop spider, a flower like a froth,
And dead wings carried like a paper kite.

What had that flower to do with being white,
The wayside blue and innocent heal-all?
What brought the kindred spider to that height,
Then steered the white moth thither in the night?
What but design of darkness to appall?--
If design govern in a thing so small.

Robert Frost
1874 - 1963

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

We're back to chilly rain. Bah humbug!!!!!


The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then, moves on.

Carl Sandberg
1878 - 1967

Monday, July 18, 2011

July 18

Spent yesterday lazing about instead of doing some laundry so today I HAVE to do it - at least 4 loads which may not sound large if you have a family, but is huge when there is only one of you. There may be more if I find the energy to strip the bed - everything needs to be washed, including the mattress cover.

Today will be a stitching day between loads of laundry. Didn't do any of that yesterday either, but there will be very few non-stitching days because of the deadline for the wedding piece.

We've actually had consecutive warm and sort of sunny days this weekend. Dare I think that summer has decided to appear?

Cool Tombs

When Abraham Lincoln was shoveled into the tombs he forgot
the copperheads and the assassin . . . in the dust, in the
cool tombs.

And Ulysses Grant lost all thought of con men and Wall Street,
cash and collateral turned ashes . . . in the dust, in the cool

Pocahontas' body, lovely as a poplar, sweet as a red haw in
November or a pawpaw in May, did she wonder? does she
remember? . . . in the dust, in the cool tombs?

Take any streetful of people buying clothes and groceries,
cheering a hero or throwing confetti and blowing tin
horns . . . tell me if the lovers are losers . . . tell me if any
get more than the lovers . . . in the dust . . . in the cool

Carl Sandbery
1878 - 1967

Sunday, July 17, 2011

July 16

Went to Terrace with Denise - her vehicle needed servicing. It was a good drive - started under a light drizzle, ended under huge patches of blue and the day improved from there. We were at the dealership for barely an hour, then we went to Wal-Mart. We weren't there long, but they had a few items on sale that couldn't be matched here. Then lunch at Mr. Mike's (where I burnt the roof of my mouth on the stuffed cannelloni, but not badly, thank goodness) followed by Pennington's, Cole's Books (came out empty handed from both places which was a shock) and finally the Super Store just before we headed home. The weather was glorious all the way home, so at some point Rupert obviously cleared up. It was a great day!

My stitching rotation is going to be put aside for a while - I've picked up a commission to stitch a wedding piece that has to be done by the end of October. It's a Chinese couple in traditional costume with language characters in the background. I think it's a decent time frame, but it will require stitching every day. It's not being done on red though but white - 14 count Aida.


Pile the bodies high at Austerlitz and Waterloo.
Shovel them under and let me work --

I am the grass; I cover all.

And pile them high at Gettysburg
And pile them high at Ypres and Verdun.
Shovel them under and let me work.
Two years, ten years, and passengers ask the conductor:
What place is this?
Where are we now?

I am the grass.
Let me work.

Carl Sandburg
1878 - 1967

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Quiet couple of days - not much happening except for some stitching.

Spring and All

By the road to the contagious hospital
under the surge of the blue
mottled clouds driven from the
northeast--a cold wind. Beyond, the
waste of broad, muddy fields
brown with dried weeds, standing and fallen

patches of standing water
the scattering of tall trees

All along the road the reddish
purplish, forked, upstanding, twiggy
stuff of bushes and small trees
with dead, brown leaves under them
leafless vines --

Lifeless in appearance, sluggish
dazed spring approaches --

They enter the new world naked,
cold, unceratin of all
save that they enter. All about them
the cold, familiar wind--

Now the grass, tomorrow
the stiff curl of wildcarrot leaf
One by one objects are defined--
It quickens: clarity, outline of leaf

But now the stark dignity of
entrance -- Still, the profound change
has come upon them: rooted, they
grip down and begin to awaken.

William Carlos Williams
1883 - 1963

Monday, July 11, 2011

Going to be a quiet day I think. I'm debating doing laundry, but at this point the "cons" are going to win I think.

Had a power outage for about 12 minutes first thing this morning, which felt odd as we are NOT having a storm. It's rather nice again today, except there is less sun and more high cloud.

The End of the World

Quite unexpectedly as Vasserot
The armless ambidextrian was lighting
A match between his great and second toe,
And Ralph the lion was engaged in biting
The neck of Madame Sossman while the drum
Pointed, and Teeny was about co cough
In waltz-time swinging Jocko by the thumb --
Quite unexpectedly the top blew off:

And there, there overhead, there, there hung over
Those thousands of white faces, those dazed eyes,
There in the starless dark the poise, the hover,
There with vast wings, across the canceled skies,
There in the sudden blackness the black pall
Of nothing, nothing, nothing -- nothing at all.

Archibald MacLeish
1892 - 1902

Sunday, July 10, 2011

We've had some sunshine for TWO days now. I'm almost afraid to say it alound in case it all goes away. Still not super warm - 14 & 15 but absolutely beautiful.

I'm thinking I'm going to have a non-stitching day and catch up on my reading. I'm only at chapter 6 of Q is for Quarry and it's due back (along with R and S) on Friday.

Shine, Perishing Republic

While this America settles in the mould of its vulgarity, heavily thickening to empire,
And protest, only a bubble in the molten mass, pops and sighs out, and the mass hardens,

I sadly smiling remember that the flower fades to make fruit, the fruit rots to make earth.
Out of the mother; and through the spring exultances, ripeness and decadence; and home to the mother.

You making haste haste on decay: not blameworthy; life is good, be it stubbornly long or suddenly
A mortal splendor: meteors are not needed less that mountains: shine, perishing republic.

But for my children, I would have them keep their distance from the thickening center; corruption
Never has been compulsory, when the cities lie at the monster's feet there are left the moutains.

And boys, be in nothing so moderate as in love of man, a clever servant, insufferable master.
There is the trap that catches noblest spirits, that caught -- they say -- God, when he walked on earth.

Robinson Jeffers
1887 - 1962

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Part 2

And here's where I am with Bunny, the second of my Thursday pictures.

And that is the last of the updates for my rotation. I'll be updating again the first week of August.

July 7

I think this is going to be a two-parter today, as I've finished one of my Thursday projects, but I'm not done stitching for the day.

These are the two projects as of 9 June.

And here's the completed Michey (bottom project in the above photo).

This was the free kit included with The World of Cross Stitch (magazine from the UK) Issue 25, November 1999. I'm not sure I'll keep the 'Merry Christmas' frame as there is nothing especially Christmasy about the piece. We shall see.


Lay your sleeping head, my love,
Human on my faithless arm;
Time and fevers burn away
Individual beauty from
Thoughtful children, and the grave
Proves the child ephemeral:
But in my arms till break of day
Let the living creature lie,
Mortal, guilty, but to me
The entirely beautiful.

Soul and body have no bounds:
To lovers as they lie upon
Her tolerant enchanted slope
In their ordinary swoon,
Grave the vision Venus sends
Of supernatural sympathy,
Universal love and hope;
While an abstract insight wakes
Anong the glaciers and the rocks
The hermit's carnal ecstasy.

Certainty, fidelity
On the stroke of mignight pass
Like vibrations of a bell,
And fashionable madmen raise
Their pedantic boring cry:
Every farthing of the cost,
All the dreaded cards foretell,
Shall be paid, but from this night
Not a whisper, not a thought,
Not a kiss nor look be lost.

Beauty, midnight, vision dies:
Let the winds of dawn that blow
Softly round your dreaming head
Such a day of sweetness show
Eye and knocking heart may bless,
Find the mortal world enough;
Noons of dryness see you fed
By the involuntary powers,
Nights of insult let you pass
Watched by every human love.

Wystan Hugh Auden
1907 - 1973

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

July 6

And here's my Wednesday piece - June 15

And as of end of today.

When I update in August I may not be able to scan this one any more, so I'll make sure my camera is handy and charged.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

July 5

And here is the Tuesday update for O Canada. This is 7 June.

And this is 5 July.

I'm really pleased at how well this one is stitching up.

Monday, July 4, 2011

July 4

This is the update for my Monday stitching piece. This top one was from 13 June.

This is as of the end of stitching tody.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

July 3

And here's the update for the Sunday stitching piece. Top picture is where it was on 12 June.

This is where I've gotten to by end of stitching today. The next time I stitch something on black, I don't think I'll use linen again. The inconsistency in the thickness of the threads is very off-putting so I think I will stick to black Lugana or another one of the even weaves where the threads are the same size.

Elegy for Jane

I remember the neckcurls, limp and damp as tendrils;
And her quick look, a sidelong pickered smile;
And how, once startled into talk, the light syllables leaped for her.
And she balanced in the delight of her thought,
A wren, happy, tail into the wind,
Her song trembling the twigs and small branches.
The shade sang with her;
The leaves, their whispers turned to kissing,
And the mould sang in the bleached valleys under the rose.

Oh, when she was sad, she cast herself down into such a pure depth,
Even a father could not find her:
Scraping her cheek against straw,
Stirring the clearest water.
My sparrow, you are not here,
Waiting like a fern, making a spiny shadow.
The sides of wet stones cannot console me;
Nor the moss, wound with the last light.

If only I could nudge you from this sleep,
My maimed darling, my skittery pigeon.
Over this damp grave I speak the words of my love:
I, with no rights in this matter,
Neither father nor lover.

Theodore Roethee
1908 - 1963

Saturday, July 2, 2011

July 2

Well, here's the progress on my Saturday stitching. This one is where it was as of June 11,

this is where I'm at as of end of day today. When I finish the colour I'm working on now I have one more - darker - and then the back stitching.

I Think Continually of Those Who Were Truly Great

I think continually of those who were truly great,
Who, from the womb, remembered the soul's history
Through corridors of light where the hours are suns,
Endless and singing. Whose lovely ambition
Was that their lips, still touched with fire,
Would tell of the spirit clothed from head to foot in song.
And who hoarded from the spring branches
The desires falling across their bodies like blossoms.

What is precious is never to forget
The delight of the blood drawn from ageless springs
Breaking through rocks in worlds before our earth;
Never to deny its pleasure in the simple morning light,
Nor its grave evening demand for love;
Never to allow gradually the traffic to smother
With noise and fog the flowering of the spirit.

Near the snow, near the sun, in the highest fields
See how those names are feted by the wavering grass,
And by the streamers of white cloud,
And whispers of wind in the listening sky;
The names of those who in their lives fought for life,
Who wore at their hearts the fire's centre.
Born of the sun they traveled a short while towards the sun,
And left the vivid air signed with their honour.

Sir Stephen Spender
1909 -

July 1

Okay, it's the first Friday of the month, so time for the update on my Friday project. The one on the top is how it looked June 10, on the bottom how it looked at the end of today. Much better definition around the eye and ear. I think as I finish the next couple of colours the coat will fill in more. All in all, I'm pleased with the progress.

Got taken out for lunch today at my favourite local restaurant - Cow Bay Cafe. The food here is always fabulous - they have one of those whiteboard menus because it changes every day. Never had a bad meal there. And it was so nice to catch up with Denise and Karen - especially Karen as I probably won't see her again until Christmas. She and Stan are off to Area 6 for salmon season, then over to Haida Gwaii for the winter doing PSP sampling.

Terrible weather for July 1 - cold, drizzle, wind - but there were still lots of people in Mariners' Park for the festivities and a continuous line for the tour of the Canadian Armed Forces boat that was here. It was cold enough I seriously thought of hauling out my electric blanket when I was ready for bed. And lots of people are, grudgingly, turning their furnaces back on. It's just ridiculous.

Friday, July 1, 2011

June 30

Busy morning at Sisters, but I did get a little stitching done on Mickey and have started on the back stitch. After my shift, wandered around town paying bills, then grabbed a sandwich at Subway and headed home.

And in my mailbox, STASH!!!!! A wonderful big envelope from Traditional Stitches ( with floss, fabric, magazine and my June SEP (stash enhancement program) goodies. This had gotten stuck in the postal strike, but I had a wonderful time going through everything.

Naming of Parts

Today we have naming of parts. Yesterday,
We had daily cleaning. And tomorrow morning,
We shall have what to do after firing. But today,
Today, we have naming of parts. Japonica
Glistens like coral in all of the neighbouring gardens,
And today we have naming of parts.

This is the lower sling swivel. And this
Is the upper sling swivel, whose use you will see,
When you are given your slings. And this is the piling swivel,
Which in your case you have not got. The branches
Hold in the gardens their silen, eloquent gestures,
Which in our case we have not got.

This is the safety-catch, which is always released
With an easy flick of the thumb. And please do not let me
See anyone using his finger. You can do it quite easy
If you have any strength in your thumb. The blossoms
Are fragile and motionless, never letting anyone see
Any of them using their finger.

And this you can see is the bolt. The purpose of this
Is to open the breech, as you see. We can slide it
Rapidly backwards and forwards: we call this
Easing the spring. And rapidly backwards and forwards
The early bees are assaulting and fumbling the flowers:
They call it easing the Spring.

They call it easing the Spring: it is perfectly easy
If you have any strength in your thumb: like the bolt,
And the breech and the cocking-piece, and the point of balance,
Which in our case we have not got; and the almond-blossom
Silent in all of the gardens and the bees going backwards and forwards,
For today we have naming of parts.

Henry Reed
1914 - 1986