Tuesday, July 3, 2012

July 3: Knee high by the 4th of July

"Knee high by the 4th of July" refers to the height one's corn should be by now, if I'm remembering right. For me, it referred to the height of the grass in my backyard before I finally mowed it this evening. Each summer I seem to go longer before mowing, enjoying the various phases of flowers--first the little violets and forget-me-nots, later the daisies and hawkweed. At this point, the flowers had been subsumed by ferns and tall, feathery grasses, and I decided I wanted a cleaner look. Also, I wanted to be able to sit in my backyard without succumbing to an asthma attack from breathing all that grass-dust.

It felt a bit like mowing a hay field, except no bird's nests or baby rabbits were harmed in the process--though I half expected some creature to startle up in front of the mower. I did mow a blue jay feather, which felt wrong somehow, but disturbed nothing else larger than a moth. Still, the neighborhood flicker is calling over and over now, as if in alarm.

Good old sweaty work--
lawn so high it's like haying.
I should have a scythe.

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