i am officially disappointed that such a thing exists. false shamrock? what’s next? fake leprechaun? pot of fool’s gold at the end of the rainbow? danny (is not my) boy? air kiss the blarney stone? the bad luck of the irish? when irish eyes are frowning?
wood sorrel (aka oxalis aka false shamrock)
a little down under up north
a former grad school classmate from sydney mailed this to me a few years after we graduated. he was a wildly adventurous intellect, capable at the same time of being an emotionally available friend, and as a result, this is one of the very few artifacts of my 20s that has passed through all the filters of the intervening years, all of the purges, and moves, and clutter clearing, and tossing. a little bit of australia in minnesota, a little bit of the past in the present, a totem of thoughtfulness.
peek a boo
i can’t help but see this little baby acorn, with its beautiful artichoke pattern, as an excited hide and seek player, sure that she is completely invisible, and at the same time, ready to scream in fear and burst tension as soon as she is discovered. i have always been attracted to the kind of purity and transparency that you see in animals, and toddlers, and the occasional beautiful, unguarded, and very rare adult soul.
immature acorn of a northern pin oak
rice creek trail, shoreview, minnesota
my parents blew around the upper midwest when i was young, from saint paul mn, to eau claire wi, to roseville mn to omaha ne, and back to shoreview mn, where they came to rest, and threw down roots in the place i mostly remember as home. but for a brief time, before i was born, my dad was offered a position in northern california. he and my mom swirled out to sausalito, hovered for a couple of days as they thought about buying a place there, and then caught a strong easterly gust back to minnesota, where they decided they would make their life, among extended family and old friends. some days i want to go back in time, to sausalito, where my folks are looking at cottages and talking about the future, and i want to calm the blustery coastal breeze, and give them a few more days to really think it through.
saint paul, minnesota
i love that the two flowers in the front row are gossiping and joking while the elder flower head in back is trying so hard to be pious and well behaved. i’m sorry. try as you might, you can’t turn me into the flower in back. i will always be one of the two in front, seeing how far i can push the rules, without getting punished too badly.
oh and BTW: happy solstice!
nodding musk thistles (Carduus nutans)