We went to Bayberry Garden Center in Truro to get our tree Saturday. In a double line of trees, it turns out to be hard to judge size. We liked the tree as it was fresh and very bushy. We did not realize how big it actually is until Woody set it up. It’s much too big for our little livingroom so we’ll be easing around it all month. But it is a very fine handsome tree. Sunday Woody put the lights on. Tuesday we began to decorate it. Last year, we had a smaller tree, maybe two thirds the size of this one. We couldn’t use all our ornaments. This tree is a different story. It absorbs everything and asked for more.
I’m growing annoyed at the sanctification of George H. W. Bush. He was a bad president. I’ll admit that he looks good in comparison to trump, but there’s the New York Times bemoaning the end of ruling class presidents. Being to the manor born produced some reasonably good and middling presidents as well as terrible ones, but being part of the elite means you have no idea about the lives of 99%: remember Bush in the supermarket not understanding how you check out because he had never done so. This is the candidate who used Willie Horton against Dukakis, willing to lie for the presidency. This is the man who put Clarence Thomas on the supreme court, establishing a precedent for sexual predators. This is the man who ran the CIA with all its dirty tricks. This is the man who sent us into Kuwait.
He looks good by comparison: he spoke literate English, did not insult people freely [unless they were running against him], seems to have had some respect for facts and reality and behaved himself in public, was able to read and write, and did not boast of groping women at will – all good things in public office. But behaving like a gentleman may be something we miss now but does not a good president make. And trump has made heroes of the CIA and the FBI, both of whom have flouted ordinary Americans’ rights for decades, between them harassing Black and anti-war and civil rights groups and overthrowing elected governments we decided we didn’t like. It’s hard to keep one’s moral compass straight under trump.
I was keeping up with the mss. submitted for my juried intensive poetry workshop, but now so many have come in, I’ve fallen behind. I’ve had excellent, okay and terrible submissions. as well as almost-ones. I try to get to them quickly, but this is a busy season. I won’t hurry through them. I read and reread even the unlikely ones to make sure of my decision. Many poets won’t have an answer till January.
The cats are getting more involved with the tree. Every morning now there are several ‘kills’ but only from the bottom third of the tree where the unbreakable ornaments are hung. Schwartzie has a particular thing for little red cardinal ornaments, of which there are several on the tree – many birds, many animals from cow to snail to giraffe to lion, some vegetables and fruit [cucumber, eggplant, garlic for example and bunch of grapes, apple, pomegranate]. Woody gave me a striped wool skirt for Hannukah and I gave him a black merino sweater to replace one that the moths ate. Dale and I sent out the lunar calendars on Monday. I give them to certain friends who appreciate them. it’s a beautiful calendar, the days on a spiral.
I don’t know what the trick is for keeping rosemary alive in the house. I brought in at least seven plants from the rose garden, but so far only two have survived in the house. If anybody reading this knows how to overwinter rosemary in the house, I use it a lot in cooking and would love to keep plants thriving till spring.