It was miserable to be in the garden this week, but we did what we had to. It was unrelentingly hot and humid and oppressive until yesterday, when it was cloudy and a bit cooler. . The air felt like molasses. After blossom end rot and nibbling rabbits and chipmunks, we have seldom in over 45 years of gardening here had such a poor tomato crop. Some years after we can three kinds of sauce and plum tomatoes, eat as many as we can and dry them, we give away many tomatoes to friends. Not this year. We have managed to eke out 11 pints of Italian sauce, that’s all. We are equally short on peppers, although we have a few, and eggplants – the rabbits have eaten all but 3 smallish eggplants. We harvested one decent sized one but they have eaten all the Italian eggplants leaving only a few Orientals. They consumed all the hot pepper plants. The leaves and stems aren’t hot and the poor plants never got past the flowering stage to make any cayennes. It hasn’t been fun to work outside. I try to stay hydrated. This weekend is cooler and dryer.
I have been working fulltime on the new poetry collection and now I finally have a complete manuscript. Now we have to figure out how to put it together as Word and Microsoft now make it difficult to manipulate files and folders in a useful way to send out a manuscript. Dale and I will try to do that on Monday. Then we have to run down where every poem was published It’s a longish manuscript for a poetry book, but I hope Knopf will like it. AS YOU LEAVE, PUT OUT THE LIGHT or AS YOU GO, TURN OFF THE LIGHT. Those are my choices for tentative title. I’d love some feedback.
I have to leave out some poems I really like because the book is already very long. It’s hard to make choices sometimes. I’ve written lots of poems since I put together my last poetry book MADE IN DETROIT. Some are quite minor and easy to leave out, but then it begins to be tough to choose. I’m sure my assistant Dale thinks I’m too fussy since I’ve changed the order of poems three times and keep revising a few poems. If there’s any excess in a poem, I want to squeeze it out.
My bedroom and office are a mess, clothes and papers everywhere including all over the floor. Since I completed [I hope but doubt] the manuscript yesterday late, I am hoping to make order form chaos. When I work, I work and not much else besides the garden and making supper. I’m going to have to wade through the mounds of papers and clothes but I dread it. I keep thinking of excuses to put off the straightening. I think I want to put off dealing with clothes until after I straightened my office.
Tonight we have seven for dinner, local friends. . I’m taking a week off from PT. The last time I had a PT other than my regular Erin, I was injured and it took four days to recover. I’m still not back where I was before that time, when I had enjoyed two completely pain free days. My ankle seems to be slowly improving again, but I’m tired of setbacks. Ten days off from PT will give my ankle time to heal and to strengthen. I’ll do all the exercises Erin has given me, but nothing new for a while.
I finished THE MOST DANGEROUS MAN IN THE WORLD about Timothy Leary – some of my old friends were in it. Now I’m reading MAMA’S LAST HUG about animal emotions. Living with four emotional cats, I don’t need convincing. Affection, anxiety, jealousy, pride, embarrassment, joy, loneliness, anger, fear, curiosity… they exhibit them all.