Tuesday, April 22, 2008




The house is hoovered and dusted. There are thirty-one mugs on the kitchen table. (For twenty prisoners, ten guards and a driver.) Didcott is nine months old (for the moment) and sitting on my knee.

I can hardly bear it - within a couple of hours, he will be gone.

Strangely, over the last few weeks, I have grown to love him.

His disposition is grim.

He is determined;


mostly silent;

- and always 'there'.

If I go to the shed, Didcott is 'there' - watching.

When the phone rings, Didcott is 'there' - listening.

When it is time for him to go to school, Didcott is 'there' - with reasons why he shouldn't have to go today!

But - now the moment has arrived for him to take his place in prison - he offers no excuses.

And I will miss him.

I clasp him tight.

I bounce him on my knee.

I wish he didn't have to go
* * * * *

To distract myself, I've spent the morning planting flowerpots.

Every day, from now on, I'll gather a good harvest of slugs; one from beneath each.

(Snails cluster;
slugs sleep alone.)

Then, having returned the pots to their semi-submerged places in the earth, I'll fill them with water. It will seep gently and economically only to the roots which need it. Precision gardening!

* * * * *

I've been out at the front too, pulling the last teasles and checking on the clover.

(Bright, green - and spreading!)

I've planted the first Romanesque.

I've planted the first nasturtium.

(If they are still there tomorrow, I'll plant more.)

(If they aren't; I won't.)

I hear someone mowing grass.


* * * * *



Philip Bewley said...

Slugs sleep alone! See, I told you there was something to that spontaneous generation thing!

Nancy J. Bond said...

They sleep alone because no one else will have them! Ick. :)


glad to hear that your clover is spreading ; ) I've got to spread some clover seed this week

Esther Montgomery said...

Slugs - find slugs very difficult. Snails, I rather like.

Clover - ours looks brilliant. The patch is spreading and looks realy green, especially from a distance when you can see the contrast it makes with the dry, straggly grass.

Because it appeared, of its own accord, in a bald patch, I pulled some of the grass away yesterday to let the clover spread.

Is that the right thing to do - or will I have to wait for seed?

Also - what should I do as it grows? If I cut it, won't I be left simply with a crop of funny little, sitcky-uppy stalks?