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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Great Day for Berries, and a Poem

    This morning we hiked downtown for the local farmers market.  Saturdays so far this season have been cloudy, cool, rainy, or all three, but not today. Today is clear and sunny, and promises to be warmer than the week was.

    Our market is a relative newcomer, smaller than the one in neighboring city Beloit, and certainly not in the league of the venerable Madison markets.  But this one has the charm of being close enough to walk to, and I like seeing people I know, and getting tips on what's good.  Today a retired teacher friend sang the praises of a vender's organic beef, and early season cauliflower.

    We were in search of fresh strawberries, cheese curds, fresh bread, and Kettle Corn. I wanted some strong coffee too, since ours at home tends to be on the weak side.  How did I get through my life so far without kettle corn?  The combination of salty and sweet is irresistible to me, and apparently to lots of others as well, based on how many bags I saw being carried around.

    There were several vendors with strawberries, but we tend to favor the folks at Skelly's Market.  Today one of the ladies was there to show off a huge and weirdly shaped berry.  She took time to explain to a disappointed buyer that their berry pies from the farm are flying off the shelves so quickly that they didn't have enough to send to the downtown market.  We took home a pint of warm strawberries, and could smell the scent of all the way back to our house.

    I found this poem on my Poetry Foundation app last night, and liked it well enough to share here. There is as much truth as poetry in these lines. You betcha.

    Ode to the Midwest
    By Kevin Young

    The country I come from
    Is called the Midwest

    —Bob Dylan

    I want to be doused
    in cheese

    & fried. I want
    to wander

    the aisles, my heart's
    supermarket stocked high

    as cholesterol. I want to die
    wearing a sweatsuit—

    I want to live
    forever in a Christmas sweater,

    a teddy bear nursing
    off the front. I want to write

    a check in the express lane.
    I want to scrape

    my driveway clean

    myself, early, before
    anyone's awake—

    that'll put em to shame—
    I want to see what the sun

    sees before it tells
    the snow to go. I want to be

    the only black person I know.

    I want to throw
    out my back & not

    complain about it.
    I wanta drive

    two blocks. Why walk—

    I want love, n stuff—

    I want to cut
    my sutures myself.

    I want to jog
    down to the river

    & make it my bed—

    I want to walk
    its muddy banks

    & make me a withdrawal.

    I tried jumping in,
    found it frozen—

    I'll go home, I guess,
    to my rooms where the moon

    changes & shines
    like television.

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Great Day for Berries, and a Poem

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