Friday, January 6, 2012

Cape Town time

At night you dream of hunting mushrooms along an Austrian stream where ice tinkles; in a summer street in New York a ballet director asks you out to dinner and wishes you were his. You don't know any ballet directors. Awake and after coffee in the early morning your feet sink into the soft green lawn and are wet with dew. At midday all the leaves in the garden are glittering mirrors. You walk inside and the dark rooms are a pale blue. At 4 o'clock you want tea. At 6 you crush mint for a drink, and squeeze limes from the tree near the washing line. At 7.30 pm every long evening the coucal - rainbird - calls from the dense shrubs at the bottom of the garden, its descending scale like liquid chocolate in the evening.  In the day the poplars in the wind are water, rushing. At dusk they settle in profound silence. Hadedas fly in clarion battalions over the house to their roosting. When the moon fattens the wood owls begin to call.


  1. Poetry.

    An aside, of interest to you and your mushroomers. I don't know which news feeds you have there, but ask Google for details of New Years Eve mushroom deaths in Canberra.A (probably) recent arrival from Asia mistook Death Caps for Paddy Straw 'shrooms.
    Not saying you'd make the same mistake (wrong climate), but if you are writing about fungi this may be important.
    Oh, Happy New Year!

  2. Thank you dinahmow :-)

    I get tired of mushroom warnings, though I add them to articles I write. If you're dumb enough to eat a mushroom without verifying what it is...

    Fewer people die of mushroom poisoning every year than are struck by lightning. But it tends to make the news. I'd rather warn people not to drive a car. Over 1,100 people were killed on South African roads in December.

  3. sighhhhhhh. ❤

    My favourite mushroom story: elderly friends of the family (husband and wife) went mushrooming in Newlands Forest. Made a luscious creamy omelet and after a while felt very ill. Prepared to die happy (if a little sooner than planned) but with all their affairs in order, they went to lie down on their bed and woke a few hours later, still holding hands, with a slight case of indigestion.

  4. Gorgeous imagery.... :)

  5. Now I understand " From the sublime to the ridiculous".

    xo J.

  6. Hear, hear! If you don't know it, don't eat it!

    I think your whole description sounds like a walking, sensual dream. Who needs a photograph?

  7. Just lovely. Thank you.

  8. Lovely. Very evocative and dreamlike.

  9. Wisssshhhhh. That's how it flew over me. Nicely done!


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