Friday, June 3, 2016

Weltschmertz, welshrats

Nights are bright, as June slides beneath our feet, the summer snake that makes us forget the long black afternoons and sunless mornings. Celebrations at the new, long table are within the backyard bowl where we sometimes feel like goldfish, pursing our lips and blowing bubbles at the windows that watch and listen. That aspect of our tiny garret, upstream on Henry Street, I miss. Just being invisible. A private sky.

We watch, too. We have found two cats in the windows. No one pets them.  We see where the squirrels live behind the gutter, high above a house. We wait for Beeskwee to come out and stare at us through the fence. We follow planes and choppers, and the robin and the cardinal who take it in turns to carol from the highest fire escape. We hear the hoarse beagle barking breathlessly. We hear the rusty voice yelling at it.

The garden is oppressively green.

But, snapping out of it, the log above? The log is a chicken liver mousse, baked at low heat in a bain marie - with a sweetfern bourbon infusion. It is rich, and we ate one end of it; the middle section was sent to friends nearby for a birthday snack. They like such things. The relish was caramelized onions from the Borough Hall Greenmarket, cooked with autumn olive flower vinegar. Salad leaves from the garden.

Champagne because the Frenchman deserved it. And I don't mind helping.


  1. Our garden less viewable by others, but I still feel we're being overlooked by others and then I wonder if I'm just paranoid and no one really cares...after 20 years I still don't know :-)

  2. Nice. I share food too. I like to bake or get a hankering for something and then I have too much. There are people in my neighborhood who are glad to take my extras. Sometime I make extra on purpose and take it to the homeless day center.

    Our backyard is pretty private right now. Eventually the land behind us is going to be sold and more houses added. I will regret the loss of trees/forest/wild life.

  3. "oppressively green" - i love that. It's the perfect description of this time of year, especially a year as wet as this one. Sadly, we will be wishing for it in August when the heat sucks every drop of moisture away.

  4. Friends who have an outside deck (second floor), that felt too exposed at dinner time, built some panels out of inexpensive bamboo poles that they arranged wherever they were needed. Those, together with their umbrella and a couple of pots filled with tall bushy stuff (that they leave outside all winter (in Minnesota!) did the trick.

  5. I, too, would have to watch as you sat down to eat that lovely meal at that lovely table ;)


  6. I love your lyrical words, and gorgeous photos. You inspire me to make every dinner a celebration.

  7. Ah - so beautiful, the words and the photo of a lovely afternoon. xo


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