Playing catch-up

Time has got away from me, but here are a few highlights of my doings since November.

Christmas came and went – abbreviated by pandemic restrictions, but enlivened by snow, which after a couple of days of heavy shovelling became old fairly soon, particularly when accompanied by a polar vortex. Which was then followed by an atmospheric river, though happily not to the degree we experienced in November.

And then some signs of spring (rhubarb) to come, though it’s frozen and thawed and frozen and thawed since then. It will be a while until the soil is warm and dry enough to start planting anything. Meanwhile, I’m sorting and swapping seeds with neighbours and getting ready to plan this year’s garden.

In literary news, one of my poems, Tasting Dirt (all about compost!) appears boldly on the front inner cover of the current issue of Small Farmer’s Journal (winter 2021). Fascinating and one of a kind journal, lavishly illustrated, with lots on farming with horses and oxen, and all kinds of interesting detail on everything from setting up a binder to a report on the apples of New York in 1908.

Another poem, Hügelkultur, which happens also to be on a soil-amendment theme, appeared in the autumn issue of the long running UK literary journal Acumen, and was featured as a guest poem.

And finally, an update on the rice porridge post below, from last summer: I made some with black (“Forbidden”) rice and it was as delicious as I remembered. In addition to the spring onions, crispy shallots, cilantro, sesame oil etc, I added some winter broccoli and Romanesco florets, and fennel fronds and slices and a dash of gomasio. A perfect winter food.

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