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Archive for June, 2011

I am grateful for this day and that I have decided to push myself to give thanks each Thursday (more or less each Thursday and more or less thanks)

Glad that Hubby helped me fix yesterday’s poem’s formatting, which I had screwed up when left to my own devices, Mac and me. I needs my Mac Daddy.

How about lack of pretension and a sense of humility? It sounds pretentious to say it, but I love a lack of pretension. Innocence, the naif. Humility, humus, the dirt, the ground, the earth, what is lowly and below, what lacks ego. I am loving Jeff Tweedy’s old school lack of pretension, but also love knowing what a complicated person he seems to be.

Grateful for Woody Guthrie’s words channeled through Jeff Tweedy’s music and voice. I chose this version because it’s so like Woody. The studio version and the many live versions are often great (how can you fail with those lyrics and Tweedy’s voice?), but this is the most simple, humble, and lovely to me.

Woody had me already, for many years, and Wilco had me a bit, but this? It’s beautiful, so beautiful.

Here’s another. I always forget how plainly sexual Woody Guthrie’s words often are, but how in their simplicity, they are often much more –broad and encompassing, clear and honest; never missing. It’s the Garden of Eden, maybe without the shame, isn’t it?


“Remember The Mountain Bed”

Do you still sing of the mountain bed we made of limbs and leaves?
Do you still sigh there near the sky where the holly berry bleeds?
You laughed as I covered you over with leaves
Face, breast, hips, and thighs
You smiled when I said the leaves were just the color of your eyes

Rosin smells and turpentine smells from eucalyptus and pine
Bitter tastes of twigs we chewed where tangled wood vines twine
Trees held us in on all four sides so thick we could not see
I could not see any wrong in you, and you saw none in me

Your arm was brown against the ground, your cheeks part of the sky
Your fingers played with grassy moss, as limber you did lie
Your stomach moved beneath your shirt and your knees were in the air
Your feet played games with mountain roots as you lay thinking there

Below us the trees grew clumps of trees, raised families of trees, and they
As proud as we tossed their heads in the wind and flung good seeds away
The sun was hot and the sun was bright down in the valley below
Where people starved and hungry for life so empty come and go

There in the shade and hid from the sun we freed our minds and learned
Our greatest reason for being here, our bodies moved and burned
There on our mountain bed of leaves we learned life’s reason why
The people laugh and love and dream, they fight, they hate to die

The smell of your hair I know is still there, if most of our leaves are blown
Our words still ring in the brush and the trees where singing seeds are sown
Your shape and form is dim but plain, there on our mountain bed
I see my life was brightest where you laughed and laid your head…

I learned the reason why man must work and how to dream big dreams
To conquer time and space and fight the rivers and the seas
I stand here filled with my emptiness now and look at city and land
And I know why farms and cities are built by hot, warm, nervous hands

I crossed many states just to stand here now, my face all hot with tears
I crossed city, and valley, desert, and stream, to bring my body here
My history and future blaze bright in me and all my joy and pain
Go through my head on our mountain bed where I smell your hair again.

All this day long I linger here and on in through the night
My greeds, desires, my cravings, hopes, my dreams inside me fight:
My loneliness healed, my emptiness filled, I walk above all pain
Back to the breast of my woman and child to scatter my seeds again

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Obviously, we’re not in the realm of sexiest songs any more (fear not, I have a few in my pocket for future use). However, if you count romance as sexy, then this one goes way up on the list. It’s sexy in its own way, including the lyrics that hint at domesticity (“tell me why I must keep working on”), in typical Woody fashion. Or maybe they hint at his lefty politics. I don’t care either way and then some. To me, Woody was a great poet and his Voice will always contain the pulse of something human and whole. It’s all fine with me.

I grew up listening to one half of Woody Guthrie’s album Songs to Grow On. I still have it, and sort of can’t bear to part with it. It’s an old 10″ record, the vinyl so thick and heavy you could practically chop ice with it; not like the flippy-floppy albums that came later, all bendy and pliable. Of course, it’s full of pocks and skips and scratches. Something my kids will never know about, that sound.

It was an album that apparently drove my mother crazy from overplay. But my dad got a kick out of it and he would sing the songs to me, and laugh.

When my girls were babies, I sang the same songs to them, too. Waking up, middle of the day, driving in the car, taking a bath, bedtime. Woody Guthrie was a real influence in my life. One of my heroes from way back to wee child-dom.

A CD came out of Songs to Grow On, with Arlo Guthrie and a slew of Woody’s clan singing along to the old, taped voice of Woody. But I didn’t really care for it and finally, the original recording of Songs to Grow On came out on disc. It was then that I realized that my 10″ record was only half of what Woody had recorded. I should have known since the cover stated right on the front “Vol. I.”

When my second daughter was born, I, for the second time, got into a severe depression. Mermaid Avenue came out the same year and we were all in love with California Stars, right away. You knew it was a classic, with a pedigree to boot. We can all be grateful that Tweedy (and Jay Bennett, not sure who did what) got a hold of it.

I was going to print the lyrics here, but thought the better of it because the music and the lyrics seem so well married (ah, I have come back to the 20-year anniversary after all).

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I am sure that no one in my family shares my love for Garlic Scapes Pesto.

I started making this stuff for the first time last summer on the suggestion of a friend. Previous to that, I would bring home a handful of scapes from my farm share, and with a puzzled expression, not unlike one you might see on the face of a country rube with a piece of straw dangling from his mouth in an old 1960’s cartoon, I would chop a few into a stir fry or onto a fresh green salad, to no accolades and with no desire to do it ever again.

I found many recipes for Garlic Scapes Pesto on the web last year. I credit this one to dorie greenspan with a couple of tweaks by me.

1 C (appx 10-12) garlic scapes, roughly chopped

1/2 C hand-grated* parmigiano-reggiano

1/3 C extra virgin olive oil

1/3 C toasted, slivered almonds

appx 2 tsp fresh lemon juice (squeeze it baby!); additional lemon zest if you like

1/2 tsp sea salt

freshly ground pepper to taste

Put all ingredients, save the cheese, into a food processor and chop until uniformly blended and to your personal preference for smoothness

After you have transferred every last bit of the pesto from the food processor into a glass (or ceramic) mixing bowl, add the grated parm-reg until well-blended

Put the pesto into an airtight container and refrigerate. Use it whenever you want, even on a midnight kitchen raid while you are watching a dirty French movie. I don’t think it will make you fat, even if you eat a cupful all at once.

I have found that the pesto stays fresh for around 4-5 days after it’s refrigerated. If you want to be like twinkly, you’ll double, triple, or quadruple the recipe (see note below) and you will freeze smallish portions for later use. Like next week and the week after because you will never get enough of this stuff. I dare you to try to have even one batch left when the snow flies. But wouldn’t it be loverly if you could make it last that long?

*after experimenting last summer with this recipe as well as with recipes for traditional basil pesto, I have found that adding the cheese into the food processor has a detrimental effect on both texture and flavor. Also, in typical twinkly fashion, I make huge batches of things so as to maximize my TIME SPENT PREPPING/COOKING to FOOD YIELD ratio. I freeze the garlic scapes pesto sans cheese (and so should you).

HOW DO I EAT IT? Well, I eat it on crackers for lunch, every day until it is gone. I eat it on wheat linguine noodles with nothing else or with cooked chicken added. I am eating it right now atop an Ak-Mak. You should do these things if you know what’s good for you and you should write to me with any new ways to eat it that are delicious.

And look, I’m gonna use the same goddamn photograph I used in yesterday’s post. That’s how little I like to work. I didn’t even reduce it like yesterday. God am I lazy.

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Google images

garlic scapes

garlic scapes pesto (perhaps I will post a recipe tomorrow–?)

food, eating, food, eating food, food in general, dreaming about making delicious recipes, even if I never make any of them, eating delicious food that someone else makes, more food

the arugula I mentioned in a post a while back? I love it mixed in fresh green salads–fresh greens right out of the farm field with the best homemade effin’ dressing in the world (recipe soon–??)

fonts (but maybe not enough to pay $30 a year on wordpress to change them on my blog)

the 3 cases of classic Dentyne that came to my door a few days ago

my kids, home from school

my kids, in camp away from home some of the time

sleeping in oh my god do I love sleeping in

money: having it, having enough of it, having more of it

friends….you already know that I love my friends and that I form intense bonds with people; but also, I really love my kids’ friends (well, except for that one boy who put a sucker in my hair that one time about 10 years ago…wait, that’s a lie, that was my nephew, 20 years ago and I’ll bet one of his own 2 sons have already karmically paid his debt)

the advent of summer (though not the thought of the already-short New England days getting shorter)

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Continuing along the lines of last week’s Music Monday….

The Queen of Soul, tellin’ it.

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As some of you may know, Lady Gaga’s meat dress went on display in Cleveland this week. You can read about it here, courtesy of Erin O’ Brien’s fabulous Owner’s Manual for Human Beings.

In honor of the showing of Lady Gaga’s meat dress, and in concurrence with the advent of summer travels the country over, I thought I’d repost something I wrote a couple of years ago, as a “note” on Facebook.

 

Here’s some of what I learned at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last week in Cleveland:

Jimi Hendrix’ drawings were very good.

The Soul Stirrers are an amazing gospel group. Mahalia Jackson must have had them in mind when she asked “Why should the Devil have all the fun?”

Stevie Nicks is popular, more than I had ever imagined, and women who love her will stare and stare at her dresses. I witnessed near-active salivation.

Stevie Nicks cannot fit into any of those dresses ever again, I just know it.

Stevie Nicks is over 60 years old (”…and I’m getting older, too…”)

Maybe Stevie Nicks isn’t as bad as I thought all these years. She’s a pretty good song writer after all.

I don’t really know the definition of a “juke joint,” but here we go:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juke_joint

Jim Morrison was once skinny skinny skinny enough to fit into a teeny tiny jacket that belonged to his gal, Pamela Courson. He was also a cute little Cub Scout.

The now-famous “John Lennon glasses” were standard-issue British National Health glasses and he began wearing them for the film “How I Won the War.”

White folks grab all the glory from Black folks. Except maybe when it comes to gospel. Then they each just have their own way of doing things.

White music that forgets its black roots, whether blues, R and B, or gospel, isn’t really very good (okay, I learned this not at the R and R H of F but on the ride back home to Massachusetts listening to really bad white pop music).

Not only is Steven Tyler a horrible speller, but the lyrics of “Walk This Way” are more raunchy than I ever realized. Really dirty.

Roger Waters made millions and millions of dollars though he had a loathing of the audience and what he was doing. Hypocrite? You decide.

Even though he studies the Alexander Technique and is supposedly well-versed in Tantric sex, Sting’s outfit from Synchronicity is bad. Really, really bad:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UbQd3jxth5k&feature=related

No way can Mick Jagger be that small. C’mon, really? I would crush him like a bug.

Listening to Joni Mitchell and Nirvana at the same time is cognitive dissonance.

The Dyson hand dryers in the bathrooms rock out almost as much as Rock n Roll itself.

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