full day at strawbale studio,
orientation but already filling notebook
new terms and concepts--coppice, sway,
doctrine of signatures,
along with at least one maxim with broader
applications: "learn 40 uses
of 1 plant
before learning 1 use of 40 plants."
the main house looks out on a variety
of round pole structures clad in cob
and roofed with thatch--examples
of what we're here to learn.
past that, a
small forest and partially
frozen swamp; mossed over rockpiles
attest to 19th century field clearing for
trees of uniform age
speak to quick reclamation when farming
was abandoned, among which this elder
oak stands out, stolid witness to change.
the woods are bisected by a
clearcut swath, path of a pipeline
with a tragic past that pumps
500,000 barrels of petroleum per day.
with every step, our host and teacher
Deanne shares another bit of seven
decades of mindful experience. yet
for all her knowledge, one could see she
hasn't lost her sense of wonder as she
took time to literally hug a tree.