1940s Archive

Coast Calendar

continued (page 2 of 3)

A swarm of bees in May Is worth a load of hay.

The farmer puts on his veiled hat and takes his dip net down, but the bees get into his broad pants, between wind and water, and the little boy laughs to see his father leap out of them and run bare into the bay.

The baby sits up by himself. The mother put salt pork on the big toe the small boy has run the rusty nail into. The winds are forever west. The rising sun turns whole forests into singing birds. Naked Gemini is the sign, and, by Jeminy! the lambs are often twins in the pasture, and the small boy believes he will start off his family with twin boys, though how he will manage with two of himself at once is more than he knows. He brings the girl's books home in the strap with his own books, and he does the kissing that is done now when they are by themselves and hunt for four-leaf clovers on the grass.

Now the plow point goes into earth, the spanned horses come up the fields trampling the bluets, and the plow shines like silver. The small boy walks the rolling furrows with joy, arching his bare toes. His father lets him hold the handles of the plow for a round, and he goes with butts wide, bursting the stitches at his proud stern. His mother will have much work to sew them together for school tomorrow. The lobster traps lie untended, and the crabs devour all the bait, for the farmer is all farmer for the moment and no fisherman. The potatoes are dropped. The big boy scatters the peas. The woodchuck plans a still larger nursery, seeing how near the peas will be to his domicile, and he goes down into his burrow to attend to the increase in his household. The crows congregate on the pines, they can hardly talk together for the water in their beaks as they watch the yellow kernels fall into the dunged hills. They laugh in scorn at the old pants and coat with nothing but two crossed boards in them, masquerading as the farmer; they know he is much thicker through the pants than this. They go to bed hungry on purpose to stoke themselves with swollen sugared corn kernels tomorrow. The farmer comes in smelling of cow dressing and good dirt, and he sits tired in the kitchen by a gingerbread, in peace up to his crinkled eyes. Sweat is a sharp sauce to a good supper.

The light breeze blows the apple blossoms over the dark loam of the garden, for the land is white with apple trees now. Even the deep wild woods light up with the pink fires of wild crab apples.

A man walks through a honeycomb when he walks through a day, and the bees are a far-away thunder to the boy lying lazy, face down in the orchard grass. The swallows skim low, and it will rain in the night; the old man is right, as they find by the clean puddles on the grass at sunrise. The crows are still empty and are in loud conclave in the pines, they cry over the fear they have that the twine string strung up last night over the garden rows is some kind of trap.

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