06 September 2021

Upon Reading North


Upon Reading North*

To say it’s unmagical is not to insult it.

It’s we who qualify and crave without definition.

Only assumptions based on context. Diction.

An entire first reading can be spent looking up meanings.

Magic’s absence then, is merely a possible state.

No stone ships here, nor glinting gravel

where men fell and froze and thawed again.

Only embers and beer cans and rebar lace.

This is Lake Ontario. On a clear day, they say, 

you can see Rochester from here.

Though noisy with gulls, untidy with detritus,

this shore of sea, this coast of bay,

is rest. Under the paling stars of morning

lay your head on the sand. Point north.

The city is behind you now.

Here is Aurora. Early sun turns the inner eye red.

The cascade is waves, each following the last.

The evolution is of your education, your

experience, in which you are the expert.

Thus the world offers itself to your imagination.

Within struggle is wonder, that bulky emotion.

It leaves room for little else.

                                                                    *after Seamus Heaney

11 February 2021

A Quote About

 "He was after a joyfulness, a belief in existence in which man's inner light is neither rare nor elite, but godly and common and acknowledged. For that it was necessary to be rooted in the world again."

                                                               Mary Oliver on Walt Whitman                                             

20 January 2020

Long and Winding Yarn

With my partner down with a bad cold, the holidays were relatively quiet here this year. There were many quiet hours by myself, wind blowing outside the window, my man sleeping and recovering in the next room. I took the time to take a plunge. It's one I've been meaning to get to and this seemed the perfect time. 

I frogged a mostly complete sweater. Yes, it was hard. I loved the pattern, loved the stitch pattern, loved the colour. I just hated the way the fit looked on me. I'd been fighting the fact that the bomber style cardigan is not for me and I finally had to concede. It felt a little sad to rip out so much hard work.

Then a funny thing happened. As I wound the yarn around the swift and tied it into hanks for washing, I began to get back in touch with the fibre itself. As the washed and weighted hanks dried and the kinks straightened, I remembered what it was I loved about this wool in the first place. I could see different cardigans, simpler wearable garments, in the raw material. The slowness and quiet of the winter break, sitting on my living room floor winding away, was just  what I needed.  How lovely to get a chance to just be with my imagination and a beautiful raw material. It was very healing. 

Pretty stitch pattern of a sweater that was not to be.

20 November 2019

It Took A Doll

It's taken this doll to make me want to photograph knitting again. She, along with her sisters and many other mementos, had been in offsite storage for over three years. Little did I know that, packed along with them, was a host of the wee beasts that lived in the carpet of my old place. A small area rug appears to have been the host of the eggs. The beetles had been reproducing in the dark of one storage bin all that time - happily munching away at my belongings.  I discovered this last month, as I unpacked the last box from our recent move. 

How sad and bizarre it felt to throw away a lifetime's worth of paper and cloth things. Teddy bears, letters, The Daughter's childhood art - all tossed along with the bin itself. The dolls were in a different box, so were saved but their clothes were ruined.

Right now the dolls are wrapped in fabric togas awaiting a new knit wardrobe. This is the first completed garment. It's knit from a bright Koigu I've kept for ages but had no idea what to do with. It suits this project perfectly so I'm glad I held on to it. I've had the flu and knitting this little dress has helped me pass the time at home. Now I'm off to find the next pattern.

21 May 2019

Would You Wear It?

I have to say that I am still uncomfortable with labeling the 80's vintage. I suppose everyone feels that way about their youth? Even if we laugh a little at the things we wore, we still don't consider them to be in any way "vintage" or, heaven forbid, "antique".

That being said, I still love these sweaters from this 1985 Scheepjes magazine I found at a sale. Would I wear this bobbly, dropped shoulder, extra wide cardigan? Definitely yes! Well...probably not in golden yellow but otherwise, yes. I still have such fondness for the shapes of the era. So bold yet cozy. Dramatic but comfy.
And check out the lovely jacket below. On a crisp fall day? With boots and a scarf? Gorgeous. 
I'd probably forego accessorizing with that guy on my arm. I would however, steal his scarf.

05 May 2019


I knit a sock. Knit from Regia, a good reliable yarn. Knit on transit, mostly. Knit from yarn that was on sale and then sat and sat.
The black portion was so much longer than I had imagined it would be. And it was right at the top of the leg. All anyone would see, as if many might be looking, was black above a boot. How dull.

So I added lazy daisies. Arts and crafts and poorly rendered - they break up all that objectionable black. They were also a delight to embroider. Process

The photo was an accident. I pointed the camera at my legs and captured the legs of another. Aren't they beautifully framed in the curve of my socks?