|More Than Zero
||[Nov. 19th, 2017|07:34 pm]
The next rainstorm, which is likely to begin around midnight, probably won't extend into Tuesday after all, and the storm after that has been severely downgraded from previous predictions, and the current forecast is for sprinkles next Sunday and maybe early Monday. More interesting is that the predicted high for next Tuesday is up to 72, and Monday and Wednesday are expected to be mild as well, though not in the seventies. This could be our Indian summer this year. Three mild days is a bit of a disappointment, but I'll take what I can get. It is November, after all. |
The oak tree in my back yard had a big leader removed several years ago, and the scar where it was, which is only about three feet above the ground, has thinned and broken, and now it fills with water every time there is rain. I'm sure this is not good for the tree. it is also an indication that some hollowing out is taking place. The location of the tree would prevent it from hitting the house should it, or either of its remaining leaders, fall, but such an event would take out part of my fence, and could fall onto adjacent properties and do damage there— in other words the tree has become a potential lawsuit I couldn't afford.
I don't know if I should patch the hole with cement, which is the usual thing done in such cases, or just have the tree taken out, which is costly but probably less so than fence replacement and certainly less so than potential lawsuit (especially should it hit a parked car and crush it.) Also, carpenter ants like to invade trees suffering this condition and can quickly weaken them to the point of collapse. Removal seems the best course, though the birds and squirrels and feral cats will miss it, and I will miss the shade it provides. Ah, the hazards of rustic life.
No English murder on television tonight, but English drama and comedy, which is the next best thing. I have to go fix something to eat while watching it.
Poem About Nothing
by Lorna Crozier
Zero is the one we didn't understand
at school. Multiplied by anything
it remains nothing.
When I ask my friend
the mathematician who studies rhetoric
if zero is a number, he says yes
and I feel great relief.
If it were a landscape,
it would be a desert.
If it had anything to do
with anatomy, it would be
a mouth, an missing limb,
a lost organ.
Zero worms its way
between one and one
and changes everything.
It slips inside the alphabet.
It is the vowel on a mute tongue,
the pupil in a blind man's eye,
of the face
he holds on his fingertips.
When you look up
from the bottom of a well
zero is what you see,
the terrible blue of it.
It is the rope
you tie around your throat
when your heels itch for wings.
Icarus understood zero
as he caught the smell
of burning feathers
and fell into the sea.
If you roll zero down the hill
it will grow,
swallow the towns, the farms,
the people at their tables
When the Cree chiefs
signed the treaties on the plain
they wrote X
beside their names.
In English, X equals zero.
I ask my frend
the rhetorician who studies mathematics
What does zero mean and keep it simple.
He says Zip.
Zero is the pornographer's number.
He orders it through the mail
under a false name. It is the number
of the last man on death row,
the number of the girl who jumps
three stories to abort.
Zero starts and ends
at the same place. Some compare it
to driving across the Prairies all day
and feeling you've gone nowhere.
∅ ∅ ∅
In the beginning God made zero.
Come to think of it, I rather enjoy eating while I watch murderers and rapists being found guilty and sentenced to life without possibility of parole, stuff like that. Serves the bastards right. Think I'll have some pie for desert.