A Week in January

Monday Morning Musings:

A Week in January

Some days begin grey and turn greyer,
there are mouse droppings in your pantry,
the rodents have partied while your cat sleeps,
the rain like a purple sweater, soft,
and you want to sleep, too.

Another day, the sun tries
to open its eyes,
as the wind whispers, try again—
and flaps rainbow wings. Look.

Another day, in this endless week,
the sky is the blue of cornflowers and hyacinths,
the river sparkles,
shadows dance and play
as a squirrel pipes a melody–

It’s all connected, the trees’
murmuring roots and the river’s answer,
the geese that rise
and the wind that sighs,

bang the drum, cross the bridge,
awaken and inform—
as the sun bestows majesty
ringing puddles in gold
take ideas from cloistered recesses–

It’s a heartbreaking spell
it’s a wishing well
it’s the dock at goodbye
and those left, asking why,

and you can’t explain,
but it comes again—
fear, regret—love,
a day in January. A week.

I used some of the random words I generated. It’s been another strange week within years full of strangeness. Lots of grey rainy days with a few patches of blue. No ice or snow—that may come later this week. The GOP is still awful, and I pity anyone trying to teach or learn in Florida. Our children and their spouses—are sick. Older child and their wife have COVID. We have not seen any of them recently, but parents worry. Our refrigerator was terminally ill, and we got a new one last week. Then a couple of days ago, I heard some rustling, and we discovered mouse droppings in a large cabinet under the kitchen counter. A lot. It was a major cleanup. I think perhaps the bird feeder attached to the kitchen window may have lured them with its scattered seeds on the ground. So, though I’ve been enjoying seeing the variety of birds there, I think we should not fill this feeder again.

We’ve caught up on British mysteries this week, sort of comfort shows, not bleak mysteries.
Annika, which we started in October, so re-watched the first episode again and finished the series. My husband was put off by Nicola Walker’s breaking the fourth wall when he first saw it. But this time, we both enjoyed the show. Nicola Walker can do anything. I had listened to the original radio/podcast version of the show, too, which is also voiced by Walker.

Miss Scarlett and the Duke (Season 3)—it’s a light-weight mystery series, but fun, with good acting. I’m surprised how caught up my husband got in it.

We started the latest season of All Creatures Great and Small. It’s another “comfort series,” but it’s hard not to love it. It’s based on the books about a rural veterinarian in Yorkshire in the1930s. The books are also good, and so was the series done several decades ago.

Then we started something totally different, The Devil’s Hour (on Amazon). It’s about a woman who wakes every single day at 3:33 A.M. after a strange dream. This show should come with lots of trigger warnings. It’s unsettling, but we were both intrigued and want to see what happens. We have eclectic tastes. 😏

Warm and colorful food for cold, grey days.

36 thoughts on “A Week in January

  1. That looks delicious!
    And the squirrel…
    Plus the usual amazing skies.
    Mice are no fun–one place I lived it took months to get rid of them (they came from the abandoned building next door)
    And so much grey…rain again today…I too cherish those small bursts of blue.
    My nephew too has been very sick–Covid rampant in the high school where he teaches, but he got some stomach virus that had him down for days. There is no end to it. I hope your family is back to good health soon.(K)

    • Thank you so much, Kerfe.
      It was raining very steadily earlier, but now I think it’s just cloudy.
      The last time we had a mouse, our other cat (the white one who died) caught it, and that was that.
      There seem to be so many illnesses going around. I hope your nephew is feeling better.
      The stew was one of those thrown together meals. It was delicious. We had it over rice.

  2. I absolutely love this, Merril. It had a Mary Oliver feel to it but with a totally Merril voice!

    As for the mouse droppings – that is NEVER fun to find – and maybe move the feeder further away from the house!

    That chickpea stew looks gorgeously delicious!

    I’ll have to check out those shows. I’m in the mood for something different. Never diss your eclectic tastes!

  3. Your imagery is always wonderful, but I liked especially this one: “sun bestows majesty
    ringing puddles in gold”

    I’m sure your chickpea soup will help dispel the grayness.
    Also, we are enjoying the warm and comfy All Creatures Great and Small. Best wishes for another productive week and restored health to the children! 😀

  4. As John Denver once sang, “Some days are diamond, some days are stone.” And some days, “there are mouse droppings in your pantry.” (I’m very taken with your line as a metaphor for life.) I love how you use rhyme in the following stanza:

    It’s a heartbreaking spell
    it’s a wishing well
    it’s the dock at goodbye
    and those left, asking why.

  5. I hope your children and their spouses get better soon! Your photos and your poem are gorgeous (as always). We are also watching All Creatures, especially when we have a need to escape this world. I read the books when I was young and also watched the original series. We also enjoy Miss Scarlett and the Duke but I thought a 4th season was due to come out. We’ve already finished Season 3 (and that didn’t take long). Have you watched Vienna Blood? We enjoy that one a lot, but we have to be sure to have enough time because we often watch two episodes at a time.

  6. Merrill, this is an incredible poem. I loved it the imagery, the movement of the captured visual emotions, the lingering questions or suggestions. Loved it. I hope your family quickly recover and regain full health. Blessings to all…

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