Telling a story

There are red spidery flowers that used to bloom in the ivy next to our walkway when I was growing up. My mother called them British soldiers, and said that when they came up in late August, my father knew it was time for him to work on his syllabus.

Now that I’m an adjunct clause, I am looking everywhere for British soldiers (the flowers), never mind that I grew up many growing zones south of my current address. And of course because I’m an adjunct clause rather than a tenured clause, I won’t know whether I even have a second class until Thursday.

I have my syllabus from last year, but I’ve changed the order of the papers, and have them starting out with a more creative paper. Yay, CNF! But now I have to build that syllabus so that when I read the headings, it sounds like a class on research writing. I have to feel in my bones that the progression and the order makes sense.

And that they don’t have two papers due in as many weeks or class on Thanksgiving day. Thus are the pitfalls of scheduling.


It’s blackberry season at Fangs and Clause central. My hausfrau DP spent yesterday shirtless and canning jam. Every few hours I put down my editorial work and picked more blackberries for my personal chef. Our blackberries ripen from the bottom, for some reason.

What are you going to do with all that blackberry jam, you may ask. The first time we went to New Orleans, we found a place that served toasted french bread with butter, jam, and brie. This is exactly what we are going to do with all that blackberry jam.


We have a row of bushes along the property line. The rhododendron blooms first, then the lilac. After that, the rose and the spirea, possibly in that order. The butterfly bush and the bush that I call New England hibiscus are the next to last bushes to bloom. The Fake Daisies (TM) bloom in September and are the last flowers of the season. [Management: Indy has only just realized how hard it is to spell flower names.]

My bush calendar says that summer is coming to an end, and I am weeping into my laptop.


How do you mark your seasons, your stories?


One response to “Telling a story

  1. I’d like to mark my seasons by having friends send me homemade blackberry jam . . .

    But I always write cozier in the Fall, fluffier in the Winter, angrier in the Spring, and very little in the late summer. Don’t know why.

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