Where there is true winter, summertime sings.
Remember the ‘flu season? Remember how we thought it would NEVER go away? Remember how much coughing we did? Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad, for great is our reward. Hello, sunshine.
A velvet-legged bee bumbled by
While skyward, the swallows swooped by
A ricochet breeze came to ruffle the trees,
As suntime bid snowtime, “Goodbye!”
Every living thing is getting busy here in Delft, The Netherlands, where we’ve been for the past ten days. Mosquitoes are certainly active, in this balmy humidity (le sigh), but also bumblebees the size of 747’s and all manner of interesting beetles and swallows and magpies and waterfowl and oh, the swans. Nasty, hissing creatures, but such grace.
With all of this vacationing going on – and the number of guests we’ve had traipsing through our rented flat – I’ve rather overfocused on the birds and the bees, and not as much on the poetry. Fortunately, this month it’s limericks, which shouldn’t take me long at all. In theory.
My very helpful houseguests all know that I have this monthly challenge. “Oh, a limerick!” they crow. “I can help with that! There was a young lady from Delft… um….” and then they run into trying to rhyme Delft three times with ANYTHING, and finally shrug. “It’s harder than I thought.” Well, yes. Yes, it is.
So, while it is violently cloudbursting – we get a couple of these a day, and then they pass and everyone goes back out for a bike ride and gelato – I shall take a moment and flog my brain for a suitable rhyme on the theme of “the birds and the bees.” Ahem.
A waterbug skimming along
Tried to dance to an eider duck’s song
Pirouette with a turn was all he could learn –
He got dizzy and sank before long.
(Technically, this isn’t quite a duck; I’ve heard it called a water hen… in common parlance, this is a coot, but does anyone know why its babies have red feathers when as adults they’re b&w? They’re a mystery…)
To a Waterfowl
A duckling is made out of fluff.
If that isn’t precious enough,
Canals where they’re found with lilies abound –
(Not “awww”-ing is actually quite tough.)
The warm air says ‘Springtime!’ – so sweet
In the market square, played on repeat
Are hand-clasps and hallos, a cheerful buzz grows
As neighbors meet friends on the street.
Invariably, limericks will wander off-topic… but, hey, jogging. Exercise. That’s seasonal, right? Right.
Delft has a Thursday market and a Saturday market, and you can get bakery goods and sundries and produce at them both, and flowers on Thursday and antiques on Saturday. It is …wow. The best combination of a farmer’s market and a flea market. I could hang out and just stall-shop all day. I bought some random soaps that look like limes – enough so that I could put them on the table and someone would try to slice them. They smell amazing.
On holiday, meals are sublime
and missing a treat seems a crime.
but, a girl can mistake her longing for cake
for desire to jog all the time…
And now, back on topic…
Mosquitoes play tag in the rain.
Well, young ones do – old ones abstain.
There’s duty to do – tourists to pursue,
Before they end up as bloodstains.
(Well, one can hope, anyway.)
So, how did the rest of my Sisters deal with the birds and the bees and the limericks? Here’s Laura swooping in, Tricia fluttering over, and Sara buzzing by. We’ll zoom over to Liz, and Kelly. Andi is in the garden, trying to keep ahead of the weeds!
Poetry Friday this week is hosted at Buffy Silverman’s Blog.