Bacon on the Bookshelf

Savory picks for the free range reader

September 24, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

Meow

It’s hard when you do the right thing and end up in the wrong place. My friend Mary Raymond stops in at Bacon today with a funny and heartfelt essay on how she got herself into a tricky situation, and how we might help… From Mary Raymond: At this point, I blame the zucchini. It was the Saturday after the 4th of July, closing in …

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September 17, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

Farewell to the Queen

Pied Beauty by Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889) Glory be to God for dappled things –    For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;       For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim; Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings;    Landscape plotted and pieced – fold, fallow, and plough;       And áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim. All things counter, original, spare, strange;    Whatever is fickle, freckled (who …

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September 3, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

The Blessing of the Old Woman, The Tulip, and The Dog

by Alicia Ostriker To be blessed said the old woman is to live and work so hard God’s love washes right through you like milk through a cow To be blessed said the dark red tulip is to knock their eyes out with the sun of lust implied by your up-ended skirt To be blessed said the dog is to have a pinch of God …

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August 13, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

On Awakening

“It was a couple of springs ago. I was driving into New York City from New Jersey on one of those crowded, fast-moving turnpikes you enter it by,” writes Frederick Buechner. “It was very warm. There was brilliant sunshine, and the cars glittered in it as they went tearing by. The sky was cloudless and blue. Around Newark a huge silver plane traveling in the …

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August 6, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

The Art of Losing Isn’t Hard to Master

This Sunday finds me in Atlanta helping a daughter move into a new apartment. Unpacking yesterday, she couldn’t find an Important pair of black jeans. Her favorite pair. It’s kind of a disaster! (They’ll turn up, of course; surely they will.) Her loss – and some of my own – brought to mind this half-remembered poem by Elizabeth Bishop… One Art by Elizabeth Bishop The …

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July 30, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

Envy

What do you yearn for? Here’s a little poem by Louise Glück that made me think twice… Lament Suddenly, after you die, those friends who never agreed about anything agree about your character. they’re like a houseful of singers rehearsing the same score: you were just, you were kind, you lived a fortunate life. No harmony. No counterpoint. Except they’re not performances; real tears are …

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July 16, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

Think of Poetry as Fishing

“Think of poetry as fishing. What really pulls is the fascination of touching a deep, unseen world with monofilament line. It’s wonderfully dark down there, so I can’t see what might be coming along that I can possibly hook and bring up,” writes poet Rod Jellema. A sunset at Lake Michigan let him “catch” a glorious and strange poem I’d love to share with you …

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May 30, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

a morning stroll

Students have left campus following the end of the term, and summer classes have yet to begin. An eerie quiet holds in the early morning…  The daylilies think about greeting the day, the last of the columbine ring their tiny bells, and Virginia spiderwort continues to regret her name but not her looks. A small rabbit browses in the aster, a robin works on a …

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May 7, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

A Prayer for the Table in May

Book Title: Thirst

Mary Oliver, as always, says it best…. When I Am Among The Trees When I am among the trees, especially the willows and the honey locust, equally the beech, the oaks and the pines, they give off such hints of gladness. I would almost say that they save me, and daily. I am so distant from the hope of myself, in which I have goodness, …

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April 16, 2022
by jenniferpuryear

Because The Mower Did Not Come

Because the mower did not come the wild things grew and sang wild songs and the tulips remembered the melodies. A grandmother’s bluebells (long since forgotten) woke up, looked around, told some jokes because the mower did not come. Because the mower did not come the field balm threw a party and invited everyone even the outliers and introverts. Tulip and wild thing, bluebell and field …

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