“Orpheus and Eurydice”

May 25, 2016

Watts_George_Frederic_Orpheus_And_Eurydice[1]

ORPHEUS and EURYDICE

 

 

 

Hear my rendering of an oft-told tale

(mixed with a leavening of Bullfinch)

Composed in view of Orpheus’

Lyre in the Cosmos.

 

 

Orpheus, son of Apollo and Calliope

(I forget Eurydice’s heritage)

Was to be blessed by Hymen.

 

He brought no happy omens.

His torch smoked, drew tears.

Flowers wilted,

Gods and Goddesses coughed and sputtered.

 

 

Orpheus, master of the lyre,

Whose notes melted tiger’s hearts

Made trees uproot and creep near,

Rocks to soften-

Loved his Eurydice.

 

 

 

But Fate conspired with happiness.

Eurydice, chased by Aristaeus

Was raped.

She died a broken, bloody death

On the end of Aristaeus’…. sword.

 

 

Fast did Orpheus descend to those Stygian depths!

His tones pleaded for the return of Eurydice.

 

Sisyphus sat on his rock to listen,

Ixion’s wheel stood still

The Furies eyes now wet with tears.

 

Ah! The Underworld turned upside down.

 

Eurydice came,

Garbed in her winding shroud,

fresh with young death.

 

 

Here’s the deal. Walk out of Hell

And don’t look back.

 

 

Orpheus! You almost made it!

Eurydice, twice dead, disappears.

 

Sometimes,

In both love and death-

 

It only takes one glance.

 

 

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2016 (first published in  the author’s “A Seasoning of Lust”, Lulu.com, 2009)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mishka’s Loot

May 22, 2016

Mishka

My dear friend, Nick Nicholson from Australia sent me this picture last night of one of his cats, Mishka.  She is quite the cat burglar.  For the past year, Mishka has been roaming the neighborhood, bringing back loot from God Knows Where.  Amongst the items she has selected are:

3 tea towels

one facewasher

2 car washing sponge

1 hairband w/bow

2 sports headbands

1 T-shirt

1 long sleeved T-shirt

1 girl’s top

1 piece bathing suit

1 pair of stockings

1 pair of leggings….

 

But by far, her favourite things to bring me were:

9 pairs of Knickers

19 gloves (mostly gardening gloves)

…..and….

83 socks.

Nick xxx

Mishka looks…. positively unrepentant.

Nick was my collaborator on “Pitcher of Moon” and “The Song of the Nightingale” (Amazon.com, 2014 and 2015).  We are going to do a collection of my Southern Short Stories next spring, with Nick including his marvelous photographs from his recent trip around the US, including the South.

Nick has been my greatest encourager in writing  and in other creative arts for the last 10 years.  Besides my Aunt Jean Kohut, who died two years ago at age 102. In this time when people  don’t read much, except their phones, these two people have made all the difference in my exploration and production as a writer.

However,  unless Nick can dissuade Mishka from her life of crime, the folk around him will appear with pikes and pitchforks, demanding at least their knickers and socks back.

Think of the villagers in “Frankenstein”.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2016

 

 

“Original Blessing”

May 18, 2016
Kohut-Bartels-BOP-8

“Sea Eagle”, jane kohut-bartels, watercolor, 2001

 

I have been fighting theological issues my whole life.  I come from a family who has a stance on theology  I just can’t tolerate.  It’s mean, oppressive, fundamentalist and especially misogynistic. There is no room in my life, in my belief system for this kind of ‘theology’.  It is abhorrent to me.  Having said that, I have struggled to come to what I do believe, and it has been an uphill climb my entire life. Organized religion is a sham to me, as I have seen the falsity of much of it.  Baha’is, Quakers, the different churches have left me numb and still an unbeliever. 

I  feel the necessity of Gratitude, and for this I am strong, though my target is not what others in the religious communities would consider the ‘correct’ target.  Too bad.  I am grateful for the beauty of Nature and the random kindnesses I have received, and I am grateful for a place of relative safety.  Perhaps there is little more in life to expect.

Lady Nyo

Original Blessing”

 

I am dizzy with love,

Standing in the rain,

This cosmic blessing

Pouring on my head,

Mingling with tears of gratitude

Til one stream

can not be deciphered

From the other.

 

I am an Original Blessing,

As are you,

And we are not born in sin,

But brought into the light of life

In great joy and anticipation.

 

Our first bellows are not of pain

But surprise at the roominess of the Cosmos,

As we kick our feet, flail our arms

And finally open our eyes at the glorious colors

Of Nature.

 

Original sin would have us

Born rotten,

A theological monkey on our back–

But I know no God of the Cosmos

Who would scar these tiny blessings

With such a heavy burden.

 

Original Blessing is a deliverance,

A deliverance of hope, trust and pride

A heritage where we can discern and save

Ourselves,

Walk in harmony with the Earth,

Stride with God across the span of life–

For this Earth is our cradle,

And all in it our kin.

 

For a truly wise person

Kneels at the feet of all creatures

And is not afraid to endure

The mockery of others.

 

And when the day sidles up to night

I will settle into the nest of the Earth,

Draw the dark blanket of the Cosmos

Across me,

Pillow my head upon stars

And know that the blessings I have been

Graced with today and always

Have come from the womb of God.

=

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2012-2016

(“Original Blessing” was published in “Pitcher of Moon” , Amazon.com, 2014, by the author)

 

 

 

“Darwins’ Worms”

May 15, 2016
Spiral

Spiral right back into Life

 

The soil has lost its excellence.

Worms hide in the

Deep sullen earth

I imagine curled up,

Embracing worm castings

And each other,

Desiccated former selves

Pale little ghosts

Awaiting the fertility of spring

The watering of a hard rain.

 

I squandered the bloom months,

Thinking paper and pen

Would bring its own blossoming

Scarcely seeing the vitality outside

Windows,

Allowing cabbage moths and beetles

To dominate

My nod to farming,

To self-sufficiency,

My tithe to the earth.

 

Ah, the soil is hardened

By the sins of the season.

Sharp winds make

Furrows

The cold buries down,

Deep, deep down

Torments, teases any life

That would show a feckless head.

 

Especially those hopeful worms

Now bundled in worm-sleep.

 

The words, verse,

I chose to cultivate

Over cabbage, collards

Failed to bloom.

Better I had plied the hoe

And bucket to that

Than a fevered pen

To paper.

 

It is now winter.

The fallow earth

Plays a waiting game

Knows I have failed

In pulp and soil

And mocks with a barrenness

Inside and out.

 

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2014

(“Darwin’s Worms” was published in “Pitcher of Moon”, Jane Kohut-Bartels, Amazon.com, Createspace, 2014) 

 

 

 

 

 

The Shame of India.

May 13, 2016

Indian Men and Authorities Are Hiding Their Heads in the Sand…..Hoping the World Will Forget What They Condone.

I wrote this short article “On the Misogyny of Indian Men” in July, 2014.  It doesn’t begin to cover the topic of the entrenched violence of Indian Men towards women and children.  It was then a stab at the very outrageous behavior that is seen as ‘normal’ by many in India.  Has much changed?  In the estimation of many, No. (The demonstrations of thousands are a start, but this is a country of over one billion people).  When you have lawmakers making statements that support the disgusting misogyny and murder by the bus driver (Mukesh Singh) of a 23 year old medical student, you can only throw up your hands at the hopelessness of the situation in India. 

But this raises a question:  Is Mukesh Singh a monster, along with the other 4 men convicted of murder and sentenced to death, or is it a reflection of a deeply entrenched belief in the value of Indian woman in Indian society? As disgusting as Mukesh Singh and his gang of rapists and murderers are, it’s supported by the mentality of many, many men in Indian society.

When the Parliamentary Affairs Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu declared:  “We can ban this film (“India’s Daughter”) in India.  But this is an international conspiracy to defame India.  We will see how the film can be stopped abroad, too.”

When defense lawyer A.P. Singh said “if his daughter or sister engaged in pre-martial activities he would take daughter or sister and in front of his entire family, would pour petrol on them and set them afire.”

How is this not barbarism?  India has a long way to go before it can join the civilized world.

‘On the Misogyny of Indian Men’, a short essay and an addition.

Today, March 3rd, 2015, was another article about the rape and death of an Indian woman on a bus.    This interview was  with the bus driver, who has been charged as one of the rapists, and condemned to death for his participation. Though it is hard to understand his justification, this isn’t a surprise to those women in India who suffer the twisted and misogynistic philosophy of many  in Indian society.  In my own country, (USA) I have come across resistance in even discussing the violence towards Indian women from women who should know better. One woman in particular  said this topic was not to be spoken of at dinner.  She went on to endlessly discuss a holiday.  So runs the mentality of many people who refuse to see the suffering of women. She was an educated, professional woman.  Should we expect more of the men in Indian society?

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Indian Rapist Blames Victim for the Rape.

(from AFP News)

One of the men convicted of the gang-rape and murder of an Indian student that shocked the world has said he blames the victim for “roaming around at night”.

The comments are made in a documentary to be screened on International Women’s Day.

Mukesh Singh, who was sentenced to death for his crimes, said the victim should not have been out at night, and should not have resisted the attack on a moving bus in 2012.

“You can’t clap with one hand -– it takes two hands. A decent girl won’t roam around at 9 o’clock at night,” he said in an interview for “India’s Daughter”, a BBC documentary to be broadcast on Sunday.

“A girl is far more responsible for rape than a boy. About 20 per cent of girls are good.”

The 23-year-old physiotherapy student died from her injuries 13 days after she was savagely attacked on her way home from the cinema with a male friend on December 16, 2012.

Before her death she was able to speak to police about the crime, which caused outrage across the world and triggered mass protests in India.

The attack highlighted the frightening level of violence against women in the world’s second most populous country and led to a major reform of the rape laws, speeding up trials and increasing penalties.

But Singh, 28, said his execution would “make life more dangerous for future rape victims”.

“Now when they rape, they won’t leave the girl like we did. They will kill her,” he told Leslee Udwin, the award-winning British filmmaker behind the documentary.

(Note: these ‘men’  rammed her with an iron pole, rupturing her intestines)

He also criticised the victim for fighting back against her attackers.

“She should just be silent and allow the rape,” he said. “Then they’d have dropped her off after doing her.”

“India’s Daughter” will be televised in seven countries including India and Britain on Sunday, International Women’s Day.

Udwin will speak to media at a screening of her film later Tuesday alongside the victim’s parents, who have campaigned vocally for improvements in women’s safety since their daughter’s death.

She said she was inspired by seeing ordinary Indians take to the streets to protest “in unprecedented numbers” following the attack.

“In my lifetime, I can’t recall any other country standing up with such commitment and determination for women’s rights,” Udwin said.

The case sparked much soul-searching about India’s treatment of women, but women’s rights campaigners say little has changed in the deeply patriarchal country.

Singh, one of five people convicted over the attack, admitted driving the bus during the incident but denied taking part in the rape.

He is appealing the verdict against him.

(Note: Indian authorities have banned the showing of this film in India.  As of March 5, 2015.)

 

On the Misogyny of Indian Men

Recently I have been reading about this issue of misogyny of men, and in particular, Indian Men.  In part I am pulled into this by some experience.  Misogyny is defined as ‘a hatred of women’Most people think of this in a sexual context.  However, I believe misogyny in some cultures is so prevalent that it defines much more than sexual attitudes, or to speak plainly, it is the total dismissal of women in that culture as second class, intellectually inferior, etc.  This of course, is not isolated to men from India, but is seen world-wide, especially in Muslim countries.

My direct experience with Indian men has been of a certain class, mostly from the upper classes.  These are very well educated and placed men in literature, education, the sciences, etc.  They are not the people one would associate with this mentality and behavior, however, I think it is very hard for Indian men in general to avoid the psychological and social issues of misogyny.  It is so prevalent in Indian society at all levels that it stains all classes.  In most  conversations I have had with upper class Indian men, there is a total blackout of any acknowledgement of misogyny in male behavior.   In only one conversation did an Indian man come forth with what he thought was the problem (lack of sex education..which begs the question to me…), but then avoided any further discussion.  Perhaps because I am an American woman this was what was making him uncomfortable, embarrassed,  but I think it is more to the issue that Indians are not comfortable talking about these things in general.  They are a very prudish and traditional society, regardless the level of education.

Actually, misogyny is so deeply entrenched in Indian society (and also in many women) that violence and devaluing women (and what flows from the caste system) is justifiable.

We read of the horrible prevalence of child and women rape in India.  According to statistics, there are over 100 REPORTED rapes of women daily.  This is just the reported rapes.  The amount of rapes unreported is much more.  Why is this so?

First, the usual men who are charged are lower middle and working class men. (of course, there is the case of  Tarun Tejpal, owner and editor of Tehelka in India, decidedly not a working class man, posturing as a left-leaning liberal) There are social and economic issues that make this obvious.  In the major cities  (and especially Delhi)  it is almost dangerous for women, unaccompanied by male relatives, to walk the sidewalks without what is called “eve-teasing”, which is groping and attempts of molestation, besides just wolf-whistles and obnoxious comments about women’s physical characteristics. (The name of this, “eve-teasing” is interesting: Eve being the temptress  of Adam?).  In the countryside, it is as dangerous and perhaps even more so. Gangs of men lie in wait for women walking home from work or on errands. However, what is even more troubling is the role and position of educated woman, women of privilege and class and caste, some who openly attack through media these women who are raped. (And hold that these crimes are those of “little brown men”, who just happen to be their own countrymen.) This is another form of misogyny, female hatred for themselves.  These women align themselves with male oppressors, thinking they will escape all the treatment of male misogynists, at least in the intellectual sphere.  But this is not the behavior of only upper class women.  It is also seen with working class women.  Blaming the rape victims is only part of this hatred.  In one village reported, a rape victim was set upon and threatened with burning alive if she didn’t leave the village of her home.

The intellectual class, the upper classes, like to blame the officials, the lawyers, the courts, and the police in particular for the lack of bringing these rapists to justice, but the base is set within Indian culture and society.  Of course, a high percentage of Indian police are corrupt, and in villages, in the countryside, bribes are standard procedure.  Having full knowledge of rapes and not reporting them is another practice by police.  The police tried to buy off two parents from their legitimate and horrifying complaint when their 5 year old daughter was kidnapped (by three local men) and raped and sodomized for three days.  The parents courageously resisted this. Another man raped a 5 year old girl.  His answer? “She was a beggar’s child. She had no value.”

These atrocities continue on and on.

Tour groups (some from here in the States and Europe, and most from India)  tell  tourists to immediately contact the police when they are molested on the street by Indian men.  But others say that this is rarely help. In fact, it can be even more obstructive to any justice.   One group of women who were staying in a hostel in some Indian city found out fast that every morning, like clockwork, police would show up banging on their door demanding bribes.  What to do?  It’s a difficult situation and only traveling in groups and not certain cities can you attempt at least a semblance of safety.

Where do these attitudes and behaviors of misogyny come from?

The answer to this question is not the place of this short article.  It would take a lot more research and study to answer this fully.  This article is just to raise awareness amongst women thinking about travelling to India and to pose some facts and warnings.

Recently I have been reading some literature that these attitudes are ‘post-Colonial influences’, left over from the period when the British were more than involved with the Indian continent.  Of course, the influence of the British imperialists certainly impacted on just about everything in Indian culture, but the problem of misogyny in India is far older than that.

It goes back to feudalism, and probably farther back.  The approach of man to woman relationship was built upon three things:  1) the availability of sexual release for men, 2) the issue of domestic  servitude and 3) reproduction.    Only where women are educated is some of this lessened.  However, this is also showing to be a double-edged sword. There is resentment from men of all classes where women are educated.  And as one Indian woman said to me recently, the very thing that should liberate women from the backwardness of society doesn’t.  “We are educated to not bring shame to our upper class and professional parents and relatives, but we are stopped from real liberation because of tradition. We can only go just so far with education.  We must not step on toes.”

Religion is of course part of the mix.  There are female goddesses in Hindu religion and they are devotedly worshiped.  But the culture of misogyny is so deep within the Indian mindset that even this has little effect in abating the behaviors of rape, molestation, etc. Goddesses are one thing, women are another.

Female Infanticide and the Sex Trade of Children

 –

There is a long history of female infanticide in India history.   Girls are killed at birth, or aborted or abandoned to die because their ‘worth’ is so much less than boys. ( In some families, the girls are only allowed to eat the leftovers of the boys after they have eaten.) This is part of the cultural behavior within India and is very old.  This is very much the base of this Indian misogyny.  It starts at the birth.  IF a female child is allowed to grow in the womb.  Recently I read that there are over 750,000 abortions of FEMALE fetus per year in India.  And, in many cases, if a woman delivers a girl child, the husband, the male of the family will tell her to  ‘get rid of it’.  In other words, many women face the situation of killing their own daughters shortly after birth.  Interestingly enough, there is now a shortage of women in India, and this fact is given for the rape and molestation by Indian men.  One man I know speaks of the necessity of sexual revolution in Indian culture, and this might be so, but I believe the situation goes beyond this.  It has everything to do with the cultural attitudes of Indians towards women, and yes, the attitudes of Indian mothers, also.

Women are just dismissed, demeaned, and denied within the broader Indian culture. They area truly second class citizens.  They are seen with little value by men.   It isn’t always sexual, but the fear that women live with is constant, and many times it is sexual.  The truncated intellectual progress that is denied because a woman is born a woman in India is one of the greatest wastes of humanity.

Statistically over 100,000 children are kidnapped or disappear from their parents and villages every year. This feeds into the sex trade and is generated also by the blinding poverty of the masses of Indians in rural villages and urban slums.  Parents sell their own children into this trade, or children are driven by hunger.

We in the West certainly have these same things, but definitely not to the extent that Indian women feel today.  Our laws are strong when applied and our police of course have the same ability to be as corrupt as the Indian police, but when our laws work, they abate some of this. But we don’t have one billion citizens and we don’t have quite the corruption of Indian lawmakers. Indian  courts are, at best, chaotic.  Rape and abuse cases can be ignored, or drag on for years.  And the feminist movement in India is little older than a decade.

I believe that generally good Indian men don’t understand how they can easily slip into the mind thought and behavior of misogyny.  Unfortunately, Indian men, many men in my experience take it as their right to demand that women do things they themselves don’t want to do.  It is because we, as women…our work, our creativity, are of a lesser standard in their eyes. Surely we can put aside our work, our propulsion towards our success for what is more ‘important’ in their belief.  This is an intellectual form of servitude.  We must see this behavior for what it is and bring it sharply to their attention.  Further, we must not be cajoled with praise to do things that put us off our road of progress.  This is a dead end for women and puts us further back in our successes in life.

 

Is India too dangerous to visit today?

 

Finally, is India too dangerous a country to visit?  I have had numerous friends, professional women and other poets who have gone to India in the past year to bring home their daughters studying there.  I would say that yes, India is in too much turmoil socially and politically for foreign women to visit, especially single women.  Even couples have been attacked, the woman gang raped and the man beaten. We have heard of many gang rapes of European women in the past few years  and this doesn’t even begin to amount to the terror and fear that Indian women and girls must live with daily.

What is the solution?  One Indian woman friend said that “all Indian men are misogynist. It’s in their DNA.”  I am hoping that those sane and good Indians, men and woman, realize how their country women (and men) are suffering and how the rest of the world sees India in all its disgusting denial for the violence it inflicts (and shows little remorse) upon the women and children of India.

Otherwise, travel there at your own risk.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2015-2016 

 

“Musings on a Closing Day”

May 12, 2016

 

917ce-pitcher

mount fuji, 2

I move my chair

to observe Mt. Fuji-

monstrous perfection

topped with the cooling crust

of spring snows.

 

Languid movement

of a branch,

like a geisha

unfurling her arm

from a gray kimono,

makes petals fall,

a scented, pink snow

covering my upturned face

with careless kisses.

 

Timid winds caress

my limbs,

a fleeting relief

to tired bones

brittle now with

a sullen defeat of life.

 

Raked sand of garden

waves barely disturbed

by feet like two gray stones

as grains flow

round ankles.

I realize once again

I am no obstacle to

the sands of time.

 

My heart is quieted

by the passage of nothing

for in this nothing

is revealed the fullness of life.

 

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2o14

“Musings on a Closing Day” was included in “Pitcher of Moon”, Amazon.com 2014,

“The Garden at Dawn”

May 8, 2016

crescent-moon

 

The Garden at Dawn

 

The dawn moon appears

Low in the eastern sky,

With an idiot’s grin

From cheek to cheek,

A glow so intense

It startles the eye.

 

My hands deep in the soil

Planting tender shoots of life

With reverence that feeds the soul

As seedlings feed flesh later to come.

 

There is God in this black soil,

Earthworms and tiny bits of life

Independent of will or wishes.

 

Moonbeams spill on this tilled earth

Like a benediction or a blessing,

And bathes plants and planter with expectation,

Promise.

 

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2016

 

Sometimes you have to admit that there is nothing you can do.

That is the feeling many of us have today. The chaos, insanity and downright vulgarity of the current campaigns is bewildering and in the end….unbelievable.

Is our nation having a collective meltdown?

We aren’t facing what Europe is right now. Not yet, and hopefully, never in those extremes. You have to trust the securities who protect us and our nation will finally get it right. These things are almost “Mission Impossible”. We pray for these folk.

Here, at ‘Clach Mhullinn’, (‘millstone around the neck’ in Gallic), we have decided there is nothing we can do about whatever is going to happen out there: here? We can plant gardens, tend fruit trees, cuddle our hens and one rooster (“Goofy”….not a Trump insult), and enjoy what life we have left. Having strong fences and good neighbors help in this.

In the end, we all are living in the Age of Anxiety. But we don’t have to live in the Age of Fear.

Lady Nyo

 

My beautiful picture

Watercolor, Early Spring, Jane Kohut-Bartels, 2011

 

“Storm Drain Baby”

May 5, 2016

backyard 6

 

Yesterday a baby was born,

Placed in a storm drain

To die by a father who wasn’t.

Three days of heavy rain

Washed the Blood of this Lamb

Into the sea.

 

He was found, expected to live

And died,

His short life measured in scant public

Outrage.

 

The 19 year old father said as they

Led him away:

“It was a miscarriage gone wrong.”

 

The rain continues today

Rushing down streets

To storm drains,

Making a gurgling sound.

 

 

Jane Kohut-Bartels

September 18, 2009-2016

(“Storm Drain Baby” first published in PoetCRIT Journal, India, 2010 by Jane Kohut-Bartels)

How many children must be killed by parents and gang violence before someone says “Enough”.  Here in Atlanta, and surrounding counties,  the killing of children, toddlers and babies are almost a weekly occurrence.  Domestic violence and gang violence, where children get caught in the crossfire doesn’t seem to stop. How many more children will be sacrificed to a cultural chaos?

“The Children of Aleppo”

May 3, 2016

backyard 4

How many men have left Syria for ‘a better life’?  How many young Syrian men are in Europe ‘looking for economic opportunities’,  while children of Aleppo are killed daily?

 

The Children of Aleppo

 

There is no childhood in Aleppo.

There are little martyrs-in-the-making

Where 5 year olds and 8 year olds

Wish for a ‘family death’

Where they can die together

With their parents

Where they live in peace in Heaven

Never tasting the fruits of peace on Earth.

 

There is no childhood in Aleppo.

The children haunt the abandoned houses

Of friends who have fled the city.

There they find abandoned teddy bears

While looking for guns for the rebels, their fathers.

 

“Oh, the poor thing!”

A dead canary in his cage

Abandoned by its owners

They flee the rockets, bombs

And mortars.

In the face of daily death

The sight of this bird

Evokes a child’s sorrow.

But the gunfire outside continues

(They are used to the noise)

And huddle in the pockmarked

Halls until safe to scatter.

 

 

The children of Aleppo

Have no teachers, doctors.

These have fled the cities, schools

But they still pine for ice cream,

For music in the streets,

For curtains not torn by violence,

For books and toys

And gardens and flowers,

For friends that have not died

Innocent blood splattering

The dirty cobble stones

At their feet.

 

The children of Aleppo

Are free and children again

Only in their dreams,

And perhaps, if you believe so,

After death.

 

How do you put back the brains

Of a child in the cup of the shattered skull?

How do you soothe the howls of the mothers

The groans of the fathers in grief?

How do you comfort the left-alive siblings?

 

The children of Aleppo

Have no future as children.

Suffer the little children here,

They are the sacrifice of parents

And factions,

And politicians

All with the blood of

10,000 children

Who have died

In a country torn

By immeasurable violence.

 

The beautiful children of Aleppo

Like children everywhere

Still want to chase each other

In the gardens, on playgrounds,

Want to dance in the streets,

Want to pluck flowers for their mothers

And they still pine for ice cream.

 

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2014-2016

Some pictures of the roses starting to bloom.

May 1, 2016

PICT0747.JPG

This is a “Lady Banks” rose that completely took over a corner of the house.  Thorn less, but only blooms one a year.  However, the blooming is  spectacular and they last a long time.  We cut it down and transplanted it to the new wrought iron fence in the front, where it is greatly diminished.  Next year it should get on it’s feet and spread.

 

Lady of Shallot rose

(Lady of Shallot Rose, David Austen English Roses)

backyard with geraniums

 

The backyard has been an issue for years:  4 dogs don’t help, especially the two girls, Daphne and the new Mia.  They compete as to who can dig the biggest holes.

We gave up on grass until we put out potted roses and some blueberries.  Now if they want to destroy the grass, they have to maneuver around big pots.  And since it’s getting really hot out there, they rather spend the hours of extreme sun inside on the cool tiles of the laundry room. ,,,

Our great friend, Nick Nicholson from Canberra, Australia was here in March, and the backyard didn’t look anything like this.  Nick, these photos are for you.

Lady Nyo 

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Most of these roses are potted, patio roses, except for a Coretta King rose, (second from left)  three new apricot David Austin roses ( Lady of Shallot) , and a few other English roses , names escape me.  This is just the second year we have had patio roses, and it is amazing how easy they are to grow.  They are constant bloomers, and will soon outgrow their bots.  No disease, no demands except water and fertilizer.  Since we have 8 hens and a rooster, we are using chicken poop for fertilizer.  If you look at the back of the most expensive rose food, the first ingredients are feathers and poop.  Having this fertilizer daily to distribute, the roses are loving it.

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These  two “New Dawn” roses  are climbers.  They are a lovely rose, with almost no smell unfortunately. A very heavy blooming in the spring, and then repeat (sort of) bloom  later. These are just gathering buds and clusters of flowers that will bloom fully in about a week and a half.  These  two roses form a tunnel that is 12 feet long and 5 feet deep.  It is quite spectacular in full blossom.  I’ll take more pictures when these are in full flower. We will have to put up a real pergola  soon as they need the support.  Quite a show when they are in full bloom.

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“New Dawn” up close.

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With today’s deluge,  a torrent of rain that has caused  a ‘boil water’ warning, we are expecting more rain tomorrow.  With all these roses and a new (and weedy) garden, we need all the rain we can get.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2016

 


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