“Cicadas.”

insect_musicians_WilHershberger_AnnualCicadaEmergent_SmallWorldSpectaculars

Finally, after nine years
of snouting through darkness
he inches up scarred bark
and cuts loose the yammer of desire:

the piercing one note of a jackhammer,
vibrating like a slow bolt of lightning
splitting the air
and leaving a smell like burnt tar paper.

Now it says Now it says Now
clinging with six clawed legs
and close by, a she like a withered ear,
a shed leaf brown and veined,
shivers in sync and moves closer.

This is it, time is short, death is near, but first,
first, first, first
in the hot sun, searing all day long
in a month that has no name:

this annoying noise of love. This maddening racket.
This – admit it – song.

Poem: Margaret Atwood

Photo: Wil Hershberger, Annual Cicada Emergent
Swamp Cicada, Tibicen chloromea, sheeding
the last juvenile exoskeleton and emerging as an adult. Princeton, New Jersy, USA.


September Midnight

Cricket
Lyric night of the lingering Indian Summer,
Shadowy fields that are scentless but full of singing,
Never a bird, but the passionless chant of insects,
Ceaseless, insistent.

The grasshopper’s horn, and far-off, high in the maples,
The wheel of a locust leisurely grinding the silence
Under a moon waning and worn, broken,
Tired with summer.

Let me remember you, voices of little insects,
Weeds in the moonlight, fields that are tangled with asters,
Let me remember, soon will the winter be on us,
Snow-hushed and heavy.

Over my soul murmur your mute benediction,
While I gaze, O fields that rest after harvest,
As those who part look long in the eyes they lean to,
Lest they forget them.

Sara Teasdale — Originally published in Poetry, March 1914.

Cricket in Times Square

The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden (1960)


Country Roads and Coffee (Westsylvania)

As dievca is making her way through Western PA via I 80, Coffee and John Denver are making the drive a bit easier. Too bad her acapella version doesn’t sound like this:

By the way, did you know that Pittsburgh was almost a part of West Virginia?

In the years before the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), the jurisdiction of the region west of the Allegheny Mountains around Pittsburgh and along the Ohio River had been disputed between the British colonies of Virginia and Pennsylvania. The Mason-Dixon line, which officially established the border between Pennsylvania and Maryland, would have also settled the Virginia-Pennsylvania boundary dispute, but the surveying of the final miles of the Mason-Dixon line was abandoned in 1767 and would not be completed until 1784. In the early 1770s, it was therefore unclear whether Pittsburgh and its environs were in Pennsylvania or Virginia. Both colonies proceeded as if they had a better claim to the area. Virginia administered the region as the District of West Augusta, while in Pennsylvania it was considered a part of Westmoreland County.

Complicating this border dispute were the vast land claims of the Ohio Company of Virginia and the Indiana Land Company along the Ohio River. The two companies combined forces in 1769 to create the Grand Ohio Company with the intention of creating a colony known as Vandalia, which would have had similar borders to Westsylvania had it been recognized. The outbreak of the American Revolutionary War effectively brought an end to the efforts to establish Vandalia.


A little reminder of Life outside of COVID-19

In this time of social distancing, dievca would like to remind you of just how much fun a crowd can be: