The Clueless Eater

Sweetening the soil at the Rock Farm
Volcanic Explosion?

No, la jefa of the Rock Farm Community Garden, Anita Rockefeller, spread lime over all of our plots, creating this eerie landscape. I happened to be there Thursday before the evening rain soaked the fine powder into the earth. The darker front rows are my plot, where I turned it in and planted a row of blue potatoes and a row of carrots. Next, we will spread a layer of compost. Supposedly, we should avoid turning the soil too much. This should encourage a build up of compost and keep carbon sequestered in the soil, where it belongs.

Spring is here after an unusually dry winter, during which our moisture was turned into snow and dumped on the east coast. The rains have begun on a regular basis, and the warmer weather makes the blue herons broody. They have begun standing on last year's nests in their rookery, making a noise like rusty gates. A local owl was up at 4:00 this morning, playing his mournfully beautiful flute.

I have been browsing through seeds and plants in the area, and found a strawberry pot which will grow the plants vertically, taking up less garden space. Unfortunately, it cost about three times what I expected to pay. Instead, the clerk generously offered me one she has at home and is not using. Maybe I can leave a gift card at the nearby espresso stand for her.

I have two more rows to plant, plus my rhubarb plant that has begun showing its leaves above the surface. Maybe this year I will plant broccoli and bush beans. I still have kale in the freezer from last fall, so I think I planted too much. We hope the neighbor will let us keep a potted tomato plant on his porch, which offers strong sunshine and easy access from our house.

Spring daydreaming. Let me know what you expect to plant.

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Selected Works

From the early literature of the Americas to the late 20th Century
Creative Nonfiction
Essays on Family and Writing

The Desert Remembers My Name makes an important contribution to discussions of ethnicity, identity, and the literature of place.”
Bloomsbury Review
"...a mesmerizing tale... the author explores the fascinating confusions and contradictions plaguing a culture precariously poised between tradition and modernization."
"She never forgot the power of storytelling as testimony."
The Utne Reader
"Kathleen Alcalá's Spirits of the Ordinary is an enthralling book..."
–Paul Yamazaki, City Lights Books

"This book entered my dreams."
–Alberto Rios
Short Fiction
"Thoroughly satisfying."
The New York Times Book Review

"By turns touching, entertaining, and surprising, and uniquely her own."
Publishers Weekly

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