It’s Too Hot to Mow the Lawn

The rest of the line goes, ‘so we rode a century’, but we didn’t. Today the mercury climbed to near ninety. We fired up the air-conditioning, just to ‘test’ it and then we mowed the lawn. Here is the back story on this day’s endeavors.

Birch Tress at Dawn on Lake George, by Georgia O'Keeffe, 1925

This painting seems more than organic to me, rather it looks sensual, almost erotic. The birch are almost unrecognizable as trees. Still it is a pretty painting. The following paragraph is the Saint Louis Art Museum’s writeup on Georgia O’Keeffe’s “Birch Tress at Dawn on Lake George”.

Sinuous tree trunks and contrasts of pale peach and dark green lend dramatic effect to this work. Georgia O’Keeffe was one of a group of leading American artists who introduced the principles of modern European abstract art to the United States in the early 20th century. Her abstractions of the natural world often feature curving organic forms and maintain a recognizable subject matter.

A letter from the city was waiting for us, when we returned from our bicycle ride yesterday. It basically said, mow your lawn or we will. I must admit that it is over the proscribed 7″ in spots. Those spots just happen to coincide with where our neighbor’s dogs have been fertilizing our grass all winter. The aesthetics of a cyclist’s yard aside, I knuckled under to the rubric that you can’t fight city hall and dug the mower out of winter storage. This excavation unearthed a problem, the water heater is leaking. The joys of home ownership.

In past years the first mowing of the season was always a traumatic affair. That was because in past years, my mower was a reel mower and the old Mark 1 motor wasn’t always up to the job. Now I have an electric mower, so even 7″ long blades are no match to my mower’s snicker-snack. Their curving organic forms fall like leaves of grass to my Ameren powered behemoth.

With the day’s itinerary dictated, I lean and loaf at my ease observing a spear of summer grass. Tenderly I will use you short curling grass. I believe a leaf of grass is no less than the journey work of the stars. I bequeath myself to the dirt to grow from the grass I love, If you want me again look for me under your boots. Long and long has the grass been growing. Give me a field where the unmowed grass grows. The good green grass, that delicate miracle the ever-recurring grass. O deathless grass!

After our transcendental experience with the lawn, we rehung Dan’s aluminium mountain sculpture on the garage. When we were done, we found that the A/C was working just fine and like a siren’s song, its sweet coolness lured us away from any further thoughts of both mowing and biking all in one day. I suspect that the city’s exhortation had less to do with the height of our grass, but with the height of our crazy neighbor’s lawn. If they are going to foreclose on him for back taxes and fees, then it wouldn’t be fair to let us skirt the law either.

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