Saturday, September 11, 2021

Remember yesterday, when I wondered if I might find another mushroom on my walk? Well, it turned out to be a banner day for urban foraging, as I found three puffballs in my own garden and, in the cemetery, a handful of--believe it or not--chanterelles! I have never before found chants in Portland, though I had a modest patch of them in Harmony, so I know how wonderful they taste. For dinner, I roasted duck legs and served them with a mixture of my three wild mushrooms--the chicken-of-the-woods I'd saved in the freezer and today's batch . . . all of them picked in busy, well-traveled Deering Center, Portland. A little gift from the forest, right here in the city. No wonder people think of mushrooms as magical.

This afternoon I'm reading with several other Maine poets in Deering Oaks Park, at the bandstand, at 1 p.m., so stop by if you're in town. There are several other readers, including Richard Foerster, Betsy Sholl, and Linda Aldrich. I'll be reading two poems, a recent one and one from my first book, Boy Land, much of which was written in the 9/11 era. Though the poems don't directly address that tragedy, some of them do wrestle with the anxieties of the moment, when I was home with two small boys and overwhelmed by the knowledge that I could not protect them from disaster.

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