Saturday, May 01, 2004

War at home ...

I have a rant brewing about the Bush administration's attempts to award itself the rights of a military dictatorship, as well as other recent revelations, but I'm feeling too demoralized to tap it all out on the keyboard right now. I'm also a little tired after having done battle against poison ivy all morning.

Every time my face itches now I'm convinced it's a poison ivy rash. The pestilent weed creeps into my yard over, under and through the fence from my neighbor's yard. This is the neighbor who is dead, so there's no one minding his yard. His son Howard drops by now and then and plans to sell the house, but right now it's just in unoccupied limbo. Even when it was occupied no one minded the yard, so the poison ivy has become quite well established and every spring it launches an invasion into my yard as well. So after pulling all the bits from my side of the fence, I went over to attack it on its home turf. I wore long pants, long sleeves and gloves, but I could never be sure that the evildoing weed hadn't just brushed against my face or taken advantage of the occasional gaps between the end of my sleeves and the top of my gloves.

I had to take out a lot of innocent civilian vegetation to get to the enemy. There were wisteria vines (which I really like so it broke my heart to have to hack it away), climbing roses, English ivy, miscellaneous viney things, common privet and a few other woody shrubs, all intertwined with the poison ivy. I kept saying to myself "I have to destroy the village in order to save it." It's actually a little true--I want the poison ivy gone, and I may actually resort to chemicals to do it, even though that goes against my whole organic approach to the garden thing. Roundup and its ilk takes out the civilians along with the combatants, so the lovely wisteria would become the ex-wisteria. My hacking may have been beneficial, however, because everything was in need of a good pruning.

At any rate, it was impossible to get it all, and if you leave even a tiny rhizome it will come back. So I'm sure I'll be back on the battlefield by summer's end.

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